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matter by taking one horse for myself and our courier. The rest of the party had each a horse, and two men were employed to take Edie the whole distance, some fifty miles, in a chair.
4. Now, if I were animated by the proper traveler's spirit, I should rise into the sublime, in my description of the appalling dangers from which we miraculously escaped. I should make each particular hair stand on end, by telling you what dizzy heights we scaled by paths scarce a foot in width, along the edges of perpendicular precipices, ten thousand feet or more in depth. I should freeze your blood with horror, by depicting the mountainous masses of rock just tottering to their fall, hy which we had to pass. I should make you shudder to think of the mighty glaciers we crossed, and the yawning crevices, a thousand feet deep, over which we were obliged to jump. I should thrill you with the thunder of the descending avalanche that came within a hair’s breadth of burying us five hundred feet deep in snow. I should But enough of these awful adventures, that trip so freely from the pens of summer tourists.
5. In plain prose and rigid truth, the whole journey was exciting in the highest degree. The path does wind along the edge of tremendous precipices, and above it the rocky mountain sides do rise sheer and awful up to heaven. Sometimes the path descends so steeply that it seems impossible to go down without breaking your neck; again it seems to go straight up into the air, and the wonder is, how any fourfooted beast can possibly climb it, without rolling over backwards. If you look up, you half believe the mountain is coming down upon you; if you look down, you are struck by the exceeding probability that you may reach the bottom a great deal sooner than you intend. With all this, you have an abiding confidence in your sure-footed and faithful beast, and you know that he will carry you safely through.
6. I walked about half the whole distance, but it so happened that I rode over the worst parts of the way. I felt astonished, delighted, and constantly amazed by the grandcur of the gigantic scenery; and only once did I feel in the least startled with any sense of danger. In one place, in the steep side of an enormous rock, a way is scooped out, just deep enough for a horse to pass, and high enough for the rider if he stoops. The side of the road towards the abyss is guarded by a wooden railing. Near this spot a beggar girl had placed herself; and as my horse entered this rather critical passage, she came up and spoke in the peculiar, inarticulate whine they all employ, standing between the horse and the rocky side. The horse shied an instant, pressed my leg against the slender railing, and I looked over into what really seemed a fathomless abyss. There was no actual danger, for the horse knew his footing exactly; but the appearance of danger set my blood in motion for a moment, and made my pulse beat at a pretty rapid rate. Agassiz will remember this spot.
Of Iser, rolling rapidly.
The darkness of her scenery.
3. By torch and trumpet fast arrayed,
To join the dreadful revelry.
4. Then shook the hills with thunder riven;
Far flashed the red artillery.
5. And redder yet those fires shall glow,
Of Iser, rolling rapidly.
Shout in their sulphurous canopy.
And charge with all thy chivalry !
Shall be a soldier's sepulcher.
CVIII. — PRESENTATION TO A KING AND QUEEN.
C. C. FELTON. 1. Since I began this letter, I have been more closely than ever occupied with my studies. But before I enter into any particulars, I must tell you of my presentation. This morning I attended church; after church, took a long walk, and, as the weather was superb, lingered longer than usual from spot to spot, tracing the vestiges of the ancient wall of Athens, so that I did not reach my room until five o'clock.
2. Arriving there, I found a notice on my table that their Majesties would receive me at seven o'clock this evening. So I had to examine my wardrobe, brush my coat, fit my gloves, make sure of my white cravat, — the same I bought for the Gran Scala at Milan, -get a hurried dinner, order a carriage, and dress. You would have laughed, I think, at the sight.
3. Well, I accomplished these multifarious duties in a very short time. I do not think you would have known my coat, hardly me, so spruced up were both of us. Dr. King went with me to the palace, to present me to the grand chamberlain, — a son of old General Colletti, one of the heroes of the revolution.
4. We went up the grand staircase, into the ante-chamber, and in a moment the chamberlain appeared, to conduct me into the royal presence. The hall of reception — the throne room—is as handsome as any I saw in Western Europe. There was no other person to be presented, and I confess that my experience with our republican court at Washington, was not a very useful guide in circumstances so novel. The door opened and in I must go. The grand chamberlain stopped at the door; the grande maitresse was visible in the distance, near the other end of the hall. As soon as I was inside the door, I bowed—I had been told a little what to do— to their Majesties, who stood about a third the length of the room from the door, and, advancing to the presence, bowed two or three times more before I got within hailing distance.
5. My reception by both king and queen was most gracious, and the conversation went on as smoothly as possible. After some words of salutation (you know the person presented, like a ghost, never speaks until he is spoken to), the queen asked, "Have you been long in Greece ?” “ About three months, your Majesty.”
KING.-“ You are occupied with the study of the Greek language ?"
“ Yes, your Majesty."
“ Yes, your Majesty, that is the principal object of my travels in Greece."
“ The pronunciation of the Greek is very different in America and England from the pronunciation here."
“Yes, your Majesty, so different that the Greek seems like two languages.”
6. QUEEN. -"How many students have you in the University of Cambridge ?”
« Exactly the same number, your Majesty, as are now in the University of Athens.”
“The same number ? But you have many universities in America ?”
“ Yes, we have many."
KING. — “What are the principal subjects or branches studied in the American universities ?"
“The general studies, your Majesty, are the classics, the mathematics, physics, philosophy.”
King. — “ Which of the professions attracts most of the young men ?”
“The law, I think, since that is the profession which opens a political career.”
King. — “In Greece, the study of medicine and theology are favorite studies.”
“Yes, -- the Greek physicians have always been very distinguished.”