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since that its nature has changed, the symphonies are not so good, and the songs are worse: painting is now dead and buried : Canova has burst out by chance, by the power of vegetation, which this fine climate bestows on the soul of man; but, like Alfieri, he is a monster; nothing resembles him; nothing approaches him. "Sculpture, speak. ing generally, is no less dead in Italy, than the art of Correggio ; en. graving is tolerably well supported, but merely as a trade.' p. 11.
Our Author tears himself from Milan with reluctance. Its splendid theatre, where there are two hundred boxes, each capable of containing a party of friends, its divine sherbets,' the gelatti, the crepé, the pezzi-duri, all so excellent, that in spite of making the experiment every night, he never could determine which sort was the best ; the congenial enthusiasm of his associates, some of whom would come fifty miles to enjoy a deli
cious interval of six minutes, which solitary passage was the only one of delight that occurred in a representation of two hours long, all seem to have endeared this city to him, and be leaves it with the high compliment of saying, that in its inhabitants he witnessed the rare combination, in an equal degree, of goodness and wisdom. He proceeds on his way to Rome in a very bad humour, insomuch that he thinks it necessary to assure the reader that no part of it is owing to any physical cause; fearing to be suspected of labouring under some disease of the same nature with that which has been supposed to have rendered Smollet and Sharp so caustic in their remarks. At Bologna, where he staid only thirty-six hours, he saw ten superb galleries, heard two concerts, and was introduced to some savans, whom he finds out to be egregious fools.
Immediately on arriving at Florence, be flies to the theatre, where his ears are first shocked by the pronunciation of the famed language, and then soothed by the notes of his favourite Rossini. Still, he is disgusted with Florence, finding nothing in it but long phrases and fine liveries. He continues bis route, crying, “ It is all barren.' • If there is a road in the world more . abominable than any other, it is that from Florence, to Rome, by Sienna. Travellers humbug exceedingly, when they talk so much of lovely Italy. The road from Florence to Rome reminded me strongly of the province of Champague, only that the arid plain is exchanged for naked bills. p. 29.
He enters Rome by the famous Porto dei Popolo, and exelaims,“ Ah, what dupes are we!” He is disappointed in every thing he sees. The theatres are inferior to the barns of Paris ; and to make it worse, he finds himself surrounded by English, who, when he talks to them of music, and addresses himself to their feelings, answer him by quotations from Dr. Burney. To the English,' says he, music is a mere dead letter.'
At last, he finds among those who belong to the ambassadors, a few men
of good sense, who think exactly like himself : indubitable proof of the correctness of their notions! He is interested also in the ecstacies into which the English ladies are thrown by the magnificent ceremonies of St. Peter's Church, on Christinas-day; but the most extraordinary thing of all is, that he sees two or three Englishmen who actually seem to feel the music. He is not himself much impressed with veneration for the Catholic forms of worship, nor indeed, as it'should seem, for any other that we have been able to discover, as is evident from the following remark :
. Rome, January 4th. I have passed five and twenty days between admiring and feeling indignant.
What an abode would ancient Rome have been, if her evil star, as the consummation of her calamities, had not erected on her ruins the Rome of priestcraft!- What would be still the Colosseo, the Pantheon, the Basilica Antoninus, and so many other monuments, demolished in being converted into churches, had they been suffered to remain proudly standing on their deserted hills, Mount Aventine, the Quirinal, the Palatine hills !—Happy Palmyra !
Our Author cannot, indeed, refrain from hazarding a conjecture, greatly in the shape of a hope, that the Pantheon will, sooner or later, • lose the name of church, by which it has been • protected hitherto against the genius of Christianity. And why? because truly it would make a sublime museum! Perhaps no Frenchman ever yet comprehended the full meaning of the word sublime, though no people have it oftener in their mouth.
The Count de Stendhat represents the French as adored from one end of Italy to the other, and speaks of the civilization that might have accrued to it from being governed by themi. The first steps towards this advantage were very different from what most countries take with those whom they wish to refine and cultivate ; but we cannot help suspecting that under all her degradations, Italy retains a degree of mental refinement beyond any thing that France has hitherto reached. There are treasures of learning in Italian literature, which lie still unguessedat by translators and book-worms who have ransacked France and Germany for their very dross, though our Author was amazed to find that one of the most distinguished among the literati at Rome, did not know that Alfieri has written his own Tife ; and though we participate in some measure in his surprise, yet we must still think there are names, even among the modern writers of Italy, of which it would have been yet more disgraceful to be ignorant. As to Alfieri's life being the only performance of any recent date which our Author has seen translated in the shops of London and Paris, that is a circumstance which might throw at least as much disgrace upon England and France as upon Italy. He proves, however, that the mass of the people in Rome are idle, discontented, and illinformed, and that society is at a very low ebb there; insomuch that he was actually reduced, one evening, ' to play at whist with • three Englishmen.' As a set-off against this trial of patience, he meets with Mr. Brougham, of whom he makes the following honourable mention :
* March 26th. I would go fifty leagues with pleasure to see a man who could argue so powerfully in the cause of feodality, as Mr. Brougham in favour of liberal sentiments. The conversation of this great statesman has been one of the greatest pleasures I ever experienced, but it is not often that he will talk. The men of superior talent in England have a simplicity in their manners, and a tone of nature which is truly admirable. Among us, a man has no sooner gained a battle, than he thinks himself obliged to act a part.' p. 140.
Many compliments are paid to the English nation in the course of the work, and they are evidently wrung out by conviction ; for the Author professes to dislike us all, and takes upon himself to assert, that we are abhorred every where, par. ticularly by the lower classes of society.'
• Men who are instructed,' he goes on to remark,' distinguish lord Grosvenor, lord Holland, and the mass of the nation, from the ministry. But were this hatred of Europe (England) twenty times more ardent, every nation must have the cholic
for a hundred years before they can obtain such a constitution, and no one will have a navy before the twentieth century. If they escape the revolution which the wounded vanity of lord C
and Mr. C. prepares for them, they are detested by the Americans, who in twenty years will be ready to fall upon them with five hundred privateers.
To these remarks he represents « lord P- one of the • most enlightened men in England,' as assenting with a sigh,' and concludes them by assuring the English that the French are not their natural enemies, and advising them to be open, and candid, and reconciled to each other.
At Naples our Author is five hours running from inn to in before be can get accommodations, on account of the crowds of English in that city, amounting, he thinks, to seven or eight hundred. At last he gets apartments on a seventh floor, but consoles himself with being opposite to the theatre of San Carlo, and having a view of Vesuvius and the sea. And how do our countrymen pass their time in this spot rendered interesting by every charm of nature, and so many of her most wonderful peculiarities? In doing precisely what the major part of them would probably do were they at home. One specimen of their amusements, and of the benefits which they derive from the study of the fine arts, may suffice for the information of those of qur readers, who are compelled to stay quietly by their own fire
sides, and may be inclined to envy those who can listen to the suggestions of the demon restlessness.
• This Aristides,' says our Author, speaking of one of the finest 'statues at the Studi, is truly adınirable; it is in the style non idéal, like the bust of Vitellius, at Genoa. It has a drapery over it, and is upon a plinth, but it has been so much calcined by the lava of Herçu. laneum, that it is become almost lime. The English, going there after dinner, had taken to amusing themselves with giving a spring, and leaping upon the plinth; the least false motion they nust come upon the statue, and it is then reduced to powder. This little cir. cumstance occasioned much embarrass.pent w Messieurs the exhi. bitors of the Museum, but how provide by any regulations against such a subject of disquietude? At length they hit upon an expedient; they found that these gentlemen did not begin their potations before two o'clock, so they determined that, for the future, the Studj should be shut at iwe instead of four. This fact I have thoroughly verified; several of the people belonging to the Museum shewed me the impressions of the boots upon the plinth. p. 132.
As I quitted the Museum of ancient pictures at Portici, I met three English navy captains, who were going in. There are two and twenty apartments. I went almost at a gallop the whole way to Naples; but before I arrived at the bridge of the Magdalena, I was joined by these three gentlemen, who said that the collection of paintings was admirable, one of the most curious sights in the universe. They must have been there about three or four minutes. p. 114.
The Count de Stendual is inuch annoyed at the constant restraints iinposed by the strict observance of rank at Naples. Yet he should not be angry at the Italian nobility valuing themselves upon the only possession which is left to them, and levying the only tax in its support which they retain the power of imposing.
: February 20th. This evening, as I went in at San Carlo, one of the guards ran after me, to make me take off my hat. In a Salle, ten times as large as that of the Opera at Paris, I had not seen some prince who was there. Paris is the first city in the world for the privilege of being unobserved. There the Court forms only an interesting spectacle, the princes are not known, but from the benefits they confer. San Carlo is only opened three times in the week: it is not a certain rendezvous for all the company in the town, like La Scala. In passing round the corridors the pompous titles inscribed upon
the doors of the boxes, remind you, at every moment, that you are but a simple citizen. You enter with your hat on; a hero of the bayonet pursues you, because some prince is there; you are enchanted with the Conti, you would fain applaud her to the skies; the king is there, it is not etiquette ; you would leave your box, and go to the pit, a great lord crosses you with all his badges of honour, your watch in passing him catches his key, as great chamberlain, (a thing which bappened to me yesterday) and he mutters between his teeth at your want of respect. Wearied with so much greatness, you go out, and call for your carriage, the six horses of some princess are at the door, you must wait there and catch cold.' pp. 92-4.
Such are the pleasures of a life of pleasure, as its votaries term it! Notwithstanding these petty miseries, the Count still quits Naples with regret.
• I shall never forget the street of Toledo, any more than the views that are presented from every part of Naples; it is, in my opinion, beyond all comparison the finest city in Europe. They who pretend to compare Genoa with it, can have no genuine feeling of the beauties of nature. Naples, though containing three hundred and forty thousand souls, is like a fine country seat in the midst of the most beautiful landscape. At Paris one has no idea that there are such things in the world as woods and mountains ; at Naples every turn in the street presents the eye with some new view of Mount Saint Elmo, Pausilippo, or Mount Vesuvius. At the extremities of every street in the ancient city, we see to the south Mount Vesuvius, to the north Mount Saint Elmo.
• The beautiful bay, which seems formed expressly to delight the eye, the hills behind Naples, all covered with trees, the beautiful walk to the village of Pausilippo, along the way made by Joachimall these things can no more be described than they can be forgotten. Joachim, notwithstanding the follies of which he was guilty, is very much regretted; though justice is rendered to the talents of the minister, who brought on the denouement of this drama.' p. 118.
Our Author's evident partiality for Bonaparte, and his wish to set all his actions in the most favourable point of view, even his conduct during the ever memorable siege of Moscow, in the hardships of which the count was himself a sufferer, cannot be overlooked; but it is more excusable than that versatility of feeling which has disgraced so many of his followers, who can hold up the banished Corsican to detestation for faults which, when he was a crowned despot, they affected to reVerence as virtues. There are, however, measures, from which it would be the height of injustice to withhold praise, even though they were carried into execution under the government of Na, poleon. Such, for instance, is the abolition of the stiletto, and the consequent diminution in the number of assassinations. Any one who was found with that detestable instrument in his hands, was to be punished with immediate death. Three hundred lives, it may be calculated, are saved annually, in the dominions of the Pope, by this timely and wholesome severity. Our Author's reflections upon the state of religion in Italy, and the character of its higber Ecclesiastics, are well expressed ; but when he says that certain young prelates, who bad travelled, agreed with him, that · England is the only country in the world in which any religion is really to be found,' we are at a loss whether to be grateful for the compliment, or alarmed at the train of ideas it might awaken. That the state of religious knowledge in Rome is not to be envied, may however be imagined by the following relation of a pretended miracle, which