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vals, with scrupulous care, by the great-grand-more civilized states, the result of any habitual sons of those by whom they were originally awe for their rank, or of any selfish considerapurchased.

tion of the advantage to be derived from cultiThe dress of the women is grotesque and vating their good will. It is the spontanesingular in the extreme. Generally speaking, ous effusion of benevolent feeling, of feeling the waists are worn long, and the petticoats springing from the uncorrupted dictates of their exceedingly short; and the colours of their hearts, and enhanced by the feudal attachment clothes are as bright and various as those of with which they naturally are inclined to rethe men, To persons habituated however to gard those in a higher rank than themselves. the easy and flowing attire of our own coun- Though the Tyrolese are entirely free, and trywomen, the form and style of this dress though the emperor possesses but a nominal appears particularly unbecoming; nor can we sovereignty over them, yet the warm feelings altogether divest ourselves of those ideas of of feudal fidelity have nowhere maintained ridicule which we are accustomed to attach to their place so in violate as among their mounsuch antiquated forms, both on the stage and tains; and this feeling of feudal respect and in the pictures of the last generation. Among affection is extended by them to the higher the peasant girls, you often meet with much classes, whenever they behave towards them beauty; but, for the most part, the women of with any thing like kindness or gentleness of the Tyrol are not nearly so striking as the manners. It has arisen from the peculiar men; an observation which seems applicable situation of their country, in which there are to most mountainous countries, and to none few of the higher orders, where the peasantry more than to the West Highlands of Scotland. possess almost the entire land of which it

It is of more importance to observe that the consists, and where, at the same time, the Tyrolese peasantry are everywhere courteous bonds of feudal attachment have been preserved and pleasing in their demeanor, both towards with scrupulous care, for political reasons, by strangers and their own countrymen. In this their indulgent government, that the peasantry respect, their manners have sometimes been have united the independence and pride of remisrepresented. If a traveller addresses them publican states with the devoted and romantic in a style of insolence or reproach, which is too fidelity to their sovereign, which characterizes often used towards the lower orders in France the inhabitants of monarchical realms. Like or Italy, he will in all probability meet with a the peasants of Switzerland, they regard themrepulse, and if the insult is carried further, he selves as composing the state, and would dismay, perhaps, have cause permanently to re- dain to crouch before any other power. Like pent the indiscretion of his language. For the the Highlanders of Scotland, they are actuated Tyrolese are a free people; and though sub- by the warmest and most enthusiastic loyalty ject to a despotic government, their own state towards their sovereign, and like them they preserves its liberty as entire as if it acknow- have not scrupled on many occasions to exledged no superior to its own authority. The pose their lives and fortunes in a doubtful and peasantry too are of a keen and enthusiastic often hopeless struggle in his cause. From temper; grateful to the last degree for kind- these causes has arisen, that singular mixture ness or condescension, but feelingly alive on of loyalty and independence, of stubbornness the other hand to any thing like contempt or and courtesy, of republican pride and chivalderision in the manner of their superiors. rous fidelity, by which their character is disDwelling too in a country where all are equal, tinguished from that of every other people in and where few noble families or great proprie- Europe. tors are to be found, they are little accustomed Honesty may be regarded as a leading feato brook insults of any kind, or to submit to ture in the character of the Tyrolese, as indeed language from strangers which they would it is of all the German people. In no situation not tolerate from their own countrymen. A and under no circumstances is a stranger in similar temper of mind may be observed danger of being deceived by them. They will, among the Scotch Highlanders; it has been in many instances, sacrifice their own innoticed in the mountains of Nepaul and Cabul, terests rather than betray what they consider so and has long characterized the Arabian tribes; sacred a duty as that of preserving inviolate and indeed it belongs generally to all classes their faith with foreigners. In this respect of the people in those situations where the their conduct affords a very striking contrast debasing effects of the progress of wealth, and to the conduct of the French and Italians,

een where, from whatever causes, the individuals observed and commented on by every traveller. in the lower ranks of life are called into active Yet, amidst all our indignation at that characand strenuous exertion, and compelled to act ter, it may well be doubted, whether it does not for themselves in the conduct of life.

arise naturally and ineyitably from the system If a stranger, however, behaves towards the of government to which they have had the Tyrolese peasantry with the ordinary courtesy misfortune to be subjected. Honesty is a virtue with which an Englishman is accustomed to practised and esteemed among men who have address the people of his own country, there a character to support, and who feel their own is no part of the world in which he will meet importance in the scale of society. Generally with a more cordial reception, or where he will it will be found to prevail in proportion to the find a more affectionate or grateful return for weight which is attached to individual characthe smallest acts of kindness. Among these ter; that is, to the freedom which the people untutored people, the gratitude for any good enjoy. Cheating, on the other hand, is the dred on the part of their superiors, is not, as in (usual and obvious resource of slaves, of men who have never been taught to respect them- preserves enough of the pure spirit of its divine selves, and whose personal qualities are en- origin to influence, in a great degree, the contirely overlooked by the higher orders of the duct of their private lives. The Tyrolese have Etate. If England and Switzerland and the not yet learned that immorality in private life Tyrol had been subjected by any train of un- may be pardoned by the observance of certain fortunate events to the same despotism which ceremonies, or that the profession of faith nas degraded the character of the lower orders purchases à dispensation from the rules of in France and Italy, they would probably have obedience. These, the natural and the usual had as little reason as their more servile neigh- attendants of the Catholic faith in richer states, bours to have prided themselves on the honesty have not reached their poor and sequestered and integrity of their national character. valleys. The purchase of absolution by money

Perhaps the most remarkable feature in the is there almost unknown. In no part of the character of the Tyrolese, is their uniform world are the domestic or conjugal duties PIETY, a feeling which is nowhere so univer- more strictly or faithfully observed: and in sally diffused as among their sequestered val- none do the parish priests exercise a stricter leys. The most cursory view of the country or more conscientious control over the conduct is sufficient to demonstrate the strong hold of their flock. Their influence is not weakened, which religion has taken of the minds of the as in a more advanced state of society, by a peasantry. Chapels are built almost at every discordance of religious tenets; nor is the conhalf mile on the principal roads, in which the sideration due to this sacred function, lost in passenger may perform his devotions, or which the homage paid to rank, or opulence, or power. may awaken the thoughtless mind to a recol. Placed in the midst of a people who acknowlection of its religious duties. The rude efforts ledge no superiors, and who live almost univerof art have there been exerted to pourtray the sally from the produce of their little domains, leading events in our Saviour's life; and in- and strangers alike to the arts of luxury, and numerable figures, carved in wood, attest, in the seductions of fashion, the parish-priest is every part of the country, both the barbarous equally removed from temptation himself, taste of the people, and the fervour of their and relieved from guarding against the great religious impressions. Even in the higher sources of wickedness in others. He is at parts of the mountains, where hardly any ves- once thé priest, and the judge of his parish; tiges of human cultivation are to be found, in the infallible criterion in matters of faith, and the depth of untrodden forests, or on the sum- the umpire, in the occasional disputes which mit of seemingly inaccessible cliffs, the symbols happen among them. Hence has arisen that reof devotion are to be found, and the cross rises markable veneration for their spiritual guides, everywhere amidst the wilderness, as if to by which the peasantry are distinguished; and mark the triumph of Christianity over the it is to this cause that we are to ascribe the greatest obstacles of nature. Nor is it only in singular fact that their priests were their prinsolitudes or deserts that the vestiges of their cipal leaders in the war with France, and that devotion are to be found. In the valleys and while their nobles almost universally kept in the cities it still preserves its ancient sway back, the people followed with alacrity the call over the people. On the exterior of most of their pastors, to take up arms in support of houses the legend of some favourite saint, or the Austrian cause. the sufferings of some popular martyr, are to In one great virtue, the peasants in this be found; and the poor inhabitant thinks him- country (in common it must be owned with self secure from the greater evils of life under most Catholic states) are particularly worthị the guardianship of their heavenly aid. In of imitation. The virtue of charity, which is every valley numerous spires are to be seen too much overlooked in many Protestant rising amidst the beauty of the surrounding kingdoms, but which the Catholic religion so scene, and reminding the traveller of the piety uniformly and sedulously enjoins, is there of its simple inhabitants. On Sunday the whole practised, to the greatest degree, and by all people flock to church in their neatest and classes of the people. Perhaps there are few gayest attire; and so great is the number who countries in which, owing to the absence of thus frequent these places of Worship, that it manufactures and great towns, poverty apis not unfrequent to see the peasants kneeling pears so rarely, or in which thë great body of on the turf in the churchyard where mass. is the people live so universally in a state of performed, from being unable to find a place comfort. Yet, whenever wretchedness does apwithin its walls. Regularly in the evening pear, it meets with immediate and effectual prayers are read in every family; and the relief. Nor is their charity confined to actual traveller who passes through the villages at mendicants, but extends to all whom accident the hour of twilight; often sees through their or misfortune has involved in casual distress. latticed windows the young and the old kneel. Each valley supports its own poor; and the ing together round their humble fire, or is little store of every cottage, like the meal of warned of his approach to human habitation, by the Irish cottager, is always open to any one hearing their evening hymns stealing through who really requires its assistance. This bethe silence and solitude of the forest.

nevolent disposition springs, no doubt, in a Nor is their devotion confined to acts of great measure from the simple state in which external homage, or the observance of an ün- society exists among these remote districts: meaning ceremony. Debased as their religion but it is to be ascribed not less to the efforts is by the absurdities and errors of the Catholic of the clergy, who incessantly enjoin this great form of worship, and mixed up as it is with in- Christian duty, and point it out as the chief numerable legends and visionary tales, it yet means of atoning for past transgressions.

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Much as we may lament the errors of the districts to spread the cultivation of which the Catholic, and clearly as we may see its ten- Alps, with their savage inhabitants, seemed to dency (at least in its more corrupt forms) to them incapable. nourish private immorality, and extinguish What is it then which has wrought so won. civil liberty, it is yet impossible to deny, that, derful a change in the manners, the habits, in the great duty of Christian charity, which and the condition of the inhabitants of those it invariably enjoins, it has atoned for a multi- desolate regions ? What is it which has spread tude of sins; and to suspect that amidst the cultivation through wastes, deemed in ancient austerity and severity of the presbyterian dis- times inaccessible to human improvement, and cipline, we have too much lost sight of the humanized the manners of a people remarkable charity of the gospel; and that with us a pre- only, under the Roman sway, for the ferocity tended indignation for the vices which involve and barbarism of their institutions? From so many of the poor in distress, too often serves what cause has it happened that those savage as a pretext for refusing to minister that relief mountaineers, who resisted all the acts of civito which, from whatever cause it has arisen, lization by which the Romans established their our Saviour tells us that it is entitled.

sway over mankind, and continued, even to the There is something singularly delightful in overthrow of the empire, impervious to all the the sway which religion thus maintains in efforts of ancient improvement, should, in later these savage and sequestered regions. In times, have so entirely changed their characancient times, we are informed these moun- ter, and have appeared, even from the first tains were inhabited by the Rhætians, the dawn of modern civilization, mild and humane fiercest and most barbarous of the tribes, in their character and manners? From what who dwelt in the fastnesses of the mountains, but from the influence of RELIGION-of that reand of whose savage manners Livy has given ligion which calmed the savage feelings of the so striking an account in his description of human mind, and spread its beneficial inHannibal's passage of the Alps. Many Roman fluence among the remotest habitations of men; Legions were impeded in their progress, or and which prompted its disciples to leave the thinned of their numbers, by these cruel bar- luxuries and comforts of southern climates, to barians; and even after they were reduced to diffuse knowledge and humanity through insubjection, by the expedition of Drusus, it was hospitable realms, and spread, even amidst the still esteemed a service of the utmost danger to regions of winter and desolation, the light and leave the high road, or explore the remote re- the blessings of a spiritual faith. cesses of the country. Hence the singular fact, Universally it has been observed throughalmost incredible in modern times, that even out the whole extent of the Alps, that the in the days of Pliny, several hundred years earliest vestiges of civilization, and the first after the first passage of these mountains by traces of order and industry which appeared the Roman troops, the source of both the Rhine after the overthrow of the Roman empire, were and the Iser were unknown; and that the na- to be found in the immediate neighbourhood turalist of Rome was content to state, a century of the religious establishments; and it is to after the establishment of a Roman station at the unceasing efforts of the clergy during the Sion, that the Rhone took its rise in the most centuries of barbarism which followed that hidden parts of the earth, in the region of per- event, that the judicious historian of Switzerpetual night, amidst forests for ever inacces- land ascribes the early civilization and husible to human approach.” Hence it is too, mane disposition of the Helvetic tribes.* Placed that almost all the inscriptions on the votive as we are at a distance from the time when offerings which have been discovered in the this great change was effected, and accustomed ruins of the temple of Jupiter Penninus, at the to manners in which its influence has long summit of the great St. Bernard, and many of ago been established, we can hardly conceive which come down to a late period in the history the difficulties with which the earlier professof the empire, speak of the gratitude of the pas-ors of our faith had to struggle in subduing sengers for having escaped the extraordinary the cruel propensities, and calming the reperils of the journey. The Roman authors al- vengeful passions, that subsisted among the ways speak of the Alps with expressions of dis- barbarous tribes who had conquered Europe; may and horror, as the scenes of only winter and nor would we, perhaps, be inclined to credit desolation, and as the abodes of barbarous tribes. the accounts of the heroic sacrifices which “Nives cælo prope immistæ, tecta informia im- were then made by numbers of great and good posita rupibus pecora jumenta que torrida fri- men who devoted themselves to the convergore homines intonsi et inculti, animalia inani-sion of the Alpine tribes, did not their institumaque omnia rigentia gelu cetera visu quam tions remain to this day as a monument of dictu fædiora terrorem renovarunt.”* No at their virtue; and did we not still see a number tempt accordingly appears to have been made of benevolent men who seclude themselves by any of the Romans in later times to explore from the world, and dwell in the regions of the remoter recesses of the mountains now so perpetual snow, in the hope of rescuing a few familiar to every traveller; but while the empe- individuals from a miserable death. When rors constructed magnificent highways across the traveller on the summit of the St. Bernard their summits to connect Italy with the northern reads the warm and touching expressions of provinces of the empire, they suffered the val- gratitude with which the Roman travellers reIeys on either side to remain in their pristine corded in the temple of Jupiter their gratitude state of barbarism, and hastened into remoter for having escaped the dangers of the passy even in the days of Adrian and the Antonines, see, in all the events by which they are sure and reflects on the perfect safety with which rounded, the marks of divine protection, which he can now traverse the remotest recesses of is the foundation of their superstition; and the the Alps, he will think with thankfulness of more strongly that they feel reliance on spithe religion by which this wonderful change ritual interposition, the less inclined are they has been effected, and with veneration of the to sink under the reverses of a temporary saint whose name has for a thousand years life. been affixed to the pass where his influence There is a wide distinction between superstifirst reclaimed the people from their barbarous tion and the belief in sorcery or witchcraft. life; and in crossing the defile of Mount Bren- The latter is the growth of weakness and ner, where the abbey of Wilten first offered credulity, and prevails most among men of a an asylum to the pilgrim, he will feel, with a timid disposition, or among ignorant and barlate eloquent and amiable writer, how fortunate barous nations. The former, though it is it is “that religion has penetrated these fast-founded on ignorance, and yields to the exnesses, impervious to human power, and spread perience and knowledge of mankind, yet her influence over solitudes where human laws springs from the noblest principles of our are of no avail; that where precaution is impos- nature, and is allied to every thing by which sible and resistance useless, she spreads her in the history of our species has been dignified visible ægis over the traveller, and conducts in former times. It will not be pretended, that him secure under her protection through all the the Grecian states were deficient either in dangers of his way. When, in such situations, splendour of talents or heroism of conduct, he reflects upon his security, and recollects yet superstition, in its grossest form, attached that these mountains, so savage and so well itself to all their thoughts, and influenced alike adapted to the purposes of murderers and the measures of their statesmen and the dreams banditti, have not, in the memory of man, of their philosophers. The Roman writers been stained with human blood, he ought to placed in that very feeling which we would do justice to the cause, and gratefully acknow- call superstition, the most honourable characledge the beneficial influence of religion. In- teristic of their people, and ascribed to it the pressed with these reflections, he will behold, memorable series of triumphs by which the with indulgence, perhaps even with interest, history of the republic was distinguished. the crosses which frequently mark the brow of " Nulla inquam republià aut major aut sanctior a precipice, and the little chapels hollowed out fuit,” says Livy; and it is to their deep sense of the rock where the road is narrowed; he of religion that Cicero imputes the unparalleled will consider them as so many pledges of se-success with which the arms of the republic curity; and rest assured, that, as long as the were attended.* Yet the religious feeling which pious mountaineer continues to adore the was so intimately blended with the Roman Good Shepherd,' and to beg the prayer of the character, and which guided the actions and afflicted mother,' he will never cease to be- formed the minds of the great men who adorned friend the traveller, nor to discharge the duties her history, was for the most part little else than of hospitality."*

* Liv. lib. 21,

* Planta, vol. i. p. 17, &c.

that firm reliance on the special interposition It must be admitted, at the same time, of Providence, which is the origin of superstithat the Tyrolese are in the greatest degree tion. The Saracens, during the wars which superstitious, and that their devotion, warm followed the introduction of the Mohammedan and enthusiastic as it is, is frequently mis- faith, were superstitious to the highest degree, placed in the object of its worship. There is yet with how many brilliant and glorious quaprobably no country in which the belief in lities was their character distinguished, when supernatural powers, in the gift of prophecy they triumphantly carried the Crescent of to particular individuals, and the agency of Mohammed from the snows of the Himmaleh to spiritual beings in human affairs, is more uni- the shores of the Atlantic. The crusaders even versally established. It forms, indeed, part of of the highest rank, believed firmly in the mitheir religious creed, and blends in the most racles and prophecies which were said to singular manner with the legendary tales and have accompanied the march of the Christian romantic adventures which they have attached army; nor is it perhaps possible to find in to the history of their saints. But we would history an example of such extraordinary conerr most egregiously, if we imagined that this sequences as followed the supposed discovery superstition with which the whole people are of the Holy Lance in the siege of Antioch; yet tinged, savours at all of a weak or timid dis- who will deny to these great men the praise position, or that it is any indication of a de- of heroic enterprise and noble manners ? graded national character. It partakes of the Human nature has nowhere appeared in such savage character of the scenery in which they glorious colours as in the Jerusalem Delivered dwell, and is ennobled by the generous senti- of Tasso, where the firmness and constancy ments which prevail among the lowest classes of the Roman patriot is blended with the of the people. The same men who imagine courtesy of chivalrous manners, and the exthat they see the crucifix bend its head in the alted piety of Christian faith ; yet superstidusk of the evening, and who hear the rattle tion formed a part of the character of all his of arms amid the solitude of the mountains, heroes; the courage of Tancred failed when are fearless of death when it approaches them he heard the voice of Clorinda in the charmed through the agency of human power. It is a tree; and the bravest of his comrades trembled strong féeling of religion, and a disposition to when they entered the enchanted forest, where

* Eustace, i. 98.

* Liv. lib. i.; Cic. de Off. lib. i. c. 11

«Esce all hor de la selva un suon repente,

lated, come to withdraw the attention from the Che par rimbombo di terren che treme,

distant magnificence of nature; while the E'l mormorar degli Austri in lui si sente, E’l pianto d'onda, che fra scogli geme.

weakness of the individual is forgotten in the

aggregate force of numbers, or in the distrac. Examples of this kind may teach us, that tions of civilized life. But amidst the solitude although superstition in the age and among the of the Alps no such charge can take place. society in which we live is the mark of a feeble The greatest works of man appear there as mind, yet that in less enlightened ages or parts nothing amidst the stupendous objects of naof the world, it is the mark only of an ardent ture; the distractions of artificial society are and enthusiastic disposition, such as is the unknown amongst its simple inhabitants; and foundation of every thing that is great or the individualis left in solitude to receive theimgenerous in character, or elevated and spiritual pressions which the sublime scenery in which in feeling. A people, in fact, strongly impressed he is placed is fitted to produce. Upon minds with religious feeling, and to whom experi- so circumstanced the changes of external na. ence has not taught the means by which Pro-ture come to be considered as the immediate vidence acts in human affairs, must be supersti- work of some invisible power; the shadows tious; for it is the universal propensity of un- that fall in the lakes at sunrise, are interpreted instructed man, to imagine that a special in- as the indication of the approach of hostile terposition of the Deity is necessary to accom- bands—the howl of the winds through the plish the manifestation of his will, or the ac- forests is thought to be the lamentations of the complishment of his purposes in human affairs. dead, who are expiating their sins and the Nor is there any thing impossible or absurd mists that flit over the summits of the moun. in such a supposition. It might have been, tains, seem to be the distant skirts of vast that future events were to be revealed on par- armies borne in the whirlwind, and treading ticular occasions to mankind, as they were in the storm. during the days of ancient prophecy, and that The Gothic ruins with which the Tyrol is the course of human events was to be main- filled, contribute in a remarkable manner to tained by special interpositions of divine power. keep alive these superstitious feelings. In Experience alone teaches us, that this is not many of the vallsys old castles of vast dimenthe case ; it alone shows, that the intentions sions are perched on the summit of lofty crags, of Providence are carried into effect through or raise their mouldering towers high on the the intervention of human agents, and that mountains above the aged forests with which the laws of the moral world work out their they are surrounded. These castles, once the own accomplishment by the voluntary acts abode of feudal power, have long since been of free agents. When we see how difficult it abandoned, or have gradually gone to decay, is to make persons even of cultivated under- without being actually dismantled by the prostanding comprehend this subject even in the prietors. With all of them the people connect present age, and with all the experience which some romantic or terrible exploit; and the former times have furnished, we may cease bloody deeds of feudal anarchy are rememto wonder at the superstition which prevails bered with terror by the peasants who dwell among the peasants of the Tyrol; we may in the villages at their feet. Lights are often believe, that situated as they are, it is the na-observed at night in towers which have been tural effusion of a pious spirit untaught by the uninhabited for centuries; and bloody figures experience of other ages; and we may discern, have been distinctly seen to flit through their in the extravagancies of their legendary creed, deserted halls. The armour which still hangs not less than in the sublime piety of Newton, on the walls in many of the greater castles, the operation of those common laws by which has been observed to move, and the plumes man is bound to his Creator.

to wave, when the Tyrolese army were victoThe scenery of Tyrol, and of the adjacent rious in war. Groans are still heard in the provinces of Styria and Carinthia, is singular- neighbourhood of the dungeons where the vicly adapted to nourish romantic and supersti- tims of feudal tyranny were formerly slain; tious ideas among the peasantry. In every and the cruel baron, who persecuted his peopart of the world the grandeur of mountain ple in his savage passion for the chase, is scenery has been found to be the prolific parent often heard to shriek in the forests of the of superstition. It was the mists, and the blue Unterberg, and to howl as he flies from the lakes, and the sounding cataracts of Caledonia, dogs, whom he had trained to the scent of which gave birth to the sublime but gloomy human blood. dreams of Ossian. The same cause has Superstitions, too, of a gentler and more holy operated to a still greater degree among the kind, have arisen from the devout feelings of Alps of Tyrol. The sublimity of the objects the people, and the associations connected with with which man is there surrounded--the particular spots where persons of extraordi. resistless power of the elements which he nary sanctity have dwelt. In many of the finds continually in action--the utter insig- farthest recesses of the mountains, on the verge nificance of his own species, when compared of perpetual desolation, hermits in former times with the gigantic objects in which he is placed, fixed their abode; and the imagination of the conspire to produce that distrust of himself, peasants still fancies that their spirits hover and that disposition to cling to higher powers, around the spot where their earthly trials were which is the foundation of superstitious feel- endured. Shepherds who have passed in the ing. In cities and in plains, the labour of gloom of the evening by the cell where the man effaces in a certain degree these impres- bones of a saint are laid, relate that they dis. sons; the works which he has there accumu-tinctly heard his voice as he repeated his

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