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Chapter 4:


January 16.—Mr. Bunsen lectured this morning on the Topography of Ancient Rome. . . . . In the evening I spent an hour quite agreeably at the Princess Borghese's,1 whom I found almost alone, because everybody had gone to a great ball at Torlonia's. There I went also, afterwards, and found a brilliant and gay fete, where were assembled six or seven hundred people. The palace where it was given is the same which Henry VIII., in the days of his Catholic zeal, gave to Cardinal Wolsey, and to which the British government, long after it became Protestant, continued to lay claim. It is a fine building, especially for the purpose to which it was devoted to-night; but it seemed strange that Torlonia should thus be the heir of Henry VIII. and Cardinal Wolsey. . . . .

January 19.—After passing the forenoon quietly, in our usual occupations, we dined with the Princess Gabrielli. It was a little dinner given on occasion of the Prince's birthday, and it would not be easy to find anything more characteristic of the modes of life here. We were led through three or four large and fine halls, all, however, ill furnished, and were received in another where, round a huge fireplace and a small fire, we found our host and hostess; General Gabrielli, the brother; Monsignor Piccolomini; another Monsignor; a young Count, who, at the age of eighteen or nineteen, is about to be married to a little girl not yet fourteen; and a French lady. . . . . [68] Things looked dreary enough, as they always do in these vast palaces; but the conversation was carried on with Italian vivacity and vehemence, and the bonhomie, simplicity, and earnest kindness of the Princess were, as they always are, irresistible. At last dinner was announced, and we were led through the same wide halls by which we had entered, across a magnificent ballroom and through a dark passage, to a moderate-sized dining-room, hung in a careless way with pictures by Perugino, Raphael, Claude, and Andrea del Sarto. The dinner consisted of strange Italian dishes, and was served in the Italian fashion. All the attendants, who were cumbrously numerous, were in shabby liveries, except the major-domo, who was in black. Some of them were old; all were easy and familiar, as they always are in these ancient families, and whenever a good joke occurred they laughed, and seemed to enjoy it as much as any of us.

The conversation was lively without any expense of wit. On this point the Italians are not difficult. They content themselves with as little of what is intellectual, in their daily intercourse, as any people well can, but their gayety is none the less for all that. Monsignor Piccolomini—a great name that has come down from the time of Wallenstein—says his mother was named Jackson, and that her family is connected with that of our President-General; a droll circumstance if it is true. His stories, however, are better than his genealogy. We had coffee at table, and then, after freezing a little in the saloon, after the true Roman fashion, we came home in about three hours after we left it. In the evening we had a pleasant visit from the Trevelyans. . . . .

January 23.—. . . . After his lecture was over this morning Mr. Bunsen took us into the Tabularium, and explained it to us in a very interesting manner. It has been fully explored only within a few years, and is now one of the grandest monuments of ancient Rome.

I walked home—as I have often lately—with an elderly English gentleman, whom I have seen a good deal of within the last three weeks, and who is full of knowledge, wisdom, and gentleness; I mean Mr. Elphinstone, who wrote the ‘Embassy to Cabul,’ was thirty years in India, was long Governor of Bombay, and refused to be Governor-General of India. It is rare to meet a more interesting man.2

February 6.—. . . . We dined to-day at Prince Massimo's, and met there the Prince, his son; Monsignor; several other Italians; three or four English, whom we are in the habit of meeting everywhere in [69] society, . . . . a party of thirteen or fourteen. Some rooms in their magnificent palace were opened which we had not seen before, which are worthy of the oldest of the Roman families; particularly a large saloon painted in fresco by Giulio Romano, in one corner of which is the famous ancient statue of the Discobolus, for which the Prince was offered twelve thousand of our dollars, and was able—which few Roman princes would be—to refuse it. He is, too, more enlightened, I am told, than most of his caste, and the family is of such influence, that the Prussian Minister told me the other day, that he knows no individual so likely, in his turn, to become pope, as Monsignor. I talked with the Prince to-day for the first time; for, whenever I have been there before, he has been diligent at the card-table. He talked very well, sometimes with scholarship. He said, among other things, that the strangers who come to Rome occupy themselves too much with the arts and antiquities, to the exclusion of all consideration of Rome itself as a city, which, under all its governments and through all its changes, has so much influenced and continues still so much to influence the condition of the world. It was a remark worthy of a Roman Prince who felt the relations and power of his great name and family, which very few of them feel at all.

The dinner was an elegant one, in the Roman style, with sundry unaccountable dishes, all served on silver or beautiful porcelain, and with a great retinue of servants, all ostentatiously out of livery. It was, throughout, a curious and agreeable entertainment to us, for I am not aware that there is any other great Roman house where strangers are invited to dinner, or where they can see so much of Roman manners . . . .

February 11.—I had a long visit from De Crollis this morning, and a long talk with him about Dante, and other matters interesting to me. He is one of the first physicians in Rome, Professor of Medicine in the University here, a learned and, what is more rare, a liberalminded, enlightened man. He told me, among other things that six or seven years ago he began to hold weekly meetings of three or four persons at his house, to study and interpret Dante, and that they made a good deal of progress in it. Two winters ago Count Ludolf, the Neapolitan Minister, who is a great admirer of Dante,3 desired to join [70] them, and the result was, that the meetings were transferred to the Farnese Palace, and the number of persons, including the Marchese Gaetano,4 and one or two other of the Roman nobles of some literary taste, was increased to fourteen or fifteen. The thing, of course, began now to be talked about, and whatever is talked about is unwelcome to a government as weak and as anxious as this. About a year ago they received a very remote, gentle, and indirect hint, as mild as priestly skill could make it, that it was feared the tendency of such meetings was not good. The hint was taken, and the meetings have since been discontinued. Yet Count Ludolf is a legitimist of unquestionable fidelity, and the whole party as far as possible from anything political. I could not help contrasting such a state of things with that in Saxony . . . .

On my way to the Capitol this forenoon, walking with Colonel Mure,5 I went to see a house not far from the foot of the hill, which Bunsen pointed out to us, lately, as an ancient Roman house. Certainly the walls looked as if they were of ancient materials and workmanship, and certainly the whole seemed as uncomfortable as we have ever supposed the Romans lived; but so much has been changed in the arrangements, and so much crowded in and upon the structure, that it is not possible to make much out of it. . . . .

After the lecture Mr. Bunsen went, with old Mr. Elphinstone and myself, through all the forums, beginning with the Forum Romanum and ending with that of Trajan; descending into all the excavations, and visiting every trace and relic of each of them, whether in cellars, barns, or churches, or in the open air. It took about three hours, and was quite curious; for Bunsen is familiar with every stone in the whole of it. He showed us, among other things, that it was possible, when these forums were in their palmiest state, to have walked from the Tabularium, or Aerarium, on the declivity of the Capitol, round by the Coliseum, and up to the farther end of the Forum of Trajan,—which he supposed to have ended near the Piazza di Venezia, on the Corso,—and yet have been the whole time sheltered by grand porticos and in the presence of magnificent buildings. This gives an idea of what Rome once was. What it now is, our senses too faithfully informed us, as we passed through almost every possible variety of filth, wretchedness, and squalid misery, while we made our researches. [71]

February 12.—We had another Roman scene this morning, very different from yesterday's. The young Countess Bolognetti, one of the famous Cenci family, took the veil at the Tor dea Specchi, the fashionable, rich convent of the nobility here; and as the Princess Gabrielli had made arrangements for us to see it, and as the Princess Massimo —who once passed four years of her education here—offered herself specially to show it to us, we were able to see all that such an occasion affords, under agreeable circumstances. . . . . We were received in the parlor of the convent, where was Count Bolognetti, the father, apparently about seventy years old, in a full and elegant court dress of black, with a sword by his side, lace ruffles, and powdered hair; the Countess Bolognetti, his daughter-in-law, also in full dress, blazing with diamonds; several of the nuns, old and good-natured; and some of the Pope's noble guards.

The company collected fast, . . . . . the élite of the fashionable nobility of Rome. . . . . The Princess Massimo soon proposed to us to go to the church, in order to have good places. We found military guards the whole way, the passages ample and rich, and the church itself beautiful, with marbles and velvet tapestries, great wealth on the altar and in its neighborhood, and excellent taste everywhere. . . . . Soon after we were seated, Cardinal Galeffi came and placed himself at the altar, a service of beautiful silver was offered him to wash his hands, he put on his robes, and took his seat. Immediately afterwards six nuns with wax-lights came in, and in the midst the Countess Bolognetti, richly but not showily dressed in pure white, without jewels, and with a crown of white roses on her head. At her side walked a beautiful little child, four or five years old, bearing on a cushion a jewelled crown; . . . . representing an angel offering her the crown of heavenly love. She advanced to the altar, knelt before the Cardinal, and having received his blessing, returned to the body of the church, where she knelt before a little prie-dieu, looking pale, but very pretty, gentle, and solemn. . . . . The Cardinal celebrated high mass with all the pomp of his church, the guards knelt and presented arms, and there was more or less stir through the whole church, but she remained perfectly motionless . . . . When the Cardinal had partaken the sacrament he administered it to her, and she received it with much apparent humility, after which, turning to the Abbess of the convent, an old Princess Pallavicini, she knelt to her, and asked her permission to enter the convent. This being granted, she addressed herself to the Cardinal and asked him to receive her vows, to which he gave his assent, and added his blessing; and she turned [72] round to the audience, and in a gentle, but firm and distinct voice, solicited their prayers while she should pronounce them.

The nuns now took off some parts of her dress, and put on that of the convent; she pronounced her vows of obedience, seclusion, etc.; her hair was cut off; . . . . the Miserere was sung, the service for the dead chanted, and she was sprinkled with holy water, as the priest sprinkles a corpse. All this happened in front of the altar, as she knelt by the Cardinal. She then walked slowly and gently down into the church; knelt in the middle of the pavement of marble on a cloth spread there; a black pall was thrown over her feet; she fell gracefully forward on her face, and the pall was spread over her whole person; and with a few more prayers and ceremonies, whatever belongs to an entire burial-service was fulfilled, and she rose a nun, separated from the world, and dedicated—as she believed—to Heaven. This part of the ceremony was very painful, and it was impossible for many of us to witness it without tears; for she was a young and gentle thing, who seemed to be fitted for much happiness in this world. But she now passed down the aisle as a nun, having first received the Cardinal's benediction and had the crown set upon her head. Near the door the nuns received her, and she embraced them all; a Te Deum was sung, and she left the church with her sister, another very young and pretty creature, who is also a member of the convent . . . . A tasteful breakfast and collation was prepared in the room of the Superior; those who chose went over the convent, and saw the room of the new nun, which was prettily and comfortably fitted up, and the whole affair was ended. . . . .

In the evening Mr. Elphinstone made us a visit, and stayed quite late. He is one of the most agreeable old gentlemen I have ever known, and full of knowledge and experience of life. He is the person under whose care Mrs. Lushington made that overland journey from India to England about which she has made so pleasant a little book. He was then returning from Bombay, where he had been governor. . . . . . He goes now to England in a day or two, and I am sorry for it . . . . . The Trevelyans, too, passed the evening with us.

February 15.—This evening Mr. Kestner, the Hanoverian Minister, came to see us, and brought with him a portfolio, containing about an hundred letters from Goethe to Mr. Kestner's father and mother, who are the Charlotte and Albert of Werther's Sorrows, together with some other papers and a preface of his own; the whole constituting a full explanation and history of that remarkable work. [73] He read to us, for a couple of hours, curious extracts from different parts, and proposes to come again and read more.6 . . . .

February 16.—. . . . The evening I passed with the Trevelyans, who had asked Dr. Wiseman,7 the head of the English College here, and an eloquent preacher, to meet me. He seemed a genuine priest, not without talent, very good looking and able-bodied, and with much apparent practice in the world. He talked well, but not so well as I expected. . . . .

February 17.—Mr. Kestner came again this evening and read the rest of what I wanted to hear from his letters about Goethe, Werther, etc. It was very curious and interesting. The fact seems to be that, in the first book of Werther's letters, Werther is undoubtedly Goethe himself, Charlotte is Charlotte Buff, and Albert is Kestner, and much of what is described there really passed.

In the second book Werther is undoubtedly the young Jerusalem,8 who was a Secretary of Legation, and met the affronts there described, and whose death and last days are described, often word for word, in Werther, from a letter sent by Kestner to Goethe . . . .

February 25.—We took a ride on horseback this morning out at the Porta Pia . . . . Afterwards I made a long visit to Cardinal Giustiniani, whom I knew formerly in Spain, and whom I have been intending to visit ever since I have been in Rome . . . . . He was a great man in Madrid when I first knew him, for he was Nuncio; he is a greater man now, being one of the principal ministers of the Pope, and the person who receives all memorials; and he was near being greatest of all, for nothing but the veto of the King of Spain prevented his being made pope in 1831, when Gregory XVI. was chosen. He is now sixty-eight years old, and quite stout and well preserved, though lame from a fall he suffered some years ago; and he has the reputation of being second to none of the Sacred College in talent and business habits. He talked with me naturally about Spain, his adventures there, and his exile during the reign of the Cortes; and finally his return to Rome, and his nomination as Cardinal in 1826. After this,—somewhat to my surprise,—he talked about the conclave of 1831 and his own rejection. He said it was owing to the influence of Colomardes, who was then Minister of [74] Grace and Justice to Ferdinand VII., and who wished to show an excessive zeal in his master's affairs, in order to increase his own power. Colomardes, he said, believed that he, Giustiniani, had induced Pius VII. to acknowledge the South American Bishops; but though he thought that measure a wise one, he declared to me that he had nothing to do with it, and that the Pope's determination, in relation to it, was taken when he was absent from Rome. Colomardes, however, sent in the veto, and Marco was the only Cardinal who knew anything about it, or suspected it. He told me, too, that he doubted whether the King of Spain knew it till after it was despatched; for, having been exiled for adhering to Ferdinand's personal rights, and having, besides, rendered him great personal services, it was to be supposed the election would have been one of his choice.

‘However,’ the Cardinal went on, ‘it was a great favor done to me,’—a remark which I took the liberty to think somewhat affected, until, in the evening, old Prince Chigi, who holds the hereditary office of shutting up the Cardinals in conclave, and watching them till they elect, told me that it was understood, at the time, that Giustiniani really preferred the place of minister to that of pope. Perhaps he is better fitted for it; at any rate, he is a man of talent, and is the only Cardinal I have talked with, since I came to Rome, who has talked as if he were so. . . . .

The following letter, written after more than eighteen months of European life, shows that the delightful society Mr. Ticknor had enjoyed, and the admiration and respect excited in him by many of the distinguished individuals whom he had met, did not conceal from him the dangers and weaknesses prevailing in the social systems which he studied. His generalizations about the state of Europe, and of his own country, now and afterwards, refer to conditions which have since been modified, but are none the less interesting historically.

To Richard H. Dana, Esq.

Rome, February 22, 1837.
. . . . You ask me if I cannot tell you something to comfort an old Tory. I cannot. What Prince Metternich, the Phoenix of Tories, said to me over and over again, in a curious conversation I had with him last summer, is eminently true to my feelings, and [75] would be, perhaps, still more so to yours, if you were travelling about as I am,—‘Laetat actuel de l'europe m'est degoutant.’ The old principles that gave life and power to society are worn out; you feel on all sides a principle of decay at work, ill counteracted by an apparatus of government very complicated, and very wearing and annoying. The wheels are multiplied, but the motion is diminished, the friction increased; and the machinery begins to grow shackling at the moment when the springs are losing their power, and when nothing but firmness can make it hold out. Indeed, almost everywhere, when you come in contact with the upper classes of society, —where in these governments power naturally resides,—you find weakness, inefficient presumption, and great moral degradation; and when you come to those who are the real managers of the world, you find them anxious about the future, temporizing, and alternately using an ill-timed spirit of concession or an ill-timed severity. The middling class, on the other hand, is growing rich and intelligent, and the lower class, with very imperfect and unpractical knowledge, is growing discontented and jealous. The governments are everywhere trying to associate to their interests the wealth of the middling class, and to base themselves on property. But this is revolution. Personal interest will not work like the principle of respect to superiors, and submission to authority as such, and it remains to be seen what will be the result of the experiment in a population so corrupt in its higher classes, and of so low a moral tone in almost all, as that which is now found on the Continent, and, with some qualification, I must add in England also. In the United States we have the opposite defects; but I greatly prefer them. We have the great basis of purity in our domestic life and relations, which is so broadly wanting here. We have men in the less favored portions of society, who have so much more intellect, will, and knowledge, that, compared with similar classes here, those I am among seem of an inferior order in creation. Indeed, taken as a general remark, a man is much more truly a man with us than he is elsewhere; and, notwithstanding the faults that freedom brings out in him, it is much more gratifying and satisfying to the mind, the affections, the soul, to live in our state of society, than in any I know of on this side of the Atlantic.

I do not know that you would be any better satisfied with the state of the arts than you would be with the state of society here. In sculpture very little is done that is worth looking at, except in Thorwaldsen's atelier, where, indeed, grace and power seem to have retired. The other artists make abundance of long-legged things [76] that they call Nymphs and Venuses and Psyches, and a plenty of chubby boys that they would pass off for Genii; but all poetry is wanting. There is more depth of meaning in the group that Greenough made for Mr. Cabot than in all of them put together.9

Painting is still worse. Cammuccini here and Benvenuti in Florence reign supreme, but there is not a man in Europe who can paint a picture like Allston. . . . .


February 27.—In the evening there was a great oratorio at the Palazzo di Venezia, given by Count Lutzow, the Austrian Ambassador . . . . It was Haydn's Creation, performed by a chorus of ninety singers and a band of fifty instruments, with Camporesi for the prima donna.10 . . . . Mad. de Lutzow herself was in the chorus, and once sang in a trio with a good deal of sweetness; so much does a love and consideration for the arts prevail—at least in Italy and Germany-over the consideration of rank and place. The whole entertainment, indeed, was elegant, and was given in a magnificent room, said to be the finest in Rome, which is opened only at intervals of years. Some notion of its size may be had from the facts that there were eight hundred people in it, nearly all comfortably seated on cushioned chairs, and that, being finished in the style of the Temple of Antoninus and Faustina, it was necessary to make the pilasters taller, and the griffins of the frieze larger, than they are in that beautiful ruin in the Forum, because the proportions of the room required it.

March 1.—. . . . I went to Mr. Bunsen's lecture, which was still on the Forum. In the evening I dined with Mr. Hare,11 an English gentleman of fortune and high connections, who lives here for his health, and has his family with him. He is an accomplished, scholar-like person, and has been established here so long that he is to be accounted almost a Roman; but he is withal very agreeable and acute. Nobody was at table but the Prussian Minister, Colonel Mure, Monsignor [77] Wiseman, and Lady Westmoreland, who, if not a very gentle person, is full of talent, spirit, and talk. . . .

Afterwards we went to Prince Massimo's, and took Anna with us, by special invitation, to see we knew not what. It turned out to be a glass-blower, who made small articles with a good deal of neatness, and amused some children and grown people very well. Such an exhibition would not have been thought very princely in Paris or London, nor very remarkable anywhere; but the good-nature of the Romans is satisfied with very small entertainment.

March 3.—. . . . . In the afternoon we went to Overbeck's atelier. . . . . He had little to show us, except the cartoon for a large picture, which is to be an allegory on art, and is full of his deep meanings. I saw nothing, however, better than his Christ entering Jerusalem, the original of which I saw here almost twenty years ago, and which is now at Lubeck. He himself is gentle, mild, and interesting, beginning to grow old. . . . . In the evening the Sismondis, with Miss Alien, made us a long and very agreeable visit, uninvited. He is growing old, and has given up his ‘Histoire des Francais’ from weariness, and seems disposed to seek, hereafter, chiefly for comfort and rest. He cares, he says, nothing about the arts, and therefore looks, even in Rome, to social intercourse for his chief pleasures; and having an excellent and sensible wife, enjoys himself with his plain common-sense not a little. Their fortune is moderate, but equal to their moderate wants; and, indeed, he has lately been able to spare enough to make happy a favorite niece in a love-match, to which her friends would not consent on account of the want of means between the parties. It was a beautiful and characteristic piece of kindness on the part of Sismondi, and made a good deal of talk when we were in Florence.

March 4.—I made a very agreeable visit to Sismondi, who is my next-door neighbor, and found with him Barbieri, the great Italian preacher, whom I knew at the Marquis Gino Capponi's, in Florence. I was glad to see them together, and I liked Barbieri more than ever for his gentleness and spirit of persuasion. He set out from the North of Italy upon an engagement to preach during Lent at Palermo, but has been prevented from getting there by the total nonintercourse between Naples and Sicily. At Rome he does not preach. The authorities of the Church do not wish to exhibit the powers of a man who, while he preaches in a pure, simple, and even classical style, and draws crowds after him, such as have hardly been seen since the Middle Ages, makes yet very little effort to raise contributions [78] of money from his audience; and, though his faith is not questioned, insists much less on the dogmas of the Church than on the reformation of the people.

I went, too, to see Count Alberti, who has the famous contested manuscripts of Tasso, and made an appointment with him to come and look them over. He seemed to me to have all his nation's acuteness and dexterity, and was extremely polite, and somewhat prepossessing in his manners. . . .

March 5.—. . . . We went to see Thorwaldsen in his own house. He received us in a slovenly dishabille, too neglected to be quite fit to see ladies; but this is the only way he is ever found, and we forgot his appearance in his good-nature and his kindness. He showed us everything; his collection of pictures, chiefly of living German artists, with one or two ancient ones, and a pencil-sketch by Raffaelle over the head of his bed, and a few things of his own in progress, especially the fresh model in clay of a statue of Conradin—mentioned by Dante—which he is making for the Crown Prince of Bavaria, who intends it for the grave of that unfortunate Prince at Naples.12 . . . .

Thorwaldsen has for some years refused to receive any fresh orders, and I think for a good while he has ceased to do more than to model, and to touch the marble enough to call it his work. His skill with the chisel was, I suppose, always small, and a statue modelled by him, and executed by such artists as he could easily procure in Rome, would probably be finer than anything entirely by his own hand. The poetry of his bas-reliefs seems to me to exceed anything in modern sculpture. He showed us one to-day containing, first, Apollo in his car, followed by the Muses and the Graces, and then a procession to consist of all the great poets, artists, etc., of all ages. He has modelled it as far as Homer, and if it is ever finished it will be a magnificent work indeed. . . . .

March 7.—Mezzofanti came to see us to-day, the famous linguist, who talks some forty languages without having ever been out of Italy. He is a small, lively little gentleman, with something partly nervous and partly modest in his manner, but great apparent simplicity and good-nature. As head of the Vatican Library he is quite in his place; besides which, he enjoys a good deal of consideration, is a Monsignor [79] and a Canon of St. Peter's, and may probably become a Cardinal. His English is idiomatic, but not spoken with a good accent, though with great fluency. The only striking fact he mentioned about himself was, that he learnt to talk modern Greek, easily, in eight days. . . .

March 10.—I passed, this forenoon, a couple of hours with Count Alberti, looking over the Tasso manuscripts. Cogswell, Gray,13 Sir H. Russell, and Sir W. Dundas were there on my invitation; and two Italians, a Countess somebody, and another. The whole matter is curious, very curious. The collection is large,—above an hundred pieces, I should think,—and begins with the first note of Eleonora to Tasso, when he sent her his first madrigal, and ends with a sort of testamentary disposition made at St. Onofrio, the day before his death.

The great question is the question of genuineness. None but Italians, and very few even of them, are able to settle it. Only two things occurred to me to-day: one was the suspicious completeness of the manuscripts on certain interesting points, and the other was the singular way in which they seemed to fit a great number of small circtumstances in the life of Tasso about which there is no doubt. I did not like it, either, that Count Alberti intimated nothing about their questioned authenticity, and explained very imperfectly how they came into his possession, though on some parts of their genealogy he was tediously diffuse. On the other hand, the belief at Rome in favor of their genuineness is as strong as the belief at Florence is against it. Bunsen, Mr. Hare, Count Ludolf, and Marquis Gaetano have expressed themselves to me strongly on the subject, but there has been no examination here, and some of them did not seem to know there had been one anywhere.

However, the manuscripts are about to be published at Lucca, and I think they will not then escape a very severe and critical examination, from men who will be competent to it, both from their literary knowledge and their skill in such documents.14

March 12.—I visited Cardinal Giustiniani this morning, and had a [80] talk with him that was curious, considering that he is one of the Pope's ministers. It was about the Abbe de Lamennais' last book, ‘Les Affaires de Rome,’ which has made so much noise lately, and the brief for forbidding which is now on the pillars of St. Peter's. I told him I had just read it, and he entered into a full discussion of the views of the Court of Rome touching Lamennais himself, whom he treated throughout as a turbulent democrat seeking power. He said, when the Abbe was here in the time of Leo XII., he produced a great sensation, and was greatly admired; and that the Pope himself had even the project of making him a Cardinal, from which he was dissuaded. The present Pope, he said, had always understood him, and that the other day the Pope showed him a copy of the ‘Affaires de Rome,’ in which he had marked the inconsistencies and contradictions it contained, which are likely to have been considerable in amount and number, if not in weight and importance. No doubt if the Court of Rome were true to its principles and ancient usages, the Abbe de Lamennais would now be excommunicated; no doubt, too, they would be glad to do it, but the state of the world does not permit them. John Bunyan's Allegory is come literally true.

In the afternoon we went to St. Peter's, always a great pleasure, and heard some good music; and the evening was divided between a sensible, intellectual visit to the Sismondis, and a fashionable one at the Princess Borghese's.

March 13.—. . . . In the evening I dined with the Countess of Westmoreland, who lives here in much elegant luxury at the Villa Negroni. The party was large, and among the persons present were Colonel Mure, Lord Maidstone, Count Ludolf, Sismondi, Madame d'orloff,—the wife of the reigning favorite of the Emperor Nicholas,—the Abbe Stuart, Monsignor Wiseman, and Mr. Hare. The hostess is an intellectual person, something strange and original in her character, but very pleasant; and as nearly every one of her guests was more or less accomplished and scholar-like, we had a very agreeable time and stayed late.

March 15.—We passed a most agreeable morning in the Loggie and Stanze of Raffaelle, in the magnificent halls where are his tapestries, . . . . and in the picture-gallery, with the Transfiguration, the Madonna di Foligno, and all the other wonderful works collected in these three rooms, the like of which there is not in the world. I am sorry to think, however, that they are ill placed here for their preservation. I have constantly noticed that the Madonna di Foligno seems to have suffered since I saw it twenty years ago; and Temmel, [81] the German artist, who has been copying in these very rooms ten years, and who is probably more familiar with the pictures they contain than any man alive, has told me this evening that they are much altered within these ten years. He says they were first put up in one of the long halls in the series where the tapestries now hang, and that there they suffered from the heat; and that where they are now they suffer from dampness, so that, as he says, those most acquainted with the matter are getting to be really anxious for their ultimate fate.

March 19.—Holy Week begins to-day, and, like all strangers, I suppose before it is over we are to sup full of ceremonies. This morning we went at half past 8 to the Sistine Chapel, and remained there till one o'clock,—the gentlemen standing the whole time,— to see the offices of Palm Sunday performed by the Pope. . . . .

March 22.—I went this morning with Mr.Gannett and Mrs. Gannett15 to see some of the principal churches and one or two remains of antiquity . . . . It was, however, the first day of the Miserere in the Sistine Chapel, and we drove to the Palazzo Massimo, where the indefatigable kindness of the old Princess had appointed a rendezvous for a few ladies, whom she was willing to carry under special favor and patronage to the Papal chapel, by a staircase different from the usual one. . . . . The Miserere, or the Fifty-first Psalm, . . . . closed the whole just as deep twilight came on, and lasted five-and-twenty minutes. It was no doubt very fine . . . . After it was over we went into St. Peters, . . . . and heard the latter part of a beautiful Miserere sung in the chapel of the choir, and walked up and down in the nave and aisles by the imperfect light of the few tapers that were scattered through the different parts of the vast pile, and seemed only to render the solemn darkness of the rest of it more visible and sensible . . . . .

March 24.—We passed a Roman forenoon again to-day, going to the grand ruins on the south side of the Palatine hill, including those in the Villa Mills, and returning by the Circus Maximus, the Temples of Vesta and Fortuna Virilis, the Ponte Rotto, the house called Rienzi's, and the Cloaca Maxima. . . .

April 6.—I went this morning to see Monsignor Mai, the famous discoverer of the Palimpsest manuscripts. It was not my first visit to him. . . . . He is now Secretary of the Propaganda, and likely before long to be made a Cardinal;16 an easy, round, but still intellectual-looking [82] man, very kind in his manner, and with more the air of a scholar in his looks, conversation, and the arrangement of his rooms, than any Italian I have seen in Rome.

I talked with him, of course, about his famous discoveries, especially of the ‘Republic of Cicero,’ and of his other publications; but this was chiefly when I saw him before. To-day I took Mr. Gannett, and we gave our time chiefly to examining the famous Vatican manuscript of the Greek Bible, counted to be of the fourth century, and the oldest of all the manuscripts of the Scriptures. It is uncommonly well preserved, except that the beginning is wanting, and the Apocalypse, which Mai himself admits may never have been there; but these deficiencies have been supplied by a manuscript of, apparently, the tenth century. He has it now in his possession, by permission of the Pope, to publish, and he showed me the other day some of the sheets. The work is far advanced, and will be out, he thinks, in the course of a year, preserving even the minutest defects and errors of the original.17 We spent the afternoon among the frescos and oil-paintings of the Vatican, where—especially in the Stanze of the Disputa and of Constantine—we seemed every moment, in the multitude of subsidiary figures and ornaments, to find something new, graceful, and beautiful. These rooms are, indeed, better worth studying than anything, to the same amount, which the art of painting has produced, and it is melancholy to see how they are going to decay.

April 9.—We dined at the Prince Gabrielli's, and had much such a dinner as we had there before . . . . . The Princess showed us her private chapel, in which mass is said every morning as an indulgence to her rank. It is in modest and excellent taste. A door opens from one side of it into a sort of balcony or tribune in a church adjacent; a luxury in religion which the higher Romans much affect. She is deeply and sincerely religious, and could not help, to-day at table, telling me, as she has often told me before, how much she is anxious that I should become a Catholic, and that she prays for it constantly.

April 16.—. . . . The evening we passed at Lady Westmoreland's, where Mr.Hare and Mrs. Hare, the Abbe Stuart, and two or three other people were invited to meet us, and where, until half past 11 o'clock, we had an excellent dish of genuinely English talk, no small luxury at Rome; for, in their respective and very different ways, the Countess, Mr. Hare, and the Abbe Stuart are three of the best talkers I know of.

April 19. . . . . We went to the Vatican Library . . . . As a [83] library in the common and practical sense of the word, it is hardly to be spoken of at all; and of the twelve or fourteen persons who were using it this morning, not one was occupied with anything but a manuscript. Its size is quite uncertain. From Mezzofanti, from Nibby, from Mai, and two or three other persons, who are, or have been employed as librarians, I have received entirely different accounts, making the manuscripts range from twenty-five thousand to thirty-five thousand, and the printed books from seventy thousand to one hundred and fifty thousand. Indeed, it is difficult to tell, for all its treasures are shut up in low cases, which are kept locked, and give you no means of estimating their contents, but to unlock them all and count them. We were shown at first through all the halls, and the cases that contain curious works in ivory, ebony, amber, and so on, were opened to us. It was not much, almost nothing, compared with the magnificent collection at Dresden, or even the moderate one at Vienna.

Then we saw the manuscripts, which are, of course, precious indeed, since the library is the oldest in Europe, and their collection began as early as 465, and was put into the shape most desirable by Nicholas V. and Leo X., as well as greatly enriched by the last: the Virgil of the fourth or fifth century, with its rude but curious miniatures; the Terence, less old, probably, but very remarkable; the autograph manuscripts of Petrarca and Tasso; the beautiful manuscript of Dante, copied by Boccaccio, and sent as a present to Petrarca; the manuscript of Dante, which claims to have belonged to his son, and the exquisite one which is ornamented with miniatures; the copy of the work of Henry VIII. against Luther, which was given to Leo X. by the King, and brought to the crown of England the title of Defensor Fidei; and two or three autograph letters of Henry VIII. to Anne Boleyn, one of which, at least, was written in French. I saw also two other copies of Henry Eighth's work, signed—as I believe all were—with his own hand; and, from what I read in them, they were bitter enough against Luther. The copy sent to the Pope had on the bottom of the last page this distich—if distich it can be called—autograph:—

Angloru Rex Henricus, Leo decimo, mittit
Hoc opus et fidei teste et amicitie.
Truly royal Latin and royal spelling, worse than Bonaparte's.

Among the incunabula I saw, as it were, everything; parchment copies without end, the princeps editions of Homer, Virgil, Horace, —in short, anything I asked for, except that the poor little subrian [84] hardly knew where to find everything. Mezzofanti was ill, so that we lost the pleasure of going round with him.

Among the copies on parchment is one of the four, known to exist, of the Ximenes Polyglote, and indeed, if a rarity is wanted, it may almost be assumed to be here, whether it can be found or not. But as to anything modern, anything useful, anything practical, it is not to be thought of. The nearest approach to it is probably the beautiful library of Count Cicognara, of 4,800 different works, bought a few years since. But they all relate strictly to the arts of design, sculpture, painting, etc. One thing struck me very much. In two places I saw the Edict of Sixtus V. posted up, threatening with excommunication any one—librarians inclusive—who should, without a written permission of the Pope, take any volume away. Can anything more plainly show the spirit of the government and religion? . . . .

April 20.—Prince Borghese invited me, last evening, to come this morning and see three frescos which he has lately had taken from the walls of one of his villas, where they were painted by Raffaelle, who occasionally lived there. I went, and found him ill in bed with the grippe, now prevalent here, and his two sons with him; all very agreeable, and as it should be. The Prince of Sulmona went with me to the frescos. They are small, extremely graceful representations of the marriage of Venus and Mars, and have been taken down and put in frames under glass with wonderful skill.

April 21.—. . . . . . To-day is the accredited anniversary of the foundation of Rome, and the Archaeological Society celebrated it with a solemn sitting, and the Prussian Minister gave a dinner afterwards to about twenty artists, diplomats, and men of letters. I went to both, and enjoyed them in their respective fashions not a little. At the Society a report was made of the doings of the last year, and several papers read, the best being one by Dr. Lepsius . . . . . At the dinner were the Bavarian, the Saxon, the Baden Charges, Kestner, Thorwaldsen, Wolff the sculptor; . . . . in short, the full representation of German intellect and talent now in Rome, with no foreign admixture but myself. The talk, of course, was of a high order. . . . .

April 22.—I went by appointment this morning to Thorwaldsen's, and had a long talk with him about sundry matters connected with the arts, in continuation of a conversation begun yesterday at dinner. He was very interesting, for he talks well, and seems, at least, to have a good deal of earnestness and unction. Just now he is much troubled at being obliged to go to Copenhagen to superintend the putting up his great works there. . . . [85]

April 23.—I went to see Cardinal Giustiniani this morning, thinking that, as one of the Pope's ministers, he could give me some light upon the future plans of the government about quarantines. But it was plain that he knew little or nothing about it. . . . .

April 24.—The Prussian Minister, with his usual indefatigable kindness, came this morning and settled the question about Naples for us. He had been to the Cardinal. Secretary of State's Office, and read the despatches received to-day from the Nuncio, and the measures of the government here in consequence, in order to be able to tell us the whole truth . . . . After we had settled this point I had a long and interesting talk with Mr. Bunsen on matters relating to the Roman government and society, about which he feels all the interest of one who has lived here twenty very active and happy years, where he was married, and where his nine children were born to him; but though he loves Rome as few Romans do, no man sees more clearly its present degraded state and its coming disasters.

April 25.—. . . . We dined at Prince Musignano's, a great dinner given by him on his being made a Roman Prince, in his own right, by the Pope. Two or three Cardinals were there; the Mexican Minister; Monsignors four or five, and among them Capuccini, perhaps the most important person in the Roman government; Alertz;18 Prince Corsini; and so on. It was a luxurious and elegant dinner, very well managed as to conversation. Au reste, Cardinal Odescalchi, the Mexican, and Alertz, with whom I sat, were very agreeable, the Cardinal curious about America, and thoroughly ignorant. Capuccini gave no hopes about the cordons. So, no doubt, we decided well not to go to Naples.

After a pleasant excursion to Albano and Frascati, in all the radiance of an Italian spring, and accompanied by their friends Gray and Cogswell, and young Ward, also from Boston, they returned to Rome for a single night before setting out for the North. An agreeable incident occurred on that last evening, which is thus described in the Journal:—

I was just going out to make a visit to Mr. Bunsen, when I met a message from Miss Mackenzie of Seaforth, desiring me to come to her, as there was a gentleman at her house who had asked to see me. I went, and to my great surprise found Wordsworth with his fidus [86] Achates, Robinson of the Temple.19 We had some excellent talk, and then both of them came home with me. They came to Rome yesterday, and will stay here two or three weeks, after which they travel slowly to the North, and go to the Tyrol and Upper Austria. I am not without the hope of meeting them again,. . . . or I should be extremely sorry to see them but for such an instant. Wordsworth has, of course, seen little of Rome except St. Peter's, but that has produced its full poetical effect upon him. It was in talking about this that we finished our last evening in Rome.

April 28.—At half past 8, as we were enjoying our last view of Rome from the Pincio, we saw our carriage cross the Piazza del Popolo beneath us. We hastened down to it, and in a few moments we left behind us the Porta del Popolo, fumum et opes, strepitumque Romoe, if, indeed, such words can be applied any longer to this city of the past. We crossed the Ponte Molle, . . . . looking back often to the dome of St. Peter's and the castle of St. Angelo, as we caught glimpses of them between the villas and over the hills.

1 Mr. Ticknor went frequently to the Princess Borghese's during the winter, and on one Sunday evening, when he speaks of the party there as something more brilliant than usual, he adds: ‘Those who chose might have the edification of seeing six cardinals at once, in the card-room at whist.’

2 Right Hon. Mountstuart Elphinstone.

3 A month before this Mr. Ticknor wrote: ‘I discovered that Count Ludolf is a great student of Dante, and I gave nearly all the time I was there [at a ball at Prince Borghese's] to a very interesting talk with him about an edition of the Divina Commedia he is now preparing. I had not before suspected the Minister of Naples of such interests or such learning.’

4 Now Duca di Sermoneta.

5 Colonel William Mure, of Caldwell, author of ‘Critical History of the Language and Literature of Ancient Greece.’

6 This correspondence was published under the title, ‘Goethe and Werther’ (Stuttgardt, 1854). The story is also told by Mrs. F. Kemble in her ‘Year of Consolation.’

7 Later Cardinal Wiseman, Archbishop of Westminster.

8 Wilhelm Jerusalem, son of a German theologian.

9 A group representing a child-angel ushering a newly arrived child-spirit into heaven. It is now owned by Mrs. T. B. Curtis, of Boston.

10 Who, as Catalani herself told Kestner, drove her off the stage, and reigned as the prima donna in London, till she had retrieved the broken fortunes of a foolish husband. For the six or eight years after she completed that object she had lived retired in Rome, and it was esteemed a privilege to hear her.

11 Francis, eldest brother of Augustus and Julius Hare, authors of ‘Guesses at Truth.’

12 Note by Mr. Ticknor: ‘The last of the Hohenstauffen is now buried so obscurely in a church in Naples, that his grave is rarely noticed; but Dante's verse and Thorwaldsen's statue will prevent him from ever being forgotten.’ This work was left unfinished by Thorwaldsen, but was completed by Schopf, and set up in the church of the Madonna del Carmine at Naples, in 1847.

13 Two old friends just arrived in Rome.

14 Mr. Ticknor's judgment was correct. Count Alberti proceeded to publish the manuscripts at Lucca, in 1837, under the title of ‘Manoscritti inediti di Torquato Tasso.’ So clearly was it proved, however, that they were not genuine, that in 1842, six numbers having appeared, the editor was imprisoned for counterfeiting the writing of Tasso. See Michaud's ‘Biographie Universelle,’ —article by De Angelis and Gustave Brunet.

15 Rev. E. S. Gannett and his wife were guests of Mr.Ticknor and Mrs. Ticknor, they having lately arrived from Boston.

16 He was made Cardinal the same year.

17 Note by Mr. Ticknor: ‘It was not published, I think, till 1850.’

18 A German, physician to the Pope.

19 Mr. H. C. Robinson in his Diary says: ‘We drank tea with Miss Mackenzie. She had sent messages to Collins and Kestner, but neither came. On the other hand, by mere accident seeing a card with Mr. Ticknor's name, I spoke of his being a friend of Wordsworth; on which she instantly sent to him, and, as he lived next door, he was soon with us, and greatly pleased to see Wordsworth, before setting off to-morrow for Florence.’

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