Page images
PDF
EPUB

us,

Whom do you wish to be taken to? You those graceful and so ingeniously-wrought have but to speak — the names are written shields which fill up whole rooms at the on the doorway of every house, in large red Naples Museum. One must above all see letters. Here is an apothecary's shop, with the toilet arsenal of the Roman ladies, their his drugs in phials, with surgical instruments combs, toothpicks, curling irons, and the and balsams still yielding a smell. Here

Here pots of vegetable or mineral rouge found are far different things. Enter, you have no- in a boudoir. Thus the Roman ladies used thing to fear; but I dare not tell you where rouge and deceived people, just as is pracyou are, unless you have perceived the sign tised now-a-days; they wore like our ladies over the door.

What think you of it?- those necklaces, rings, and ridiculous earand yet facing one of those houses stands rings which add nothing to beauty and dia temple of Vesta!

minish not ugliness. How times resemble Let

then, pay a few visits; we are in one another, in spite of the space that separa baker's shop, and here is the flower grind-ates them.

. stone; suppose a stone sugar-loaf, covered Above thirty streets of Pompeii are now with an extinguisher also of stone-rub the restored to light; it is a third part of the ore against the other, after throwing some

town. The walls which formed its ancient corn between them, and you have a Roman inclosure have been recognized; a magnimill. This wretched piece of machinery ficent amphitheatre, a theatre, a forum, the was entrusted to the hands of slaves. But temple of Isis, that of Venus, and a number I have reserved a surprise for you: here is of other buildings have been cleared. The some bread-do you read the baker's name secret stairs by which the priests of those hollowed out of that carbonised pancake; times slily crept to prompt the oracles have take and break it. Open that cupboard, you

been detected.

On beholding so many will find there preserved olives, dried figs, monuments which display in so lively a lintels, and eatables of all descriptions. A manner the importance of private life among saucepan has been carried to the Naples the Romans, it is impossible to resist a feelMuseum, containing a piece of meat, as well ing of sadness and melancholy. Behold, preserved as by Mr. S.... process. What along that fall of earth, the vestige of the a number of meals Vesuvius interrupted on breast of a woman who was buried alive, that awful day.

and stiffened by death-behold the stones of I nevertheless do not think that the Ro- that well, worn by the rubbing of the ropes mans were great eaters. I have carefully

I have carefully-examine that guardhouse, covered with explored a number of kitchens and dining caricatures of soldiers-one might suppose rooms at Pompeii, and I have found, even in that a Roman people still existed, and that the richest houses, but very trifling cooking we were but strangers in one of their towns. apparatus, and miniature table utesils. Who knows what future discoveries may be Their plates were real saucers, and the ta- made in those august ruins! Murat employupon which the dinner was served up

ed upon them 2,000 men every year. Onbut little stands, in general of stone or mar- ly 60 men and 1,0001. are now employed ble, which could hold but one dish at a time. upon them. The excavations proceed in The guests lay down around, as soldiers consequence with dismal slowness, however round their mess.

What is admirable, de- great may be the interest which his Sicilian lightful, charming and overwhelming to us

Majesty takes in their success. It is not barbarians of the nineteenth century, is the to Rome-devasted and disfigured Romeexquisite pureness and delicacy of shape of that one must go to study the Romans-it all the utensils which served in Roman do is to Pompeii. Pompeii, as regards anmestic life. One must see those candelabras, tiquities, is worth all Italy together. lamps, vases of all sizes, those charming little bronze calefactors (for everything was The view of the Temple of Fortune in its of bronze), those tripods, scales, beds, chairs,' present state seems scarcely intelligible

bles

MOONLIGHT.

soul;

without the drawing of the restored Temple, which will be given in the number next following. The steps, the iron railing, and When the darkness of night overshadows the

earth, the altar in the lower part, are still distin

And the heaven's deep splendour enraptures the guishable. On the platform of the portico the yet existing capitals of the antæ When all around is calm save the outbreak of mirth, and columns point out the site of the front

And that music of nature the wild ocean's roll: and lateral pillars. On the left of the cell, on entering, may

Ob,say what in those moments of peace and repose

Breaks forth through the clouds, and all nature be seen the niche of a statue. The whole

enlightens ; must have been cased with marble. Many 'Tis the bright moon that o'er all her silver'd beams of the trees have been cut down in the pro

throws,

'Tis the orb of the night, the Queen of the heavens. gress

of the excavation since this view was taken. On the stone pier on the right of

She illumines the sea, and the swift sailing bark the arch was painted a galley, larger and

By her aid safely traces her path o'er the wave; in greater detail than any yet seen, but it

By her light through the tempest the mariners mark was gradually effaced by the rain. The Those perils of oceans their hearts love to brave. triumphal arch opens into the street, now called that of Mercury; and the window

A cloud veils her beauty, passes over, and now, like holes in it afford a sight of water pipes By moonlight two lovers their vows are confessing;

Oh man, would thy spirit were as calm as the brow of which the use is not apparent.

Of her, whose fair hand to thy lips thou art pressing!

Were thy friendship as changeless, thy false heart

as true, As those laws by whose power nigbt follows the

day : What joy would it be to Heaven's angels to view Thy virtues all present, all thy vices away!

Though inconstant the moon, yet less constant art

thou:
The object obtain'd, soon it's glories all vanish,
And the heart that thou seekest so earnestly now,
Once gain’d, without heaving a sigh thou wilt

banish.

Human Life.- Human life is a journey which commences for each of us the moment we enter the world, and which terminates at the grave. We are like those, who, passengers on the ocean, are wafted by the winds towards the port, whilst they are asleep in the vessel; and who, insensible of the progression of their course, arrive there before they are aware.

It is the same with the whole of life. It runs on, impelled by a continual current, which carries us on unconsciously along with it. We sleep; and, during our sleep, our brief space of time flies silently over our heads: we wake to thousand cares; and, while struggling with them, life pursues its rapid course at the same rate. We are here below only as travellers; every thing rapidly recedes from our view; we leave every thing behind us; we throw a passing glance on the enamelled meads, or the purling brook, or whatever other object may charm our sight; we feel a pleasure in contemplating it, and, before we can analyze our pleasure, we have already lost sight of it. To charming prospects and a smiling country often succeed rocks, ravines, precipices, and rugged paths, sometimes infested with ferocious animals, or venomous reptiles; or perplexed with thorns which lacerate the flesh; these things annoy or afflict us for a moment, and the next we are beyond their reach, Such is life ; neither its pleasures nor its pains are durable, nor does the road we traverse belong to us, any more than any of the objects with which it is diversified : other travellers have preceded us on it, others are com ing along it at the same time with ourselves, and countless multitudes will follow us.-St. Basil.

[merged small][ocr errors][merged small][merged small]

No. 57.

Saturday, October 10th, 1840.

(Price ld.

CHINA.

the petty chiefs of barbarous tribes; yet,

with much compassion, he occasionally (Continued from No. 43.)

condescended to receive their embassies. It is remarkable that all the nations which

Though the modern improvements in nause the Chinese written character, harbour vigation, the progress in the science of geothe same prejudices against foreigners. By graphy and in general information, have means of this written language they have partially rectified their opinions on this subbeen united for ages under similar laws, ject, yet they are too proud to confess the institutions, and religion. Hence they have fact of their national'ignorance: to this formed one great family distinct from other moment they claim the title of “the flownations, in all points of peculiarity. As

ery middle kingdom," and would have all they enjoyed the privileges of civilization

the princes of the earth humbly do them at an early period, while the adjoining na

homage. We still hear the same old stories tions were living in barbarism, they learned

about the "four seas" repeated, and maps to look down upon them with contempt,

of the world may be met with, which so reand in all collisions with them, to treat them,

present it still. So long as the public opinif inferior, as vanquished enemies, or if su- ion is swayed by such notions, we cannot perior, as savage intruders. By sedulously expect foreigners to be held in any just esshunning any intercourse with the “barbar- timation among them. Those petty nations ians,” the opinion of their serocity and de

which use the Chinese written character, pravity, which the Chinese had imbibed, and acknowledge their vassalage to the continued to be cherished through ignor- Celestial Empire, imitate them also in all ance of its objects and settled prejudice. the arrogance of national vanity. This general contempt was increased also Another cause operating to favour the by the consciousness that they were the same system of restriction, exists in their most numerous of the nations of the world.

literature. The Chinese are much attached The fact is certainly true, but not so the

to their own literature, and are therefore conclusion which they derive from it, that prepared highly to value any degree of their country was the most extensive of all. eminence in this department. But foreignFancying the earth to be a square, they

ers are not often acquainted with their liteassumed to themselves the main land in the rary productions, and having scarcely any centre, and allowed to the other nations thing else which in the estimation of a Chithe small and remote clusters of islands, in nese entitles them to rank among the "litevarious directions around themselves. How rati," they are together regarded as ignorant could they look upon the poor inhabitants barbarians. Proud of their own observance of those scattered lands otherwise than with of the rules of propriety and justice, the the utmost contempt! The sovereign of so Chinese are also taught by their classical great a nation, also, regarding himself as authors to look down upon these barbarians the sole potentate of the earth and the vice

as rude and fraudulent, and to esteem any gerent of heaven, claimed the universal friendly intercourse contaminating. "These dominion over all the lands and the four barbarians," they are told, “have never felt seas. Their princes he considered his vas- the transforming influence of the Celestial sals and tributaries. He slighted them Empire, and though they may therefore be when he pleased, viewing them merely as pitied, yet much more do they call for our

ILL-NATURED SATIRE.

contempt. Drive them away, banish them extremity of force, where he is as sure of from the empire.” This is true Chinese defeat, as he is certain of victory, in a pitched policy.

battle of words. To increase and perpetuate this contempt

(To be continued.) of foreigners, various methods have been adopted by the government, and with various degrees of success. Tbey know, though reluctant to admit it, that some barbarians There is nothing that more betrays & are more warlike than themselves, that they base ungenerous spirit than the giving of made extensive conquests in their vicinity, secret stabs to a man's reputation; lamand that in the event of a war with them,

poons and satires, that are written with wit they themselves would be an unequal match and spirit, are like poisoned darts, which for them. This has led them to regard not only inflict a wound, but make it incurthese nations with constant suspicion. But able. For this reason I am very much to conceal from the people their fear of the troubled when I see the talents of humour superiority of Europeans, they are accus- and ridicule in the possession of an ill-natomed to stigmatize their character as infa- tured man. There cannot be a greater gramous, and in their intercourse with them, tification to a barbarous and inhuman wit, to substitute violence and cunning for prin- than to stir up sorrow in the heart of a priciple and candour. I am firmly persuaded vate person, to raise uneasiness among that government would, were it possible, near relations, and to expose whole families reduce all European residents and visitants to derision, at the same time that he remains to the same state of humiliation which the

unseen and updiscovered. If, besides the Dutch endure at Japan.

accomplishments of being witty and ill-naIt must, however, be acknowledged, that tured, a man is vicious into the bargain, he Europeans have frequently, by petty ag- is one of the most mischievous creatures that gressions, provoked the Chivese to carry can enter into a civil society. His satire their laws of exclusion into the most rigor- will then chiefly fall upon those who ought ous execution. We have cause to regret to be the most exempt from it. Virtue, that they have never been so successful in merit, and every thing that is praiseworthy, re-establishing friendly intercourse, as un- will be made the object of ridicule and buffortunate in giving occasion for stopping it. soonery. It is impossible to enumerate the

As in the instances where actual force evils which arise from these arrows that fly was used to decide disputed claims, the in the dark, and I kpow no other excuse that Chinese have generally proved inferior, they is or can be made for them, than that the have become desirous to avoid any recourse wounds they give are only imaginary, and to physical strength. Instead of spilling produce nothing more than a secret shame blood, they prefer to spill ink, and have or sorrow in the mind of the suffering perproved to the world that China is invincible It must indeed be confessed, that a in a paper war. Like the anathemas of the lampoon or satire do not carry in them robPapal See, fulminating edicts have been bery or murder; but, at the same time, how invariably issued on such occasions against many are there that would not rather lose intruding foreigners. These edicts are in a considerable sum of money, or even life general very suspicious, and would persuade itself, than be set up as a mark of infamy a European unacquainted with the case, to and derision! and in this case a man should believe that the Chinese have justice on consider, that an injury is not to be meatheir side Their threats are intimidating, sured by the notions of him that gives, but and their commands almost irresistible; but of him who receives it. here they stop: for the intruder either yields There is, indeed something very barbaand retraces his steps, or if not, the Chinese rous and inhuman in the ordinary scribblers is too wise to let matters to come to the of lampoons. An innocent young lady

on.

RESTORATION OF THE TEMPLE OF FORTUNE.

shall be exposed for an unhappy feature. rule on this subject: “For I have learned in A father of a family turned to ridicule for whatsoever state I am, therewith to be content." some domestic calamity. A wife be made

On this principle we shall find that we may all

sing with sincerity the sensible old song, uneasy all her life for a misinterpreted

My mind to me a kingdom is, word or action. Nay, a good, a temperate, Such perfect joy therein I find.- Turner. and a just man shall be put out of counte

-eest Dance by the representation of those qualities that should do him honour. So perni.

Pompeii. cious a thing is wit, when it is not tempered

(Continued from No. 56.) with virtue and humanity. I have indeed heard of heedless inconsi

This restoration of the temple of Fortune derate writers, that without any malice have

and the triumphal arch seemed necessary sacrificed the reputation of their friends and acquaintance to a certain levity of temper, the place, now so disfigured as to be almost

to give an idea of the original features of and a silly ambition of distinguishing them

unintelligible to an uninformed spectator. selves by a spirit of railery and satire: as

The altars on which sacrifices were offerif it were not infinitely more honourable to

ed could never have been placed within be a good-natured man than a wit. Where

those temples of the ancient which were there is this little petulant humour in an

not hypathral; and many proofs might be author, he is often very mischievous with

brought to show that even those of hypæout designing to be so. For which reason

thral temples were placed at some distance I always lay it down as a rule, that an indiscreet man is more hurtful than an ill

in front, like the great altar before the east

ern portico of the Parthenon at Athens. natured one; for as the latter will only

The triumphal arch supported an equesattack his enemies, and those he wishes ill

trian statue of bronze, thought to be that of to, the other injures indifferently both friends and foes. I cannot forbear, on this Tiberius, or Caligula, the fragments of which

were found below. occasion, transcribing a fable out of Sir Roger l' Estrange, which accidentally lies

The fountains probably existed, because

the remains of water-pipes are still found before me. "A company of waggish boys in the masonry of the arch, though it is not were watching of frogs at the side of a pond, easy to ascertain the exact manner in which and still as any of them put up their heads, they would be pelting them down again ed that the arch fronting the entrance of

they were employed; but is be with stones. Children,' says one of the

the Forum had also its fountain or reservoir frogs, you never consider that though this

of water. may be play to you it is death to us.

The actual appearance of this spot hav

ing been first drawn by the camera lucida, som

the objects have been restored upon that It is the general misfortune not to be content drawing, in order to render intelligible its with what we have; not to see or cultivate the sources of comfort which in our personal circum

ancient aspect to those who are in need of stances may be realized ; and not to value what such assistance, without the possibility of we are enjoying, because we have it, and by the erring widely from the truth. daily use of it become indifferent to it, till we Above the arch is placed the inscription learn its importance by its departing from us.

Augusto Cæsari parenti patræ," which every one would but study to extract pleasure from their means of pleasure, however humble,

was on marble, and which, Iorio says, was and to be as happy as it is in their power to maké positively found near the spot. themselves in their situation, without looking at other means of gratification which are not within their reach; all would experience a comfortable The MALTA PENNY MAGAZINE is published and manhood, and learn from their own experience sent to subscribers, in Valletta, every Saturday. that every one may be in this agreeable condition. Subscriptions at ts. per quarter received at No. 97 The Apostle presents to us the true and golden Str. Forni.

ADDISON.

If

« PreviousContinue »