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narrow, the voyage is like that of a the vagabond foot, and after we had winding river, — like that of the Ohio, dined we went and lay down under but for the primeval wildness of the some greenly waving trees beside a acclivities that guard our Western field of corn, and heard the plumed stream, and the tawniness of its cur- and panoplied maize talking to itself rent. Wherever the hills do not de- of its kindred in America. It always scend sheer into Como, a pretty town has a welcome for tourists of our nanestles on the brink, or, if not a town, tion wherever it finds us in Italy, and then a villa, or else a cottage, if there is sometimes its sympathy, expressed in room for nothing more. Many little a rustling and clashing of its long green towns climb the heights half-way, and blades, or in its strong, sweet perfume, where the hills are green and cultivat has, as already hinted, made me homeed in vines or olives, peasants' houses sick; though I have been uniformly scale them to the crest. They grow unaffected by potato-patches and toloftier and loftier as we leave our start- bacco-fields. If only the maize could ing-place farther behind, and as we draw impart to the Italian cooks the beautinear Colico they wear light wreaths of ful mystery of roasting-ears! Ah! then cloud and snow. So cool a breeze has indeed it might claim a full and perdrawn down between them all the way fect fraternization from its compatriots that we fancy it to have come from abroad. them till we stop at Colico, and find From where we lay beside the cornthat, but for the efforts of our honest field, we could see, through the twinkengine, sweating and toiling in the ling leaves and the twinkling atmosdark below, we should have had no phere, the great hills across the lake, current of air. A burning calm is in taking their afternoon naps, with their the atmosphere, and on the broad, flat clouds drawn like handkerchiefs over valley, - out of which a marshy stream their heads. It was very hot, and the oozes into the lake, - and on the snow- red and purple ooze of the unwholecrowned hills upon the left, and on the some river below “ burnt like a witch's dirty village of Colico upon the right, oils.” It was indeed but a fevered joy and on the indolent beggars waiting to we snatched from nature there ; and I welcome us, and sunning their goitres am afraid that we got nothing more at the landing.
comfortable from sentiment, when, risThe name Colico, indeed, might be ing, we wandered off through the unliterally taken in English as descrip- guarded fields toward a ruined tower tive of the local insalubrity. The place on a hill. It must have been a relic of was once large, but it has fallen away feudal times, and perhaps in the cool seamuch from sickness, and we found a son it is haunted by the wicked spirits bill posted in its public places inviting of such lords as used to rule in the teremigrants to America on the part of a ror of the people beside peaceful and German steamship company. It was happy Como. But in summer no ghost, the only advertisement of the kind I however sultrily appointed in the other ever saw in Italy, and I judged that world, could feel it an object to rethe people must be notoriously dis- visit that ruined tower. A few scrawny contented there to make it worth the blackberries and other brambles grew while of a steamship company to tempt out of its fallen stones; harsh, dust-dry from home any of the home-keeping Ital- mosses painted its weather-worn walls ian race. And yet Colico, though unde- with their blanched gray and yellow. niably hot, and openly dirty, and tacitly From its foot, looking out over the unhealthy, had merits, though the din- valley, we saw the road to the Splügen ner we got there was not among its Pass lying white-hot in the valley; and virtues. It had an accessible country while we looked, the diligence appeared, about it; that is, its woods and fields and dashed through the dust that rose were not impenetrably walled in from like a flame before. After that it was a relief to stroll in dirty by-ways, past nationality. The Englishmen grinned, cottages of saffron peasants, and poor and the Americans blushed in silence. stony fields that begrudged them a Of all my memories of that hot day on scanty vegetation, back to the steamer Lake Como, this is burnt the deepest ; blistering in the sun.
for the flag was that insolent banner Now indeed we were glad of the awn- which in 1862 proclaimed us a broken ing, under which a silent crowd of people, and persuaded willing Europe people with sunburnt faces waited for of our ruin. It has gone down long the departure of the boat. The breeze ago from ship and fort and regiment, rose again as the engine resumed its and they who used to flaunt it so gayly unappreciated labors, and, with our head in Europe probably pawned it later toward Como, we pushed out into the in the cheap towns of South France, lake. The company on board was such whither so much chivalry retired when as might be expected. There was a wealth was to be wrung from slaves German landscape-painter, with three no more forever. Still, I say, it made heart's-friends beside him; there were Como too hot for us that afternoon, and some German ladies; there were the even breathless Milan was afterwards unfailing Americans and the unfailing a pleasant contrast. Englishman ; there were some French people ; there were Italians from the
ΙΙΙ. meridional provinces, dark, thin, and enthusiastic, with fat, silent wives, and
TRIESTE. a rhythmical speech; there were Milan- If you take the midnight steamer at ese with their families, out for a holi- Venice you reach Trieste by six o'clock day, — round-bodied men, with blunt, in the morning, and the hills rise to square features, and hair and vowels meet you as you enter the broad bay clipped surprisingly short; there was dotted with the sail of fishing-craft. a young girl whose face was of the ex- The hills are bald and bare, and you act type affected in rococo sculpture, find, as you draw near, that the city and at whom one gazed without being lies at their feet under a veil of mist, able to decide whether she was a or climbs earlier into view along their nymph descended from a villa gate, or sides. The prospect is singularly dea saint come from under a broken arch void of gentle and pleasing features, in a Renaissance church. At one of and looking at those rugged acclivities, the little towns two young Englishmen with their aspect of continual bleakin knickerbockers came on board, who ness, you readily believe all the stories were devoured by the eyes of their fel- you have ever heard of that fierce wind low-passengers, and between whom and called the Bora, which sweeps from our kindly architect there was instantly them through Trieste at certain searatified the tacit treaty of non-inter- sons. While it blows, ladies walking course which travelling Englishmen near the quays are sometimes caught observe.
up and set afloat, involuntary Galateas, Nothing further interested us on the in the bay, and people keep in-doors way to Como, except the gathering as much as possible. But the Bora, coolness of the evening air ; the shad- though so sudden and so savage, does ows creeping higher and higher on the give warning of its rise, and the peashills; the songs of the girls winding ants avail themselves of this characteryellow silk on the reels that hummed istic. They station a man on one of through the open windows of the face the mountain-tops, and when he feels tories on the shore ; and the appear- the first breath of the Bora, he sounds ance of a flag that floated from a shal a horn, which is a signal for all within lop before the landing of a stately villa. hearing to lay hold of something that The Italians did not know this banner, cannot be blown away, and cling to it and the Germans loudly debated its till the wind falls. This may happen
in three days or in nine, according to market-place, and selling their wares, the popular proverbs. “The spectacle with much glitter of eyes, teeth, and of the sea,” says Dall'Ongaro, in a ear-rings, and a continual babble of note to one of his ballads, “while the bargaining. Bora blows, is sublime, and when it It seemed to me that the average ceases the prospect of the surrounding of good looks was greater among the hills is delightful. The air, purified by women of Trieste than among those of the rapid current, clothes them with a. Venice, but that the instances of strikrosy veil, and the temperature is in- ing and exquisite beauty were rarer. stantly softened, even in the heart of At Trieste, too, the Italian type, so winter."
pure at Venice, is lost or continually The city itself, as you penetrate it, modified by the mixed character of the makes good with its stateliness and population, which perhaps is most nopicturesqueness your loss through the ticeable at the Merchants' Exchange. grimness of its environs. It is in great This is a vast edifice roofed with glass, part new, very clean, and full of the life where are the offices of the great steam and movement of a prosperous port; navigation company, the Austrian but, better than this so far as the mere Lloyds, - which, far more than the sight-seer is concerned, it wins a novel favor of the Imperial government, has charm from the many public staircases contributed to the prosperity of Trieste, by which you ascend and descend its -- and where the traffickers of all races hillier quarters, and which are made of meet daily to gossip over the news and stone, and lightly railed and balustrad- the prices. Here a Greek or a Dalmat ed with iron.
talks with an eager Italian, or a slow, Something of all this I noticed in my sure Englishman ; here the hated Ausride from the landing of the steamer trian button-holes the Venetian or the to the house of friends in the sub- Magyar ; here the Jew meets the Genurbs. There I grew better disposed tile on common ground; here Christoward the hills, which, as I strolled tianity encounters the superstitions of over them, I found dotted with love the East, and makes a good thing out ly villas, and everywhere traversed by of them in cotton or grain. All cosperfectly-kept carriage-roads, and easy tumes are seen here, and all tongues and pleasant foot-paths. It was in the are heard, the native Triestines conspring-time, and the peach-trees and tributing almost as much to the vaalmond-trees hung full of blossoms and riety of the latter as the foreigners. bees; the lizards lay in the walks ab- “In regard to language,” says Cantù, sorbing the vernal sunshine; the violets " though the country is peopled by and cowslips sweetened all the grassy Slavonians, yet the Italian tongue is borders. The scene did not want a spreading into the remotest villages, human interest, for the peasant-girls where a few years since it was not were going to market at that hour, and understood. In the city it is the comI met them everywhere, bearing heavy mon and familiar language ; the Slaburdens on their own heads, or hurry- vonians of the North use the Gering forward with their wares on the man for the language of ceremony; backs of donkeys. They were as hand- those of the South, as well as the Issome as heart could wish, and they raelites, the Italian; while the Proteswore that Italian head-dress which I tants use the German, the Greeks the have never seen anywhere in Italy ex- Hellenic and Illyric, the employees of cept at Trieste and in the Roman and the civil courts the Italian or the GerNeapolitan provinces, - a kerchief of man, the schools now German and dazzling white linen, laid square upon now Italian, the bar' and the pulpit the crown, and dropping lightly to the Italian. Most of the inhabitants, inshoulders. Later I saw these comely deed, are bi-lingual, and very many trimaidens crouching on the ground in the lingual, without counting French, which is understood and spoken from infancy. Mexicans vainly waits her husband's Italian, German, and Greek are written, return from the experiment of paternal but the Slavonic little, this having re- government in the New World. It mained in the condition of a vulgar would be hard to tell how art has there tongue. But it would be idle to dis- charmed rock and wave, until the spur tinguish the population according to of one of those rugged Triestine hills, language, for the son adopts a lan- jutting into the sea, has been made the guage different from the father's, and · seat of ease and luxury; but the visitor now prefers one language and now is aware of the magic as soon as he another; the women generally incline passes the gate of the palace grounds. to the Italian ; but many of the upper These are in great part perpendicuclass prefer now German, now French, lar, and are overclambered with airy now English, as, from one decade to stairways climbing to pensile arbors. another, affairs, fashions, and fancies Where horizontal, they are diversified change. This in the salons ; in the with mimic seas for swans to sail upsquares and streets, the Venetian dia- on, and summer-houses for people to lect is heard.”
lounge in and look at the swans from. And with the introduction of the On the point of land farthest from the Venetian dialect, Venetian discontent acclivity stands the castle of Miramare, seems also to have crept in, and I once half at sea, and half adrift in the clouds heard a Triestine declaim against the above. Imperial government quite in the man
" And fain it would stoop downward ner of Venice. It struck me that this
To the mirrored wave below; desire for union with Italy, which he
And fain it would sear upward declared prevalent in 'Trieste, must be
In the evening's crimson glow." of very recent growth, since even so I remember that a little yacht lay belate as 1848 Trieste had refused to side the pier at the castle's foot, and join Venice in the expulsion of the lazily flapped its sail, while the sea beat Austrians. Indeed, the Triestines have inward with as languid a pulse. That fought the Venetians from the first; was some years ago, before Mexico they stole the Brides of Venice in one was dreamed of at Miramare. Now, of their piratical cruises in the lagoons; perchance, she who is one of the most gave aid and comfort to those enemies unhappy among women looks down of Venice, the Visconti, the Carraras, distraught from those high windows, and the Genoese ; revolted from St. and finds in the helpless sail and imMark whenever subjected to his ban- passive wave the images of her baffled ner; and finally, rather than remain hope, and that immeasurable sea which under his sway, gave themselves five gives back its mariners neither to love centuries ago to Austria.
nor to sorrow. I think, though she be The objects of interest in Trieste are the wife and daughter of royalty, we may not many. There are remains of an pity this poor Empress at least as much attributive temple of Jupiter under the as we pity the Mexicans to whom her Duomo, and there is near at hand the dreams have brought so many woes. museum of classical antiquities founded It was the midnight following the in honor of Winckelmann, murdered at visit to Miramare when the fiacre in Trieste by that ill-advised Pistojese, which I had quitted my friend's house Ancangeli, who had seen the medals was drawn up by its greatly bewildered bestowed on the antiquary by Maria driver on the quay near the place Theresa and believed him rich. There where the steamer for Venice should is also a scientific museum founded by be lying. There was no steamer for the Archduke Maximilian, and, above Venice to be seen. The driver swore all, there is the beautiful residence of a little in the polyglot profanities of this unhappy prince, - the Miramare, his native city, and, descending from where the half-crazed Empress of the his box, went and questioned different lights - blue lights, yellow lights, green “The other passengers have all gone lights - to be seen at different points. to bed, I suppose," I argued acutely, To a light, they were ignorant, though seeing none of them. Nevertheless, I eloquent, and, to pass the time, we thought it odd, and it seemed a shrewd drove up and down the quay, and means of relief to ring the bell, and, prestopped at the landings of all the steam- tending drowsiness, to ask the steward ers that touch at Trieste. It was a snug which was my state-room. fiacre enough, but I did not care to He replied, with a curious smile, that spend the night in it, and I urged the I could have any of them. Amazed, I driver to further inquiry. A wanderer yet selected a state-room, and while the whom we met declared that it was not steward was gone for the sheets and the night for the Venice steamer; an- pillow-cases I occupied my time by other admitted that it might be; a third opening the doors of all the other stateconversed with the driver in low tones, rooms. They were empty. and then leaped upon the box. We “Am I the only passenger ?” I drove rapidly away, and before I had, asked, when he returned, with some in view of this mysterious proceeding, anxiety. composed a fitting paragraph for the “Precisely,” he answered. Fatti Diversi of the Osservatore Tries- I could not proceed and ask if he tino, descriptive of the state in which composed the entire crew: it seemed the Guardie di Polizia should find me too fearfully probable that he did. floating in the bay, exanimate and too I now suspected that I had taken clearly the prey of a triste evvenimento, passage with the Olandese Volante, but the driver pulled up once more, and there was now nothing in the world now beside a steamer. It was the for it, except to go to bed, and there, steamer for Venice, he said, in pre- with the accession of a slight sea-sickcisely the tone which he would have ness, my views of the situation unused had he driven me directly to it derwent a total change. I had gone without blundering. It was breathing down into the Maelstrom with the Anheavily, and was just about to depart; cient Mariner, - I was a Manuscript but even in the hurry of getting on Found in a Bottle! board I could not help noticing that it Coming to the surface about six seemed to have grown a great deal o'clock A. M., I found a daylight as since I had last voyaged in it. There cheerful as need be upon the appointwas not a soul to be seen except the ments of the elegant cabin, and upon mute steward who took my satchel, the good-natured face of the steward and, guiding me below into an elegant when he brought me the caffe latte, and saloon, instantly left me alone. Here the buttered toast for my breakfast. again the steamer was vastly enlarged. He said, “ Servitor suo !" in a loud These were not the narrow quarters of and comfortable voice, and I perceived the Venice steamer, nor was this lamp, the absurdity of having thought that he shedding a soft light on cushioned was in any way related to the Nightseats and panelled doors and wainscot- mare - Death-in-life-that-thicks - man'sings, the sort of illumination usual in blood-with-cold. that humble craft. I rang the small “This is not the regular Venice silver bell on the long table, and the steamer, I suppose," I remarked to mute steward appeared.
the steward as he laid my breakfast in Was this the steamer for Venice ? state upon the long table. Sicuro!
No. Properly, no boat should have All that I could do in comment was left for Venice last night, which was to sit down; and in the mean time the not one of the times of the tri-weekly steamer trembled, groaned, choked, departure. This was one of the steamcleared its throat, and we were under ers of the line between Trieste and way.
Alexandria, and it was going at present