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people, received at the door of the principal apartment by the mistress of the house, standing, who smiles at every new comer with a look of acquaintance. Nobody sits; there is no conversation, no cards, no music ; only elbowing, turning, and winding from room to room ; then, at the end of a quarter of an hour, escaping to the hall door to wait for the carriage, spending more time upon the threshold among footman than you have. done above stairs with their masters. From this rout you drive to another, where, after waiting your turn to arrive at the door, perhaps half an hour, the street being full of carriages, you alight, begin the same round, and end in the same manner.
A DAY IN MADRID.
I wake~'tis four o'clock in the morning! The whole broad street of of Alcali is spread before me with all its churches, palaces, and convents; while at the further end, the shady walks of the Parado form a sublime sight, baffling description. The matin bell announces early mass, the streets become more animated; veiled women in black, men in long brown cloaks, with cedissalas, wearing their hair in a kind of net-work, hanging low down their back. The doors of all the balconies open, and water is sprinkling before every house.
Now the goat-keepers, with their little herds, enter the gates, crying; “ Milk, milk! goat's milk! fresh and warm !” There I saw market women pass by with there asses loaded with vegetables ; bakers with bread, in carts of Spanish reed; watercarriers and porters hastening to commence their day's work; while, with a hoarse voice, two consequential-looking alguazils proclaim thefts committed in the preceding night. By degrees, all the warehouses, shops, and booths, are opened. The publicans (tabernecos) expose their wine-cups; the chocolate women get their pots ready; the water-carriers begin to chaunt their “Quin bebe?” (Who'll drink ?) and the hackney-coach and chaise drivers, with muleteers, take their stands. Soon the whole streets resound with numberless criers' Cod, white cod ! Onions from Garcia! Walnuts from Biscay! Oranges from Murcia! Hot smoked sausages from Estremadura ! Tomatos, large tomatos! Sweet citrons! Barley-water! Ice-water ! A new Journal ! A new Gazette ! Water melons ! Long Malaga raisins ! Olives from Seville ! Milk rolls, fresh and hot! Grapes ! Figs, new figs ! Pomegranates from Valencia !" It strikes ten; the guards mount; dragoons, Swiss regiments, Waloon guards, Spanish infantry; and the universal cry is, “A los ples vin Donne Manuela! (Let us go to mass.) All the bells are ringing, all the streets are covered with rock roses, rich carpets hang from every balcony, and alters are raised in every square under canopies of state. The procession sets out. What a number of neat little angels, with pasteboard wings, covered with gilt paper ! Images of saints with powdered bob wigs, and robes of gold brocado! What swarms of priests! and how many beautiful girls, all looking pleasant, and all mixed in groups. The clock proclaims noon. We return through the square of the Puerto del Sol. All their ifas (ruffles) have begun, all the hackney waiters are busy, and the whole square thronged with people. One o'clock-we are called to dinner; a great deal of saffron; many love apples; plenty of oil and pimento, but then, wine from La Mancha; all of Xerxes and Malaga ! What a fine thing is Spanish cookery! La Siesta ! La Siesta ! Senores! A deadly silence is in all the streets ; all the window shutters are put up, or the curtains let down; even the most industrious porter stretches his length on his mat, and falls asleep at the fountain with his pitcher behind him. At four o'clock every body repairs to the bull-fight, to the canal, or to the parado ; all is gaiety and merriment, one equipage after another at full speed, to those places of diversion. The Puerto del Sol becomes as crowded as before, and the water-carriers and orange-women are as busy as bees. Thus passes the afternoon, untill the dusky shades of evening close in at last. Then all the bells again ring, every Spaniard says the
of salutation to the Virgin. Now all hasten to the tertulias and theatres, and in a few minutes the rattling of carriages once more resound in every street. The lamps before images of the Virgin are already lighted; the merchants and dealers have illuminuted their houses and shops, and the sellers of ice-water and lemonade their stalls. Every where are seen rush-lights and paper-lanterns on the tables of fruitwomen and cake-men. Meanwhile, the crowd in the square has prodigiously increased, and it is soon full. In one part you hear the soft sound of the guitar, or senu filla ; in another a female ballad-singer tells in rhyme the tale of the last murder committed ; in a third, a thundering missionary attempts to move
the hearts of obdurate sinners, while the light-footed Cyprians carry off his audience by dozens. Soon passes the rosary and tatto with music, and the equipages return from the theatres. It grows still later ; the crowds begin to disperse-by one o'clock in the morning, all the streets are still and quiet, and only here and there resounds a lover's solitary guitar, through the more solitary gloom of the night. All else sleeps in the quiet repose, which even nature herself enjoys at night.
THE SPECTRE OF PONT VATHU.
(From the New European Magazine.)
HAM.–Did you not speak to it ?
Bút answer made it none : yet once, methought,
From the very earliest ages a belief in the existence of disembodied spirits has prevailed more or less forcibly among the human race; there is, perhaps, no nation, or tribe in the world, many of whose members do not implicitly believe in the appalling influence of some species or other, of ghost or goblin. À modern writer has endeavoured, by the aid of physiology, to ascertain whether these extraordinary and terrific impressions cannot be explained, from the acknowledged laws of animal economy, independent altogether of supernatural cases; and he has certainly managed his subject with much ingenuity. It is well known, he says, that in certain diseases of the brain, such as delirium and insanity, spectral delusion take place even during the space of many days. But it has not been generally observed, that a partial affection of the brain may exist, which renders the patient liable to such imaginary impressions, either of sight or sound, without disordering his judgment or memory. From the peculiar disposition of the senorium, he conceives that best supported stories of apparitions may be completely accounted for. Arguing upon this assumption, he proceeds to adduce examples in support of his theory ;-all of which tend to prove that the foundation of all supernatural appearances is entirely dependent upon a certain impulse of the human mind. In that, he establishes a generic disease, which he terms Hallucinatio ; and which comprises all delusive impressions, from the scarcely perceptible moat which floats in the sunbeam, to the tremendous spectre which appears at midnight.
That the universal opinion already adverted to should spring merely from a delusion of the senses dependent upon a disordered imagination, is a circumstance which I could never bring myself fully to acknowledge, and numberless are the scoffings to which my scepticism, on this point, has exposed me. That the spirits of individuals have appeared after their decease, I have never doubted; and it has often seemed to me that their appearance was arranged and regulated by Providence for the accomplishment of some purpose of more than usual importance. Why should we not infer, from the unceasing goodness of the Creator, that he would present to us so decisive a proof of the immortality of the soul ? Rather let us adopt the beautiful opinion of the Poet, who has thus sweetly advocated the benevolent solicitude of Providence :
“ And is there care in heaven? and is there love
In heavenly spirits to these creatures base,
There is : else much more wretched were the case
Of men than beasts. But oh! th' exceeding grace
And all his works with mercies doth embrace,
How oft do they their silver bowers leave,
To come to succour us that succour want?
The flitting skies, like flying pursuivant,
And their bright squadrons round about us plant,
That very many instances of gross deception and palpable delusion have occured, I do not mean to deny. These every one has witnessed, or has heard of ; and, consequently, the generality of mankind ridicule any serious opinion upon the subjcct. But the following remarkable circumstance, of which a most intimate friend of my own was an eyewitness, shews that all speculations upon this point are not to be treated with levity. The friend alluded to is a gentleman residing in Wales, whose veracity cannot be questioned. I had formed an acquaintance with him, during my Wanderings, which has since ripened into warm and sincere friendship : and I give the relation in his own words :
“ I had been spending a few days in the neighbourhood of the little town of Towyn, in Merionethshire, and had set off on my return to Dolgellan about seven o'clock in the evening. It was in the autumn, and the day had been beautifully fine, even sultry, the sun had finally set amidst a canopy of glowing clouds, which an experienced Shepherd would have said, foreboded a tempest. But a kind mother expected me at Dolgellan that evening, and these portents had no influence to retard my departure. I rode on, therefore, slowly and silently among the quiet hills, and thought only of reaching my journey's end before night-fall, Of all the distriets in the wild, but beautiful, county of Merioneth, undoubtedly that, which I was then traversing, is the wildest. It may be justly called the Highlands of Merionethshire ; and the peasants have bestowed upon this desolate tract, the name of Fordd ddu, or the Black Road. Being entirely out of the usual route of English travellers, its inhabitants have retained their language and their custom almost in their pristine purity; and the rugged hills which enclose them have hitherto presented an impenetrable barrier to the innovating effects of cilvilization. My road lay through a tract as desolate as it was rugged and romantic. A deep wood bounded the path on the left, while a long and dreary ridge of heather-covered hills shut out the prospect in an opposite direction ; before me were the wooded mountains of Penniarth and Celynin, and behind me were Towyn and the Sea.
“ I had not ridden more than two miles before the wind arose, at first sighing plaintively amongst the foliage of the trees, and afterwards rocking to their very roots with violent and fitful gusts. The sky, too, was overcast with black clouds, and I had the very comfortable prospect of being overtaken by one of those sudden and tremendous storms, which sometimes agitate our mountainous districts.