Imágenes de páginas

Latin and German, and singular sta- the great valley, and appeared here tues in relief, the work of the middle and there in the distant plain spreadages. It is one of the oldest churches ing its bosom into a lovely lake. Now, in the country, and what is of greater whenever I endeavour to particularize importance, there is a superb view of the works of human skilị

, these icy the Rhine from the top of its spire. peaks, the “ palaces of nature," rise

i 5th.-In this country the works of up before me, and have made so strong nature are formed on such a magnifi- an impression, that I find myself ina cent scale, that one feels the less in- capable of attending to any thing else. clined to bestow much attention on During supper, a German artist fathose of art. Indeed, though I have voured us with a critique on the Dance now only crossed the barriers of Swit- of Death, and other works of Holbein, zerland, I imagine that there is already some of which it seems are preserved something different, even in the “li- here. beral air,” from what I have elsewhere 16th.-On leaving Basle I need not experienced, and this makes me the say how sorry I was. I had there onmore anxious to enjoy it as much as ly passed two little days, but they possible among the open fields. As were pleasant and happy ones; and Cowper says

though I should live many a long “ God made the country, but man made the year, I don't think I shall ever forget town"

them. My regret, however, at leaving and I was never before so deeply im- it, gradually wore away as I proceeded pressed with the truth of the observa- on my journey to Lauffenburg; for tion. I certainly feel every inclination every step I took discovered some new to behave like a zealous tourist ; that beauty. The road winds along a numis, to describe the shape of the streets, ber of little vallies, caused by the the number of the houses, and the size wooded hills which form the banks of of the doors and windows-to sketch the Rhine; and as often as the traveller old crosses, or copy inscriptions from turns about, he beholds a beautiful fountains and market-places-and to extent of country behind him, covered ascertain the precise periods at which with hanging woods, and either swellthe different charitable institutions ing into lofty hills, or sinking into deep were founded. All this, however, I dells with the most delightful variety. am prevented from doing, by an acci. A number of lovely cottages scattered dent which befel me one calm Sabbath through the vales, and glimmering aevening. I happened to walk a few mid the trees, present continual obmiles from Basle, up a small and silent jects for admiration—and each one bevalley, by the side of a beautiful comes envied till a more beautiful one stream. Towards the head of it, I appears. So delighted was I with this ascended a vine-clad hill of considers walk, that though many leagues long, I able height, and enjoyed as usual a scarcely knew where I was till it was most delightful view. But one night over, and then I could not help wishI shall never cease to remember, ing that I had to perform it again. “ While memory holds her seat in this dis. There is certainly something in the tracted globe."

noise and motion of a carriage, which On turning towards the Swiss side, I prevents the mind from feeling excited beheld for the first time, with astonish- I feel mine to be when my body is una

by rural scenery in the way in which ment and joy, the snow-covered summits of the Alps at a vast distance, ing of nature, which every one must

confined. That calm and placid breathe towering beyond the line of perpetual have seen and felt who has walked acongelation. The sun had almost sunk, lone through a fine country, cannot be at least the vallies and lower ranges of enjoyed except on foot. The face of hills were obscured ; but these gigan- nature bears a different aspect, and the tic mountains still reflected the golden cracking of the coachman's whip is sufbeams from their snowy scalps, which ficient to dissolve the charm, and cause glittered in the distaat twilight like glorious diadems; and contrasted with "The silence that is in the starry sky, the increasing darkness of the still valThe sleep that is among the lonely hills" lies below, were grand as it was possi- to vanish. But on foot every thing ble for the imagination to picture. makes an impression-every winding The majestic Rhine, too, shone in of a river, and each beautiful tree,

“ And the shrill matin song nable castle, the scene of many an act Of birds from every bough,”

of feudal tyranny and oppression. This make the soul feel all the intoxication island is connected with the town, on of delight. These are intellectual plea- either side, by two bridges-the one sures of a high and noble order ; but of stone, and uncovered--the other of there are others of a less dignified, wood, and ornamented with a roof and though equally essential nature. I walls of the same material. The river mean the delight of finding one's-self runs here with frightful rapidity, the in a comfortable inn, after a long walk, wooden-bridge vibrates and trembles the fatigue of which, though by no for ever-and the first step a passenmeans painfully perceptible at the time, ger takes on it, he feels as it were a is generally quite sufficient to render slight electric shock. How the foundbodily repose most grateful—and theations of such an affair could have increased relish which is bestowed on been laid I do not at all conceive, in every thing which reminds one of the the present state of my architectural immortal Beauvilliers, and the peerless knowledge. It must have been a perilRobert.

ous undertaking; for man or beast Proceeding along the banks of the falling into the water, at this spot, Rhine, the first place I stopped at was would never be seen or heard of til the well known colony of the Ro- he or it reached Rotterdam. In the mans, called Augusta Rauracorum, or course of half an hour I proceeded on Augst, (pronounced by the natives my journey, and about eight in the Owst.) The ruins are extensive, evening I arrived at Lauffenburg, my though much dilapidated. There still resting place for the night. It was remains a fine marble pillar, which now too dark to see any thing out of formed part of the temple of Jupiter. doors, so I contented myself with a The scite of the temple is evident from very elegant supper, the description of other relics besides the pillar ; and which would occupy me a much longer there is a bath and aqueduct, neither time now than I then took to discuss of which, however, are at all intereste it; and having written some of the ing in their appearance, resembling preceding pages, I retired to rest, and more one of the sunk fences where the was soon lulled asleep by the ceaseless bears are kept in the garden of plants flow of the mighty river. in Paris, than any

thing else I at pre- 19th.--Of Lauffenburg, where I now sent remember. The situation of the am, what shall I say? That it is by colony is well chosen. It is built on far the most delightful little spot i a small eminence, in the centre of a ever saw. When I entered it, I green valley, surrounded with lofty thought, have I lived so long and never hills well wooded, and topped with heard of this Paradise ? During those loose crags and overhanging precipices, dreams of the soul, which our hopes with here and there a solitary pine, and wishes create, and our reason is contrasting its sombre top with the unable destroy-when we wish to reblue heavens. At present, however, tire from the loud and stirring world, instead of the solemn tone of the and among the loveliness of some farpriest, proclaiming the auspicious sacri- removed valley to pass the days that fice, you may hear the glad notes of the fate may have assigned us when the children of the valley, or the untutored mind endeavours to combine, in one voice of the mountain bard chanting scene, every beauteous image that me to the surrounding shepherds the fa- mory can supply, or imagination picmous song of the wild Tyrolese. ture, it would be impossible to con

Towards noon, I stopped at Rhin- oceive the existence of a more lovely felden, a singular village, where I took landscape. So sweet is this spot, that some refreshment, the day being ex- the very winds of heaven seem slowly ceedingly hot. This place is situated and fondly to float over it, and the on both sides of the Rhine ;-the bed little summer birds sing more cheerily of the river is very rocky, and assumes amid its holy solitude. Since I have quite the aspect of a mountain-stream seen it, I have not been conscious of in every thing but in size and colour. feeling any emotion allied to evil. In Half-way across, and in the centre of deed, what could make the heart evilthe town, there rises a rocky island, disposed among such general peace and and on this stand the remains of á happiness ? No mind can withstand once powerful, and no doubt impreg- the influence of fair and lovely scenery,

and the calmness of a fine summer I am informed that towards Schaffevening, when there is nothing to pre- hausen they are so ; but from Brissac vent it sinking into the farthest re- to Basle, and somewhat farther up, cesses of the heart. For myself at they are of a clay colour, with a shade least I can say, that I never walked of green. Here, however, they begin with my face towards a fine setting to brighten ; the clay colour is less via sun, without feeling it to be, as our sible, and the green is like that of a own most majestic poet has expressed shallow sea. Such, however, is the it, “ a heavenly destiny.". Nothing opposition the waters meet with in tends so powerfully to extinguish all this rapid, that the whole is one sheet bad passions as the contemplation of of foam of the most snowy whiteness. the still majesty of Nature. Perhaps When first I beheld this glorious pass, time so spent might ere long fill up the rays of the sun had just fallen on the void even of a desolate heart, and the river, while the steep bank on the cause it to wonder why it should ever eastern side was dark and obscure. have been wretched. Peace has visited The river shone like liquid silver, and the cell where the hermit retired to the 'waving tops of the birches and die in sorrow.

weeping willows constantly bending But what relation do such specula- their long drooping branches into the tions bear to Lauffenburg ? I rose stream, “ stooping as if to drink,” with the lark, and descended to the gave a character of life and beauty to river side, having heard a good deal of the scene, which passeth speech. Aa fall of the Rhine here. I was not bove that part of the river which has disappointed with the scene, but there the appearance of a little lake, the is no fall. The river for some hun- mountains are lofty, and ranged like dred yards passes along a rocky bed, an immense amphitheatre, adorned and is confined within one half of its with vineyards and cottages, and ternatural channel ; there is also a great minated by precipitous crags and old declivity for nearly a quarter of a mile, romantic pine-trees. so that it has here exactly the appear- 18th.—I found the last-mentioned ance of an American rapid. The village so delightful, that I was almost rushing of the water is prodigious, rivetted to the spot, and wished that and the surrounding scenery is quite I had so arranged my plans as to alin unison with the voice of the de- low me to pass a couple of months stroyer. Every thing seems rent, up- there. This, however, could not well rooted, and overthrown, and placed be; so I left it this forenoon, and proexactly in a situation the most differ- ceeded onwards by the left side of the ent from that which nature must have Rhine. The greater part of my jouroriginally intended it should occupy. ney this day lay in Germany. The If you glance your eye over a sheet of road proceeds for many miles close to water, or a chain of rocks, you have the river, and a little elevated above not proceeded a few yards before you it. The banks on either side are green find the water and the rocks in oppo- and sloping—the river is smooth and sition to each other, and turning, rapid, and seems in some parts almost “ with aspect malign," in a direction to overflow its banks. . It would be quite contrary to that which you at difficult to fancy any thing more beau: first expected them to take. The tiful than many parts of my walk at banks are steep, and shaggy, and ro- this time. Passing through Albrugg mantic in the extreme ; indeed, upon and Waldshut, towards evening I arthe whole, this little town of Lauffen- rived at Little Coblentz, below which burg possesses the most picturesque is the junction of the Rhine, with its situation I have ever beheid. It has great branch the Aâr, which river has the merit, also, of originality-at least a long and continuous course through I never saw any other to which it Switzerland, and is fed by streams bore the slightest resemblance. Im- from Neufchatel, the country to the mediately above the rapid, and at the north-east of the lake of Geneva, and head of the town, the river is very from the cantons of Berne and Zurich. broad and spacious, like a little lake It is nearly as large as the other it appears, in fact, as if collecting its branch; but, running at an angle with utmost strength to effect the passage the united waters, it loses its own through the rocks. The waters of the name, and assumes that of the Rhine. Rhine hitherto have not been clear. My favourite river, therefore, though Vol. IV.

4 R

still magnificent, is now much dimi« man peasant. We descended upon nished, but it is beautifully clear, of the town from an elevated ridge of & fine bluish green colour, and the land, from which I had a noble view surrounding country is as delightful of the old Rhine and the surtounding as ever.

country: About a quarter of a mile After passing the village of Co- from Schaffhausen, I passed close by blentz, we lose sight of the Rhine, a small mount surrounded by a stone though, in the stillness of a fine au- wall, which altogether reminded me tumnal evening, its sonorous flow was of the druidical temple I had erected distinctly audible for some time af- near Basle. My attention was more ter it became invisible to the eye. particularly attracted to it by a group About nightfall I found myself in of children on the top, who seemed the town of Thungen; but not lik- intently examining something on its ing its appearance, I determined to surface. I accordingly ascended, and proceed another league to Luchingen, found, to my surprise, the verdant -having previously ascertained that sod covered with blood. On inquiry, there were no walls, or other hostile I found that this place was what the barriers, around the last-mentioned natives call the Rappen-stein, which city. There I arrived, accordingly, is the place of public execution. The in good time, and regaled myself with blood I saw was possibly still warm, an excellent bottle of hock. I was as an unhappy malefactor had been treated with great civility, though it executed that afternoon. Their heads is rather an ill-regulated place, and are chopped off with a two-banded not to compare with Lauffenburg- sword, and this, by a dextrous execubut indeed what other spot deserves tioner, is accomplished by a single to be so ?

blow. 19th.-On Wednesday I departed, During this day, I had not much before the mists of the morning had enjoyment. The scenery, no doubt, risen from the valley, and pursued my was fine, but the weather was oppresroute to Schaffhausen. An old ruined sively hot, the sky being without a castle was seen on the brow of a steep cloud, and the greater part of my walk hill, with white clouds breaking a. without a tree and the refreshing flow round it a very picturesque style. of the river, which had so long deI crossed one or two small streams, lighted both eye and ear, with its with antique mossy bridges, but the mighty melody, was far distant. majestic river was inaudible. During 19th. Schaffhausen isa considerable my walk this day, I recollected that I town, but dirty and ill paved. With was within a few days' journey of the in a mile or two of this place, is the source of the Danube; and being sud- famous fall of the Rhine, by many denly inspired with the desire of be- thought the finest cataract in Europe. holding the parent of that famous It is certainly a glorious sight. The river, I struck off to the leftward, and river, owing to a rapid immediately entered the Black Forest, with the in- above the fall, rushes with prodigious tention of crossing the Suabian moun- velocity--the body of water is very tains next day. After walking, how- great, the breadth being nearly 200 ever, for several hours, without meet- feet, and it falls from the height of ing a single being, and seeing no- 80 feet. There are two or three high thing but bare hills before me, I be castellated rocks in the centre, finely gan to think it might be as well to wooded. These divide the fall, but sleep beneath a human roof, particu- the spray rising from below, conceals larly as I felt both fatigued and fe- their bases entirely, and produces an verish ; so turning to the right, I a- appearance towards the lower part, of gain directed my steps towards the one continued mass of water. But the Řhine, the course of which could easi- scenery is really so superb, and the ly be traced by the fine woods and weather so delightful, that all descripcultivated fields on either side-and tion is set at defiance; and I sit down thus ingloriously terminated my ex- more from a praiseworthy habit which cursion to the Danube. I arrived at I have got into of writing for a few Schaffhausen in the evening, having minutes every evening, than from any taken a near cut through a small forest hope, or even intention, of recording in the neighbourhood, at the instiga- either my own feelings, or the general cion of, and in company with, a Ger- features of this heavenly country. Many times since I entered Switzer- one room of which is fitted up with an land, I have found, that those things excellent camera obscura. This gives which delight us most, are those con- a beautiful picture of the foaming cacerning which not a single intelligible taract, with its gray rocks and 'rich sentence could be written, even by underwood, as well as of the vineyards those who command the copious and ap- which encompass it, and their white propriate imagery suggested by poetic cottages. The continual descent of the genius, far less by one who is so little enormous river, the waving of the ad. versed “in the set phrase of peace." joining woods, and the dark shadows Besides, in the present case, my mind of the clouds floating over the vineis so pervaded by a noble passage of clad hills, produce the most complete " the grand infernal peer," that any deception I ever witnessed. Indeed, I attempt at original description would could scarcely believe that it was only be alike vain and presumptuous. The a reflection of nature, and not nature's quotation is longer than those with self, and when the light was admitted, which I usually

indulge myself, but the whole appeared to vanish rather by after writing the first line, it would the hand of enchantment than from be almost as impossible to refrain from natural causes. I would certainly adthe remainder, as it would be to arrest vise any one visiting this neighbourthe progress of the vast torrent which hood, to make a point of seeing the it so well describes.

camera, for I really think I derived as

much pleasure from it as from the “ The roar of waters ! from the headlong scene itself. The roaring voice of the

height, Velino cleaves the wave worn precipice ;

river renders the delusion perfect. The fall of waters ! rapid as the light,

I saw this fall from many different The flashing mass foams, shaking the abyss; points of view, each successively apThe hellof waters! where they howl and hiss, pearing finer than the other; and And boil in endless torture ; while the sweat though I arrived at the foot of it about Of their great agony, rung out from this eleven in the forenoon, it was halfTheir phlethegon, curls round the rocks of past eight in the evening before I rejet

turned to the Auberge. One view from That gird the gulph profound, in pitiless

a pine wood opposite, is particularly horror set,

fine, and it was at this time adorned And mounts in spray the skies, and thence by a bright and magnificent rainbow. again

About eight o'clock, when every thing Returns in an unceasing shower, which round, was obscure except the foaming cataWith its unemptied cloud of gentle rain, ract, I was still seated by the river Is an eternal April to the ground,

side, enjoying its tremendous melody. Making it all one emerald ; how profound The gulf! and how the giant element

Suddenly a stream of fire shot up from From rock to rock leaps with delirious bound, the rock close by, and threw a flood of Crushing the cliffs which downward worn

stars among the silvery waters. For and rent

a few seconds I was a good deal astonWith his fierce footsteps, yield in chasms a

ished at this apparent phenomenon, fearful vent,

and the unceasing voice of the river To the broad column which rolls on, and deadening all other sounds, it was

some little time before I discovered shews More like the fountain of an infant sea,

that a smith's forge was built near the Torn from the womb of mountains by the foot of the fall. It produced a singuthroes

larly beautiful effect, as this stream of Of a new world, than only thus to be light “ sprung upward like a pyramid Parent of rivers which flow gushingly of fire," or gently bending across the With many windings, thro' the vale : Look water, rose and fell like a magnificent back!

plume of gold ; and sometimes, when Lo! where it comes like an eternity, it was about to expire, the bright As if to sweep down all things in its track, Charming the eye with dread, a matchless Mickering fames gave a meteoric apcataract."

pearance to the columns of spray simi

lar to that so frequently observed in a Immediately below this fall, the ship's wake at sea. Salmon, and other circling waters of the river form a migratory fish, advance no higher up broad expanse, in which there is a the Rhine than the large pool below little island. On this there is a house, the fall.

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