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in a riding habit, all mounted on donkeys. Then came a queer endeavour to represent a stage-coach, drawn by four donkeys, directed by two postillions ;-absurdly dressed people inside the coach and on the top-staring about them with restless, wide-eyed curiosity Then followed the Italian idea of a foxhunter, dressed in a coat with long, flapping skirts, top-boots, and a very shabby hat, and mounted on a dejected donkey, which he rode with a wonderful show of more than all the energy proper to his reckless character. Then more trumpets blowing dismal notes, and so the troop passed on-cleaving its way through the dense crowd of masquerading humanity that now overflowed the street.

And now tbe showers of chalk confetti are liberally exchanged. The balconies pour forth volleys of these small shot upon the carriages below, whose occupants are of course at a great disadvantage in returning the fire. One or two instances of balconies on the second, or even third storey of the tall houses, from which the cowardly attack comes, drive the victims in the street below to desperation. Frantic efforts are made to reach them—but vainly, and then fists are clenched, and good-humoured vows of vengeance are shouted up at them. Larger shot of flowers and bon-bons occasionally darken the air ; and every now and then some eager cavalier aims a beautiful bouquet, delicately enclosed in laced-paper, at some fair lady in balcony or carriage. It is a pity when it misses, and falls into the street, for then some of the many hundred urchins whose grand business it appears to be to profit by such accidents, snatches it up in one instant, and is away-lost in the crowd, and offering it for sale, in another.

Other aggressive devices are in vogue also :—There is a certain illustrious little prince, whose beaming face is an object of much interest to us English, at one balcony, who, having heroically endured for one day the privation of taking no active part in the proceedings, has made up for lost time ever since, and you may be very sure is far from being the least delighted individual of the many thousands who are to-day enjoying the Carnival. He has invented a contrivance by means of which a small quantity of flour is deposited on the head of every passenger in the street below. The blackest hats receive the most flour, it is to be observed. And between whiles, he is not idle with confetti, bouquets, and so forth, as indeed he has no chance to be, for, not unnaturally, this is a favoured point of attack, and courteous salutes of flowers, sugar-plums, and specimens of all the prettiest “shot' of the Carnival, are sent in that direction.

The variety of these ornamental missiles which are exchanged between friends, or offered as tributes of regard, is very great. A child would be speechless with delight over them. A Christmas tree would exult in them. These pretty offerings consist of bon-bons in dainty little boxes, or baskets, or cases ; cunningly-contrived little slippers, little ermine muffs, little reticules, and portmanteaus, are in high favour; also birds-nests, bird-cages, dressed figures, all imaginable devices for looking quaint and pretty, and containing sugar-plums. You should see the excitement with which the intended recipient stretches her arms from a balcony, as it is about to be thrown from a carriage-the exultation with which it is caught—the felicitations on that happy event which are exchanged in dumb show between giver and receiver !

Thus prosily catalogued, you have some of the elements of the general frolic. But how to give any idea of the life and mirth, and good humour, and brightness and picturesqueness of the whole scene ? To you, far away from the scene and the time, and their exhilarating and infecting influences, it will doubtless seem childish and absurd enough—but you must take it upon faith that there is something of irresistible fascination in it all, not to be conceived of, much less appreciated, except by those who have seen and experienced it. True, to sober lookers-on it might seem as if all the world had gone mad for the time being : but then the madness is universal, every one is bitten by the mania, and there are no sober lookers-on!

It does not seem strange at the time, but there may be something curious in remembering, afterwards, how unanimous and overwhelming is this same Carnival spirit. It will, perhaps, be curious to recal how pensive Italian, grave English, shrewd American, stolid Russian, and mobile French faces are all alike and at once relaxed to the same expression of eager fun and thorough enjoyment. On every hand are to be seen astonishing examples of the effect of this powerful influence, and never so frequently as among our own compatriots. Ordinarily demure-looking English fathers of families, staid men, who, in their every-day existences, and in their own country, are to be recognised as responsible dignitaries, sober lawyers, thoughtful men of letters ; individuals supposed to be so completely engrossed by professional or business pursuits as to be altogether without the pale of susceptibility to frolic and fun,-are here in the very midst of it, pelting away with their confetti, or making desperate efforts to return a fire of bouquets to a retreating carriage, with an eager energy that must surely remind them of nothing later in life than their first school-days.

And if Saxon phlegm is to be decoyed into such antics, we may well accept, without much marvelling, the story told of a Carnival many years before, at the most excited and crowded epoch of which a carriage containing two gentlemen, habited and masked, broke down, and the unfortunate occupants had to be lifted out and receive refuge and assistance, and lo! beneath the dominoes and masks were found, first, an illustrious Cardinal; and secondly, a puissant Monsignore !

Doubtless “Il Carnavale” has a very engrossing hold upon the hearts of the Romans, albeit, they are a far graver and less mercurial race than the Italians generally. Indeed, it is reported, and currently believed, that if the authorities had, as was at one time threatened, prohibited “masks" this year, and in other ways hindered the full flow of the many days' revel, a revolution might have been expected !

However, revolutions are not easy of accomplishment in a city stifled with spies and swarming with French soldiers, and among a people

in a riding habit, all mounted on donkeys. Then came a queer endeavour to represent a stage-coach, drawn by four donkeys, directed by two postillions ;-absurdly dressed people inside the coach and on the top-staring about them with restless, wide-eyed curiosity. Then followed the Italian idea of a foxhunter, dressed in a coat with long, flapping skirts, top-boots, and a very shabby hat, and mounted on a dejected donkey, which he rode with a wonderful show of more than all the energy proper to his reckless character. Then more trumpets blowing dismal notes, and so the troop passed on--cleaving its way through the dense crowd of masquerading humanity that now overflowed the street.

And now the showers of chalk confetti are liberally exchanged. The balconies pour forth volleys of these small shot upon the carriages below, whose occupants are of course at a great disadvantage in returning the fire. One or two instances of balconies on the second or even third storey of the tall houses, from which the cowardly attack comes, drive the victims in the street below to desperation. Frino efforts are made to reach them- but vainly, and then fists are clenched and good-humoured vows of vengeance are shouted up at them. Laht shot of flowers and bon-bons occasionally darken the air ; and every now and then some eager cavalier aims a beautiful bouquet, delicate! enclosed in laced-paper, at some fair lady in balcony or carriage a pity when it misses, and falls into the street, for then some of many hundred urchins whose grand business it appears to be to pra by such accidents, snatches it up in one instant, and is away- lost bu the crowd, and offering it for sale, in another.

Other aggressive devices are in vogue also :-There is a certain ilk trious little prince, whose beaming face is an object of much inter to us English, at one balcony, who, having heroically endured for day the privation of taking no active part in the proceedings, has up for lost time ever since, and you may be very sure is far from beina the least delighted individual of the many thousands who are to-day en joying the Carnival. He has invented a contrivance by means of whic a small quantity of flour is deposited on the head of every passenger the street below. The blackest hats receive the most flour, it is 10 observed. And between whiles, he is not idle with confetti, bouque. and so forth, as indeed he has no chance to be, for, not unnaturally this is a favoured point of attack, and courteous salutes of flowers sugar-plums, and specimens of all the prettiest "shot " of the Carnik are sent in that direction.

The variety of these ornamental missiles which are exchanged tween friends, or offered as tributes of regard, is very great Aca would be speechless with delight over them. A Christmas would exult in them. These pretty offerings consist of boniin dainty little boxes, or baskets, or cases ; cunningly-contrived and slippers, little ermine muffs, little reticules, and portmanteaus, are high favour ; also birds-nests, bird cages, dressed figures, all imaginas devices for looking quaint and pretty, and containing sugar-plum

You should see the excitement with which the intended recipient stretches her arms from a balcony, as it is about to be thrown from a carriage-the exultation with which it is caught—the felicitations on that happy event which are exchanged in dumb show between giver and receiver !

Thus prosily catalogued, you have some of the elements of the general frolic. But how to give any idea of the life and mirth, and good humour, and brightness and picturesqueness of the whole scene? To you, far away from the scene and the time, and their exhilarating and infecting influences, it will doubtless seem childish and absurd enough—but you must take it upon faith that there is something of irresistible fascination in it all, not to be conceived of, much less appreciated, except by those who have seen and experienced it. True, to sober lookers-on it might seem as if all the world had gone mad for the time being : but then the madness is universal, every one is bitten by the mania, and there are no sober lookers-on!

It does not seem strange at the time, but there may be something curious in remembering, afterwards, how unanimous and overwhelming is this same Carnival spirit. It will, perhaps, be curious to recal how pensive Italian, grave English, shrewd American, stolid Russian, and mobile French faces are all alike and at once relaxed to the same expression of eager fun and thorough enjoyment. On every hand are to be seen astonishing examples of the effect of this powerful influence, and never so frequently as among our own compatriots. Ordinarily demure-looking English fathers of families, staid men, who, in their every-day existences, and in their own country, are to be recognised as responsible dignitaries, sober lawyers, thoughtful men of letters; individuals supposed to be so completely engrossed by professional or business pursuits as to be altogether without the pale of susceptibility to frolic and fun,—are here in the very midst of it, pelting away with their confetti, or making desperate efforts to return a fire of bouquets to a retreating carriage, with an eager energy that must surely remind them of nothing later in life than their first school-days.

And if Saxon phlegm is to be decoyed into such antics, we may well accept, without much marvelling, the story told of a Carnival many years before, at the most excited and crowded epoch of which a carriage containing two gentlemen, habited and masked, broke down, and the unfortunate occupants had to be lifted out and receive refuge and assistance, and lo! beneath the dominoes and masks were found, first, an illustrious Cardinal; and secondly, a puissant Monsignore !

Doubtless “Il Carnavale” has a very engrossing hold upon the hearts of the Romans, albeit, they are a far graver and less mercurial race than the Italians generally. Indeed, it is reported, and currently believed, that if the authorities had, as was at one time threatened, prohibited “masks" this year, and in other ways hindered the full flow of the many days' revel, a revolution might have been expected !

However, revolutions are not easy of accomplishment in a city stifled with spies and swarming with French soldiers, and among a people whose government has latterly more than ever been directed towards the crushing of free thought, the hindrance of knowledge, and the discouragement of social intercourse. And the Romans, with the French bayonets at their throats, and the priestly gag upon their lips, have had, within the last ten years, to endure so much that is outrageous to manhood, as may well have taught them patience to bear small privations. Still, it is a fact that this year of all years, which has dawned with such strange promise of light as we are almost afraid to trust this year, solemn with awful uncertainty, trembling with infinite possibilities for what we fondly call “our Italy,”-this year is singled out and chosen to afford the Roman people a Carnival with more brilliance, and more license than has been known within the memory of this generation.

In fact, it is quite possible, even probable, that the government may have thought it politic to grant this outlet for the rampant energy anél spirit of its people, which might otherwise have been directed in a manner more inconvenient to itself. And it is not difficult thus to understand a certain connection between the approaching war (rumours of which hang about us like an atmosphere) and this actually existent Carnival. A strange, mocking juxta-position of ideas this- which, never theless, one can but indulge in every now and then, as some little incident occurs, apparently trivial, yet significant in the present anomalous state of affairs. Not the least curious of these, are the indications of that growing rapport between the French soldiers and the Roman people, which is a new and most startling sign of the times the would have supposed that the feeling could be no other than bittet hatred and fury--nore the less fierce, because impotent — of the subdued citizens for these, their subjugators, who ever since enterin the eternal city in 1849, have played the invidious part of police there But, whatever may have been felt at one time, things are evidents changed now. The dark faces light up with a certain complacenes * the troops file by ; they beat time to the music of the band, they sin the tunes they play, and if you hear voices speaking of I Frances it is in kindly and cheerful tones. Moreover, the license of the Carnival permits such little demonstrations of friendliness as a involved in small offerings to the soldiery who, ranged in lines, gan the Piazza del Popolo, and direct the right progression of the carriage More than one elaborately-attired cavalier did we see walking alone the aforesaid line of guards, and with a profound bow, and laying hand upon his heart with a gesticulation no less Italian than the courteous and musical syllables which flowed from his lips at the same time, presenting to each in turn one of those minute bunches of violets or other flowers which form the lighter and pleasanter ammunition the mimic warfare of the day. The swarthy-faced warriors receive these little tributes with an air partly grim, partly amused, slightly astonished besides. It was easy to see they were pot accu tomed to such pleasing attentions at Roman hands

Straws show which way the wind blows. If these “straws" sei,

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