"This makes of thee a master, me a slave.
And I destroy it; we are equal now."
A NOT less exciting scene was now going on within the council chamber. There, all was confusion and despair. The shock of such a doom as that which the chiefs had heard pronounced by the people, under the influence of the prophet, came upon them like a bolt of thunder. For a moment it paralyzed with its terrors the hearts of those who had no fear of death. The mere loss of life is always an event of triumph with the brave among the Indians, and, for the due ennobling of which, his song of past victories and achievements, carefully chronicled by a memory which has scarcely any other employment, is shouted forth in the most acute physical agony, with a spirit which nothing can bend or conquer. But to deprive him of this memory — to eradicate all the marks of his achievements — to take from him the only credential by which he operates among his fellows, and claims a place in the ranks of the illustrious dead — was a refinement upon the terrors of punishment, which, unfrequently practised, was held as a doom, intended to paralyze, as in the present instance, every spark of moral courage which the victim might possess. For a moment such was its effect in the assembly of the chiefs. The solitary howl of despair which their unanimous voices sent up, as the first intimation of the decree met their ears, was succeeded by the deepest silence, while they threw themselves upon their faces, and the torch-bearers, burying their torches in the clay floor of the building, with something of that hate and horror which seemed to distinguish the body of the Indians without, rushed forth from the apartment and joined with the assembled people. Their departure aroused the despairing inmates, and while one of them carefully again closed the entrance before the watchful mass without could avail themselves of the opening, the rest prepared themselves with renewed courage to deliberate upon their situation.
" There is death for Manneywanto,"exclaimed that fierce warrior and chief —
" he will not lose the arrow of his tribe. I will go forth to the hatchet. I will lift my arm, and strike so that theyshall slay."