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After Waterloo: Reminiscences of European Travel 1815-1819 by Major W. E Frye

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environs of this place, and has repeatedly called forth the admiration and
delight of all travellers. Near Coblentz is the monument erected to the
French General Marceau, who fell gloriously fighting for the cause of
liberty, respected by friend and foe.

July 10th.

We had a large society this day at the table d'hote. The conversation
turned on the restoration of the Bourbons, which nobody at table seemed to
desire. Several anecdotes were related of the conduct of the Bourbon
princes and of the emigration, who held their court at Coblentz when they
first emigrated; these anecdotes did not redound much to their honor or
credit, and I remark that they are held in great disgust and abhorrence by
the inhabitants of these towns, on account of their treacherous and
unprincipled conduct. It was from here that "La Cour de Coblentz," as it
was called, intrigued by turns with the Jacobins and the Brissotins and, by
betraying the latter to the former, were in part the cause of the
sanguinary measures adopted by Robespierre.[27] The object of this
atrocious policy was that the French people would, by witnessing so many
executions, become disgusted at the sanguinary tyranny of Robespierre and
recall the Bourbons unconditionally; which, fortunately for France and
thanks to the heroism and bravery of the republican armies, did not take
place; for had the restoration taken place at that time, a dreadful
reaction would have been encouraged and the cruelties of the reign of
Terror surpassed. With the same view, emissaries were dispatched from the
Court of Coblentz to the South of France in order, under the disguise of
patriots, to preach up the most exaggerated corollaries to the theories of
liberty and equality.

Among other things at Ehrenbreitstein is a superb pleasure barge belonging
to the Dukes of Nassau for water excursions up and down the Rhine. A _coche
d'eau_ starts from here daily to Mayence and another to Cologne. The price
is ten franks the person. The superb _chaussee on_ the left bank of the
Rhine, which extends all the way from Cologne to Mayence, was constructed
by the direction of Napoleon. In the evening I went to the theatre at
Coblentz, where Mozart's opera of Don Giovanni was represented. I
recollected my old acquaintance "La ci darem la mano," which I had often
heard in England.

MAYENCE, 12th July.

I embarked in the afternoon of the 11th in the _coche d'eau_ bound to
Mayence. Except an old "Schiffer," I was the only passenger on board, as
few chuse to go up stream on account of the delay. I, however, being master
of my own time, and wishing to view the lovely scenery on the banks of the
river, preferred this conveyance, and I was highly gratified. After
Boppart, the bed of the river narrows much. High rocks on each bank hem in
the stream and render it more rapid. Nothing can be more sublime and
magnificent than the scenery; at every turn of the river you would suppose
its course blocked up by rocks, perceiving no visible outlet. Remains of
Gothic castles are to be seen on their summits at a short distance from
each other, and where the banks are not abrupt and _escarpes_ there are
_coteaux_ covered with vines down to the water's edge. The tolling of the
bells at the different villages on the banks gives a most aweful solemn
religious sound, and the reverberation is prolonged by the high rocks,
which seem to shut you out from the rest of the world. There are the walls
nearly entire of two castles of the Middle Ages, the one called "Die Katze"
(the cat); the other "Die Maus" (the Mouse); each has its tradition, for
which and for many other interesting particulars I refer you to Klebe's and
Schreiber's description of the banks of the Rhine.

We arrived early in the evening at St Goar, where we stopped and slept. St
Goar is a fine old Gothic town, romantically situated, and is famous from
having two whirlpools in its neighbourhood. It is completely commanded and
protected by Rheinfels, an ancient hill fortress, but the fortification of
which no longer exist. It requires half an hour's walk to ascend to the
summit of Rheinfels, but the traveller is well repaid for the fatigue of
the ascent by the fine view enjoyed from the top. I remained at Rheinfels
nearly an hour. What a solemn stillness seems to pervade this part of the
river, only interrupted by the occasional splash of the oar, and the
tolling of the steeple bell! Bingen on the right bank is the next place of
interest, and on an island in the centre of the river facing Bingen stand
the ruins of a celebrated tower call'd the "Mauesethurm" (mouse tower), so
named from the circumstance of Bishop Hatto having been devoured therein by
rats according to the tradition. This was represented as a punishment from
Heaven on the said bishop for his tyranny and oppression towards the poor;
but the story was invented by the monks in order to vilify his memory, for
it appears he was obnoxious to them on account of his attempts to enforce a
rigid discipline among them and to check their licentiousness.

Bieberich, a superb palace belonging to the Dukes of Nassau on the right
bank, next presents itself to view on your left ascending; to your right,
at a short distance from Bieberich, you catch the first view of Mayence on
the left bank, with its towers and steeples rising from the glade. We
reached Mayence at 4 o'clock p.m., and I went to put up at the three Crowns
(_Drei-Kronen_). The first news I learned on arriving at Mayence was that
Napoleon had surrendered himself to the Captain of an English frigate at
Oleron; but though particulars are not given, Louis XVIII is said to be
restored, which I am very sorry to hear. The Allies then have been guilty
of the most scandalous infraction of their most solemn promise, since they
declared that they made war on Napoleon alone and that they never meant to
dictate to the French people the form of government they were to adopt.
Napoleon having surrendered and Louis being restored, the war may be
considered as ended for the present, unless the Allies should attempt to
wrest any provinces from France, and in this case there is no saying what
may happen. This has finally ended the career of Napoleon.

There is in Mayence a remarkably fine broad spacious street called "die
grosse Bleiche" and in general the buildings are striking and solid, but
too much crowded together as is the case in all ancient fortified cities.
The Cathedral is well worth seeing and contains many things of value and
costly relics. When one views the things of value in the churches here, at
Aix-la-Chapelle and at Cologne, what a contradiction does it give to the
calumnies spread against the French republicans that they plundered the
churches of the towns they occupied! There is an agreeable promenade lined
with trees on the banks of the river called _L'Allee du Rhin._ Mayence is
strongly fortified and has besides a citadel (a pentagon) of great
strength, which is separated from the town by an esplanade. The _Place du
Marche_ is striking and in the _Place Verte_ I saw for the first time in my
life the Austrian uniform, there being an Austrian garrison as well as
troops belonging to the other Germanic states, such as Prussians,
Bavarians, Saxons, Hessians, and troops of the Duchy of Berg. This City
belongs to the Germanic Confederation and is to be always occupied by a
mixed garrison. The Archduke Charles has his head-quarters here at present.
I attended an inspection of a battalion of Berg troops on the _Place
Verte_; they had a very military appearance and went thro' their manoeuvres
with great precision. From the top of the steeple of the Church of Sanct
Stephen you have a fine view of the whole Rheingau. Opposite to Mayence, on
the right bank, communicating by an immensely long bridge of boats, is the
small town and fort of Castel, which forms a sort of _tete-de-pont_ to
Mayence. The works of Castel take in flank and enfilade the embouchure of
the river Mayn which flows into the Rhine. One of the redoubts of Castel is
called the redoubt of Montebello, thus named after Marshal Lannes, Duke of
Montebello.

The German papers continue their invectives against France. In one of them
I read a patriotic song recommending the youth of Germany to go into France
to revenge themselves, to drink the wine and live at the cost of the
inhabitants, and then is about to recommend their making love to the wives
and daughters of the French, when a sudden flash of patriotism comes across
him, and he says: "No! for that a German warrior makes love to German girls
and German women only!" (_Und kuesst nur Deutsche Maedchen._) With regard to
the women here, those that I have hitherto met with, and those I saw at
Ehrenbreitstein, were exceedingly handsome, so that the German warriors, if
love is their object, will do well to remain here, as they may go further
and fare worse, for I understand the women of Lorraine and Champagne are
not very striking for personal beauty. There were some good paintings in
the picture gallery here and this and the fortifications are nearly all
that need call forth the attention of a traveller who makes but a fleeting
visit.

FRANKFORT-ON-THE-MAYN, 14th July.

I arrived here the day before yesterday in the diligence from Mayence, the
price of which is two and a half florins the person, and the distance
twenty-five English miles; there is likewise a water conveyance by the Mayn
for half the money. The road runs thro' the village of Hockheim, which in
England gives the name of _Hock_ to all the wines of Rhenish growth. The
country is undulating in gentle declivities and vales and is highly
cultivated in vines and corn. I put up here at the _Hotel Zum Schwan_ (The
Swan), which is a very large and spacious hotel and has excellent
accommodation. There is a very excellent table d'hote at one o'clock at
this hotel, for which the price is one and a half florins the person,
including a pint of Moselle wine and a _krug_ or jar of Seltzer water.
About four or five o'clock in the afternoon it is the fashion to come and
drink old Rhine wine _a l'Anglaise_. That sort called _Rudesheimer_ I
recommend as delicious. There is also a very pleasant wine called the
_Ingelheimer_, which is in fact the "red Hock." At one of these afternoon
meetings a gentleman who had just returned from Paris related to us some
anecdotes of what passed at the Conference between the French commissioners
who were sent after the abdication of Napoleon, by the provisional
government, to treat with the Allies; in which it appeared that the British
commissioner, Lord S[tewart],[28] brother to the Secretary of State for
Foreign Affairs, made rather a simple figure by his want of historical
knowledge or recollection. He began, it seems, in rather a bullying manner,
in the presence of the commissioners, to declaim against what he called the
perfidy and mutiny of the French army against their lawful Sovereign; when
the venerable Lafayette, who was one of the commissioners and who is ever
foremost when his country has need of his assistance, remarked to him that
the English revolution in 1688, which the English were accustomed always to
stile glorious, and which he (Lafayette) stiled glorious also, was
effectuated in a similar manner by the British army abandoning King James
and ranging themselves under the standard of the Prince of Orange; that if
it was a crime on the part of the French army to join Napoleon, their
ancient leader who had led them so often to victory, it was a still greater
crime on the part of the English army to go over to the Prince of Orange
who was unknown to them and a foreigner in the bargain; and that therefore
this blame of the French army, coming from the mouth of an Englishman,
surprised him, the more so as the Duke of Marlborough, the boast and pride
of the English, set the example of defection from his Sovereign, who had
been his greatest benefactor. Lord S[tewart], who did not appear to be at
all conscious of this part of our history, was staggered, a smile was
visible on the countenances of all the foreign diplomatists assembled
there, and Lord S[tewart], to hide his confusion, and with an ill-disguised
anger, turned to Lafayette and said that the Allies would not treat until
Napoleon should be delivered to them. "Je m'etonne, my lord, qu'en faisant
une proposition si infame et si deshonorante, vous vous plaisez de vous
adresser au prisonnier d'Olmuetz," was the dignified answer of that virtuous
patriot and ever ardent veteran of liberty.[29]

The main street in Frankfort called the _Zeil_ is very broad and spacious,
and can boast of a number of splendid houses belonging to individuals,
particularly the house of Schweitzer[30]; and on the Quai, on the banks of
the Mayn, there is a noble range of buildings. The bridge across the Mayn
is very fine and on the other side of the river is the suburb of
Sachsenhansen, which is famous for being the head-quarters of the
priestesses of the Venus vulgivaga who abound in this city. There are in
Frankfort an immense number of Jews, who have a quarter of the city
allotted to them. The gardens that environ the town are very tastefully
laid out, and serve as the favourite promenade of the _beau monde_ of
Frankfort. The Cathedral will always be a place of interest as the temple
wherein in later times the German Caesars were crowned and inaugurated. At
the _Hotel de Ville_ called the _Roemer_, which is an ugly Gothic building,
but interesting from its being in this edifice that the Emperors were
chosen, is to be seen the celebrated Golden Bull which is written on
parchment in the Latin language with a golden seal attached to it. In the
Hall where the Electors used to sit on the election of an Emperor of the
Romans, are to be seen the portraits of several of the Emperors, and a very
striking one in particular of the Emperor Joseph II, in full length, in his
Imperial robes. There is no table d'hote at the _Swan_ for supper, but this
meal is served up _a la carte_, which is very convenient for those who do
not require copious meals. At the same table with me at supper sat a very
agreeable man with whom I entered into conversation. He was a Hessian and
had served in a Hessian battalion in the English service during the
American war. He was so kind as to procure me admission to the Casino at
the Hotel Rumpf,[31] where there is a literary institution and where they
receive newspapers, pamphlets and reviews in the German, French, English
and Italian languages. In Frankfort there are several houses of individuals
which merit the name of palaces, and there is a great display of opulence
and industry in this city. In the environs there is abundance of _maisons
de plaisance_. For commerce it is the most bustling city (inland) in all
Germany, besides it being the seat of the present German Diet; and from
here, as from a centre, diverge the high roads to all parts of the Empire.

I have been once at the theatre, which is very near the _Swan_. A German
opera, the scene whereof was in India, was given. The scenery and
decorations were good, appropriate, and the singing very fair. The theatre
itself is dirty and gloomy. The German language appears to me to be better
adapted to music than either the French or English. The number of dactylic
terminations in the language give to it all the variety that the
_sdruccioli_ give to the Italian. As to poetry, no language in the world
suits itself better to all the vagaries and phantasies of the Muse, since
it possesses so much natural rythm and allows, like the Greek, the
combination of compound words and a redundancy of epithets, and it is
besides so flexible that it lends itself to all the ancient as well as the
modern metres with complete success: indeed it is the only modern language
that I know of which does so.

As for political opinions here, the Germans seem neither to wish nor to
care about the restoration of the Bourbons; but they talk loudly of the
necessity of tearing Alsace and Lorraine from France. In fact, they wish to
put it out of the power of the French ever to invade Germany again; a thing
however little to be hoped for. For the minor and weaker Germanic states
have always hitherto (and will probably again at some future day) invoked
the assistance of France against the greater and stronger. I observe that
the Austrian Government is not at all popular here, and that its bad faith
in financial matters is so notorious and has been so severely felt here,
that a merchant told me, alluding to the bankruptcy of the Austrian
Government on two occasions when there was no absolute necessity for the
measure, that Frankfort had suffered more from the bad faith of the
Austrian Government than from all the war contributions levied by the
French.

BRUXELLES, 28th July.

On arrival at Coblentz we heard that Napoleon had surrendered himself
unconditionally to Capt. Maitland of the _Bellerophon_. He never should
have humiliated himself so far as to surrender himself to the British
ministry. He owed to himself, to his brave fellow soldiers, to the French
nation whose Sovereign he had been, not to take such a step, but rather die
in the field like our Richard III, a glorious death which cast a lustre
around his memory in spite of the darker shades of his character; or if he
could not fall in the field, he should have died like Hannibal, rather than
commit himself into the hands of a government in which generosity is by no
means a distinguishing feature, and which on many occasions has shown a
petty persecuting and vindictive spirit, and thus I have no hesitation in
portraying the characteristics of our Tory party, which, unfortunately for
the cause of liberty, rules with undivided sway over England. He will now
end his days in captivity, for his destination appears to be already fixed,
and St Helena is named as the intended residence; he will, I say, be
exposed to all the taunts and persecutions that petty malice can suggest;
and this with the most uncomfortable reflections: for had he been more
considerate of the spirit of the age, he might have set all the Monarchs,
Ultras and Oligarchs and their ministers at defiance. But he wished to ape
Charlemagne and the Caesars and to establish an universal Empire: a thing
totally impossible in our days and much to be deprecated were it possible.

Consigned to St Helena, Napoleon will furnish to posterity a proverb like
that of Dionysius at Corinth. This banishment to St Helena will be very
ungenerous and unjust on the part of the English Government, but I suppose
their satellites and adherents will term it an act of clemency, and some
_Church and Kingmen_ would no doubt recommend hewing him in pieces, as
Samuel did to Agag.

I stopped three days at Aix-la-Chapelle to drink the waters and then came
straight to this place stopping half a day in Liege. I shall start for
Paris in a couple of days, as the communication is now open and the public
conveyances re-established. My passport is _vise_ in the following terms:
"Bon pour aller a Paris en suivant la route des armees alliees." I am quite
impatient to visit that celebrated city.

[18] Philipp Klingmann (1762-1824) was better known as an actor than as an
author.--ED.

[19] Ariosto, _Orlando Furioso_, VII, 12, 1.--ED.

[20] "What business have you? None, I travel for amusement. Strange! What
is there strange in travelling to see a fine country?"

[21] _Le Compere Mathieu_, a satirical novel by the Abbe Henri Joseph
Dulaurens, published 1765 and sometimes (though wrongly) attributed to
Voltaire. One of the prominent talkers in the dialogues is Pere Jean
de Domfront.--ED.

[22] Horace, _Epist_., I, i, 15.--ED.

[23] This altar, inscribed _Deae Victoriae Sacrum (Corpus inscr. lat_.
XIII, 8252), was erected by the Roman fleet on the Rhine at the place
now called _Altsburg_ near Cologne and, after its discovery, taken to
Bonn, where it was set up on the _Remigius-Platz_ (now called
_Roemer-Platz_) on Dec, 3, 1809. It is now in the Provincial
Museum.--ED.

[24] Ariosto, _Orlando Furioso_, vi, 20, 3.--ED.

[25] August Lafontaine (1758-1831), born in Brunswick of a family of French
protestants, was the very prolific and now quite forgotten author of
many novels and novelettes.--ED.

[26] From Ernst Moritz Arndt's (1779-1860) celebrated poem, _Des Deutschen
Vaterland_.--ED.

[27] There seems to be much truth in this opinion, though the question of
the intrigues of Louis XVIII with Robespierre is still shrouded in
obscurity. Some pages of General Thiebault's memoirs might have
cleared it up, but they have been torn out from the manuscript
(_Memoires du General Baron Thiebault_, vol. I, p. 273). Louis XVIII
paid a pension to Robespierre's sister, Charlotte.--ED.

[28] Sir Charles Stewart, created Lord Stewart In 1814; he was a
half-brother of Lord Castlereagh.--ED.

[29] The same story is given, with slight differences, by Lafayette himself
(_Memoires_, vol. V, p. 472-3; Paris and Leipzig, 1838). See also
_Souvenirs historiques et parlementaires du Comte de Pontecoulant_,
vol. III, p. 428 (Paris, 1863). Major Frye's narrative is by far the
oldest and seems the most trustworthy.--ED.

[30] The house in question was built about 1780 by Nicolas de Pigage for
the rich merchant, Franz von Schweizer; Pigage was the son of the
architect of King Stanislas at Nancy. The Schweizer palace became
later on the _Hotel de Russie_ and was demolished about 1890, the
Imperial Post Office having been erected in its place. The Schweizer
family is now extinct.--ED.

[31] A _Casinogesellschaft_, still in existence (1908), was founded at
Frankfort in 1805, with the object of uniting the aristocratic
elements of the city, admittance being freely allowed to distinguished
strangers, in particular to the envoys of the _Bundestag_. The
_Gesellschaft_ or club occupied spacious rooms in the house of the
once famous _tapissier_ and decorator Major Rumpf, grandfather of the
German sculptor of the same name. That building, situated at the
corner of the _Rossmarkt_, was demolished about 1880.--ED.

CHAPTER III

From Bruxelles to Paris--Restoration of Louis XVIII--The officers of the
allied armies--The Palais Royal--The Louvre--Protest of the author against
the proposed despoiling of the French Museums--Unjust strictures against
Napoleon's military policy--The _cant_ about revolutionary robberies--The
Grand Opera--Monuments in Paris--The Champs Elysees--Saint-Cloud--The Hotel
des Invalides--The Luxembourg--General Labedoyere--Priests and
emigrants--Prussian Plunder--Handsome behaviour of the English officers--
Reminiscences of Eton--Versailles.

PARIS, August 3rd.

Here I am in Paris. I left Bruxelles the 29th July, stopped one night at
Mons and passing thro' Valenciennes, Peronne and St Quentin arrived here on
the third day. The villages and towns on the road had been pretty well
stripped of eatables by the Allied army, as well as by the French, so that
we did not meet with the best fare. In every village the white flag was
displayed by way of propitiating the clemency of the Allies and averting
plunder.

August 7th.

I have put up at the _Hotel de Cahors_, Rue de Richelieu, where I pay five
francs per diem for a single room; such is the dearness of lodgings at this
moment. It is well furnished, however, with sofas, commodes, mirrors and a
handsome clock and is very spacious withal, there being an alcove for the
bed. This situation is extremely convenient, being close to the Palais
Royal, Rue St Honore, Theatre Francais, Louvre and the Tuileries on one
side, and to the Grand Opera, the Theatre Feydeau, the Italian Opera and
the Boulevards on the other. The National Library is not many yards distant
from my hotel, and a few yards from that _en face_ is the Grand Opera house
or _Academie Royale de Musique_.

This city is filled with officers and travellers of all kinds who have
followed the army. The House of Legislature of the Hundred Days,--as it is
the fashion to style Napoleon's last reign--dissolved themselves on the
demand of a million of francs as a war contribution made by Marshall
Blucher. Louis XVIII has been hustled into Paris, and now occupies the
throne of his ancestors under the protection of a million of foreign
bayonets, and the _banniere des Lis_ has replaced the tricolor on the
castle of the Tuileries. A detachment of the British army occupies
Montmartre, where the British flag is flying, and in the Champs Elysees and
Bois de Boulogne are encamped several brigades of English and Hanoverians.
The Sovereigns of Russia, Austria and Prussia are expected and then it is
said that the fate of France will be decided. The Army of the Loire has at
length made its submission to the King, after stipulating but in vain for
the beloved tricolor. Report says it is to be immediately dissolved and a
new army raised with more legitimate inclinations. Should the King accede
to this, France will be completely disarmed and at the mercy of the Allies,
and the King himself a state prisoner. The entrance into Paris, thro' the
Faubourg St Denis, does not give to the stranger who arrives there for the
first time a great idea of the magnificence of Paris; he should enter by
the Avenue de Neuilly or by the Porte St Antoine, both of which are very
striking and superb.

Now you must not expect that I shall or can give you a description of all
the fine things that I have seen or am about to see, for they have been so
often described before that it would be a perfect waste of time, and I can
do better in referring you at once to the _Guide des Voyageurs a Paris_; so
that I shall content myself with merely indicating these objects which make
the most impression on me.

My first visit was, as you will have no doubt guessed, to the Palais Royal:
there I breakfasted, there I dined, and there I passed the whole day
without the least _ennui_. It is a world in itself. It swarms at present
with officers of the Allied army. The variety of uniforms adds to the
splendour and novelty of the scene. The restaurants and cafes are filled
with them. The Palais Royal is certainly the temple of animal
gratification, the paradise of gastronomes. The officers are indulging in
all sorts of luxury, revelling in Champaign and Burgundy, in all the
pleasures of the belly, as well as _in iis quae sub ventre sunt_. 'Twill be
a famous harvest for the restaurateurs and for the Cyprians who parade up
and down the Arcades, sure of a constant succession of suitors. In fact,
whatever be the taste of a man, whether sensual or intellectual or both, he
can gratify himself here without moving out of the precincts of the Palais
Royal. Here are cafes, restaurants, shops of all kinds whose display of
clocks, jewellery, stuffs, silks, merchandize from all parts of the world,
is most brilliant and dazzling; here you find reading-rooms where
newspapers, reviews and pamphlets of all tongues, nations and languages are
to be met with; here are museums of paintings, statues, plans in relief,
cosmoramas; here are libraries, gaming houses, houses of fair reception;
cellars where music, dancing and all kinds of orgies are carried on;
exhibitions of all sorts, learned pigs, dancing dogs, military canary
birds, hermaphrodites, giants, dwarf jugglers from Hindostan, catawbas from
America, serpents from Java, and crocodiles from the Nile. Here, so
Kotzebue has calculated, you may go through all the functions of life in
one day and end it afterwards should you be so inclined. You may eat,
drink, sleep, bathe, go to the _Cabinet d'aisance_, walk, read, make love,
game and, should you be tired of life, you may buy powder and ball or opium
to hasten your journey across Styx; or should you desire a more classic
_exit_, you may die like Seneca opening your veins in a bath. Deep play
goes forward day and night, and I verily believe there are some persons in
Paris who never quit these precincts. The restaurants and cafes are most
brilliantly fitted up. One, _Le Cafe des Mille Colonnes_, so called from
the reflection of the columns in the mirrors with which the wainscoat is
lined, boasts of a _limonadiere_ of great beauty. She is certainly a fine
woman, dresses very well, as indeed most French women do, and has a
remarkably fine turned arm which she takes care to display on all
occasions. I do not, however, perceive much animation in her; she always
appears the same, nor has she made any more impression on me--tho' I am of
a very susceptible nature in this particular--than a fine statue or picture
would do. There she sits on a throne and receives the hommage and
compliments of most of the visitors and the money of all, which seems to
please her most, for she receives the compliments which are paid her with
the utmost _sang-froid_ and indifference, and the money she takes especial
care to count. English troops, conjointly with the National Guard, do duty
at the entrance of the Palais Royal from the Rue St Honore; and it became
necessary to have a strong guard to keep the peace, as frequent disputes
take place between the young men of the Capital and the Prussian officers,
against whom the French are singularly inveterate.

The French, when left to themselves, are very peaceable in their pleasures
and the utmost public decorum is observed; their sobriety contributes much
to this; but if there were in London an establishment similar to that of
the Palais Royal, it would become a perfect pandemonium and would require
an army to keep the peace. The French police keep a very sharp look-out on
all political offences, but are more indulgent towards all moral ones, as
long as public decorum is not infringed, and then it is severely punished.
But they have none of that censoriousness or prying spirit in France which
is so common in England to hunt out and criticise the private vices of
their neighbours, which, in my opinion, does not proceed from any real
regard for virtue, but from a fanatical, jealous, envious, and malignant
spirit. Those vice-hunters never have the courage to attack a man of wealth
and power; but a poor artisan or labourer, who buys a piece of meat after
twelve o'clock on Saturday night, or a glass of spirits during church-time
on Sunday, is termed a Sabbath-breaker and imprisoned without mercy.

In the Palais Royal the three most remarkable temples of dissipation are
Very's for gastronomes, Robert's faro bank for gamesters, and the Cafe
Montausier for those devoted to the fair sex. The Cafe Montausier is fitted
up in the guise of a theatre where music, singing and theatrical pieces are
given; you pay nothing for admission, but are expected to call for some
refreshment. It is splendidly illuminated, and is the Cafe _par
excellence_, frequented by those ladies who have made the opposite choice
to that of Hercules, and who, taking into consideration the shortness and
uncertainty of life, dedicate it entirely to pleasure, reflecting that

Laggiu nell' Inferno,
Nell' obblio sempiterno,
In sempiterno orrore,
Non si parla d'amore.

Of course, this saloon is crowded with amateurs, and the Prussians and
English are not the least ardent votaries of the Goddess of Paphos; many a
vanquished victor sinks oppressed with wine and love on the breast of a
Dalilah: this last comparison suggests itself to me from the immense
quantity of hair worn by the Prussians, as if their strength, like that of
Samson's, depended on their _chevelure_. There is a very pretty graceful
girl who attends here and at the different restaurants and cafes with an
assortment of bijouterie and other knick-knacks to sell. She is full of wit
and repartee; but her answer to all those who attempt to squeeze her hand
and make love to her is always: "_Achetez quelque chose._" Her name is
Celine and she has a great flow of conversation on all subjects but that of
love, which she invariably cuts short by "_Achetez quelque chose._"

10th August.

I have been to see the Museum of sculpture and painting in the Louvre, but
what is to be seen there baffles all description:

Se tante lingue avessi e tante voci
Quanti occhi il cielo o quante arene il mare
Non basterian a dir le lodi immense.

The _Apollo Belvedere_, the _Venus de Medici_ and the _Laocoon_ first
claimed my attention, and engaged me for at least an hour and a half before
I could direct my attention to the other masterpieces. I admire indeed the
_Laocoon_, still more the _Venus_, but the _Apollo_ certainly bears away
the palm and I fully participate of all Winkelmann's enthusiasm for that
celebrated statue. The _Venus_ is a very beautiful woman, but the _Apollo_
is a god. One is lost, and one's imagination is bewildered when one enters
into the halls of sculpture of this unparalleled collection, amidst the
statues of Gods, Demi-Gods, Heroes, Philosophers, Poets, Roman Emperors,
Statesmen and all the illustrious worthies that adorned the Greek and Roman
page. What subjects for contemplation! A chill of awe and veneration
pervaded my whole frame when I first entered into that glorious temple of
the Arts. I felt as I should were I admitted among supernatural beings, or
as if I had "shuffled off this mortal coil" and were suddenly ushered into
the presence of the illustrious tenants of another world; in fact, I felt
as if Olympus and the whole Court of Immortals were open to my view. No! I
cannot describe these things, I can only feel them; I throw down the pen
and call upon expressive silence to muse their praise.

Of the Picture Gallery too what can I say that can possibly give you an
idea of its variety and extent? Here are the finest works of the Italian,
Flemish, and French schools, and you are as much embarrassed to single out
the favourite object, as the Grand Signor would be, among six or seven
hundred of the most beautiful women in the world, to make his choice. The
only fault I find in this collection is that there were rather too many
Scripture pieces, Crucifixions, Martyrdoms and allegorical pictures, and
too few from historical or mythological subjects. Yet perhaps I am wrong in
classing the Scripture pieces with Martyrdoms, Crucifixions, Grillings of
Saints and Madonnas; there are very many beautiful episodes in the
Scriptures which would furnish admirable subjects for painters. Why then
have they chosen disgusting subjects such as Judith sawing off Holofernes'
head, Siserah's head nailed to the bedpost, John the Baptist's on a
trencher, etc.? But the pictures representing Martyrdoms are too revolting
to the eye and should not be placed in this Museum.

It is reported that the Allies mean to strip this Museum [of sculpture and
painting]. No! it cannot be, they never surely can be guilty of such an act
of Vandalism and contemptible spite. I am aware that there is a great
clamour amongst a certain description of English for restoring these
statues and pictures to the countries from whence they came, and that it is
the fashion to term the translation of them to Paris a revolutionary
robbery; but let us bring these gentlemen to a calm reasoning on the
subject.

The statues and paintings in question belonged either to Governments at war
with France, or to individuals inhabiting those countries; now, with
respect to individuals, I will venture to affirm, on the best authority,
that the property of no individual was taken from him without an
equivalent. Those who had statues and pictures of value and wished to sell
them, received their full value from the French Government, but there was
no force used on the occasion; in fact, many who were in want of money were
rejoiced at the opportunity of selling, as they could never have otherwise
disposed of those valuable articles to individuals at the same price that
the French Government gave. I recollect a day or two ago being in
conversation with a Milanese on this subject and others connected with the
occupation of Italy by the French. I happened to mention that the conquest
of Italy by the Republican armies must have been attended with confiscation
of property; he assured me that no such thing as confiscation of property
took place; that so far from being the losers by the French invasion and
the establishment of their system, they had on the contrary been
considerable gainers, for that the country flourished under their
domination in a manner before unknown, and that one of the greatest
advantages attendant on the occupation was the establishment of an equality
of weight and measures, the decimal division of the coin, the introduction
of an admirable code of laws free'd from all barbarisms--legal, political
and theological--and intelligible to all classes, so that there was no
occasion to cite old authors and go back for three or four hundred years to
hunt out authorities and precedents for what men of sense could determine
at once by following the dictates of their own judgment.

With respect to the statues and pictures belonging to the different
governments of Italy, it must never be forgotten that these governments
made war against the French Revolution either openly or insidiously, and
did their utmost to aid the coalition to crush the infant liberties of
France. Those who did not act openly did so covertly and indirectly; in
short, from their tergiversations and intrigues, they had no claim whatever
on the mercy of the conquerors, who treated them with a great deal of
clemency. The destruction of these governments was loudly called for by the
people themselves, who looked on the French as their deliverers.

It will be admitted, I believe, that it is and has been the custom on the
continent, in all wars, for all parties to levy war contributions on the
conquered or occupied countries; but Buonoparte thought it more glorious
for the French name to take works of art instead of money; and not a statue
or picture was taken from the vanquished governments except by a solemn
treaty of cession, or given in lieu of contributions at the option of the
owners, and the Princes were very glad to give up their pictures and
statues, which the most of them did not know how to appreciate, in lieu of
money which they were all anxious to keep; and on these articles a fair
value was fixed by competent judges. In this manner did the French become
the possessors of these valuable objects of art, and in this manner was the
noble Museum in Paris filled up, and surely nothing could be more generous
and liberal than the use made of the Museum by the French Government;
foreigners were indeed more favoured than the inhabitants themselves. To
the inhabitants of Paris this Museum is open twice a week; but to
foreigners on producing their passports, it is open every day in the week
all the year round; artists of all nations are allowed, during a certain
number of hours each day, to come to copy the statues and pictures which
suit their taste; and stoves are lighted for their accommodation during
winter, and all this gratis.--Now, before these objects of art were
collected here, they were distributed, some in churches, and some in
Government palaces. To see the first, required a specific introduction to
the owner; to see the second, application to the attendants of the churches
became necessary, and for both these you were required to pay fees to the
servants and church-attendants, who are always impatient to take your fee
and hurry you through the apartments or chapels, scarcely giving you time
to examine anything. To be admitted into the Government palaces was a
matter of favour, and here also fees were required.[32] Here in the Louvre
there is no introduction required; no court to be paid to _major-domos_, no
favour; it is open to all classes, high and low, without exception, and no
money is allowed to be given.

But there are some people, in their ridiculous fury against the French
Revolution, who would fain persuade us that before that epoch there was a
golden age on the earth, that there were no acts of violence committed, no
frauds practised, no property injured, no individuals ill-used; that every
Prince governed like Numa; that every noble was a Bayard, and every priest
like a primitive apostle. Why I need go no further than the Seven Years'
war to show that in that war, during the height of European civilisation,
and carried on between the most polished nations in Europe, there were much
more acts of violence and rapine carried on than ever were done by the
French republicans. I by no means wish to excuse or even palliate the acts
of ferocity which took place at that epoch of the French Revolution called
the reign of Terror, which were executed by a people wrought up to frenzy
by a recollection of their wrongs; and I know too well that many virtuous
individuals fell victims to their indiscriminating fury; but I do believe
and aver that much more clamour was made at the execution of a handful of
corrupt courtiers, intriguing and profligate women of quality and worthless
priests, than all the rest put together.

To return to the Seven Years' war (I may be permitted to take this
retrospect, I hope, since it is the fashion, and those who differ with me
in opinions go much farther back than I do), let the French royalists and
emigrants recollect the confiscation of property and barbarity exercised by
Marshall Richelieu in Hanover, where many families were reduced to beggary.
They may not chuse to recollect this; but the Hanoverians do and they have
not forgotten the _Pavillon de Hanovre_, so called by the wits of the time
from its having been built by the Marshall with money arising from the
spoils of Hanover; will they recollect also the harsh treatment inflicted
on the burghers and citizens of a town in Germany, who were shut up in a
room and kept without food or drink for nearly three days because they
would not consent to fix a heavy and unwarrantable contribution on their
fellow citizens; when these unhappy but virtuous men were only allowed to
go out for the necessities of nature attended by sentries, and on the third
day, when fainting with hunger, a little bread and water was given to them,
with an assurance that in future they were not to expect such luxuries.
Have they forgot the devastation committed in Berlin by the Austrians in
the Seven Years' war, when they pillaged, burned or destroyed all the
valuable property of the royal Palaces, the most valuable works of art,
vases, statues of antiquity, the loss of which could never be replaced;
when they lopped off the heads, arms and legs of the statues? Have they
forgot the conduct of the belligerent powers at the siege of Dresden at the
same epoch, when whole families, among whom were helpless old men and women
with children at the breast, were compelled to leave Dresden in the middle
of a most rigorous winter and were driven to take refuge in the fields
where the most of them perished with hunger and cold; and where many
individuals lost their reason and became insane from the treatment they
received? Have they forgotten the merciless barbarities inflicted by the
Russians in the same war on the inhabitants of the Prussian territory?
their ripping up and burning men, women, and children? and the dreadful
retaliation inflicted on them at the battle of Zorndorff, when the
Prussians, exasperated at the idea of those horrors so fresh in their
memory, on being ordered to bury the Russian dead, threw the wounded men
also belonging to that nation into the graves dug for the dead, to be thus
buried alive, and hastily filled them up with earth, as if fearful that
they might relent, did they give themselves time for reflection? These are
not exaggerations; they are given by an author celebrated for his
impartiality and deep research and who was an eye-witness of many of these
proceedings; I mean Archenholz in his admirable history of the Seven Years'
war.[33]

Then again in the war of American Independence (and here my countrymen must
excuse me if I point out the acts of injustice committed by them, when
acting in obedience to an unprincipled and arbitrary government and in a
cause hostile to freedom), who does not recollect the private property
wantonly destroyed and confiscated by the English? their employing the
Indian tribes, those merciless savages of the forest, to scalp, etc., which
called forth the indignation of a Chatham? and the grossly unjust pillage
and confiscation of property which took place at St Eustatius by the
commanders of a _religious and gracious King_?[34] Again, who does not
recollect the gentle but deep reproof given by the American General
Schuyler to the English General Burgoyne, when the latter was made prisoner
by the Americans under Gates? General Schuyler's valuable house, barns,
etc., had been burned by the express order of Burgoyne. Nevertheless,
Schuyler received him with dignified politeness, magnanimously stifled the
recollection of the injury he had received, and obtained for him a good
quarter, merely remarking, "General, had my house and farms not been
burned, I could have offered you a more comfortable abode." How Burgoyne
must have felt this reproof! yet he was not by nature a harsh man, but he
had the orders of his government to exercise severities; he was educated in
Tory principles, and passive obedience is their motto.

Can one forget likewise even, in the late war, Nelson's conduct to
Caraccioli at Naples, whom he caused to be hanged on board of an English
ship of war, together with a number of other patriots, in violation of a
solemn capitulation, by which it had been stipulated that they should be
considered as prisoners of war and sent to France? Then again the wanton
destruction of the Capitol and other public buildings at Washington not
devoted to military purposes, which it is not usual to destroy or deface;
and the valuable public library too which was burned? What excuse can be
offered for this? Were the times of Omar returned? It is fair and allowed
by the laws of war to blow up and destroy arsenals, magazines, containing
warlike stores and engines of destruction, but to destroy with Gothic
barbarity buildings of great symmetry and beauty, and a library too--O fie!

Why I will defy any man to point out a single instance where the French
republican armies or Napoleon ever injured or wantonly destroyed a single
national edifice, a single work of art, a single book belonging to any
other country! On the contrary, they invariably extended their protection
to the Arts and Sciences. Why at Vienna, where there is, I understand, a
most splendid museum, and many most valuable works of art and antiquity,
tho' this city fell twice into their possession, they never destroyed or
took away a single article; but, on the contrary, there, as well as in
Berlin, they invited the inhabitants to form a civic guard for the
protection of their property. As to the Vandalism shewn during the reign of
Terror, and I by no means seek to palliate it, that was of short duration,
it was madness, if you will, but it was disinterested--and other nations
who talk a great deal about their superior morality would do well to look
at home. They would there observe, in their own historic page, that the
atrocities of the French Revolution have not only been equalled but
surpassed perhaps by more dreadful scenes committed at Wexford in 1798,
under the auspices of the Government then ruling Ireland and which the
noble and virtuous ----[35] disdained to serve.

Excuse this long digression, but I feel it my duty to open the eyes of my
countrymen and prevent them from supporting on all occasions the unjust
acts of their Government, which reflect dishonour on a great and
enlightened nation; which can boast, among its annals, of some of the most
heroic, splendid, and disinterested characters that ever the world
produced.

All that I need add on the subject of the statues and pictures is, that
putting out of the question the justice or injustice of the restitution, it
will be a great loss to England and to English artists in particular,
should they be removed: many an artist can afford to make a trip to Paris,
who would find it beyond his means to make a journey to Florence or Rome.

If these objects of art are to be taken away, it should be stipulated so in
the treaty of peace; and then everybody would understand it. This would be
putting it on the fairest footing. You then say to France: "You gained
these things by conquest; you lose them by defeat"; but for God's sake let
us have no more of that _cant_ about revolutionary robberies!

PARIS, ----

I went for the first time to the Grand Opera, or, as it is here called, the
Academie Royale de Musique, which is in the Rue de Richelieu. _Armida_ was
the piece performed, the music by Glueck. The decorations were splendid and
the dancing beyond all praise. The scenes representing the garden of Armida
and the nymphs dancing fully expressed in the mimic art those beautiful
lines of Tasso:

Cogliam d'amor la rosa! amiamo or, quando
Esser si puote riamato amando![36]

The effect of the dissolution of the palace and gardens by the waving of
Armida's wand is astonishing; it appears completely to be the work of
inchantment, from the rapidity of execution which follows the _potentissime
parole_. The French recitative however does not please me. The serious
opera is an exotic and does not seem to thrive on the soil of France. The
language does not possess sufficient intonation to give effect to the
recitative.

On the contrary, the comic operas are excellent; and here the national
music and singing appear to great advantage. It never degenerates to the
grotesque or absurd _buffo_ of the Italians, but is always exquisitely
graceful, simple, touching and natural.

Among the ballets, I have seen perhaps three of the best, viz., _Achille a
Scyros, Flore et Zephire_ and _La folle par amour_. In the ballet of Flore
and Zephire, the dancers who did these two parts appeared more aerian than
earthly. To use a phrase of Burke's, I never beheld so _beautiful a vision.
Nina_, or _la folle par amour_, is a ballet from private life. The title
sufficiently explains its purport; it is exquisitely touching and pathetic.
O what a divine creature is Bigottini! what symmetry of form! what innate
grace, what a captivating expression of countenance; and then the manner in
which she did the mad scenes and her return to reason! Oh! I was moved even
to tears. Never had any performance such an effect upon me. What a
magnificent _tout ensemble_ is the Grand Opera at Paris! Whenever I feel
chagrined or melancholy I shall come here; I feel as if I were in a new
world; the fiction appears reality; my senses are ravished, and I forget
all my cares.

I have very little pleasure in visiting royal Palaces, unless they have
been the residence of some transcendent, person like Napoleon or Frederick
II of Prussia, as the sight of splendid furniture and royal pomp affords me
no gratification; and I would rather visit Washington's or Lafayette's
farms in company with these distinguished men than dine with all the
monarchs of Europe. After a hasty glance at the furniture of the Tuileries,
what fixed my attention for a considerable time was "La Salle des
Marechaux," where are the portraits of all the modern French Marshalls.
They are all full length portraits and are striking resemblances; some are
in the Marshall's undress uniform and others in the full court costume
which is very elegant, being the costume of the time of Francis I with the
Spanish hat and plumes. I did not observe Ney's or Soult's portraits among
them.

In front of the great square of the Tuileries where the troops exercise,
stands the Arch of Triumph erected by Napoleon, commonly called _l'Arc du
Carrousel_. It is a beautiful piece of architecture, but is far too small
to tally with such a vast mass of buildings as the Palace and offices of
the Tuileries. By the side of them it appears almost Lilliputian. It would
have been better to have made it in the style of the triumphal arch of the
Porte St Denis. On this arc of the Carrousel are _bas-reliefs_ both outside
and inside, representing various actions of Napoleon's life. He is always
represented in the Roman costume, with the imperial laurel on his brows,
with kings kneeling, and presenting the keys of conquered cities. On the
outside are statues, large as life, in modern military costume,
representing the different _armes_ which compose the French army.[37] On
the top of this Arc du Carrousel is an antique car of triumph, to which are
harnessed the four bronze horses which were taken from the facade of the
Church of San Marco in Venice. They are of beautiful workmanship and of
great antiquity. What various and mighty revolutions have these horses
witnessed! Cast in Corinth in the time of the glories of the Grecian
commonwealths and removed by conquest to Rome, they witnessed the
successive fall of the Grecian and Roman states; transferred to
Constantinople in the time of Constantine, and from thence removed to
Venice when Constantinople fell into the hands of the French and Venetians;
transferred from thence to Paris in 1798, they have witnessed the
successive falls of the Eastern and Western Empires, of the Republic of
Venice and the Napoleonic dynasty and Empire. Report says they are to be
restored to Venice; and who knows whether they may not be destined one day
to return to their original country, Greece, under perhaps Russian
auspices?

The Gardens of the Tuileries which lie at the back part of the palace are
very spacious, well laid out in walks and lined with trees. Large basins
inlaid with stone, fountains and statues add to the grandeur of these
gardens; they extend from the Tuileries as far as the Place Louis XV
parallel to the Seine, and are separated by a wall and parapet and a
beautiful cast iron railing from the Quai, and on the other side from the
Rue de Rivoli, one of the new streets, and the best in Paris for
pedestrians. On the side opposite the palace itself is the _Place Louis
XV_, called in the time of the republic _Place de la Revolution_, and where
the unfortunate Louis XVI suffered decapitation. The _Place Louis XV_ is by
far the most magnificent thing of the kind I have ever seen and far exceeds
the handsomest of our squares in London. On one side of it is the _Hotel du
Garde Meuble_, a superb edifice. On the other the Quai, the river; and on
the other side of the river is the _Palais du Corps legislatif_, now the
place where the Chamber of Deputies hold their sitting, and which has a
magnificent facade. In front of this place are the Champs Elysees and
avenue of Neuilly and behind the gardens and palace of the Tuileries.

My next visit was to the _Place Vendome_, where stands the majestic column
of the Grand Army. To me this column is the most striking thing of its kind
that I have hitherto seen. It is of bronze and of the most beautiful
workmanship, cast from the cannon taken from the Austrians in the war of
1805, and on it are figured in bas-relief the various battles and
achievements, winding round and round from the base to the capital. It is
constructed after the model of the Column of Trajan in Rome.

The next place I visited was the Chamber of Deputies. It is a fine building
with a Doric facade and columns; it is peculiarly striking from its noble
simplicity. On the facade are bas-reliefs representing actions in
Napoleon's life. The flight of steps leading to the facade is very grand,
and there are colossal figures representing Prudence, Justice, Fortitude
and other legislative virtues. The Chamber itself where the Deputies hold
their sittings is in the form of a Greek theatre; the arch of the
semi-circle forms the gallery appropriated to the audience, and comprehends
in its enclosure the seats of the deputies like the seats in a Greek
theatre; on the chord of the semi-circle where the _proscenium_ should be,
is the tribune and President's seat. The whole is exceedingly elegant. The
Orator whose turn it is to speak leaves his seat, ascends the tribune and
faces the Deputies. The anti-rooms adjoining this Chamber are fitted up
with long tables and fauteuils and are appropriated to the sittings of the
various committees. These antichambers are hung round with pictures
representing the victories of the French armies; but they are covered with
green baize and carefully concealed from the public eye in order to stifle
recollections and prevent comparisons.

PARIS, August.

I mounted on horseback and rode out to St Cloud to breakfast, passing
through the Champs Elysees, the Bois de Boulogne and the little town of
Passy, and returned by the Quai, as far as the bridge of Jena, which I
passed and went to visit the _Hotel des Invalides, le Champ de Mars_, the
_Pantheon_ or Church of St Genevieve and the Palace of the Luxembourg. This
was pretty good work for one day; and as you will expect some little
account of my ideas thereon, I shall give you a _precis_ of what most
interested me.

In the Champs Elysees are quartered several English regiments who are
encamped there, and this adds to the liveliness of the scene; our soldiers
seem to enjoy themselves very much. They are in the midst of places of
recreation of all kinds, such as guinguettes, tennis-courts, dancing salons
and cafes, and besides these (places of Elysium for English soldiers), wine
and brandy shops innumerable; our soldiers seem to agree very well with the
inhabitants. In the Bois de Boulogne are Hanoverian troops as well as
English. At Passy I stopped at the house occupied by my friend, Major C. of
the 33rd Regt.,[38] who was to accompany me to St Cloud. St Cloud is an
exceedingly neat pretty town, well and solidly built, and tolerably large.
There are a great many good restaurants and cafes, as St Cloud with its
Palace, promenades and gardens forms one of the most favourite resorts of
the Parisians on Sundays and _jours de fete_. Diners _de societe_ and
_noces et festins_ are often made here; and there is both land and water
conveyance during the whole day. There are two roads by land from Paris:
the one on the Quai the whole way; the other through the Bois de Boulogne
and Champs Elysees. The gardens of St Cloud are laid out something in the
style of a _jardin anglais_, but mixed with the regular old fashioned
garden; it abounds in lofty trees, beautiful sites and well arranged vistas
commanding extensive views of Paris and the country environing. St Cloud
was the favourite residence of Napoleon; and the furniture in the palace
here shows him to be a man of the most refined taste. All is elegant and
classic; there is nothing superfluous; the furniture is modern, but in
strict imitation of the furniture of the ancients and chiefly in bronze.
There are superb vases and candelabras in marble, magnificent clocks of
various kinds, marble busts, and busts in bronze of great men, and bronze
statues large as life holding lamps. The chairs and sofas too are in a
classic taste, as are the beds and baths. We were informed here that
Blucher, who passed one night here, tore with his spur the satin covering
of one of the sofas and that he did it wilfully; but I never can believe
that the old man would be so silly, and I rather think that this story is
an invention of the keeper of the Palace, or that if it was done, it was
done by an accident merely. But the fact is that Blucher has a contempt for
and hates the Parisians and likes to mortify them on all occasions; he
threatens to do a number of things which he never seriously intends, merely
for the sake of teasing them; and it must be owned that they deserve a
little contempt from the want of _caractere_ they showed on the entrance of
the Allies. Be it as it may, Blucher is the _bete noire_ of the Parisians
and they are as much afraid of him as the children are of _Monsieur
Croque-mitaine_.

We returned from St Cloud by the Quai, crossed the bridge of Jena,
galloped along the _Champs de Mars_, took a hasty glance at the _Hotel des
Invalides_, a magnificent edifice and which may be distinguished from all
other buildings by its gilded cupola. It is a superb establishment in every
respect, and is furnished with an excellent library. A great many old
soldiers are to be seen in this library occupied in reading; they are very
polite to all visitors, particularly to ladies. Nothing can better
demonstrate the superior character, intelligence and deportment of the
French soldiers over those of all other countries than the way in which
they employ their time in literary pursuits, their dignified politeness to
visitors and the intelligent answers they give to questions. I am afraid
our British veterans, brave as they are in the field, occupy themselves,
when laid up as invalids, more in destroying their bodies by spirituous
liquors than in improving their minds by reading. The Chapel of this
establishment where were displayed the banners and trophies taken at
different epochs from the enemies of France, and which were much mutilated
by the wars since the Revolution, is now stripped of all the ensigns of
glory. They were all burned by the French themselves previous to the
capitulation of Paris in 1814, in order to prevent their falling into the
hands of the enemy. An old soldier who was my guide related this with tears
in his eyes, but suddenly checking himself said: "_Mais telle est
l'histoire_."

The only things now in this Chapel that interest the eye of the traveller
are the monuments of Vauban and Turenne. Of the rest nought remains but the
brilliant souvenirs.

Fuit Ilium, et ingens
Gloria Teucrorum!...[39]

I had a great deal of difficulty in inducing this old soldier to accept of
three franks; I told him at last that, as he did not want it himself, to
take it and give it to somebody that did. I then visited the rest of the
establishment. There is a whole range of rooms which contains models or
plans in relief of all the fortresses of France; they are admirably and
most minutely executed; not only the fortifications and public buildings,
but the private houses, the gardens, orchards, meadows, mountains, hill and
dale, bridges, trees, every feature of the ground in fine and of the
surrounding country are given in miniature. In fact it gives you the same
idea of the places themselves and of the environing country as if you were
held up in the air over them to inspect them; or as if you viewed them from
a balloon at the distance of 800 yards from the earth. The models of
Strassburg, Lille and three or four others have been taken away by the
Austrians and Prussians, but I have seen those of Calais, Dunkirk,
Villefranche, Toulon, and Brest, and in fact almost every other French
fortress. This is one of the most interesting sights in Paris, and for this
we are certainly indebted to the occupation; for I question much if
travellers were ever permitted to see these models until Paris fell into
the hands of the Allies. Prussian sentries do duty at the doors; how
grating this must be to the old invalids! Among the models I must not omit
to mention a very curious one which represents the battle of Lodi. The town
of Lodi, the bridge and river are admirably executed. The soldiers are
represented by little figures about a quarter of an inch in height and
cobwebs are disposed so as to represent the smoke of the firearms,
Buonaparte and his staff are on horseback on one side of the bridge. There
is also a very fine model of the _Hotel des Invalides_ itself.

From hence we went to the garden and palace of the Luxembourg. These
gardens form the midday and afternoon promenade of that part of the city.
In one wing of the Palace is the Chamber of Peers, elegantly fitted up and
in some respect resembling a Greek theatre. The busts of Cicero, Brutus,
Demosthenes, Phocion and other great men of antiquity adorn the niches of
this chamber and on the grand _escalier_ are the statues in natural size of
Kleber, Dessaix, Caffarelli and other French generals. Report says that
these statues will be removed.

In the picture gallery at the Luxembourg is a choice collection of pictures
of the modern French school such as Guerin, David, etc. The subjects are
extremely well chosen, being taken from the mythology or from ancient and
modern history. I was too glad to find no crucifixions, martyrdoms, nor
eternal Madonnas. I distinguished in particular the _Judgment of Brutus_
and the _Serment des Horaces et des Curiaces_. Connoisseurs find the
attitudes too stiff and talk to you of the Italian school; but I prefer
these; yet I had better hold my tongue on this subject, for I am told I
know nothing about painting.

Poor Labedoyere[40] is sentenced to be shot by the Court Martial which
tried him, and the sentence will be carried immediately into execution. His
fate excites universal sympathy, and I have seen many people shed tears
when talking on this subject. He certainly ought to be protected by the
12th Article of the Capitulation. The French are very uneasy; the Allies
have begun to strip the Louvre and there is no talk of what the terms of
peace are to be, or what is the determination of the Allies. This is a
dreadful state of uncertainty for the French people and may lead to a
general insurrection. The Allies continue pouring troops into France and
levying contributions. "_Vae victis_" seems their motto. France is now a
disarmed nation, and no French uniform is to be seen except that of the
National Guard and the "Garde Royale." France is at the mercy of her
enemies and prostrate at their feet; a melancholy prospect for European
liberty!

The Allies have parades and reviews two or three times a week and the
Sovereigns of Russia, Austria and Prussia constantly attend; Wellington is
their showman. These crowned Heads like mightily playing at soldiers; I
should think His Grace must be heartily tired of them. Massacres and
persecutions of the Protestants have begun to take place in the South of
France, and the priests are at work again threatening with excommunication
and hell the purchasers and inheritors of emigrant estates and church
lands. These priests and emigrants are incorrigible. Frequent quarrels take
place almost every evening in the Palais Royal between the Prussian
officers and the French, particularly some of the officers from the army of
the Loire. I rather suspect these latter are the aggressors. The Prussians
being gorged with plunder come there to eat, drink and amuse themselves and
have as little stomach for fighting as the soldier of Lucullus had after
having enriched himself; but the officers of the army of the Loire are,
poor fellows, in a very different predicament; they have not even been paid
what is due to them, and they, having none of those nice felicities (to use
an expression of Charlotte Smith's)[41] which make life agreeable, are
ready for any combat, to set their life on any cast, "to mend it, or to be
rid of 't." The Prussians indulge in every sort of dissipation, which they
are enabled to do by the plunder which they have accumulated, and of which
they have formed, I understand, a _depot_ at St Germain. They send these
articles of plunder to town every day to be sold, and then divide the
profits, which are sure to be spent in the Palais Royal, and other places
of revel and debauchery.

They sometimes affect a fastidiousness of stomach which is quite laughable,
and not at all peculiar to the Germans, who are in general blessed by
nature with especial good appetites; and they spend so much money that the
English officers who have not had the advantages of plunder that these
Prussians have had must appear by the side of them stingy and niggardly.

I was witness one day to a whimsical scene, which will serve to give you an
idea of the airs of importance these gentlemen give themselves. I was one
day at Versailles and after having visited the palace and gardens I entered
the Salon of a restaurateur and called for a veal cutlet and _vin
ordinaire_. There was a fat Prussian Major with two or three of his
companions at one of the tables, who had been making copious libations to
Bacchus in Burgundy and Champaign. He heard me call for _vin ordinaire_,
and whether it was to show his own magnificence I know not, but he called
out to the _cafetiere_: "Madame, votre vin ordinaire est il buvable? car
j'en veux donner a mon trompette, et s'il n'est pas bon, il n'en boira pas.
Faites venir mon trompette." Now I dare say in his own country this Major
would not have disdained even the "schwarze Bier" of Brandenburgh.

Scarcely any quarrels, I believe, take place between the English and
French, nor did I hear of any violent fracas but one. In this instance, the
English officers concerned must have been sad, brutal, vulgar fellows.
They, however, after behaving in a most gross insulting manner, were
compelled by some Frenchmen not to eat but to drink their words, and that
out of a vessel not usually employed in drinking. I shall not repeat the
contemptible affair, but it furnished the subject of a caricature.

The English officers in general behave in a handsome and liberal manner,
and their conduct was spoken of in high terms of encomium by very many of
the French themselves. I regret however exceedingly that any of the British
officers should have imbibed the low prejudices and vulgar hatred against
the French, which certain people preach up in England to cover their own
peculations and interested views. A young friend of mine, with whom I was
one day talking on political subjects, said to me: "I cannot help agreeing
with you in many things, but I am staggered when I think that your ideas
and reasoning are so contrary to the ideas in which I have been brought up;
so that I rather avoid entering at all on political questions."

I do not wonder at all at this, for I recollect when I was at school at
Eton, the system was to drill into the heads of the boys strong
aristocratic principles and hatred of Democracy and of the French in
particular; we were ordered to write themes against the French Revolution
and verses of triumph over their defeats, with now and then a sly theme on
the great advantage of hereditary nobility; in these verses God Almighty
was to be represented as closely allied to the British Government and a
_sleeping partner_ of the Administration. One of the fellows of Eton
College actually told the late Mr Adam Walker, the celebrated lecturer on
natural and experimental philosophy, who was accustomed to give lectures
annually to the Etonians, that his visits were no longer agreeable and
would be dispensed with in future; as "Philosophy had done a great deal of
harm and had caused the French Revolution."

With respect to my visit to Versailles, I was much struck with the vast
size and magnificence of the buildings and with the ingenuity displayed in
the arrangement of the grounds and the numerous groups of statues,
grottos, aqueducts, fountains and ruins. Still it pleases me less than St
Cloud, for I prefer the taste of the present day in gardening and the
arrangement of ground, to the ponderous and tawdry taste of the time of
Louis XIV, and I prefer St Cloud to Versailles, just as I should prefer a
Grecian Nymph in the simple costume of Arcadia to a fine court lady rouged
and dressed out with hoops, diamonds, and headdress of the tune of Queen
Anne. Napoleon must have had an exquisite taste.

[32] Exceptions to this are, I understand, the Gallery at Florence, and the
Museo Vaticano at Rome, which are both open to all and no fees allowed.

[33] Johann Wilhelm Archenholz (1743-1812), author of the _Geschichte des
Siebenjaehrigen Krieges_, 1789.--ED.

[34] In February, 1781, before the declaration of war was generally known
in the West Indies, Rodney's fleet surrounded the Dutch island of
Eustatius, which had become a sort of entrepot for supplying America
with British goods; two hundred and fifty ships, together with several
millions worth of merchandise, were seized and sold at a military
auction. The plunder of Eustatius was bitterly commented upon In the
British House of Commons.--Lee Richard Hildreth, _The History of the
United States_, vol. III, p. 335.--ED.

[35] The name is in blank. Major Frye may have meant Beauchamp Bagenal
Harvey (1762-1798), the squire of Wexford who deserted to the Irish
rebels.--ED.

[36] Tasso, _Jerusalemme liberata_, canto XVI, ottava 15.--ED.

[37] For instance, a Cuirassier, a Dragoon, a Grenadier, a Tirailleur, an
Artilleryman.

[38] Major G. Colclough, senior major of the 33rd Regt.--ED.

[39] Virgil, _Aen_., II. 325.--ED.

[40] La Bedoyere (Charles Huchet, Comte de) distinguished himself in
several of the Napoleonic wars, in particular at Ratisbonne and
Borodino. Being a colonel at Grenoble, in March, 1815, he deserted to
Napoleon's cause and was nominated by him general and _pair de
France_. In July, 1815, he was arrested in Paris, tried for high
treason and shot, August 19, in spite of Benj. Constant's efforts to
save him.--ED.

[41] Charlotte Smith (1749-1806), author of _Emmeline, or the Orphan of the
Castle_ (1788), _Celestina_ (1792), _The Old Manor House_ (1793),
etc.--ED.

CHAPTER IV

From Paris to Bruxelles--Visiting the plains of Waterloo--The Duke de Berri
at Lille--Beauvais--Return to Paris--Remarks on the French theatre--
Talma--Mlle Duchesnois--Mlle Georges-French alexandrine verse--The Abbe
Delille--The Opera Comique.

I met with my brother-in-law and his nephew at Paris, and hearing from them
that they had an intention of returning to England by the way of Bruxelles,
with the idea of visiting the plains of Waterloo, I was induced to
accompany them. We started on the 18th August, taking the exact route from
Paris that was taken by Napoleon. Passed the first night at St Quentin; the
second at a small village on the line between Mons and Charleroy in the
Belgian territory. The next morning, after breakfasting at Nivelles, we
proceeded to Quatre Bras and Mont St Jean. At the little cabaret called _a
la belle Alliance_ we met a host of Englishmen who had been to behold the
field of battle; Lacoste, the peasant who was Napoleon's guide on the day
of battle, was about to conduct them across the fields to Hougoumont. We
followed them. The devastation of the place, every tree being pierced with
bullets, and the whole premises being nearly burned to the ground, seemed
to astonish their _weak minds_; one of them was not contented till he had
measured the length and breadth of the garden and orchards.

Cuirasses, helmets, swords and various other spoils of war found on the
spot, were offered for sale by some boys and eagerly bought up as relics.
My brother-in-law made a purchase of a helmet, sword and cuirass, intending
to hang it up in his hall. For my part I have seen, and can see no reason
whatever to rejoice at this event. I fear it is pregnant with infinite
mischief.

We arrived at Bruxelles on the afternoon of the 20th August and after
visiting thePark, _Alee verte_ and Palace of Laeken, we proceeded the next
morning on our journey to Lille.

The Duke of Berri was at Lille and a grand _fete_ was given in the evening
to celebrate the second restoration of the Bourbons. Fireworks were let
off, the city was brilliantly illuminated and boys (hired of course) went
about the streets singing the following refrain

A bas, a bas Napoleon!
Vivent, vivent les Bourbons!

A number of beautiful women elegantly attired paraded up and down the
public promenades, which are exceedingly well and tastefully laid out. This
city is built with great regularity, and the streets are broad, neat, and
clean. It is by far the handsomest city I have ever seen either in France
or Belgium. The _Hotel de Ville_ and the theatre both are on the _Grande
Place_ and are well worth seeing. Lille is renowned for its fortifications;
I much wished to visit the citadel but I was not permitted. At dinner at
the table d'hote at the _Hotel du Commerce_, I remarked a French officer
declaiming violently against Napoleon; but I heard afterwards that he was
the son of an Emigrant; the rest of the company did not seem to approve his
discourse and shewed visible impatience at it.

Lille may be easily recognised at its approach from the immense quantity of
wind-mills that are in the vicinity of this city, some of which are used
for grinding of wheat and others for the expression of oil. A great deal of
flax from whence the oil is made, grows in the country.

I left Lille on the morning of the 24th inst., with the courier for Amiens.
From Amiens I took the diligence to Beauvais and on arrival there I put up
under the hospitable roof of my friend Major G., of the 18th Light
Dragoons, lately made Lt.-Colonel for his gallantry at Waterloo.[42] I did
not want for amusement here, for the next day a _fete champetre_ was given
just outside the walls of the town, and I admired the grace and tournure of
the female peasantry and their good dancing. How much more creditable are
these innocent and agreeable _fetes_ to the fairs and meetings in England,
which are generally signalized in drunkenness! The next afternoon presented
a novel sight to the inhabitants of Beauvais, it being a grand cricket
match played between the officers of the 10th and 18th Dragoons. It was won
by the latter, mainly owing to the superior play of Colonel G. of the 18th,
who never touched a bat since he was at Burney's school. The Officers
afterwards dined _al fresco_ and many toasts accompanied by the huzzas were
given, to the astonishment of the bystanders, who seemed to consider us as
little better than barbarians. One of the officers wishing to pay a
compliment to the inhabitants of Beauvais proposed the health of Louis
XVIII, but they seemed to take it coldly and not at all to be flattered by
the compliment.

After five days very agreeable residence at Beauvais, I put myself in the
diligence to return to Paris. During the journey an ardent political
altercation arose between a young lady, who appeared to be a warm partisan
of Napoleon, on the one side, and a Garde du Corps on the other. The lady
was seconded by a young gentleman, of whom it was difficult to say, whether
he sustained her argument from a dislike to the present order of things, or
from a wish to ingratiate himself in her favour. The argument of the Garde
du Corps was espoused, but soberly, by one of the passengers who was a
mathematical professor at one of the Lyceums; he was not by any means an
Ultra, but he supported the Bourbons, with moderate, gentlemanly and I
therefore believe sincere attachment. This professor seemed a well informed
sort of man; he told me that he was acquainted with Sir James M., formerly
recorder at Bombay. On our arrival at the _Bureau des Messageries_, the
whole company forgot their disputes and parted good friends; and the young
man who was partisan of the young lady in the political dispute took care
to
inform himself of her abode in Paris.

* * * * *

Remarks on the various dramatic performances which I witnessed at Paris,
with opinions on the French theatre in general.

In my ideas of dramatic works I am neither rigidly classic nor romantic,
and I think both styles may be good if properly managed and the interest
well kept up; in a word I am pleased with all genres _hors le genre
ennuyux_,[43] and tho' a great admirer of Shakespeare and Schiller, I am
equally so of Voltaire, Racine and Corneille; I take equal delight in the
pathos of the sentimental dramas of Kotzebue as in the admirable satire and
_vis comica_ of the unrivalled Moliere, so that on my arrival at Paris I
was not violently prejudiced either for or against the French stage, but
rather pre-occupied, to use a gentler term, in its favour; and I have not
been at all disappointed, for I think I can pronounce it with safety the
first, perhaps the only stage in Europe.

I now mean to speak not of Operas, nor of Operas-comiques, nor of
melodrames, nor of vaudevilles; all these have their respective merits; but
when I speak of the French stage, I confine myself to the regular theatre
of tragedy and comedy, of their classical pieces; in a word, to the
dramatic performances usually given at the _Theatre Francais_.

The first piece I saw performed was _Manlius_;[44] but I was too far off
from the stage to judge of the acting, and could do little more than catch
the sounds. The parterre and the whole house was full. I was in the fourth
tier of boxes, yet I could distinguish at intervals the finest and most
prominent traits, of Talma's acting, particularly in that scene where he
upbraids his friend with having betrayed him. This he gave with uncommon
energy and effect. The plot of this piece is very similar to that of
_Venice preserved_.[45]

The next piece I saw represented was the _Avare_ of Moliere, which to me
was one of the greatest dramatic treats I had ever witnessed. Every part
was well supported. The next was _Athalie_ of Racine. Here too I was highly
gratified. Mlle Georges performed the part of Athalie and gave me the
perfect ideal of the haughty Queen. Her narration of the dream was given
with the happiest effect, and in her attempt to conceal her uneasiness and
her affected contempt of the dream in these lines:

Un songe, me devrois--je inquieter d'un songe?

she seemed in reality to labour under all the anxiety and fatigue arising
from it. That fine scene between Joad and Joas was well given, and the
little girl who did the part of Joas performed with a good deal of spirit.
The actor who played Joad recited in a most impressive manner the advice to
the young prince terminating in these lines:

Vous souvenant, mon fils, que cache sous ce lin,
Comme eux vous futes pauvre et comme eux orphelin.

The interrogating scene between Athalie and Joad was given spiritedly, but
the rather abrupt and uncourtierlike reply to the Queen's remark, "Ils sont
deux puissans dieux"--"Lui seul est dieu, Madame, et le votre n'est rien"--
excited a laugh and I fancy never fails to do so, every time the piece is
performed.

Racine has several passages in his tragedies which perhaps have rather too
much _naivete_ for the dignity of the cothurnus; for instance in the answer
of Agamemnon to Achille in the tragedy of _Iphigenie_:

Puisque vous le savez, pourquoi le demander?

A poet of to-day would be quizzed for a line like the above, but who dare
venture to point out any defect in an author of whom Voltaire has said and
with justice too, that the only criticism to be made of him (Racine) would
be to write under every page: "Admirable, harmonieux, sublime!"

The costume and the decorations at the _Theatre francais_ are so strictly
classical and appropriate in every respect, that it is to me a source of
high delight to witness the representation of the favourite pieces of
Racine, Corneille, Moliere and Voltaire, which I have so often read with so
much pleasure in the closet and no small quantity of which I have by heart.

The next piece I saw was the _Cinnna_ of Corneille; and here it was that I
beheld Talma for the second time. I was of course highly pleased, tho' I
was rather far off to hear very distinctly; this was, however, no very
great loss, as I was perfectly well acquainted with the tragedy. Talma's
gestures, his pause's, his natural mode of acting gave a great relief to
the long declamation with which this tragedy abounds. When this tragedy was
given it was during the time that poor Labedoyere's trial was going on, and
the allusions to Augustus' clemency were eagerly seized and applauded. It
was hoped that Louis XVIII would imitate Augustus. Vain hope!

I have seen _Phedre_; the part of Phedre by that admirable actress Mlle
Duchesnois, who performs the part so naturally and with so much passion
that we entirely forget the extreme plainness of the person. She acts with
far more feeling and pathos than Mlle Georges. I shall never be able to
forget Mlle Duchesnois in _Phedre_. She gave me a full idea of the
impassioned Queen, nor were it possible to depict with greater fidelity the
"Venus toute entiere a sa proie attachee," as in that beautiful speech of
Phedre to Oenone wherein she reveals her passion for Hippolyte and
pourtrays the terrible struggle between duty and female delicacy on the one
hand, and on the other a flame that could not be overcome, convinced as it
were of the complete inutility of further efforts of resistance and
invoking death as her only refuge. I was moved even to tears. I am so great
an admirer of the whole of this speech beginning "Mon mal vient de plus
lorn" etc., and ending "Un reste de chaleur tout pret a s'exhaler," that I
think in it Racine has not only united the excellencies of Euripides,
Sappho and Theocritus in describing the passion of love, but has far
surpassed them all; that speech is certainly the masterpiece of French
versification and scarcely inferior to it is that beautiful and ingenuous
confession of love by Hippolyte to Aricie. What an admirable _pendant_ to
the love of Phedre! In Hippolyte you behold the innocence, simplicity and
ingenuousness of a first and pure attachment: in Phedre the _embrasement_,
the ungovernable delirium of a criminal passion.

I have seen Mlle Duchesnois again in the _Merope_ of Voltaire and admire
her more and more. This is an admirable play. The dialogue is so spirited;
the agitation of maternal tenderness, and the occasional bursts of feelings
impossible to be restrained, render this play one of the most interesting
perhaps on the French stage, and Mlle Duchesnois gave with the happiest
effect her part in those two scenes; the first wherein she supposes Egisthe
to be the person who has killed her son; in the other where having
discovered the reality of his person, she is obliged to dissemble the
discovery, but on Egisthe being about to be sacrificed she exclaims
"Barbare, c'est mon fils!" The part of Egisthe was given by a young actor
who made his appearance at this theatre for the first tune, and he executed
his part with complete success (Firmin, I think, was his name). Lafond did
the part of Polyphonte and did it well. At this tragedy many allusions were
caught hold of by the audience according as they were Bourbonically or
Napoleonically inclined; at that part of Polyphonte's speech wherein he
says:

Le premier qui fut Roi fut un soldat heureux.
Qui sert bien son pays n'a pas besoin d'ayeux.

Thunders of applause proceeded from those who applied it to Napoleon. At
the line:

Est il d'autre parti que celui de nos rois?

a loud shout and clapping proceeded from the Royalists; but I fancy if
hands had been shown these last would have been in a sad minority. I have
often amused myself with comparing the _Merope_ of Voltaire with that of
Maffei and am puzzled to which to give the preference. Maffei has made
Polyphonte a more odious and perhaps on that account a more theatrical
character, while Voltaire's Polyphonte is more in real life. In the play of
Voltaire he is a rough brutal soldier, void of delicacy of feeling and not
very scrupulous, but not that praeternatural deep designing villain that he
is represented in the piece of Maffei. In fact Maffei's Polyphonte appears
too _outre_; but then on the stage may not a little exaggeration be
allowed, just as statues which are destined to be placed in the open air or
on columns appear with greater effect when larger than the natural size?
Alfleri seems to have given the preference to the Merope of Voltaire.

I have seen Talma a second time in the part of Nero in the Britannicus of
Racine; Mlle Georges played the part of Agrippina. Talma was Nero from head
to foot; his very entry on the stage gave an idea of the fiery and
impatient character of the tyrant, and in the scene between him and his
mother Agrippina nothing could be better delineated. The forced calm of
Agrippina, while reproaching her son with his ingratitude, and the
impatience of Nero to get rid of such an importunate monitress, were given
in a style impossible to be surpassed. Talma's dumb show during this scene
was a masterpiece of the mimic art. If Talma gives such effects to his
roles in a French drama, where he is shackled by rules, how much greater
would he give on the English or German stages in a tragedy of Shakespeare
or Schiller!

Blank verse is certainly better adapted to tragedy than rhymed
alexandrines, but then the French language does not admit of blank verse,
and to write tragedies in prose, unless they be tragedies in modern life,
would deprive them of all charm; but after all I find the harmonious pomp
and to use a phrase of Pope's "The long majestic march and energy divine"
of the French alexandrine, very pleasing to the ear. I am sure that the
French poets deserve a great deal of credit for producing such masterpieces
of versification from a language, which, however elegant, is the least
poetical in Europe; which allows little or no inversion, scarce any poetic
license, no _enjambement_, compels a fixed caesura; has in horror the
hiatus; and in fine is subject to the most rigorous rules, which can on no
account be infringed; which rejects hyperbole; which is measured by
syllables, the pronunciation of which is not felt in prose; compels the
alternative termination of a masculine or feminine rhyme; and with all this
requires more perhaps than any other language that cacophony be sedulously
avoided. Such are the difficulties a French poet has to struggle with; he
must unite the most harmonious sound with the finest thought. In Italian
very often the natural harmony of the language and the music of the sound
conceal the poverty of the thought; besides Italian poetry has innumerable
licenses which make it easy to figure in the Tuscan Parnassus, and where
anyone who can string together _rime_ or _versi sciolti_ is dignified with
the appellation of a poet; whereas from French poetry, a mediocrity is and
must be of necessity banished. Neither is it sufficient for an author to
have sublime ideas; these must be filed and pruned. Inspiration can make a
poet of a German, an Italian or an Englishman, because he may revel in
unbounded license of metre and language, but in French poetry inspiration
is by no means sufficient; severe study and constant practise are as
indispensable as poetic verve to constitute a French poet. The French poets
are sensible of this and on this account they prefer imitating the
ancients, polishing their rough marble and fitting it to the national
taste, to striking out a new path.

The Abbe Delille, the best poet of our day that France has produced, has
gone further; he had read and admired the best English poets such as
Milton, Pope, Collins and Goldsmith, and has not disdained to imitate them;
yet he has imitated them with such elegance and judgment that he has left
nothing to regret on the part of those of his countrymen who are not
acquainted with English, and he has rendered their beauties with such a
force that a foreigner Versed in both languages who did not previously know
which was the original, and which the translation, might take up passages
in Pope, Thomson, Collins and Goldsmith and read parallel passages in
Delille and be extremely puzzled to distinguish the original: for none of
the beauties are lost in these imitations. And yet, in preferring to
imitate, it must not be inferred that he was deficient in original
thoughts.

To return to the theatre, I have seen Mlle Mars in the _role_ of Henriette
in the _Femmes Savantes_ of Moliere. Oh! how admirable she is! She realizes
completely the conception of a graceful and elegant Frenchwoman of the
first society. She does not act; she is at home as it were in her own
salon, smiling at the silly pretensions of her sister and at the ridiculous
pedantry of Trissotin; her refusing the kiss because she does not
understand Greek was given with the greatest _naivete_. In a word Mlle Mars
reigns unrivalled as the first comic actress in Europe.

I have seen too, _Les Plaideurs_ of Racine and _Les fourberies de Scapin_
of Moliere, both exceedingly well given; particularly the scene in the
latter wherein it is announced to Geronte that his son had fallen into the
hands of a Turkish corsair, and his answer "Que diable allait-il faire dans
la galere?"

I have seen also _Andromaque_, _Iphigenie_ and _Zaire_. Mlle Volnais did
the part of Andromaque; but the monotonous plaintiveness of her voice,
which never changes, wearies me. In _Iphigenie_ I was more gratified; for
Mlle Georges did the part of Clytemnestre, and her sister, a young girl of
seventeen, made her debut in the part of Iphigenie with great effect. The
two sisters supported each other wonderfully well, and Lafond did Agamemnon
very respectably.

Mlle Georges the younger, having succeeded in _Iphigenie_, appeared in the
part of Zaire, a bold attempt, and tho' she did it well and with much
grace, yet it was evidently too arduous a task for her. The whole onus of
this affecting piece rests on the _role_ of Zaire. In the part where
_naivete_ was required she succeeded perfectly and her burst: "Mais
Orosmane m'aime et j'ai tout oublie" was most happy; but she was too faint
and betrayed too little emotion in portraying the struggle between her love
for Orosmane and the unsubdued symptoms of attachment to her father and
brother and to the religion of her ancestors. In short, where much passion
and pathos was required, there she proved unequal to the task; but she has
evidently all the qualities and dispositions towards becoming a good
actress, and with more study and practise I have no doubt that three or
four years hence, she will be fully equal to the difficult task of giving
effect to and portraying to life, the exquisitely touching and highly
interesting _role_ of Zaire. She was not called for to appear on the stage
after the termination of the performance, tho' frequently applauded during
it. The actor who did the part of Orosmane, in that scene wherein he
discovers he has killed Zaire unjustly, gave a groan which had an unhappy
effect; it was such an awkward one, that it made all the audience laugh; no
people catch ridicule so soon as the French.

What I principally admire on the French stage is that the actors are always
perfect in their parts and all the characters are well sustained; the
performance never flags for a moment; and I have experienced infinitely
more pleasure in beholding the dramas of Racine and Voltaire than those of
Shakespeare, and for this reason that, on our stage, for one good actor you
have the many who are exceedingly bad and who do not comprehend their
author: you feel consequently a _hiatus valde deflendus_ when the principal
actor or actress are not on the stage. I have been delighted to see Kemble,
and Mrs Siddons and Miss O'Neil, and while they were on the stage I was all
eyes and ears; but the other actors were always so inferior that the
contrast was too obvious and it only served to make more conspicuous the
flagging of interest that pervades the tragedies of Shakespeare, _Macbeth_
alone perhaps excepted. I speak only of Shakespeare's faults as a
dramaturgus and they are rather the faults of his age than his own; for in
everything else I think him the greatest litterary genius that the world
ever produced, and I place him far above any poet, ancient or modern; yet
in allowing all this, I do not at all wonder that his dramatic pieces do
not in general please foreigners and that they are disgusted with the low
buffoonery, interruption of interest and want of arrangement that ought of
necessity to constitute a drama; for I feel the same objections myself when
reading Shakespeare, and often lose patience; but then when I come to some
sublime passage, I become wrapt up in it alone and totally forget the piece
itself. In order to inspire a foreigner with admiration for Shakespeare, I
would not give him his plays to read entire, but I would present him with a
_recueil_ of the most beautiful passages of that great poet; and I am sure
he would be so delighted with them that he would readily join in the "All
Hail" that the British nation awards him. Thus you may perceive the
distinction I make between the creative genius who designs, and the artist
who fills up the canvas; between the Poet and the Dramaturgus. I am
probably singular in my taste as an Englishman, when I tell you that I
prefer Shakespeare for the closet and Racine or Voltaire or Corneille for
the stage: and with regard to English tragedies, I prefer as an acting
drama Home's _Douglas_[46] to any of Shakespeare's, _Macbeth_ alone
excepted; and for this plain reason that the interest in _Douglas_ never
flags, nor is diverted.

In giving my mite of admiration to the French stage, I am fully aware of
its faults, of the long declamation and the _fade galanterie_ that
prevailed before Voltaire made the grand reform in that particular: and on
this account I prefer Voltaire as a tragedian to Racine and Corneille. The
_Phedre_ and _Athalie_ of Racine are certainly masterpieces, and little
inferior to them are _Iphigenie, Andromaque_ and _Britannicus_, but in the
others I think he must be pronounced inferior to Voltaire; as a proof of my
argument I need only cite _Zaire, Alzire, Mahomet, Semiramis, l'Orphelin de
la Chine, Brutus_. Voltaire has, I think, united in his dramatic writings
the beauties of Corneille, Racine and Crebillon and has avoided their
faults; this however is not, I believe, the opinion of the French in
general, but I follow my own judgment in affairs of taste, and if anything
pleases me I wait not to ascertain whether the "master hath said so."

It shows a delicate attention on the part of the directors of the _Theatre
Francais_, now that so many foreigners of all nations are here, to cause to
be represented every night the masterpieces of the French classical
dramatic authors, since these are pieces that every foreigner of education
has read and admired; and he would much rather go to see acted a play with
which he was thoroughly acquainted than a new piece of one which he has not
read; for as the recitation is extremely rapid it would not be so easy for
him to seize and follow it without previous reading.

Of Moliere I had already seen the _Avare_, the _Femmes savantes_ and the
_Fourberies de Scapin_. Since these I have seen the _Tartuffe_ and _George
Dandin_ both inimitably performed; how I enjoyed the scene of the _Pauvre
homme!_ in the _Tartuffe_ and the lecture given to George Dandin by M. and
Mme de Sotenville wherein they recount the virtues and merits of their
respective ancestors. Of Moliere indeed there is but one opinion throughout
Europe; in the comic line he bears away the palm unrivalled and here I
fully agree with the "general."

I must not quit the subject of French theatricals without speaking of the
_Opera comique_ at the _Theatre Faydeau_. It is to the sort of light pieces
that are given here, that the French music is peculiarly appropriate, and
it is here that you seize and feel the beauty and melody of the national
music; these little _chansons_, _romances_ and _ariettas_ are so pleasing
to the ear that they imprint themselves durably on the memory, which is no
equivocal proof of their merit. I cannot say as much for the tragic singing
in the _Opera seria_ at the Grand French Opera, which to my ear sounds a
perfect psalmody. There is but one language in the world for tragic
recitative and that is Italian. On the other hand, in the _genre_ of the
_Opera comique_, the French stage is far superior to the Italian. In the
French comedy everything is graceful and natural; the Italians cannot catch
this happy medium, so that their comedies and comic operas are mostly
_outre_, and degenerate into downright farce and buffoonery.

[42] Major James Grant, of the 18th Light Dragoons, was made a Brevet
Lieutenant Colonel on 18th June, 1815.--ED.

[43] A phrase in prose, often quoted as a verse, from Voltaire's preface to
the _Enfant Prodigue: Tous les genres sont bons, hors le genre
ennuyeux_.--ED.

[44] A tragedy often acted by Talma, the work of Antoine d'Aubigny de
Lafosse (1653-1708).--ED.

[45] Thomas Otway's once celebrated tragedy, 1682.--ED.

[46] _The Tragedy of Douglas_, by John Home (1722-1808).--ED.

CHAPTER V

From Paris to Milan through Dijon, Chalon-sur-Saone, Lyons, Geneva and the
Simplon--Auxerre--Dijon--Napoleon at Chalon-sur-Saone--The army of the
Loire--Macon--French _grisettes_--Lyons--Monuments and theatricals--
Geneva--Character and opinions of the Genevois--Voltaire's chateau at
Ferney--The chevalier Zadera--From Geneva to Milan--Crossing the
Simplon--Arona--The theatres in Milan--Rossini--Monuments in Milan--Art
encouraged by the French--Mr Eustace's bigotry--Return to Switzerland--
Clarens and Vevey--Lausanne--Society in Lausanne--Return to Paris--The
Louvre stripped--Death of Marshal Ney.

I left Paris on the 17th Sept., in the diligence of Auxerre, The company
was as follows: a young Genevois who had served in the National Guard at
Paris, and had been wounded in a skirmish against the Prussians near that
city; a young Irish Templar; a fat citizen of Dijon and an equally fat
woman going to Dole. We arrived the following day at 11 o'clock at Auxerre,
a town situated on the banks of the Seine. Water conveyance may be had from
Paris to Auxerre, price 12 francs the person: the price in the diligence is
28 francs. We had during our journey much political conversation; the
Bourbons and the English government were the objects of attack, and neither
my friend the barrister nor myself felt the least inclined to take up their
cause. The Genevois had with him Fouche's expose of the state of the
nation, wherein he complains bitterly of the conduct of the Allies. All
France is now disarmed and no troops are to be seen but those in foreign
uniform. The face of the country between Paris and Auxerre is not
peculiarly striking; but the soil appears fertile and the road excellent.
After breakfast we started from Auxerre and stopped to sup and sleep the
same night at Avallon. At Semur, which we passed on the following day,
there is a one arched bridge of great boldness across the river Armancon.
We arrived in the evening at Dijon. The country between Auxerre and Dijon
is very undulating in gentle hill and dale, but for the want of trees and
inclosures it has a bleak appearance. As you leave Avallon and approach
Dijon, the hills covered with vines indicate your arrival in a wine
country. I put up at the _Chapeau rouge_ at Dijon and remained there one
day, in order to visit the _Chartreuse_ which is at a short distance from
the town and commands an extensive view. It was devastated during the
Revolution. The view from it is fine and extensive and that is all that is
worth notice. The country about it is rich and cultivated, and the
following lines of Ariosto might serve for its description:

Culte pianure e delicati colli,
Chiare acque, ombrose ripe e prati molli.[47]

'Mid cultivated plain, delicious hill,
Moist meadow, shady bank, and crystal rill.

--_Trans_. W.S. ROSE.

The city of Dijon is large, handsome and well built. It has an appearance
of industry, comfort and airiness. There are several mustard manufactories
in this town. A dinner was given yesterday by the municipality to the
National Guard, and an immense quantity of mustard was devoured on the
occasion in honor of the staple manufactory of Dijon. From Dijon I put
myself in the diligence to go to Chalon and after stopping two hours at
Beaune, arrived at Chalon at 5 o'clock p.m. The country between Dijon and
Chalon is flat, but cultivated like a garden. It is likewise the wine
country _par excellence_. I do not know a wine more agreeable to palate
than the wine of Beaune.

At Chalon I put up at the _Hotel du Parc_. Chalon is beautifully situated
on the banks of the Saone. The Quai is well constructed and forms an
agreeable promenade. There is an Austrian garrison in Chalon. The hostess
of the inn told me that Napoleon stopped at her house on his way from Lyons
to Paris, when he returned from Elba, and she related to me with great
eagerness many anecdotes of that extraordinary man: she said that such was
the _empressement_ on the part of the inhabitants to see him, and embrace
him by way of testifying their affection, that the Emperor was obliged to
say: "Mais vous m'etouffez, mes enfans!" In fact, had the army remained
neutral, the peasantry alone would have carried the Emperor on their
shoulders to Paris. It is quite absurd to say that a faction did this and
that it was effectuated merely by the disaffection of the Army. The Army
did its duty in the noblest manner, for it is the duty of every army to
support the national cause and the voice of the people, and by no means to
become the blind tools of the Prince; for it is absurd, as it is degrading
to humanity, it is impious to consider the Prince as the proprietor of the
country and the master of the people; he is, or ought to be, the principal
magistrate, the principal soldier paid by the people, like any other
magistrate or soldier, and like them liable to be cashiered for misconduct
or breach of faith. This is not a very fashionable doctrine nowadays, and
there is danger of it being forgotten altogether in the rage for what is
falsely termed legitimacy; it becomes therefore the bounden duty of every
friend of freedom to din this unfashionable doctrine into the ears of
Princes and unceasingly to exclaim to them and to their ministers:

Discite justitiam moniti et non temnere gentes.[48]

In their conduct on this occasion the French soldiers proved themselves far
more constitutional than those of any other army in Europe; let despots,
priests and weak-headed Tories say what they please to the contrary.

I embarked the following morning at 12 o'clock in the _coche d'eau_ for
Lyons. There was a very numerous and motley company on board: there were
three bourgeois belonging to Lyons returning thither from Paris; a quiet
good-humoured sort of woman not remarkable either for her beauty nor
vivacity; a young Spaniard, an adherent of King Joseph Napoleon, very
taciturn and wrapped up in his cloak tho' the weather was exceeding hot; he
seemed to do nothing else but smoke _cigarros_ and drink wine, of which he
emptied three or four bottles in a very short time--a young Piedmontese
officer, disbanded from the army of the Loire, who no sooner sat down on
deck than he began to chaunt Filicaja's beautiful sonnet, "_Italia, Italia,
O tu cui feo la sorte_," etc.--a merchant of Lyons who had been some time
in England, and spoke English well--a Lyonnese Major of Infantry, also of
the army of the Loire, who had served in Egypt in the 32nd Demi-brigade;
three Austrian officers of Artillery with their servants. A large barge
which followed and was towed by the _coche d'eau_ was filled with Austrian
soldiers, and on the banks of the river were a number of soldiers of the
Army of the Loire returning to their families and homes.

The peaceable demeanour and honourable conduct of this army is worthy of
admiration, and can never be sufficiently praised: not a single act of
brigandage has taken place. The Austrian officers expressed to me their
astonishment at this, and said they doubted whether any other army in
Europe, disbanded and under the same circumstances, would behave so well. I
told them the French soldier was a free-man and a citizen and drawn from a
respectable class of people, which was not the case in most other
countries. Yes, these gallant fellows who had been calumniated by furious
Ultras, by the base ministerial prints of England, and the venal satellites
of Toryism, who had been represented as brigands or as infuriated Jacobins
with red caps and poignards, these men, in spite, of the contumely and
insult they met with from servile prefects, and from those who never dared
to face them in the field, are a model of good conduct and they preserve
the utmost subordination, tho' disbanded: they respect scrupulously the
property of the inhabitants and pay for everything. Mr. L., the young Irish
barrister, told me at Dijon that he left his purse by mistake in a shop
there in which were 20 napoleons in gold, when a soldier of the army of the
Loire, who happened to be in the shop, perceived it and came running after
him with it, but refused to accept of anything, tho' much pressed by Mr.
L., who wished to reward him handsomely for his disinterested conduct. Yes,
the French soldier is a fine fellow. I have served against them in Holland
and in Egypt and I will never flinch from rendering justice to their
exemplary conduct and lofty valour. No! it is not the French soldiery who
can be accused of plundering and exaction, but what brought the French name
in disrepute was the conduct of certain _prefects_ and _administrators_ in
Germany who were promoted to these posts for no other reason than because
they were of the old _noblesse_ or returned _Emigrants_, whom Napoleon
favoured in preference to the Republicans whom he feared. These emigrants
repaid his favours with the basest ingratitude; after being guilty of the
grossest and most infamous _concussions_ on the inhabitants of those parts
of Germany where their jurisdiction extended, they had the hypocrisy after
the restoration to declaim against the oppression of the _Usurper's_
government and its system: but Napoleon richly deserved to meet with this
ingratitude for employing such unprincipled fellows. I believe he was never
aware of the villany they carried on, or they would have met with his
severest displeasure in being removed from office, as was the case with
Wirion at Verdun.[49]

I do not find that the French soldiers with whom I have conversed are so
much attached to the person of the Emperor as I was led to believe; but
they are attached to their country and liberty; and in serving him, they
conceived they were serving the man _par excellence_ of the People.

The French army too was beloved by the people, instead of being dreaded by
them as the armies of most other European nations are. In short, whenever I
met with and held conversation with soldiers of this army, I was always
tempted to address them in the words of Elvira to Pizarro when she seeks to
console him for his defeat:

Yet think another morning shall arise,
Nor fear the future, nor lament the past.[50]

The French Major was very much inclined to take up a quarrel with an
Austrian officer, on my account, but I dissuaded him. The cause was as
follows. A young Austrian boy, servant to one of the officers of Artillery,
had entered the _coche d'eau_ at Chalon, some minutes before his master,
and began to avail himself of the right of conquest by taking possession of
the totality of one of the cabins and endeavouring to exclude the other
passengers; among other things he was going to thrust my portmanteau out of
its place. I called to him to let it alone, when the French Major stepped
forward and said that if he dared to touch any of the baggage belonging to
the passengers, he would punish him on the spot and his master also, for
that he longed to measure swords with those "Jean F---- d'Autrichiens."
Fearful of a serious quarrel between them and being unwilling that any
dispute should occur on my account, I requested the Major not to meddle
with the business, for that I was sure the Austrian officer would check the
impertinence of his servant when he came on board; and that if he did not,
I was perfectly able and willing to defend my own cause. The Austrian
officers came on board a few minutes after, when I addressed them in
German, and explained to them the behaviour of the boy; they scolded him
severely for his impertinence to us and threatened him with the _Schlag_,
should it occur again. The rest of the journey passed without any incident.
I found that my friend the Major had served in the French army in Egypt in
the division Lanusse in the battle of the 21st March, 1801, (30 Ventose)
and that consequently we were opposed to each other in that battle, as I
was then serving as a Lieutenant in the Queen's Regiment, commanded by that
excellent and amiable officer the Earl of D[alhousie] in General Doyle's
brigade.

The voyage on the Saone presents some pleasing and picturesque points of
view; the _coteaux_ on the banks of the river are covered with vines. We
arrived at 8 o'clock in the evening to sup and sleep at Macon and put up at
the _Hotel des Sauvages_. We had a most sumptuous repast, fish, flesh,
fowls, game, fruit and wine in profusion, for all which, including our
beds, we had only to pay 2-1/2 francs the person.

There is a spacious Quai at Macon, which always adds to the beauty of a
city, and there are some fine buildings, public and private. I need not
enlarge on the excellence of the Macon wine. The country girls we observed
on the banks of the river as we floated along, and the _grisettes_ of the
town who were promenading on the Quai when we arrived, wore a peculiarly
elegant _costume_ and their headdress appeared to me to be something
Asiatic.

The voyage on the subsequent day was more agreeable than the preceding one.
The country between Macon and Lyons is much more beautiful and diversified
than that which we have hitherto seen and resembles much the picturesque
scenery of the West-Indian landscape. One part between Macon and Trevoux
resembles exactly the island of Montserrat.

Within two miles of Trevoux we were hailed by some _grisettes_ belonging to
the inns at that place, in order to invite us to dine at their respective
inns. There was one girl exceedingly beautiful whose name was Sophie,
daughter of the proprietor of the _Hotel des Sauvages_ at Trevoux. She, by
her grace and coquetry, obtained the most recruits and when we disembarked
from the boat, she led us in triumph to her hotel. From her beauty and
graceful manner, Sophie, in a country where so much hommage is paid to
beauty, must be a most valuable acquisition to the interests of the inn,
and tho' she smiles on all, she takes care not to make herself cheap, and
like Corisca in the _Pastor Fido_ she holds put hopes which she does not at
all intend to gratify. After passing by the superb scenery on the banks of
the river (which increases in interest as you approach Lyons), the _Isle
Barbe_ and _la Tour de la belle Allemande_, we arrived at Lyons at 5 p.m.
and debarked on the _Quai de la Saone_. A _fiacre_ took me up and deposited
me safe at the _Hotel du Nord_ situated on the _Place St Claire_ and not
many yards distant of the _Quai du Rhone_.

LYONS, 26th Sept.

Lyons is situated on a tongue of land at the junction of the Saone and
Rhone, and there is a fine bridge on the spot where the streams unite,
called _le pont du Confluent_, which joins the extremity of the tongue of
land with the right bank of the Saone. There is besides a large bridge
across the Rhone, higher up, before it joins the Saone, leading in a right
line from the _Hotel de Ville_; and two other bridges across the Saone. The
_Quai du Rhone_ is by far the finest and most agreeable part of the city.
It is spacious, well paved, aligned with trees, and boast the finest
edifices public and private in the whole city; it is the favourite
promenade of the _beaux_ and _belles_ of Lyons. The sight of the broad and
majestic Rhone itself is a grand object, and on a fine day the prospect is
augmented by the distant view of the fleecy head of Mont Blanc. On this
Quai and within a 100 yards of the bridge on the Rhone are the justly
celebrated _bains du Rhone_, fitted up in a style of elegance even superior
to those called _les Bains Vigier_ on the Seine at Paris. The grand
Hospital is also on the Quai; the facade is beautiful; its architecture is
of the Ionic order and the building itself as well as its interior economy
has frequently elicited the admiration of travellers. Among the Places in
this city the finest is that of Bellecour.

The scenery is extremely diversified in the environs of Lyons, and in the
city there is great appearance of wealth and splendour. Lyons flourished
greatly during the time of the continental blockade, as it was the central
depot of the commerce between France and Italy. Napoleon is much respected
and regretted here, and with reason, as he was a great benefactor to this
city. The Lyonnese are too frank, too open in their sentiments and too
grateful not to render justice to his great talents and good qualities,
while they blame and deplore his ambition. In fact an experience of a few
days and some acquaintance I made here has given me a very favourable
impression of the inhabitants of this city. The men are frank in their
manners, polite, well informed, and free from all frivolity. The women are
in general handsome, well shaped, and have much grace and are exceedingly
well educated; they seem totally free from the _Petite-maitressism_ of the
Parisian women, and both sexes seem to possess a good deal of what the
French term _caractere_. Had the Parisians resembled the Lyonnese, Paris
would never have fallen twice into the hands of the enemy, nor would the
Lyonnese women have welcomed the entry of the invaders into their city with
waving handkerchiefs, etc. These qualities of the inhabitants, the beauty
of the country, and the cheapness of all the comforts and luxuries of life,
would make Lyons one of the most agreeable places of residence to a
foreigner of liberal sentiments and principles.

Cloth and silk are the staple manufactures of Lyons, particularly the
latter; I accompanied my friend Mr M---- to see his fabrique of silk which
is of considerable extent and importance, and everything appeared to me, as
far as one totally ignorant of the business and its process could judge,
admirably regulated and rapid in its execution. The _tournure_ of the
_grisettes_ of Lyons is very striking and they possess completely the
_grata protervitas_, the _vultus nimium lubricus aspici_ which Horace so
much admires in Glycera.

I visited both the theatres here, viz.: the _Grand Theatre_, situated near
the _Hotel de Ville_, and the smaller one called the _Theatre des
Celestins_. At the former was some good dancing, and at the latter I was
engaged in a conversation which I cannot forbear citing as it will serve to
show the dislike the people have to the feudal system and the dread they
have of its re-establishment, tho' they can know nothing about it except by
tradition. The piece performed was called _Le petit Poucet_ (Tom Thumb and
the Ogre); but I missed my old acquaintance the Ogre and his seven-league
boots of Mother Goose, and found that in this melodrama he was transformed
into a tyrannical and capricious _Seigneur Feodal_. There was a very pretty
young lady about 16 years of age accompanied by her father in the same box
with me, and I observed to her, "Ou est donc l'Ogre? il parait que l'on en
a fait un Seigneur feodal." "Oui, monsieur (she replied), et avec raison,
car ils etaient bien les Ogres de ce temps la." I entered into a long
conversation with my fair neighbour and found her well informed and well
educated, with great good sense and knowledge of the world far beyond her
years. She told me that she had begun to study English and that her father
was a miniature painter. I took leave of her not without feeling much
affected and my heart not a little "percosso dall' amoroso strale."

I must not forget to mention that there is a most spacious and magnificent
building on the _Quai du Rhone_ to the North of the bridge, which serves as
a cafe and ridotto or assembly room for balls, etc. I am afraid to say how
many feet it has in length; but it is the most superb establishment of the
kind I have ever met with.

Fortunately for the city of Lyons, the famous decree of Robespierre for
its destruction, and the column with the inscription, "Lyon a porte les
armes contre la liberte; Lyon n'est plus," which was to occupy its place,
was never put in execution and tho' this city suffered much from
revolutionary vandalism yet it soon recovered and has flourished ever since
in a manner unheard of at any former period. No people are more sensible
than the Lyonnese of the great benefits produced by the Revolution, and no
people more deprecate a return to the _ancien regime_.

Oct. 2nd, GENEVA.

I started in the diligence for Geneva on the 28th Sept. and found it
exceedingly cold on ascending the mountain called the _Cerdon_; the scenery
is savage and wild, and the road in many parts is on the brink of
precipices. We stopped at Nantua for supper and partook of some excellent
trout. There is a large lake near the town, and 'tis here that the Swiss
landscape begins. Commanding a narrow pass stands the fort of L'Ecluse. The
Austrians lost a great many men in attempting to force it. From this place
you have a noble view of the Alps and Mont-Blanc towering above them. As
this was the first time I beheld these celebrated mountains I was
transported with delight and my mind was filled with a thousand classical
and historical recollections! The scenery, the whole way from Fort l'Ecluse
to Geneva, is most magnificent and uncommonly varied. Mountain and valley,
winter and summer, on the same territory. Descending, the city of Geneva
opens gradually; you behold the lake Leman and the Rhone issuing from it.
We entered the city, which is fortified, and after crossing the double
bridge across the Rhone, we arrived at the _Hotel de l'Eau de Geneve_ at 12
o'clock. The most striking thing in the city of Geneva to the traveller's
eye as he enters it, is the view of the arcades on each side of the street,
excellent for pedestrians and for protection against sun and rain, but
which give a heavy and gloomy appearance to the city. An immense number of
watch-makers is another distinguishing feature in this city. The first
thing shewn to me by my _valet de place_ was the house where Jean Jacques
Rousseau was born; I then desired him to shew me the spot where that
barbarian Calvin caused to be burnt the unhappy Servetus for not having the
same religious opinions as himself.

The most agreeable promenades of the city are on the bastions and ramparts,
a place called _La Treille_ and a garden or park of small extent called
_Plain Palais_. In this park stands on a column the bust of J.J. Rousseau.
This park was the scene of a great deal of bloodshed in 1791 on account of
political disputes between the aristocratic and democratic parties, or
rather between the admirers and imitators of the French Revolution and
those who dreaded such innovations. This affair excited so much horror, and
the recollection of it operated so powerfully on the imagination of the
inhabitants, that the place became entirely abandoned as a public
promenade, and avoided as a polluted spot for many years. Very likely
however a sort of lustration has taken place; an oration was pronounced and
the place again declared worthy of contributing to the recreation of the
inhabitants. It is now become the favourite promenade of the citizens of
Geneva, tho' there are still some who cannot get over their old prejudices
and never set their foot in it. There is likewise a pleasant walk as far as
the town of Carrouge in Savoy, which town has been lately ceded by the King
of Sardinia to the republic of Geneva. In Geneva the sentiments of the
inhabitants do not seem to be favourable either to the French Revolution,
or to Napoleon. Their political ideas accord very much with those professed
by the government party in England, and they make a great parade of them
just now, as a means of courting the favour of England and of the Allied
Sovereigns. The government here have shewn a great disposition to second
the views of the Allied Powers in persecuting those Frenchmen who have been
proscribed by the Bourbon government.

This state lost its independence during the revolutionary wars and was
incorporated with France. As the citizens were suspected of being more
favourable to the English than suited the policy of the French government
of that time, they were viewed with a jealous eye and I believe some
individuals were harshly treated; but what most vexed and displeased them
was the enforcement of the conscription among them, for the Genevois do not

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