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chose rather to trust themselves to the arms of the
men than to an ass, and thus picturesque groups of
a different kind were formed.

July 30 th.

I learn from daily experience that the most need-
ful quality of a traveller is not to wish to see every-
thing, otherwise he lives in constant uneasiness, and
does not accomplish his purpose at last. A forced
resignation, however, very often takes the place of
this wise and calm content. Thus, to-day. Profes-
sor W , from Rome, who proposed to call for

me at four in the morning to go with him to Pom-
peji, was left in the lurch by the man who was to
drive us thither, and it is doubtful whether better
luck awaits us to-inorrow.


It admits of a question which affords most plea-
sure, to plan travels, or to travel. The former preli-
minary business costs no efforts, no money, presents
much more variety and change. On the other hand, a
hundred possibilities do not make a reality. Again,
it is not to be denied that many a one learns more
from serious preparations for a journey, than many
travellers who have actually been whirled along,
breathed foreign air, eaten foreign bread, and slept
in foreign beds.

I hope that the heat of Brandenburg agrees as
well with you as that of Naples does with me. You
will be killed by the heat in Sicily, say some. You
will be killed by robbers, cry others. In the former
event, the latter cannot take place, and vice versa.
I have no fear of either of these dangers, and shall
only beware of the slow and tedious riding upon
asses in the sunshine. Palermo, Messina, Catanea,
a bit of Etna, perhaps somewhat of Syracuse —
basta per me. Ne siitor ultra crepidam^ nor should
one affect enthusiasm for things which lie out of
one"'s own line.


Naples — The Studj — Pompeji.

Naples, August 3rd. (the king's birthday).

At present only a few particulars of my daily

history. On the 29th of July, M. T — introduced

me to Mazzetti, Archbishop of Seleucia, who is at


the head of a commission of instruction, and has
with great courage set his face against many useless
things. His general plan of instruction contains
much that is good and well-meant ; but, as he is for
altering the present system in almost all its parts,
and rarely adopts any portion of it, he cannot fail
to meet with insurmountable obstacles. Gradual
development has in general accomplished more than
what is termed total regeneration. There is much
in this plan, too, that to me is unaccountable; that,
for instance, all real knowledge must be acquired at
the lyceums, but the positive excluded from the
universities. In the latter, of course, no history,
but only a sort of philosophy of history, &c., so
that, upon the whole, the merely general, (often
only abstract,) is considered as the more important.
But you may some day read all this yourself in his
work, if you please.

On the 30th to the Studj. The naked men stand
about everywhere for inspection ; the naked women
are shut up in a separate room. Scarcely one
solid reason can be assigned for this regulation,
though it might furnish occasion for abundance of
pleasantries. In that room, then, there are ten
Venuses, seven d la Venus Medich', two sitting,
and the one looking behind her. Hence, it ap-
pears that certain master-pieces have been imitated
numberless times by inferior artists, and that there
were very few real originals. The seven above-


mentioned are in part ugly portrait-statues of women
who ought to cover themselves, and only one re-
sembles that of the Capitol. The KaA^tTruyjj is, in
fact, not a Venus, but only a very handsome female,
who is proud of the beauty of her sitting part, and
at the same time, perhaps, is striving to catch a flea.

On the 31st, with W and two painters, to

Pompeji, another hot, but supportable, and in-
structive day, in shirt sleeves, and with umbrella.
Once more I transported myself into the mode of
hfe of those times when people cared but little
about the streets, and when the colonnade around
a public place was more important than the house.
The paintings here, and those which have been re-
moved to Naples, have perhaps been overrated by
some ; certainly there are wretched and tasteless
things among them. They nevertheless attest a
love for the art, extraordinary practice, and a lively
conception. In no modern provincial town would
so much that is remarkable have been found, and
then again, that which has been found cannot be
taken as the standard for antique painting. The
painters who wrought at Pompeji bear much the
same proportion to Zeuxis and Apelles as Pompeji
does to Athens and Corinth. The mosaic repre-
senting Alexander and Darius is certainly copied
from some other work, and there is perhaps nothing
more perfect in this kind, but yet objections might
be made to particular points, from the car or the



wheel of it to the head of Alexander, if ray periodi-
cal on the arts had not been dropped for want of


Passage to Palermo — Flora — Santa Maria di Gesu— Diikeof
Serradifalco — Moiireale.

Palermo, August 6th.
About ten o'clock in the forenoon of the 4th of
August, I set out from Naples, arrived here at
eight in the morning, on the 5th, and took up my
quarters at M. Giacquieri's. The passage was fa-
vourable, and without any volcanic eruptions, but I
was rather unwell in consequence of the tremulous
motion of the Marie Christine. It affects the nerves,
so that I went about the whole day on terra firmn,
as though it had not been ^rw. At daybreak, I
went to the head of the vessel, that I might see
without obstruction the coast of Sicily rising out of
the sea. A great diversity of fantastic lines, (as
the Romans say) of hills and mountains — beautiful
colours— but mostly bare and treeless. Palermo
situated in the plain, three-fourths of the circle en-
compassed by hills, one-fourth open towards the
sea ; on the left, IMonte Pellegrino, with the chapel
of St. Rosalia. The city has not the appearance of
a thriving place, and, besides the two main streets
intersecting one another, few worthy of mention.
The promenade along the sea is fine, but simple and


insignificant in comparison with the drive from the
Chiaja to Puzzuoli ; and the horses and the car-
riages too are surpassed by the Neapolitan. The
Flora, so highly spoken of, is a regularly laid out,
level, enclosed garden, adorned with the more
southern plants of these countries, but without any
prospect. Instead of the nymphs, elves, and dryads,
that I hoped to find here yesterday evening, there
were only ecclesiastics and monks, walking up and
down in all colours, black, half-black, speckled,
white, brown. If there are really sixty-seven
convents in the city, and among them, many of
mendicant friars, it is but natural that one
should see as many monks here, as soldiers with
us. Palermo has, undoubtedly, a fine situation,
but to prefer it to that of Naples argues, in my
opinion, a faulty taste or exaggerated patriotism.

Aiijiust 7tli.
As the post and letters will not go off till morn-
ing, I shall add a few words. The day before yes-
terday, the first of my abode here, I ran about
during the heat of the day with a lacquey (indispen-
sable on this occasion) through the whole city, and
in the evening went, as I have already mentioned,
to the promenade and the Flora. This, however,
was a quiet day in compai'ison with yesterday. I
rose at four in the morning, for the purpose of
driving out before the heat commenced, with M.
W , the very kind Prussian consul, and his


brother, to the Capuchhi convent of Santa Maria di
Gesu. 1 he aloe, the cactus, or Indian fig. and
some other southern plants which were associated
with the vine, the olive, the orange, and the cypress,
showed that I had almost arrived at the end of my
journey. Some steep chalk-stone walls alone were
bare, but beautifully-coloured red and yellow j
with these exceptions, the whole side of the hill was
so covered with plants and trees, that I was anew
confirmed in the conviction that the nakedness of
hills is more frequently owing to the fault and
neglect of man, than a necessary consequence of
natural defects. The feeling and taste of the monks
in the selection of a site for their convent were
shown here as in so many other places. It com-
mands an extensive and beautiful view over Pa-
lermo and Monreale, as far as the range of hills
that lie behind the Pellegrino and the sea. On my
return from this excursion, I set out on a second
with the lacquey, made some instructive acquaint-
ances, missed other persons, and found others again
in bed at eleven o'clock. I conceived that people
here rose early, slept a good deal in the day time,
and went to bed late. On the latter point alone I
was right : they sleep but little in the day, and to
early rising they are utter strangers. The bustle
in the streets, too, commences much earlier in Naples
than here.

A half decayed fresco painting by Monreale in a


convent was wonderfully fresh and beautiful : other
martyrdoms of his which I afterwards saw were far
less attractive, and had even become much darker.
Five or six churches, modern, gaudy, not worthy of
mention. So much the more characteristic Roger's
chapel in the castle, more Latin than Grecian in
form, but just like St. Mark's at Venice in mosaic-
work and style.

The Duke of Serradifalco, (upon whom I
called a second time, and who had likewise missed
me) received me in the most cordial manner. His
offer to take me in his carriage to Monreale was
the more welcome as he has published an admirable
work on the church there, and is consequently by
far the best guide. The church itself is a most re-
markable structure : the part of it that was burned
is mostly rebuilt, and exactly in the former style.
To a church in the form of a Greek cross is an-
nexed a sort of basilica. Above the pillars and
arches, the walls entirely covered with mosaic, as in
Venice. Among other things, King William is re-
presented as being ci'owned by Christ, to indicate
that he did not receive his crown from the pope.
I abstain from further description. You will see
from the work of the Duke of Serradifalco how
much was done in this country in the department
of the arts so early as the end of the twelfth cen-



Palermo — Temperature — Poitiait of Frederick Barbarossa —
Librar}— Autiquiiiesi — Uuiversity — Ball — Ciitlu'dral —
Lunatic Hospital — Mendicants' Asylum.

Palermo, Angus! 8tb.

I shall continue my simple reports. The thunder-
storm of the day before yesterday was followed
yesterday, contrary to the expectation of the Paler-
mitans with whom I conversed, by another of
greater violence, so that the atmosphere is much
cooled, the thermometer at six o'clock this morning
indicating only 17' (70° F.) and at noon 23" (84° F.).
Many insist that, with the exception of the sirocco
days, which are described as being very oppressive,
the heat here is not so great as in Naples, and I
must agree with them as far as my experience goes.
Possibly, however, a storm may have produced the
same effect in Naples ; and that assei'tion would
hardly hold good in regard to the average tempera-
ture of the whole year. People here are in general
disposed to assign a lower degree to the local heat,
just as they do in the north to the cold, because
both, viewed from different points, are considered
as evils. A^^ guid nimis !

Yesterday M. A G— — , a respectable Sici-
lian scholar, fetched me, in the first place to show me
a portrait of the Emperor Frederick II., which he
had had copied from a picture in San Martino. He


considered it as genuine, a good likeness, and well
executed. In this opinion I could not coincide;
nay, I \vas disgusted with the face, which seemed
by no means to represent a man of superior under-
standing and noble mind, but rather a clownish
fellow. The wish to see something ideal, some-
thing beautiful, was certainly not a sufficient ground
for denying the genuineness of the picture. But
my feeling was supported by other reasons. In the
first place, the portrait was not at all in the style of

the thirteenth century. M. G remarked that

the reputed original in San Marti no was pro-
bably of the seventeenth century. In this case,
then, we should have but the copy of a modern
cop}', which exhibits not the least trace of the adop-
tion and imitation of an older form and style. In
the second place, the picture bears no resemblance
to the genuine Augustals, nor to my ring engraved
after the contemporary statue of Frederick II. at
Capua. On the other hand, the Augustals and the
ring agree in all the essentials, and must decide as
to Frederick's face, and the rejection of that pic-

On another point, too, my opinion differed from

G 's. He maintains that a lamentation of Peter

de Vinea from his prison is genuine, and was com-
posed by himself. To me, on the contrary, it ap-
pears to be the bungling performance of some later
divine ; for, in the first place, it manifests none of


Peter's previous energy ; and in the second, it con-
tains nothing but phrases, verba prcetereaque nihil^
without the slightest reference to facts and personal
circumstances. In the third place, it appears to me
to be for the most part an amplification and dilu-
tion of the well-known passage in Dante, which the
later author must, as I conceive, have had before
his eyes. Granting, however, that this lamentation
is genuine, we learn from it nothing for history.

M. G then took me to the library, where

I had occasion to make the important remark that
literature here covers its nakedness more commonly
with hog-skin, as it does among us with calf-skin.
I looked with due devotion at some manuscripts of
laws and chronicles, and rejoiced most disinter-
estedly that their contents were destined for the
literary labourer of later ages, or have already been
submitted in print to the world. The library and
its revenues have arisen in part from the donations
of the liberal. It seems to be well-arransed and
much frequented. The lending of books is, of
course, out of the question.

The abbate M then took me to the archi-
tectural remains and sculptures, mostly brought
hither from Selinus. The latter show the progress
of development from extreme rudeness to a high
degree of perfection. It was a novelty to me to see
face, hands, and feet of white marble attached to
stone statues of female figures. Here, too, we


plainly perceive that the application of colours to
sculptures was by no means rejected by the ancients,
but frequently approved and adopted.

Now for the university, in the buildings of which
are deposited a collection of partly valuable paint-
ings, and another of plaster casts. A programme
of the lectures is not printed (any more than with
us for the schools) because the limited subjects
usually remain unchanged. In the forenoon are
generally held two lectures of an hour and a half
each, but in the afternoon only one. I shall not
repeat remarks already made on the Italian uni-
versities. Those who accompanied me related that
the theological faculty (or the fragment that may
be so called) is placed below that of the law. The
salary of the professors is, with few exceptions, very
low, mostly 240 dollars per annum.

I dined yesterday and passed a very agreeable

afternoon with M. W the consul, and went in

theevening to a ball at the Duke of 's. Luckily,

I had not left shoes and stockings and the other
articles belonging to an old man''s costume behind
in Naples. The arrangements of the ball deserved
praise in every respect. The inner court, a large
hall, the principal entrance to the garden, tastefully
illuminated with lamps, the saloons and apartments
spacious, and likewise brilliantly lighted with wax-
candles, works of art of various kinds dispersed
here and there, cooling beverages and ice in super-


abundance, a well-furnished table beyond the illu-
minated hall, good music, &c. The gentlemen in
general in black coats, white waistcoats, and breeches;
the ladies dressed as they now are every where in
Europe; waltzes and country-dances. Some of
the ladies, married and single, very handsome,
many insignificant : in stature rather short and
stout, than tall and spare. The Duchess of Berry,
too, much stouter than formerly, whether from grief
and sorrow, or some other cause, I cannot tell.

August 8th, evening.
After I had worked hard and written the fore-
going to you, I rode with Prince G to the

lunatic hospital, the mendicants' asylum, the Zisa,
the ancient palace of the Saracens, and the tombs of
the emperors in the cathedral. Very different —
but the frail and perishable nature of what is human
apparent in all. Of the porphyry coffins, that of
Frederick II. exhibits the finest workmanship ; and
how pitiful, that, at a subsequent period, for the
sake of economy, another royal corpse, that of a
king of Aragon, was laid along with him in the
narrow space, to share it peaceably with him till
the last day. Of the original Arabian forms and
decorations of the Zisa scarcely a vestige is left,
what with repairs, alterations, and decay. The
view, uninterrupted on all sides, from the centre of
the plain of Palermo, is, on the other hand, ever
young and ever beautiful.


Of idiots and maniacs, there is here, owing to the
same causes as in every other country, one third
more men than women, few raving, many gentle
enough, more rarely deprived of reason by drunken-
ness than in the north. Every thing cleanly, or-
derly ; treatment mild ; the institution improved,
or rather created anew, by the Baron Pisani. Force
employed only in cases of extreme emergency ;
patience in the liighest degree ; rather psychological
and moral than any other means ; never ridicule or
excitements to anger.

The suppression of mendicity in Palermo, with
the exception of the begging monks and very few
others, deserves the greatest praise, and distinguishes
this city from most of the towns of Italy. For the
reception of beggars, male and female, boys and
girls, separate houses are established or divisions
made. They are universally commended for order,
honesty, cleanliness, industry, and excellent manage-
ment of the funds, and as far as those things can be
perceived or inferred from inspection, I must award
this praise to the girl's house, the only one that I
have seen When, however, I started some ob-
jections of a different kind, a sub-inspector, though
a native of Germany, told me, his half countryman,
that I knew nothing at all about the matter and
never should be any the wiser. I thought it not
more advisable to quarrel with this very irritable
man, than to believe him on his word. For the

140 mendicants' institution.

question was not about local knowledge but general
principles, which are the same all the world over ;
for instance, if, when more persons go into a house
than out of it, the number within increases or de-
creases; whether 100 is more than 20, or less,&c. The
point namely is this : The beggars, or (let us con-
fine ourselves to the girls) the beggar-girls, are
taken up and then in general sent to that house. If
they have no parents, they may be considered as
orphans, and the institution as an orphan-house.
On putting further questions, I learned that, into
this institution, which has subsisted only a few
years, many more are continually admitted than
are discharged from it, so that the number is gra-
dually on the increase. And this must be the case,
for the grounds of admission are endless, and no
term is fixed for abode in the house. Thus there
is no specific time by way of punishment, or as the
period necessary for education, nor a certain age,
nor majority, &c. Every year very few obtain by
lot a small dowry, for the sake of which they are
sought in marriage ; but departures of this or any
other kind are rare in comparison with the admis-
sions, and in this way the institution for children will
gradually come to comprehend females of every
sex up to very old maids.

I will not repeat what might be urged against
giving dowries to girls out of public funds in gene-
ral : certainly marriages contracted merely for the

mendicants' institution. 141

sake of such a gift rest on a bad foundation, and
are a natural nursery of future want. If I con-
sider reception into a house of this kind as a punish-
ment for beggary, this punishment ought to have
measure and Hmit ; if I consider it as a charity,
then neither can this (as, for instance, the orphan-
houses prove) extend to the whole hfe ; but the
greatest mistake of all is the notion that the govern-
ment and a few benevolent overseers can and ought
to be the guardians and task-masters of innumerable
paupers, because diere is a want of work. The
individual ought rather to be set on his own legs,
and that should be allotted to him and to families,
which these great barracks for education and ex-
pensive playthings of the manufacturing system
never can supply. Without limitation of admission,
without a fixed time for discharge, the number will,
as I have observed, increase prodigiously ; and as
the expenses cannot be provided for, the old system
of begging will be revived on a larger scale than
ever. The well-meant institution is transformed
into a sort of foundling hospital for children of
greater age. Thus much in vindication of my
scruples, which, as I afterwards found, by no means
all the Palermitans regard as stupid ; many, on the
contrary, participate in them, nay, the city already
begins to oppose further considerable payments.
Heaven forbid that, for want of a particular destina-
tion, the praiseworthy object should miscarry, and
the ancient evil return !



Palermo — Monte Pellegrino — St. Rosalia — The Observa-
tory and Botanical Garden — Evening Party.

Palermo, An2:ust 10th.

Yesterday I was up before light, mounted a
donkey which the very obHging Duke of Serradi-
falcw had sent me, and rode out of the city over the
plain to Monte Pellegrino, which suddenly rose like
an island before me. The road leads in a zig-zag,
and partly on under-ground arches, up to the
chapel of St. Rosalia. Here I alighted and as-
cended by a difficult and unfrequented path to a
peak, which commands an extensive prospect of the
nearest mountains, the sea which lies beneath, the
city and plain of Palermo, and the more distant
ranges of hills of various forms. The immediate
environs, on the other hand, reminded me of Radi-
cofani ; only the desert is more extensive and wilder,
and in order not to be behindhand with the crude
forms and pointed crags of rock that every where
protrude, the vegetable kingdom has taken pos-
session of every handful of mould, and thrown out
innumerable (but at this moment dry) thistles. In
such a wilderness lies the grotto to which St.
Rosalia retreated.

I will not throw doubts in Palermo upon what
the Palermitans believe. The mythology of many


christian saints rests on no better foundation than
the mythology of pagan heroes. Instead, however,
of applying on this occasion the cold, critical knife,
and cutting off and flinging away the best of the
legend, I could not help thinking that the Paler-
mitans show an honourable feeling of gratitude, and
the praiseworthy disposition, which is gradually be-
coming more rare, to recognize in the deification of
a particular person something higher above them.
The saint, dressed in cloth of gold, is represented
reclining, with one hand supporting her head, and
the other lying upon her breast, and holding cru-
cifix and pilgrim's staff. On looking through the
bars into the farther half-lighted part of the cavern,
it is only by degrees that the eye discerns outline
and features, so that many circumstances concur to
produce a strong and peculiar impression. I was
reminded involuntarily, but most decidedly, of
Guilelmo della Porta's wonderful female in St.
Peter's. There, the highest splendour of earthly
beauty ; and from the energy of her own bosom
bursts forth all the poetry of bold passions ; here,
the forms of the face have remained, but, instead of
an innate energy forcing its way out, a profounder

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