Imágenes de páginas
PDF
EPUB

his prize to the learned Abbate Vis- and Constantia. As to the destination conti, at that time inspector of the of&his box there can remain no doubt, Museum Po-Clementinum, who made after the slightest examination of the its value known to the world by a let- relievos and inscriptions with which it ter addressed to the Prelate Jomaglia. is covered. Upon the tablet, at the

The whole of the articles found with top, which may be supposed to be the this casket are of massy silver, and inost honourable place, there is a halftheir total weight amounts to one length relievo of a man and a woman. thousand and twenty-nine ounces. The lady stands on the right of her The whole pieces of wrought silver of husband, and holds in her hand a half antiquity (coin excepted) which have unfolded roll. This is often to be seen as yet been discerned, would scarcely on old monuments where a marriage is equal the weight of this single trea- the subject of representation, and the sure ; an imoreover, a very great pro- roll has been supposed by some of the portion of ts component parts are sil- most erudite antiquarians, to be the ver-gilt. The other important re- marriage-contract. It is probable that mains of this kind which have been the box itself was the wedding gift of found have all been in single pieces, the bridegroom to his bride. The such as, the silver shield found in the head-dress of the lady is elevated to a Rhone not far from Avignon ; another great height, with curls and ringlets shield found in the Arve, near. Genf; after the fashion commonly met with a third shield, which has been describe in the coins of the age of the Empress ed in the 9th volume of the Memoires Helena. The bridegroom has a short de Litterature ; the great silver key at curled beard, like the heads in the coins the Vatican, and the Aldaburian Pa- of Maximus, Julius, and Eugenius.tera, which has been described by the Over his shoulders he has a mantle, Abbate Braschi. But however great (the chlamys)* which is fastened, as the metallic weight of some of these usual, above the right arm, with a single pieces may be, no one of them clasp of considerable size. The two can be put into any kind of compari- busts are surrounded with a common son with this casket and its contents, border of sufficiently intelligible deby any one who has the smallest tinc- scription. It is a garland of myrtle ture of true antiquarian learning. twigs, held at either extremity by a Here are to be seen at once, almost all flying genius—a symbol of the unity the articles in use in the toilette of a of the pair. distinguished Roman lady of the fourth Three of the four declining sides of century; the history of luxury and the lid are adorned with beautiful refashions possesses no monument which presentations of the goddess of love. can be compared with it.

One of these is particularly charming, The most remarkable piece is the wherein Venus is pictured as making silver toilette, or dressing-box itself, her progress over the calm waves, two feet in length, a foot and a half attended by a group of Tritons and a in breadth, and one foot in height. whole procession of Cupids. One of The form, the workmanship, the fi- the Tritons leans forward, and pregures upon its exterior, are all of the sents to the goddess an oval mirror ; a most elaborate and exquisite kind. group often seen, with some little vaThe quadrangular box consists of two riation, on ancient gems and medals. equal parts, of which the one forms the box, properly speaking, and the

* The chlamys, originally entirely confinother the lid. The box is thickest at ed to military dress, had, in the 3d and 4th the place where these join ; from that centuries, almost superseded the use of the point upwards and downwards it is proper toga. The clasps were continually shaped in a pyramidal fashion; and increasing in size, and in elaborate workit terminates both above and below in manship. See Rhodius, de acia c. 5. p. 56 a small oblong tablet. The earlier and Smetius, Antiquitates Neomag. p. 86. taste of antiquity would have rejected

+ The Venus Marina, a favourite subthis form as too artificial ; but it is to ject both of sculptors and painters. A fine be seen in several lids of urns, &c. De Nupt. Hon. et Mar. seems to have

passage in the beautiful poem of Claudian, of the age of Constantine, among been composed with reference to some such others, in the two urns supposed to representation as the present. See v. 151, have contained the ashes of St Helena &c.

The drapery of the figures on all these intimately connected with the use of three sides is strongly gilt. In these all these. A fourth slave holds a basin later times, this gilding of silver was of a semicircular form. A fifth holds the universal taste. The scene on the a ring, from which depends a small fourth side is also worthy of much at- box pyramidically shaped in its cover, tention, although Venus is not visibly but fat below. In addition to all this introduced. It represents the festal rich work, there are still two female home-bringing of the bride to her figures more, which seem to perform husband's house. The shape of the the parts of candelabra: probably this bouse, with its wreathed pillars, is one may refer to the well-known nuptial ef farniliar occurrence in medals. The torch-bearing. The subject of this bride moves between her two brides- piece, then, is not, it would seem, any maidens, the one of whom holds a ordinary dressing, but the formal and tambourin in her hand. At a little solemn attiring of a bride. The chamdistance there are some more figures, ber wherein the figures are placed has a woman with two children, all bring- in its back-ground a row of pillars, ing boxes, vases, ewers, and other ar- every two figures separated by one of tieies of furniture. The figures are them. The unwearied invention of in some measure separated from each the artist has placed by each of the other by a pillar which stands in the extreme columns a peacock in the full middle, covered with garlands, and splendour of his expanded plumage ;* wreathed like those already mentioned, the whole of the gay scene being most in the corrupt fashion of architecture fitly terminated on either side by one then prevalent.

of the emblems of that imperial Juno, Another very interesting represent- who has no emblems but those of ation is that on one of the sides of the pride and splendour. box-paper, where the lady whom we This then is a dressing-box + exhave just seen introduced to the house actly of the same nature with those is set forth in the retirement of her which modern ladies use. The only toilette or dressing-room. She is difference is, that our ladies are in seated on a splendid stool, while her common satisfied with boxes of atlas slaves are busied about her. The stool or rose-wood, inlaid with brass or is hung round with golden chains and silver, while the ancient fair condeornaments, and is therefore a cathedra. scended not below silver materials and The lady holds in one hand a casket, the workmanship of a seulptor.--As containing probably her wedding-jewe to the name of the owner, no doubt els; with the other she is fastening a can exist. On the smooth summit of band upon her head. Right before the lid, the following words are still her stands one of the attendant slaves, distinctly visible : Secunde et Projecta with a silver mirror of the common vivatis. Secundus is the bridegroom, oval shape in her hand, which she is Projecta is the name of his bride. Á holding up to ber mistress. Another prayer for the happiness of both is the stands by her with a dressing-box, meaning of the legend. On some of containing probably the rouge and the the smaller pieces there is found, als other cosmetic apparatus. A third though not so entire, the name Proholds & rectangular casket high up, jecta Turci. Now, in the history of and has an ewer at her feet. This the fourth and fifth centuries, several probably is the psecas, the slave whose of the first dignities in Rome were vocation it is to sprinkle the odorife, held by men bearing the name of rous Indian essences over the hair and Turcius Asterius Secundus ; # so that dress of her lady. The casket which there seems to be no reason to doubt she holds is probably the proper nar- that this splendid box was possessed thezium, or salve-casket, filled with by a Projecta, wife of one of these alabaster vases, oil flasks, onyx phials, Asterii. &c.; and the water ewer' below is

. “ Gloriosum animal, gemmantes lau. The use of the word ducere is evidently datus expandit colores.” Plin. x. 20. derived from this practice. Processions of + Its proper name was Pyxis, which the same kind are still used anong the in- shews of what materials it was originally habitants of European Turkey. See Tourne- formed. fort, Voyage du Levant, vol. ii. p. 51. (edit. # There were two prefects of the Gens Amst. 1718. 4.)

Turcia in the years 339 and 362. VOL. IV.

G

Next to the pyxis itself, the most We have all read of the astonishremarkable piece is a silver capsula, ment of a young heir, who, in tumwhich, from the chains appended to bling over the library of his grandfait, appears to have been carried about ther, shook from the centre of one of on the arm. It is one foot in height, the fathers a purse of beautiful louis and is, at the base, one foot and two d'or.

Our fair readers will guess or three inches broad. It is a regular what was the astonishment of the polygon of sixteen sides, which cor- worthy antiquarian, Baron von Schelners are all rounded off into a circle lersheim, who lifted the lid of his where the lid is inserted. The first capsula librorum with the expectation glance is sufficient to suggest the re- of drawing forth some precious fragsemblance which this bears to the ments of Menander or Sapho, and receptacles of book-rolls which are found nothing but five salve-boxes and often to be seen on ancient monu- essence-vials. In the midst of the ments,-for example, at the feet of the capsula there is a copper tablet with Muses, or wrapped in the folds of the five openings, one of a larger, and four toga; although in general the form of around it of a smaller size. In these these is either square, or, in the de- openings, originally, no doubt, intendcline of taste, cylindrical or circular.

ed for MSS., were found the recepThe capsula was used by the Romans, tacles of pomatums and lotions. Alexin travelling, for the accommodation ander threw out the balsams from the of a small library; and in their own casket of Darius, and inserted the Iliapartments, for the purpose of pre

ad in their stead : our Asteria followserving books of an unusual value. ed quite a different course ; with her The figures in relievo, on the sixteen the books gave place to the essences. sides of this capsula, harmonize very But our readers must not be too sewell with this idea of its destination. vere on Asteria. We have ourselves These are the nine Muses, eight of seen modern books, and pretty books them around the capsula, each alter- too, which, on examination, turned nate surface being occupied by a out to be snuff-boxes-or countergarland of flowers. The ninth Muse boxes; and Prince Potenikin, it is is on the flat summit of the whole, well known, had a number of books Erato, it is probable, the Muse that the chief objects of his attentionunited love and poetry; and therefore which were filled with Russian bank the fittest to preside over the dressing- assignats." We remember to have table of a beauty. The other Muses read of the surprise of a German traare indeed distinguished by their ap

veller, who opened a large and splenpropriate emblemata.

did quarto in the apartment of a French On one of the intermediate spaces lady, and found it to contain the very there is a lock and bolt, for the secu- reverse of what occupied the capsula of rity of the precious rolls. But why Asteria. all this learned apparatus at the toilette Besides these two principal pieces, of a Roman lady? Might the whole there are a variety of lesser articles apcapsula not be meant for holding love- pertaining to the Trousseau, or, as the letters and billets-doux ? For this no Roman jurisconsults would have called such formal preparation had been ne- it, the Mundus Muliebris of Asteria ; cessary The safest place for such several small silver paterae and ewers, deposits was in the girdle, or below with ciphers on them; one beautiful the bosom-band (the strophium), close little vase covered with Arabesques, to the heart. But there were learned without doubt for nard or incense; ladies among the Romans as well as several small toilette-spoons for dropamong ourselves; and why might not ping out essences, or tasting sweetmeats Asteria be a Blue Stocking? We have or liqueurs. There is also a silver holOvid's authority, that the Roman low hand for holding a taper ; for the ladies were as fond of Menander as ancients always preferred natural forms ever the French Bas Bleus were of to artificial, and hands of this kind are their Florian or Picard. Even of seen on all kinds of monuments,romances, at that time called Milesian what a contrast to some of our clumsy tales, there was no dearth. But luckily there is no need for so much • Zwey briefe u. d. neuesten veranderconjecture. The capsula's contents ungen in Reussland. Zurich 1797. see p. have been preserved, as well as itself. 80.

and tasteless inventions. The last

MEMOIRS OF piece is a human head of silver, be- EDWARD CAPE EVERARD.* longing to the awning of a litter, and four sitting figures of exquisite beauty, These are the memoirs of an unfore with screw-ends—for ornamenting the tunate veteran of the stage, who is extremities of the poles, by which As- now concluding a long life of unsucteria's palanquin was carried.

cessful labour by an old age of penury All this was within the chest. Close and wretchedness. The theatrical taby it there were found, at the same lents of Mr Everard, it appears, were time, two little pieces, whose form and never sufficient to maintain him in execution prove them to have belong- the first walks of his profession ; and ed to a more elegant age than that of he has ever been one of those obscure Asteria. The first is a bronze vessel, but useful performers, on whom dethe only thing of that metal in the volves most of the drudgery of the whole collection. It is an ewer, in the stage, but little of the applause. The form of a female head, having a double work (as the memoirs of actors generow of pearls round the forehead, and rally are) is extremely entertaining, the hair interwoven with bandlets. and contains much amusing anecdote Nothing is more common than vessels and green-room scandal. There is no of this kind in this beautiful form. profession so much separated from the The swelling above the head is bor- pursuits of the rest of the world as rowed from the Caryatides, and forms that of an actor. What is our pleacommonly the neck of the vessel. It sure is their business; and the public, is worthy of notice, that the eyes, and who are generally kept before the curother small ornaments of this vessel, tain, are always glad to get a peep beare of silver inlaid on the bronze,-a hind it. We love to mingle with fashion very common even in the case those whom we have hitherto seen of the marble statues of antiquity, al- only in an assumed character, and for though not exactly reconcileable with a time to behold them in their own. our ideas of simplicity.*

We can assure those, therefore, who But the most beautiful of all is un- wish to become acquainted with all the questionably a large silver patera, in petty arts, bickerings, and jealousies the midst of which there is an exquisite of the green-room, that they will have representation of Venus rising from their curiosity amply gratified by the the sea—the Venus Anadyomene. perusal of the present volume. “ Equoreo madidas quæ premit imbre co- It autobiography is excusable in any mas.”+

man, it is surely so in a case like the The very handle of this patera is a- present, where the unfortunate nardorned with a most graceful carving of rator only resorts to it as a last endeaAdonis, the lover of Venus, represent- vour to derive from his past misfored en heros, with his lance, but hav- tunes something which may enable ing, in token of his passion for the him to sink in peace and comfort to chace, a favourite dog at his feet. the grave. At the advanced age Mr

What might not our goldsmiths, Everard has now attained, this is all porcelain manufacturers, and decora- he can expect, and what we most sintion-artists, learn even from the small- cerely trust he will be enabled to obest, and apparently least important, tain. parts of antique workmanship? What It is not our intention to enter on a use might they not make of those na- review of the present work, which, tural forms, those heads, hands, paws, however, is sufficiently creditable both serpents, &c. so endlessly, and yet so to his principles and his talents. We gracefully, introduced by the artists of shall, however, give a summary view the Greeks?

of his unfortunate career, and extract

from it a few theatrical anecdotes, from The Colossal Pallas of Phidias had precious stones in the eyes. See Plin. xxxiii. • Memoirs of an Unfortunate Son of 3. 20.

Thespis ; being a Sketch of the Life of See also Visconti Busti di Museo Pio-cle. Edward Cape Everard, Comedian, Twentymentino, vol vi. p. 11. and the Monumens three Years of the Theatre-Royal, DruryAntiques du Musée Napoleon, lib. ix. p. Lane, London, and Pupil of the late David 16. The custom was of oriental or Egyp- Garrick, Esq. ; with Reflections, Remarks, nian origin.

and Anecdotes. Written by Himself. Royal + Orid, ex, Pont. iv. 1. 29.

18mo. pp. 274. Edinburgh. 1818.

which we think our readers will derive dote, and (if the would-be Romeos some entertainment.

have one spark of common sense left) The parents of Mr Everard were lead them to turn their abilities to respectable plebeians, who died in an some more profitable and respectable humble situation, “ leaving no blot on occupation. their fame.” On account, however, of The galaxy of talent which adorned some casual resemblance to Mr Gar- the stage in the days of Garrick, rick, it was rumoured by the scandal- Barry, Powell, Palmer, Mossop, Foote, mongers of the theatre, that he was Quin, Macklin, Clive, Pritchard, and indebted for his being to the unlawful Woffington, has since been wholly embraces of the great Roscius; an unrivalled. They not only raised opinion which, though utterly without their profession from the degraded foundation, Mr Everard was weak and condition to which it had been revain enough to encourage, thus ven- duced, but succeeded, in a certain turing to cast an imputation on the degree, in giving a tone and character character of his mother, which, even to the taste and manners of the times by his own shewing, it was impossible in which they lived. The theatre and she could deserve. On the death of its affairs then occupied a much his parents, he became an inmate of greater share of the public attention his uncle, Mr Cape, who kept a lodg- than they have since been able to ating-house in the Piazza, Covent-gar. tract. The witticisms of the greenden. This vicinity to the stage pro- room were quoted in polite society, duced its natural effect; and he soon and the names of Garrick, Quin, Foote, after came out at Covent-garden in the and Palmer, have not only been transa character of Cupid. He shewed con- mitted to us as those of great actors, siderable talents for dancing, and was but as the first wits of their day. It placed under the tuition of an emi- was among these great men that Mr nent master of that art, and had the Everard made his theatrical debût; honour of becoming a fellow-scholar and we have many new and curious of the celebrated Nancy Dawson. anecdotes, illustrative of their character From his extreme youth, he became a and temper, in the work before us. favourite with the public, and, it would We shall extract at random the folappear, gave promise of talents for the lowing account of Mr Barry and Mr stage which he never afterwards fully Garrick. We think he has discrimirealised. He attracted likewise much nated their different excellences with notice from Mr Garrick, who gave considerable judgment. him occasional instructions, and en- “ I remember the great Barry, in his decouraged him to persist in his thea- cline, could scarcely walk off the stage in trical career. For some years he con- his unequalled Othello ; and, after, he was tinued to perform on the London too old for playing Old King Lear. He stage with considerable success, but was, as Mr Fawcett observed, the " afflicted was at length left without an engage- infirmity.” And when the audience plainly

actor, under the real pressure of age and ment, and compelled to seek a preca- saw that he could scarcely stand, that he rious subsistence by becoming an could not kneel down without help, or rise itinerant performer in the provincial again without evident pain to himself and theatres. It were needless to pursue great support, they forgot King Lear," him farther. The narrative of his and remembered he was “ Barry." Romeo, succeeding life exhibits only a picture Othello, Marc Anthony, Varanes, and in of respectable mediocrity labouring to all that may be called love parts, none ever attain success, but for the most part sweet and harmonious, that he was called

equalled him, I believe; his voice was so encountering disappointment. Those, the silver-toned Barry, the tuneful swan.' however, who choose to read the work His figure, too, was tall and even handitself, will find it not unentertaining. some, and in Romco none could have stood We recommend it particularly to the against him but a Garrick. They played it perusal of all young stage-aspirants, in opposition at the different theatres twelve who will there become acquainted successive nights. In the balcony or lovewith all the difficulties that await scenes, with Juliet, in the 20 and 3d acts, them, and learn how

the critics gave Barry the preference; the “ Hard is his fate, whom evil stars have led act, and the last scene, they allowed it to

Ist act, the scene with the Friar in the 3d To seek in scenic art precarious bread.” Garrick ; but I think, they never agreed or

* To the present theatrical mania, we could determine, which, upon the whole, think, it will afford a complete anti- was greatest. Garrick then attacked him in

« AnteriorContinuar »