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Saturday, October 17th. 1840.
GLIMPSES OF MALTA.
MY DEAR FRIEND,
enter the great harbour, lies Valetta, the
capital, and principal town of the island, Thrs letter is extracted from the "Glimpses which at its western extremity is terminatof the Old World," published in the begin- ed by Florian, a strongly fortified suburban ning of the present year. 'Tis interesting, village, that looks off on the south upon the at all times, to hear the remarks of new great harbour, and on the north, as does comers from distant shores on foreign things also Valetta itself, upon the waters constiand customs, especially as they strike them tuting the quarantine ground. When enat first sight.
tering the port, having passed the lighthouse Valetta January 20th. and Fort St. Elmo, with its surrounding for
tifications on the one side, and Fort RicaI believe we last parted company just as
soli and St. Angelo on the other, we reach we were approaching the island of Malta. a point from which, if a lipe were drawn Some of our passengers were romantic | north and south, it would divide Valetta enough to sit up till two o'clock to see our nearly in the centre; and from this point steamer enter the harbour of Malta, which there runs off to the south, a branch or certainly appeared truly picturesque beneath creek from the great harbour, which forms the rays of the moon, which streamed down of itself a beautiful little haven; and its asin silvery lustre upon the shore.
cending shores, through the whole of their one among the number, however; I went winding oval circuit, are crowded with streets quietly to bed at the usual hour, and knew and houses, and a dense population, to not that we had reached the place of our
which, while in the harbour, you can harddestination, till the chime of a hundred bellsly see a limit. It was in this little haven from the numberless churches and convents that we found our steamer quietly anchored around us, roused me at early dawn from on the morning to which I have referred. my slumbers. When I first went on deck As we stood upon the deck, in front of us in the morning, and looked around upon
rose the lofty, embattled shores of Valetta, the encompassing city, with its houses of sweeping down by terraces in the rock on stone, its flat and terraced roofs, and all the which it stands, to the waters brink, its sumunique appearance of its streets rising one
mit crowned with fortifications, towers, casabove another, crowned with castles, and tles, convents, and churches. On our right convents, and churches, I felt for a moment lay the densely populated Senglea, with its as though I had been transported by some own peculiar fortifications, and on the left, unknown power into a scene of enchant- the steep and guarded banks of Burmola ment-a place of which I had never before and Borgo, the first residence of the Knights, heard. I was soon awoke from my reverie, and which, from a great victory they gained however, by the voice of a servant, remind- over the Ottoman forces in 1565, was oriing me that it was necessary to get my bag. ginally denominated Vittoriosa. On our gage in a state of preparation for landing. I rear, sweeping around the head of this little must try to give you some idea of the group haven, were a series of houses and streets, of little cities that cluster densely around the forming connecting links between Senglea shores of the great harbour of Malta, and and Vittoriosa, backed and flanked by the at a distance, appear to constitute one en. Cottonera a fortification of immense tire town. On the north, or right as you strength, built in 1676 by the Grand Mas
ter Nicola Cottoner-and which joins by | tempts to snatch an umbrella from one of its two extremities Senglea on one side, and his companions, he came up to us, and, with Vittoriosa on the other.
a few words of broken English which he A traveller bas very justly remarked, that had acquired, offered himself as our valet“nothing can be more impressive than the de-place. We, of course, did not need bis view of Malta to a stranger arriving in the services, and he then insisted upon showing harbour of Valetta. The high walls, the us excellent private lodgings. All we desirhouses rising one above the other, the arch- ed to know, was the way to Morell's in Strada es of the lower Barraca, the three cities on Forni, where we had been recommended to the opposite side of the harbour, with Fort put up, and where the numerous retinue Ricasoli
, St. Angelo, and the fortifications bearing our luggage were conducting us. of Florian, the creeks with the merchant The moment we arrived there, we learned vessel and ships of war lying at anchor, and why our swarthy porters had exhibited so the walls of Cottonera, form together a much zeal in conveying our luggage-every coup d'ail of a very imposing character." one of these dozen tatterdemalions made
I was particularly struck with the aspect an exhorbitant demand upon us for his parof the fortifications that stood out to view ticular service. We were obliged to pay on every side. They are principally com- them all, though one-fourth of the number posed of long lines partly cut out of the could have performed the service equally rock, and in part made of an equally solid well. On the way from the boat one of wall. Range rises above range, and fort these fellows came to me, and insisted upon beyond fort, forming a line of battery that carrying my umbrella. He, of course, deabsolutely commands every height and in- manded and received a compensation for let. No vessel of hostile intentions could this service, and we now cherrished the hope come into the harbour without being utterly
that the claims of all this numerous fraterdemolished.
nity were fully satisfied.
What then was But I began to tell you about my landing. our surprise, just after having reached our Valetta was the spot, of course, in which rooms, to see our would-be valet-de-place we determined to take up our quarters. entering, and demanding from us a comHundreds of little boats, filled with hardy pensation for having acted as our guide in Maltese, jabbering in their own semi-Italian showing us the way! The demand was so and semi-Arabic dialect, were pressing absolutely farcical, and was urged with such around the sides of our steamer, all anxious gravity, that I could not refrain from throwto do us the favour of conveying us to the ing the fellow a few pennies. shore. We were soon on board one of these
(To be continued.) boats, and the strong, muscular arms of our Maltese rowers speedily brought us to the
NATURE, A SONNET. foot of one of the steep and rocky streets that lead up to the court part of the town
“ The azure vault, the chrystal circles bright,
The gleaming fiery torches bower'd there; of Valetta.
The changing round, the shining beamy light, No sooner had our boat touched the The sad and bearded fires, the monsters fair; shore, than about a dozen swarthy, half.nak- The prodigies appearing in the air, ed Maltese, with long elfish locks, sprung
The rending thunder, and the blust'ring winds;
The fowls in hue and shape and nature rare, upon our baggage like su many harpies.
The pretty notes the wing'd musician finds; For awhile there was quite a contest among In earth, the savoury flowers, the metall'd mines, them for the division of it. Every one
The wholesome herbs, the baughty pleasant trees, wanted to carry a piece of it, if it were no
The silver streams, the beasts of sundry kinds; more than an umbrella or a cane
The bounded roars, and fishes of the seas: There
All these, for teaching men, the Lord did frame was one unfortunate wight, who could not To do bis will, whose glory shines in them.” succeed in getting any thing to carry, and after having made several unsuccessful at
couraged the people from entering upon it, About an age ago it was the fashion
Those who show us the joy, the cheerfulness in England for every one that would be
the good humour, that naturally spring up thought religious, to throw as much sanctity
in this happy state, are like the spies bring. as possible into his face, and in particular to
ing along with them the clusters of grapes, abstain from all appearances of mirth and
and delicious fruits, that might invite their pleasantry, which were looked upon as the companions into the pleasant country which marks of a carnal mind. The saint was of produced them. a sorrowful countenance, and generally discourse to show that the atheist, who de
An eminent pagan writer* has made a eaten up with spleen and melancholy. Notwithstanding this general forın and
nies a Goil, does him less dishonour than outside of religion is pretty well worn out
the man who owns his being, but at the among us, there are many persons who, by
same time believes him to be cruel, hard to a natural uncheerfulness of heart, mistaken please, and terrible to human nature. “For notions of piety, or weakness of understand- my own part,” says he, “I would rather it
should be said of me, that there was never ing, love to indulge this uncomfortable way of life, and give up themselves a prey to
any such man as Plutarch, than that Plugrief and melancholy. Superstitious fears
tarch was ill-natured, or inhuman."
ADDISON. and groundless scruples cut them off from the pleasures of conversation, and all those . Plut. Ilspl Accolo atjuovias. Plut. Opera, social entertainments, which are not only tom. i. p. 286. H. Speth. 1572. 12 mo. innocent, but laudable: as if mirth was made for reprobates, and cheerfulness of heart
A FATHER'S ADVICE. denied those who are the only persons that have a proper title to it.
Oh, listen, dear child, and imprint on thy mind Sombrius is one of these sons of sorrow.
The advice that I now give to thee.
The time yet may come, when good and aid you He thinks himself obliged in duty to be sad and disconsolate. He looks on a sudden fit In the counsel you've gathered from me. of laughter as a breach of his baptismal For to swear, or to drink, An innocent jest startles him like
Or e'en badly to think,
Dear boy, it will lead you to ruin ; blasphemy. Tell him of one who is ad
Before breaking the laws vanced to a title of honour, he lifts
his For a moment then pause, hand and eyes; describe a public ceremony, And ask your own heart what you're doing. he shakes his head; show him a gay equi- Gray hairs, my dear boy, will soon spring on thy page, he blesses himself. All the little ornaments of life are pomps and vanities. Mirth In the grave thy dear parent will rest;
Adhere to the virtues I see in thee now, is wanton, and wit profane. He is scan
And the turf will lie light on my breast. dalized at youth for being lively, and at 'Tis a world full of cares, childhood for being playful. He sits at a A world full of snares, christening, or marriage-feast, as at a fune. As soon, my dear boy, you'll be viewing, ral; sighs at the conclusion of a merry
But remember, dear child,
When lur'd to be wild, story, and grows devout when the rest of
You ask your own heart what you're doing. the company grow pleasant. After all
so Sombrius is a religious man, and would have behaved himself very properly, had he lived
A CONTINUAL sense of the Divine presence is when Christianity was under a general per
the best and only restraint from vice; the strung.
est and most encouraging motive to virtue. secution.
Those who represent religion in so unamiable a light, are like the spies sent by
The Malta PENNY MAGAZINE is published and
sent to Subscribers, in Valetta, every Saturday, Moses to make a discovery of the Land of Subscriptions at Is. per quarter received at No. 37 Promise, when by their reports they dis- Str. Forni.