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noble expressive features, the look of She shook her head mournfully but high bearing and dignity, were there. decidedly. Her dress was as simple as it was The advocate turned to the court becoming : a black silk robe, a hat and “ My client declines to adduce any veil of the same colour, and her only evidence. She will abide the result ornament a slender gold chain which as it stands." sustained her watch. The favourable The public prosecutor rose to ad impression which her appearance dress the jury. Instead of following made upon the public could not be him through his long, and in some mistaken.
respects impressive, commentary on Near her sat the private complainer, the evidence, we shall state briefly the Ferdinand von Preussach, the subject conclusions to which his speech was also of great observation, though ob- directed. viously of a less favourable kind. His “He held it to be clear," he said, “that well formed features betrayed a pain. Baron Hermann von Preussach had ful restlessness, which, in the course been assassinated, and by means of a of the proceedings, sometimes amount- sharp instrument, apparently a knife
. ed almost to distortion. The witnesses That there had been others on the in general sat silent, and with down- spot at the time who were the authors cast eyes; many of the ladies dissolved of the deed, seemed plain froin all the in tears.
evidence. The president, a man of imposing “ The time of the assassination, exterior, addressed the accused. She though not fixed to an hour, was rose and answered the usual questions plainly brought within the compass as to name, rank, and residence, in a the 24th August, the day on the low tone, scarcely audible to the court. morning of which the deceased had The jury were then empannelled and been last seen alive. The place was sworn; the act of accusation, which evidently the ruin on the Raubstein, was long and detailed, and which from whence the body had been concharged the accused with being an veyed to St Anne's chapel below." accomplice in the murder of her hus
He proceeded to detail the combi. band, was read; her counsel denied nation of circumstances which had the charge, and the examination the led to the suspicion, and the subsewitnesses commenced.
quent conviction that the accused was We need not pursue these examina connected with the murder. tions in detail. Suffice it to say, that “ The idea of the crime having been abont forty witnesses were examined; committed with a view to robbery, and that, though some important was out of the question. The ring points were elicited on cross-exami. left on the finger of the deceased—his nation, their depositions before the purse left in the poor's chest of the court were, in substance, the same chapel-excluded that supposition. with those which they had given on “ That a woman had been contheir preliminary examination. The cerned in the deed was proved by points in which they differed, will be many circumstances, some of real
, sufficiently indicated by the observa- some of parole evidence. The stripes tions made by the counsel for the de- of a silk dress found round the body fence.
and among the bushes-the Danish At the conclusion of the evidence, leather glove-the evidence of the which had occupied the greater part witnesses who had seen a lady ascendof two days, and in the course of which ing the path to the Raubstein on the several warm debates had taken place forenoon of the 24th August—that of on contested questions of evidence, the bath-keeper and others who had the president addressed the priso. seen her again at Schlingin, wounded,
agitated, in company with a stranger “ Had she any evidence to adduce ? who had used expressions, the import If so, the necessary delay would be of which could not be mistaken as granted to her."
pointing to some recent tragedyA short and earnest conversation clearly connected a female with the took place in an under tone between assassination of the 24th August. the lady and her counsel. The latter “ But was it not equally certain that seemed to press upon her some ad this female was the Baroness von vice to which she was disinclined. Preussach? The evidence proved
unquestionably that after their sepa- the result of a deliberate plan, arising ration, and unknown apparently to from the embarrassment caused by her parents, a secret correspondence pecuniary extravagance: he admitted continued between the spouses, he wri- that the balance of the evidence in ting from K—, and she from Blu- favour of character, appeared inconmenrode. It was proved by the letters sistent with the notion of a murder themselves that a secret and decisive perpetrated from interested motives, interview had been resolved on: that and concerted long before. interview had taken place on the 24th “ But her passionate temper was as August. The baroness bad joined her distinctly proved as the better parts of husband in the house of Madame her character. The passions of her Veitel ; her dress on that occasion husband were as impetuous as her own. corresponded, as far as could be seen, His object in the interview plainly was, with that worn by the stranger at to obtain in any way her consent to a Schlingin. From Madame Veitel's the reconciliation and renewal of their parties had continued their walk to intercourse; by fair means, if possible; the lonely and unfrequented thickets if these failed, probably by force. That of the Raubstein, which had proved he had threatened violent measures on the scene of the lamentable catastrophe. some former occasion was evident; for
• Every thing confirmed this view. her letter had alluded to warnings reThe baroness returns to her party in ceived from a third party, which, conHilgenberg late in the evening, pale fident in her own strength of mind, and agitated, with white gloves sub- she had despised. Might not the viostituted for the pair of Danish gloves, lence thus threatened have been atof which one had been left behind in tempted to be carried into execution her flight. She feigns a story of the at this decisive interview. of the 24th distresses of a Madame Seehausen, of August, when the stimulus of in.. who never existed; conceals the wound toxication appeared to have been added in her hand by the constant use of to the natural violence of his characgloves; shortens her stay at Blumen- ter, and the excitement of passion ?. rode by nearly two months; writes If on that occasion he attempted forcianxiously, again and again, to know bly to remove her from the spot, was whether any thing is discovered as to it improbable that she too, of passions the murder; is overpowered by the as violent as his own, might be hurried sight of the brother of her murdered into crime-might snatch the knife husband, and by the intelligence that which lay beside, and plunge it into an innocent person had been arrested the heart of her husband ? on suspicion of the crime of which she " And what answer does the accused herself had been guilty : last of all, make to all the charges against her? the watch and marriage-ring of her What proofs does she oppose to them ? husband, which the witnesses from What witnesses does she call? What K-spoke to his wearing, are found is her defence ? Obstinate silence-a in her possession.
silence inexplicable upon the supposiTaking these circumstances toge- tion of innocence, perfectly natural ther, are we not compelled to echo the upon the supposition of guilt; partiexclamation which escaped from her cularly in one not so depraved as to mother,— Unhappy girl, you are no
resort to artifice and falsehood in orstranger to Hermann's death!'
der to shield her from the consequences “ That another person was also con
of the crime into which she has been cerned along with her ;- that that hurried." person was the woodman who had The auditory had listened with been seen in her company at Schlin- deep anxiety to the long address of gin, was not improbable; but that did the public prosecutor. Opinions were not the less leave the charge of a guilty much divided at its conclusion. The participation in her husband's murder female part of the spectators inclined proved against her.
to the theory that the baroness was “ But the motive, it might be asked, not guilty of the murder of her husthe motive for the crime? That mo. band, though not ignorant of the cirtive he was not bound to explain ; but cumstances of the murder; the male he thought it might be naturally ex- part of the auditory were disposed, in plained. He gave no weight to the the main, to concur in the conclusions insinuation that the deed had been of the public prosecutor. The con
duct of the baroness in Hilgenberg- ceed to the estates by the proof of
mann's, did it follow that Hermann The advocate for the accused rose was the wearer? In how many ways to address the court, amidst the deep might another person become the pos. silence of expectation and anxiety. We sessor of a ring which had belonged pass over the introduction of his plead to him? It might have been dropped, ing, and come at once to the subject. it might have been sold, gifted, stolen, matter :
and found on the finger of the finder, “It was strange," he said, “that the the purchaser, the friend, or the thief: public prosecutor had assumed, without any one of these cases would equally argument, the very basis of the whole account for what had happened. accusation--that the dead man of St “ How many instances had occurred Anne's chapel was Hermann von in the annals of courts of justice of Preussach, the husband of the ac- persons who had long disappeared, cused.
who had been supposed dead or mur. “What, after all, was the proof of the dered, re-appearing after the lapse of corpus delicti, that Hermann was dead years, sometimes just in time to save or assassinated by any hand whatever? from the scaffold the innocent beings To the civil court the proof of his who had been accused of depriving death had appeared insufficient. They them of life? How laudable, there. had refused their attestation to that fore, the extreme jealousy and caution effect when solicited by the private of the law, in demanding strict evidence complainer. Would the criminal tribu. of that which must form the basis of nal be satisfied with less evidence, in a every accusation? How fearful would matter of life and death, than the civil be their responsibility, if, after a sen. court required in a question of pro- tence of conviction against the accused, perty?
the very man who was supposed to be " True, a man had been found dead murdered should re-appear, but too in the neighbourhood of the chapel. late to save the victim of a mistaken Circumstances seemed to prove that prosecution and a rash and misjudging this person was a Herr von Breisach, verdict. once resident in K, and who had “ But let it be supposed that Her. slept at the forest inn on the night be- mann and the dead man of the chapel fore the 24th of August. But what proof are one-what is the evidence which existed that this man, described as a is to connect the accused with his low adventurer, shunning society, and death ? leading an obscure and discreditable “ I begin with the letters. I deny life, was the gay, handsome, and that there is any proof that the letter noble Baron Hermann von Preussach? of the 21st July, written in French, is No one who had seen the body before in the handwriting of my client. The interment knew the baron, or could mere resemblance of handwriting is, speak to his identity with Breisach. of all evidence, the most fallacious and The landlord, no doubt, recognised unsatisfactory ; the faults of orthogra. in the dead man his guest of the night phy, with which the letters are filled, before; but of who the guest was he are inconsistent with the supposition knew nothing. To what, then, did that the letter is the production of an the evidence connecting the dead educated person. That Hermann was adventurer with the baron come ? a man addicted to licentious amours, Simply to this:- The dead man wore seems to be part of the prosecutor's a seal-ring bearing the arms of Preus- How many such billets, then, sach, and said to have belonged to may he not have received? How close, Hermann.
in general, is the resemblance of female “ Was it Hermann's? Even this was hands, when educated in the same not proved; for the only evidence on school, or under the same system ? the subject was the suspicious testi. “The prosecutor, in order to connect mony of Ferdinand von Preussach, the accused with this letter, assumes the the interested party, who would suce theory of a secret correspondence car
ried on between the spouses after their was the baroness; and the baroness i separation ; and then he adduces the had been present at the scene of the y letter itself as proof of that correspond. murder.
There is no evidence that that “ That a woman might have been letter was written by the accused. The seen on the mountain.path that day, real evidence it affords is the other and that the scene described by the way.
bath-keeper's wife as to the binding of “But the scrap found in the music, the wound might have taken place, he book at Blumenrode. That I admit did not question. But though the to be in the handwriting of the accu- woman had at first pretended to idensed; but it would be difficult to discover tify the lady with Madame von Preusaby resemblance between that frag- sach, she had plainly owned, in her eviment and the handwriting of the dence on the trial, that she could not. French letter. The one is written in Her house was dark; the scene, ac. German characters, the other in cording to her own account, was over French. There can be no argument in a few minutes ; scarce a word was from one to another. They do not spoken; how then, at the distance of appear in fact to resemble each other. a twelvemonth, could she pretend to
“But the meaning putupon this scrap recognise the person whose wound had by the public prosecutor is a forced been bound up? Her husband, who
He says the words ' A. knows had bound up the wound, was dead; me,' refer to Hermann. He arrives from him her testimony could receive at this conclusion by translating the no corroboration. Dame Hermann into French, Armand. " Was the dress of the Baroness von But why a French name in the midst Preussach proved to correspond with of a German letter? Then, to whom that of the person who had beeri is the letter addressed ?
wounded ? Assuredly not. The baththird party who had given a warning keeper's wife was the only witness to the writer. Who was this ? On who had any distinct recollection as the theory of the public prosecutor, he to the one, and she thought the gown should have explained who was thus was of green silk. The Countess von the confidant of the secret correspond- Koss and her daughters, who spoke to ence; for might not that third party, the dress worn by the baroness in Hilthus cognizant of the secret relations genberg, were clear that it was not of that existed between the husband and green silk; though the private comwife, be, on his own theory, the real plainerhad done all in his power to assist author of the crime, if crime were their memory. Both, to be sure, seemed committed ?
to have worn a bonnet and parasol-of "For his own part, he did not think a light colour; the wonder would have the fragment was a real letter at all. been if in summer it had been other. He believed it to be part of an imagi. wise. nary epistle, probably a portion of a • But a stripe of silk is found wrapnovel which she might have copied. ped round the body, and another frag
“ But then there was a chain of cir- ment is found sticking upon a bush. cumstances relied on to connect the It is assumed that these belonged to, Baroness von Preussach with the com. and had been worn by, the female who mission of the crime.
A woman had was wounded. I am willing to take seen, on the 24th August, on the it so; it is a proof that that person path to the Raubstein ; in Schlingin, was not the baroness. One of the on the after part of the same day, leading witnesses for the prosecution wounded in the hand, agitated, trem. (the rector's wife) states, that these bling, accompanied by a woodman : formed part of a shawl so coarse and her dress, it was said, corresponded vulgar, both in colour and texture, that with Madame von Preussach's, who no cook would have worn it. Does had been mysteriously absent from that suit with the idea of the Baroness her party in Hilgenberg during the von Preussach, who lavishes fortunes whole day; had had an interview in on dress, patronises Madame Tieffe,
the forenoon with a gentleman at the and never sleeps but with gloves on? his house of Madame Veitel, and had “ And this brings me to the glove.
afterwards been seen accompanying A right hand glove is found near the him in the direction of the Raubstein. Raubstein; it bears the stamp of MaThis person then, it was assumed, dame Tieffe. A left hand glove, bear
ing the same stamp, is found in the heard of it. The house-surgeon never possession of the clergyman's daugh, was applied to to dress it. He speaks, ter, which she appears to have recei. indeed, of an attack of nervousness ved from the waiting-woman of the and low spirits, but of nowound in the baroness. These must be a pair; there. hand. If she wore her glove when he fore the baroness was upon the moun- felt her pulse, he states also that this tain: the baroness dropped the right was her constant practice. hand glove which bears the spots of “ Such a wound as is described must blood.
have left a trace. But on this point the “But why must the gloves be a pair ? evidence is in favour of the accused. Because they resemble each other in One surgeon, indeed, speaks doubtsize, in material, in workmanship? fully of some invisible, and, as he ad. Why, how many thousand pairs, ex- mits, almost impalpable line running actly of the same kind, must be an- across the hand-which, with all de. nually put into circulation from such ference, appears simply to have been an establishment as Madame Tieffe's; a natural one. The other two candidly the same pattern, the same materials, admit that they see no traces of any according to the reigning fashion ? wound whatever. Who can pretend, out of a hundred “ So far every thing is against the pairs, to say this right hand glove bee supposition on which the whole case of longs to that left hand one? What, the prosecutor rests—that the wounded then, is the result ? Simply this at the person and the Baroness von Preus utmost : That some customer of Ma. sach are the same. dame Tieffe dropped one of her gloves “ But, farther, the charge against the in the Raubstein, and that the accused baroness involves the supposition that is a customer of Madame Tieffe. the murder took place during the fore.
“ But when was this glove dropped ? noon of the 24th August. On that Why on the 24th August? Why not day only she was in Hilgenberg. long before? Why not after ? Before On the 25th she returned to Blumen. the glove was found, a crowd had col. rode. lected about the Raubstein, including “ But, after all, what is the proof many females : they were busily ex- that the murder, if such it was, was ploring in all directions ; how easily committed on the 24th ? Why not might any one of them have dropped on the 25th ? The whole proof the glove in question ?
on the subject consists of the conjec. • What importance can be attached tures of the medical man, derived from to the story told by the countess and the appearances of incipient corrupher daughters, that the baroness went tion. "'The body was found early on out with Danish gloves in the morn- the 26th August; "a considerable ing, and returned in the evening with time,' he thinks, must have elapsed white. If, as she says, she paid a visit before such an effect would have been to a friend, and her feelings were agi- produced by the influence of the sun tated-particularly as she only left her and air : the deceased had been seen towards dusk-wasit very unlikely that alive in the morning of the 24th ; she might make an involuntary ex- therefore he thinks the assassination change of gloves, and then only dis- must have taken place early in the cover her mistake when she was too course of that day. far off to return and correct the error? 666 A considerable time!' How in.
“ But, according to the hypothesis of definite! how unsatisfactory! as if the public prosecutor, she returned the symptoms of putrefaction might wounded. Those white gloves con- not depend upon a thousand circum. cealed a wound in the hand. Who stances which baffle all conjecture as ever saw this wound-which, if as de- to time: a shower of rain, an hour or scribed by the bath-keeper's wife, must two of hotter sunshine, the dampness have been of some size ? I doubt or dryness of the atmosphere, the pre. whether by any process a hand so ban. vious habit of body of the deceased, daged could be forced into a glove, might either accelerate or retard the even of large size. But the family of approaches of decay. How can any Langsitz saw nothing of the kind. one, who never once saw the deceased They laugh at the supposition. The before, pretend to say that, if the death family of Baron Kettler, to whose took place on the 25th, all these symp; house she returned the next day, never toms which were actually found would