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etary now resigned me into the secular hands of the general-commandant, to whom I also had letters, and who carried me immediately to see the military school of which he is the head. It is in the Alcazar, or castle, a remarkable building, whose front indicates a great antiquity, and whose ornaments and style are of the richest, most gorgeous Moorish architecture. It was once the residence of the kings of Castile, whose statues in wood, with those of the kings of Oviedo and Leon, from 700 to 1555, are all preserved here. For a long time, however, it was used only as a castle of state, and the last person that was confined here was Escoiquiz, in 1808. . . . . It was Charles III. that established the military school here, where one hundred and thirty-two young men of noble birth are educated for the army. They have eight professors (all officers),. . . . a respectable laboratory, a good philosophical apparatus, and an excellent military library of about twenty thousand volumes. . . .
ee gates of entrance which form the front of the establishment,—the little village is within these gates, and before the palace, to which it serves only as offices and an appendage. Farther up is the palace; then come the gardens with the very beautiful fountains; and then the whole is closed up by the mountain covered with fine woods, and filled, until lately, with all sorts of game. . . . . The first thing we went to see was the glass manufactory, a royal plaything established by Philip in 1726; but, what is remarkable, the only royal manufactory in Spain that yet pays its own expenses. The work is ordinary, and in general trifling. . . . . From the manufactory we went with the governor, who came to find us, to the palace. It is a mere repetition of Versailles in its outline and arrangement, and like that, has a fine facade towards the gardens, and a chapel in front where are deposited, in a plain sarcophagus, the bones of its founder. The interior is finer, and better preserved
rican Review, July, 1825, Vol. XXI. p. 62. They take place only in the summer, and during the months when the heat is not extreme,. . . . and it is always on Mondays, both morning and afternoon,—in the morning with six bulls, and in the afternoon with eight bulls; but each part of the day, if any one of the royal family is theimportance and power,—when, in fact, they feel themselves to be what they are, and become for the moment free in consequence of it. Royalty is little respected on Mondays in Madrid, and therefore whatever the people persist in requiring in the amphitheatre,—even to the extreme cruelty of putting fire upon the bull's back to goad hind St. Ildefonso, the two most famous royal residences, and on all other accounts two of the most interesting spots in Spain. I set out early on the morning of the 1st, by the horse-post, which is the most agreeable mode of conveyance the country affords, and after traversing the dreary, barren waste round Madrid, in which for the<
ingular among the works of this original and eccentric genius. With all these resources, with the society of the monks, who are in number one hundred and twenty-three, and with the delightful music of the church, which, whether heard in its lofty, solemn naves, or echoed through the interminable aisles, that make the whole convent a labyrinth, falls on the ear like magic,—wish these resources I passed two short and very happy days at the Escorial. It was at sundown, on the evening of the 2d, that I took leave of the prior and the bishop, and mounted my post-horse for St. Ildefonso. We galloped up the side of the mountain, by a fine bright evening, and descending partly down on the other side, came to St. Ildefonso,—or, as it is commonly called here, La Granja,—at ten o'clock, severely chilled, though in the plain the heat of the dog-star still rages; for St. Ildefonso is situated where no other monarch's palace is, in the region of the clouds, since it is higher up than the cra<
ther nation. The great sin of both theatres is, that the majority of the longer pieces they represent are translations from ordinary French comedies, though it must be confessed they are becoming better in this respect; and that the national plays are coming more into fashion, and are oftener acted. An opera-house they have not, nor are operas much in the Spanish taste and character, any more than tragedies. Philip V., however, who brought in their foreign tastes, built an opera-house in 1730, but Ferdinand VII., for reasons which I do not know, has pulled it down. Operas, notwithstanding this, are given alternately in the two theatres. . . . . The great amusement—the national and prevailing amusement, which swallows up all the rest—is the fiestas de toros, the bull-fights. It is purely and exclusively Spanish, and the passion with which it is sought by all classes, and with which it always seems to have been sought, is inconceivable to one who has not witnessed it; and would
find them, and those I observed were hit upon by chance. The library above, which is the manuscript library, is, as everybody knows, a great mine which is yet but imperfectly explored. The whole number is 4,300, of which 1,805 are Arabic, 567 Greek, a great number of curious Castilian, which chiefly engaged my attention, etc., etc. Philip III. added to it an immense number of Arabic manuscripts, There is a complete Catalogue of the Arabic manuscripts by Cassini, in two folios. Madrid, 1770. which he took at sea, on board a vessel bound to Morocco; it would now be beyond all price, but that the greater part of it was burnt in 1671. Since the time of Philip IV., who finished the ornaments of both the halls of the libraries, little has been added to either. Among the manuscripts here should be mentioned those of their church service, which are the largest and most magnificent in their style of execution, illumination, etc., I ever saw, far before the famous ones of Florence.
ors and circenses, for examples before us. Of their earliest origin I have no knowledge, nor am I aware that any can be obtained; for almost nothing has been written upon them. . . . . The first intimations I find of them are in the oldest Spanish Chronicle,—that dark chaos from which the elements of Spanish poetry and history are alike drawn, and which is itself hardly less interesting and instructive than either. There it is said, incidentally, that there were bull-fights in Saldaña, in 1124, on the marriage of Alfonso VII.; and there is an ancient tradition, which I think I have noticed in his Chronicle, that the Cid was a famous toreador, and that he was the first that ever fought bulls on horseback. Mr. Ticknor sketches in many pages the growth, ceremonies, and mode of carrying on the bull-fights,—a long and minute description, which he afterwards arranged as an article for the North American Review, July, 1825, Vol. XXI. p. 62. They take place only in the summer, and
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