« AnteriorContinuar »
Their history, after a desperate struggle, has been satisfactorily explored. The decisions and doubts of Enzzo and Zanetti, and lastly, of the Count Leopold Cicognara, would have given them a Roman extraction, and a pedigree not more ancient than the reign of Nero. But M. de Schlegel stepped in to teach the Venetians the value of their own treasures, and a Greek vindicated, at last and for ever, the pretension of his countrymen to this noble production. Mr. Mustoxidi has not been left without a reply; but, as yet, he has received no answer. It should seem that the horses are irrevocably Chian, and were transferred to Constantinople by Theodosius. Lapidary writing is a favourite play of the Italians, and has conferred reputation on more than one of their literary characters. One of the best specimens of Bodoni's typography is a respectable volume of inscriptions, all written by his friend Pacciaudi. Several were prepared for the recovered horses. It is to be hoped that the best was not selected, when the following words were ranged in gold letters above the cathedral porch:
QUATUOR. EQUORUM. SIGNA. A. VENETIS. BYZANTIO CAPTA. AD. TEMP. D. MAR. A. R. s. MCCIV. POSITA. QUÆ HOSTILIS. CUPIDITAS. A.
MDCCCIII. ABSTULERAT. FRANC. I. IMP. PACIS.
Sebastian Ziani, the Doge. Several embassies passed between Chioza and the capital, until, at last, the emperor relaxing somewhat of his pretensions, "laid aside his leonine ferocity, and put on the mildness of the lamb."' On Saturday the 23d of July, in the year 1177, six Venetian galleys transferred Frederic, in great pomp, from Chioza to the island of Lido, a mile from Venice. Early the next morning, the Pope, accompanied by the Sicilian ambassadors, and by the envoys of Lombardy, whom he had recalled from the main land, together with a great concourse of people, repaired from the patriarchal palace to Saint Mark's church, and solemnly absolved the emperor and his partisans from the excommunication pronounced against him. The chancellor of the empire, on the part of his master, renounced the anti-popes and their schismatic adherents. Immediately the doge, with a great suite both of the clergy and laity, got on board the galleys, and waiting on Frederic, rowed him in mighty state from the Lido to the capital. The emperor descended from the galley quay of the Piazetta. The doge, the patriarch, his bishops and clergy, and the people of Venice, with their crosses and their standards, marched in solemn procession before him to the church of Saint Mark. Alexander was seated before the vestibule of the ba
ORBI. DATE.TROPHÆUM. A. MDCCCXV. VICTOR. silica, attended by his bishops and cardinals, by the
Nothing shall be said of the Latin, but it may be permitted to observe, that the injustice of the Venetians in transporting the horses from Constantinople was at least equal to that of the French in carrying them to Paris, and that it would have been more prudent to have avoided all allusions to either robbery. An apostolic prince should, perhaps, have objected to affixing, over the principal entrance of a metropolitan church, an inscription having a reference to any other triumphs than those of religion. Nothing less than the pacification
of the world can excuse such a solecism.
Note 6. Stanza xii.
patriarch of Aquileja, by the archbishops and bishops of Lombardy, all of them in state, and clothed in their church robes. Frederic approached-"moved by the Holy Spirit, venerating the Almighty in the person of Alexander, laying aside his imperial dignity, and throwing off his mantle, he prostrated himself at full length at the feet of the Pope. Alexander, with tears in his eyes, raised him benignantly from the ground, kissed him, blessed him; and immediately the Germans of the train sang, with a loud voice, 'We praise thee, O Lord. The emperor then taking the Pope by the right hand, led him to the church, and, having received his benediction, returned to the ducal palace." "2 The ceremony of humiliation was repeated the next day. The Pope himself, at the request of Frederic, said mass at Saint Mark's. The emperor again laid aside his imperial mantle, and, taking a wand in his hand, officiated as verger, driving the laity from the choir, and preceding the pontiff to the altar. Alexander, after reciting the gospel, preached to the people. The emperor put himself close to the pulpit in the attitude of listening; and
The Suabian sued, and now the Austrian reignsAn emperor tramples where an emperor knelt. After many vain efforts on the part of the Italians, entirely to throw off the yoke of Frederic Barbarossa, and as fruitless attempts of the emperor to make himself absolute master throughout the whole of his Cisalpine dominions, the bloody struggles of four-and-twenty years were happily brought to a close in the city of Venxce. The articles of a treaty had been previously the pontiff, touched by this mark of his attention, for agreed upon between Pope Alexander III. and Barba- he knew that Frederic did not understand a word he rossa, and the former, having received a safe-conduct, said, commanded the patriarch of Aquileja to translate had already arrived at Venice from Ferrara, in com- the Latin discourse into the German tongue. The creed pany with the ambassadors of the king of Sicily and the was then chaunted. Frederic made his oblation, and consuls of the Lombard league. There still remained, kissed the Pope's feet, and, mass being over, led him by however, many points to adjust, and for several days the hand to his white horse. He held the stirrup, and the peace was believed to be impracticable. At this would have held the horse's rein to the water side, had juncture it was suddenly reported that the emperor not the Pope accepted of the inclination for the perhad arrived at Chioza, a town fifteen miles from the formance, and affectionately dismissed him with his capital. The Venetians rose tumultuously, and insisted benediction. Such is the substance of the account left apon immediately conducting him to the city. The by the archbishop of Salerno, who was present at the Lombards took the alarm, and departed towards Tre- ceremony, and whose story is confirmed by every subviso. The Pope himself was apprehensive of some disaster if Frederic should suddenly advance upon him, but was re-assured by the prudence and address of
1 Sui quattro cavalli del'a Basilica di S. Marco in Venezia, Lentera di Andrea Mustoxici Corcirese. Padova per Bettoni e compagni, 1816.
sequent narration. It would not be worth so minute a record, were it not the triumph of liberty as well as
1 Quibus anditis, imperator, operante eo, qui corda principum sicut vult et quando vult humiliter inclinat, leonina feritate deposita, ovinam mansuetudinem induit." Romunid Salernitani. Chronicon. apud Script. Rer. Ital. tom. VII. p. 229. 2 lbid. p. 231.
of superstition. The states of Lombardy owed to it the confirmation of their privileges; and Alexander had reason to thank the Almighty, who had enabled an infirm, unarmed old man to subdue a terrible and potent sovereign.'
Note 7. Stanza xii.
Oh, for one hour of blind old Dandolo !
Th' octogenarian chief, Byzantium's conquering foe.
The reader will recollect the exclamation of the highlander, Oh, for one hour of Dundee! Henry Dandolo, when elected doge, in 1192, was eighty-five years of age. When he commanded the Venetians at the taking of Constantinople, he was consequently ninety-seven years old. At this age he annexed the fourth and a half of the whole empire of Romania, 2 for so the Roman empire was then called, to the title and to the territories of the Venetian Doge. The three-eighths of this empire were preserved in the diplomas until the dukedom of Giovanni Dolfino, who made use of the above designation in the year 1357.3
Signor of Padua, the Venetians were reduced to the t most despair. An embassy was sent to the conquerors with a blank sheet of paper, praying them to prescribe what terms they pleased, and leave to Venice only her independence. The Prince of Padua was inclined to listen to these proposals, but the Genoese, who, after the victory at Pola, had shouted, "to Venice, to Venice, and long live St. George," determined to annihilate their rival, and Peter Doria, their commander-in-chief, returned this answer to the suppliants: "On God's faith, gentlemen of Venice, ye shall have no peace from the Signor of Padua, nor from our commune of Genoa, until we have first put a rein upon those unbridled horses of yours, that are upon the porch of your evangelist St. Mark. When we have bridled them, we shall keep you quiet. And this is the pleasure of us and of our commune. As for these my brothers of Genoa, that you have brought with you to give up to us, I will not have them: take them back; for, in a few days hence, I shall come and let them out of prison myself, both these Dandolo led the attack on Constantinople in person: and all the others." In fact, the Genoese did advance two ships, the Paradise and the Pilgrim, were tied to as far as Malamocco, within five miles of the capital; gether, and a drawbridge or ladder let down from their but their own danger, and the pride of their enemies, higher yards to the walls. The doge was one of the first gave courage to the Venetians, who made prodigious to rush into the city. Then was completed, said the efforts, and many individual sacrifices, all of them careVenetians, the prophecy of the Erythræan sybil. "A fully recorded by their historians. Vettor Pisani was gathering together of the powerful shall be made amidst put at the head of thirty-four galleys. The Genoese the waves of the Adriatic, under a blind leader: they broke up from Malamocco, and retired to Chioza in shall beset the goat--they shall profane Byzantium-October; but they again threatened Venice, which was they shall blacken her buildings-her spoils shall be dis- reduced to extremities. At this time, the 1st of Janupersed; a new goat shall bleat until they have measured ary, 1380, arrived Carlo Zeno, who had been cruising out and run over fifty-four feet, nine inches, and a half."4 on the Genoese coast with fourteen galleys. The Dandolo died on the first day of June, 1205, having Venetians were now strong enough to besiege the Gereigned thirteen years, six months, and five days, and noese. Doria was killed on the 22d of January by a was buried in the church of St. Sophia, at Constanti-stone bullet a hundred and ninety-five pounds weight, nople. Strangely enough it must sound, that the name discharged from a bombard called the Trevisan. Chioza of the rebel apothecary who received the doge's sword, was then closely invested; five thousand auxiliaries, and annihilated the ancient government in 1796-7, was amongst whom were some English Condottieri, comDandolo.
Note 8. Stanza xiii.
But is not Doria's menace come to pass?
After the loss of the battle of Pola, and the taking of Chioza on the 16th of August, 1379, by the united armament of the Genoese and Francesco da Carrara,
1 See the above-cited Romuald of Salerno. In a second sermon which Alexander preached, on the first day of August, before the emperor, he compared Frederic to the prodigal
son, and himself to the forgiving father.
2 Mr. Gibbon has omitted the important a, and has written Romani instead of Romaniz:-Decline and Fall, chap. xi. note 9. But the title acquired by Dandolo runs thus in the
chronicle of his namesake, the Doge Andrew Dandolo :--Ducali titulo addidit, "Quartæ partis et dimidiæ totius imperii Romanie." And. Dand. Chronicon. cap. iii. pars xxxvii. ap. Script. Rer. Ital. tom. xii. page 331. And the Romaniæ is observed in the subsequent acts of the doges. Indeed the continental possessions of the Greek empire in Europe, were then generally known by the name of Romania, and that appellation is still seen in the maps of Turkey as applied to Thrace.
3 See the continuation of Dandolo's Chronicle, ibid. p. 498. Mr. Gibbon appears not to include Dolfino, following Sanndo, who says, "il qual titolo si uso fin al Doge Giovanni Dolfino." See Vite de' Duchi de Venezia, ap. Script. Rer. Ital. tom. xxii. 530. 641.
4 "Fiet potentium in aquis Adriaticis congregatio, cæco præduce, Hircum ambigent, Byzantium prophanabunt, dificia denigrabunt; spolia dispergentur, Hircus novus balabit usque dum LIV. pedes et IX. pollices et semis, præmensurati discurrant." Chronicon. ibid. pars xxxiv.
manded by one Captain Ceccho, joined the Venetians.
Note 9. Stanza xiv.
1 "Alla fé di Dio, Signori Veneziani, non haverete mai pace dal Signore di Padoua, né dal nostro comune di Genova, s primieramente non mettemo le briglie a quelli vostri cavalli sfrenati, che sono su la Reza del Vostro Evangelista S. Marco. Infrenati che gli havremo, vi faremo stare in buona pace. E questa è la intenzione nostra, e del nostro comune. Questi miei fratelli Genovesi, che bavete menati con voi per donarci non li voglio; rimanetegli in dietro perche io intendo da qui a pochi giorni venirgli a riscuoter dalle vostre prigioni, e lorǝ e gli altri."
2 "Chronica della guerra di Chioza," etc. Script. Rer. Ital tom. xv. p. 699 to 804.
standard of the republic, which is the origin of the word
Thin streets, and foreign aspects, such as must
of their subjection. They retired from the
and the ally of the conqueror. It may, however, be allowed to say thus much, that, to those who wish to recover their independence, any masters must be an object of detestation; and it may be safely foretold that this unprofitable aversion will not have been corrected before Venice shall have sunk into the slime of her choked canals.
The population of Venice at the end of the seventeenth degraded capital might be said rather to haunt the century amounted to nearly two hundred thousand scenes of their departed power, than to live in them. souls. At the last census, taken two years ago, it was The reflection, "who and what enthrals," will hardly no more than about one hundred and three thousand, bear a comment from one who is, nationally, the friend and it diminishes daily. The commerce and the official employments, which were to be the unexhausted source of Venetian grandeur, have both expired. Most of the patrician mansions are deserted, and would gradually disappear, had not the government, alarmed by the demolition of seventy-two, during the last two years, expressly forbidden this sad resource of poverty. Many remnants of the Venetian nobility are now scattered and confounded with the wealthier Jews upon the banks of the Brenta, whose palladian palaces have sunk, or are sinking, in the general decay. Of the "gentil uomo Veneto," the name is still known, and that is all. He is but the shadow of his former self, but he is polite and kind. It surely may be pardoned to him if he is querulous. Whatever may have been the vices of the re-seer, or Armenian; the Merchant of Venice; Othello.
Note 11. Stanza xvi.
Redemption rose up in the Attic Musc.
And Otway, Radcliffe, Schiller, Shakspeare's art.
Note 13. Stanza xx.
But from their nature will the tannen grow
public, and although the natural term of its existence may be thought by foreigners to have arrived in the due course of mortality, only one sentiment can be expected from the Venetians themselves. At no time were the subjects of the republic so unanimous in their resolution liar to the Alps, which only thrives in very rocky parts,
to rally round the standard of St. Mark, as when it was for the last time unfurled; and the cowardice and the treachery of the few patricians who recommended the fatal neutrality, were confined to the persons of the traitors themselves.
Tannen is the plural of tanne, a species of fir pecu
where scarcely soil sufficient for its nourishment can be found. On these spots it grows to a greater height than any other mountain tree.
Note 14. Stanza xxviii.
A single star is at her side, and reigns
Itakan sky; yet it is but a literal and hardly sufficient
Note 15. Stanza xxx.
The present race cannot be thought to regret the loss of their aristocratical forms, and too despotic gov-gerated to those who have never seen an oriental or an The above description may seem fantastical or exagernment; they think only on their vanished independence. They pine away at the remembrance, and on this subject suspend for a moment their gay good-huVenice may be said, in the words of the scripture, "to die daily;" and so general and so apparent is the decline, as to become painful to a stranger, not Watering the tree which bears his lady's name reconciled to the sight of a whole nation expiring, as it With his melodious tears, he gave himself to fame. were, before his eyes. So artificial a creation, having Thanks to the critical acumen of a Scotchman, we lost that principle which called it into life and sup-now know as little of Laura as ever. The discoveries ported its existence, must fall to pieces at once, and of the Abbé de Sade, his triumphs, his sneers, can no sink more rapidly than it rose. The abhorrence of longer instruct or amuse.* We must not, however, slavery, which drove the Venetians to the sea, has, think that these memoirs are as much a romance as since their disaster, forced them to the land, where Belisarius or the Incas, although we are told so by Dr. they may be at least overlooked amongst the crowd Beattie, a great name, but a little authority. His "laof dependants, and not present the humiliating specta-bour" has not been in vain, notwithstanding his "love" cle of a whole nation loaded with recent chains. Their has, like most other passions, made him ridiculous.^ liveliness, their affability, and that happy indifference The hypothesis which overpowered the struggling Itawhich constitution alone can give, for philosophy aspires to it in vain, have not sunk under circumstances; but many peculiarities of costume and manner have by d: been lost, and the nobles, with a pride com-year 1784; the other is inserted in the fourth volume of the grees mon to all Italians who have been masters, have not | Transactions of the Royal Society of Edinburgh; and both been persunded to parade their insignificance. That have been incorporated into a work, published under the first splendour which was a proof and a portion of their title, by Ballantyne in 1810. power, they would not degrade into the trappings
1" Nonnullorum e nobilitate immense sunt opes, adeo ut VIX æstimari possint: id quod tribus e rebus oritur, parsimonia, commercio, atque is emolumentis, que o Repub. percipiunt, qn hanc ob causam diuturna fore creditur."-See De Princupauibus Italia Tractatus, edit. 1631.
I See A historical and critical Essay on the Life and Char
acter of Petrarch; and a Dissertation on a Historical Hypothesis of the Abbé de Sade: the first appeared about the
2 Memoirs pour la Vie de Pétrarque.
3 Life of Beattie, by Sir. W. Forbes, t. ii. p. 106.
4 Mr. Gibbon called his Memoirs" a labour of lore," (seo Decline and Fail, cap. Ixx, note 1.) and followed him with confidence and delight. The compiler of a very voluminous work must take much criticism upon trust: Mr. Gibbon has done so, though not so readily as some other author.
lians, and carried along less interested critics in its current, is run out. We have another proof that we can never be sure that the paradox, the most singular, and therefore having the most agreeable and authentic air, will not give place to the re-established ancient prejudice.
It seems then, first, that Laura was born, lived, died, and was buried, not in Avignon, but in the country. The fountains of the Sorga, the thickets of Cabrières, may resume their pretensions, and the exploded de la Bastie again be heard with complacency. The hypothesis of the Abbé had no stronger props than the parchment sonnet and medal found on the skeleton of the wife of Hugo de Sade, and the manuscript note to the Virgil of Petrarch, now in the Ambrosian library. If these proofs were both incontestable, the poetry was written, the medal composed, cast, and deposited, within the space of twelve hours; and these deliberate duties were performed round the carcass of one who died of the plague, and was hurried to the grave on the day of her death. These documents, therefore, are too decisive: they prove, not the fact, but the forgery. Either the sonnet or the Virgilian note must be a falsification. The Abbé cites both as incontestably true; the consequent deduction is inevitable-they are both evidently false.'
that it was guilty and perverse, that absorbed him quite, and mastered his heart.'
In this case, however, he was perhaps alarmed for the culpability of his wishes; for the Abbé de Sade himself, who certainly would not have been scrupulously delicate, if he could have proved his descent from Petrarch as well as Laura, is forced into a stout defence of his virtuous grandmother. As far as relates to the poet, we have no security for the innocence, except perhaps in the constancy of his pursuit. He assures us, in his epistle to posterity, that, when arrived at his fortieth year, he not only had in horror, but had lost all recollection and image of any "irregularity." the birth of his natural daughter cannot be assigned earlier than his thirty-ninth year; and either the memory or the morality of the poet must have failed him, when he forgot or was guilty of this slip.' The weakest argument for the purity of this love has been drawn from the permanence of effects, which survived the object of his passion. The reflection of M. de la Bastie, that virtue alone is capable of making impressions which death cannot efface, is one of those which every body applauds, and every body finds not to be true, the moment he examines his own breast or the records of human feeling. Such apophthegms can do nothing for Petrarch or for the cause of morality, except with the Secondly, Laura was never married, and was a haughty very weak and the very young. He that has made even virgin rather than that tender and prudent wife who a little progress beyond ignorance and pupilage, cannot honoured Avignon by making that town the theatre of be edified with any thing but truth. What is called an honest French passion, and played off for one-and-vindicating the honour of an individual or a nation, is twenty years her little machinery of alternate favours the most futile, tedious, and uninstructive of all writing; and refusals upon the first poet of the age. It was, indeed, rather too unfair that a female should be made responsible for eleven children upon the faith of a misinterpreted abbreviation, and the decision of a librarian. It is, however, satisfactory to think that the love of Petrarch was not platonic. The happiness which he prayed to possess but once and for a moment was surely not of the mind, and something so very real as a marriage project, with one who has been idly called a shadowy nymph, may be, perhaps, detected in at least six places of his own sonnets. The love of Petrarch was neither platonic nor poetical; and, if in one passage of his works he calls it "amore veementeissimo ma unico ed onesto," he confesses, in a letter to a friend,
1 The sonnet had before awakened the suspicions of Mr. Horace Walpole. See his letter to Wharton in 1763.
although it will always meet with more applause than that sober criticism, which is attributed to the malicious desire of reducing a great man to the common standard of humanity. It is, after all, not unlikely, that our historian was right in retaining his favourite hypothetic salvo, which secures the author, although it scarcely saves the honour of the still unknown mistress of Petrarch. Note 16. Stanza xxxi.
They keep his dust in Arquà, where he died. from the unsuccessful attempt to visit Urban V. at Rome, Petrarch retired to Arquà immediately on his return in the year 1370, and, with the exception of his celebrated visit to Venice in company with Francesco Novello de Carrara, he appears to have passed the four last years of his life between that charming solitude and Padua. For four months previous to his death he was 2 "Par ce petit manége, cette alternative de faveurs et de rigueurs bien ménagee, une femme tendre et sage amuse, in a state of continual languor, and in the morning of pendant vingt-un ans, le plus grand poete de son siecle, sans July the 19th, in the year 1374, was found dead in his faire la moindre breche à son honneur." Mém, pour la Vie de Petrarque, Préface aux Français. The Italian editor library chair with his head resting upon a book. The of the London edition of Petrarch, who has translated Lord chair is still shown amongst the precious relics of Arquà, Woodhouselee, renders the "femme tendre et sage,' " "raffinata civetta." Riflessioni intorno a Madonna Laura, p. 234. which, from the uninterrupted veneration that has been vol. iii. ed. 1811. attached to every thing relative to this great man, from
3 In a dialogue with St. Augustin, Petrarch has described
Laura as having a body exhausted with repeated pluhs. The old editors read and printed perturbationibus; but M. Capperonier, librarian to the French King, in 1762, who saw the MS. in the Paris library, made an attestation that "on lit et qu'on doit lire, partubus exhaustum." De Sade joined the names of Messrs. Boudot and Bejot with M. Capperomer, and in the whole discussion on this tabs, showed himseif a downright literary rogue. See Riflessioni, etc., p. 267. Thomas Aquinas is called in to settle whether Petrarch's mistress was a chaste maid or a continent wife.
4" Pigmalion, quanto lodart dei
5 See Riflessioni, etc., p. 291.
1 "Quella rea e perversa passione che solo tutto mi oceupava e mi regnava nel cuore."
2 Azion disonesta, are his words.
3 "A questa confessione cosi sincera diede forse occasione una nuova caduta ch' ei fece." Tiraboschi, Storia, etc., tom. v. lib. iv. par. ii. pag. 492.
4" Il n'y a que la vertu seule qui soit capable de faire des impressions que la mort n'efface pas." M. de Bimard, Baron de la Bastie, in the Mémoires de l'Academic des Inscriptiong et Belles Lettres for 1740 and 1751. See also Riflessioni, etc.. p. 295. 5 And if the virtue or prudence of Laura was inexorable he njoyed, and might boast of enjoying the nymph of poet Decline and Fall, cap. Ixx. p. 327. vol. xii. oct. Per haps the if is here meant for although.
capacity, extensive erudition, and refined taste, joined to that engaging simplicity of manners which has been so frequently recognised as the surest, though it is cer
the moment of his death to the present hour, have, it may be hoped, a better chance of authenticity than the Shakspearian memorials of Stratford-upon-Avon. Arqua (for the last syllable is accented in pronun-tainly not an indispensable, trait of superior genius. ciation, although the analogy of the English language Every footstep of Laura's lover has been anxiously has been observed in the verse), is twelve miles from traced and recorded. The house in which he lodged is Padua, and about three miles on the right of the high shown in Venice. The inhabitants of Arezzo, in order road to Rovigo, in the bosom of the Euganean hills. to decide the ancient controversy between their city and After a walk of twenty minutes, across a flat well-wooded the neighbouring Ancisa, where Petrarch was carried meadow, you come to a little blue lake, clear but fathom-when seven months old, and remained until his seventh less, and to the foot of a succession of acclivities and year, have designated, by a long inscription, the spot hills, clothed with vineyards and orchards, rich with fir where their great fellow-citizen was born. A tablet has and pomegranate trees, and every sunny fruit-shrub. been raised to him at Parma, in the chapel of St. Agatha, From the banks of the lake, the road winds into the hills, at the cathedral,' because he was archdeacon of that and the church of Arquà is soon seen between a cleft society, and was only snatched from his intended sepulwhere two ridges slope towards each other, and nearly ture in their church by a foreign death. Another tablet inclose the village. The houses are scattered at intervals with a bust has been erected to him at Pavia, on acon the steep sides of these summits; and that of the count of his having passed the autumn of 1368 in that poet is on the edge of a little knoll overlooking two de-city, with his son-in-law Brossano. The political concents, and commanding a view not only of the glowing dition which has for ages precluded the Italians from gardens in the dales immediately beneath, but of the the criticism of the living, has concentrated their wide plains, above whose low woods of mulberry and attention to the illustration of the dead. willow thickened into a dark mass by festoons of vines, tall single cypresses, and the spires of towns are seen
the distance, which stretches to the mouths of the Po and the shores of the Adriatic. The climate of these volcanic hills is warmer, and the vintage begins a week sooner than in the plains of Padua. Petrarch is laid, for he cannot be said to be buried, in a sarcophagus of rel marble, raised on four pilasters on an elevated base, and preserved from an association with meaner tombs. It stands conspicuously alone, but will be soon overshadowed by four lately-planted laurels. Petrarch's forrain, for here every thing is Petrarch's, springs and expan is itself beneath an artificial arch, a little below the church, and abounds plentifully, in the driest season, with that soft water which was the ancient wealth of the Euganean hills. It would be more attractive, were f not, in some seasons, beset with hornets and wasps. No other coincidence could assimilate the tombs of Petrarch and Archilochus. The revolutions of centures have spared these sequestered valleys, and the July violence which has been offered to the ashes of Petrarch, was prompted, not by hate, but veneration. An attempt was made to rob the sarcophagus of its asure, and one of the arms was stolen by a Florentae, through a rent which is still visible. The injury is not forgotten, but has served to identify the poet with * country where he was born, but where he would in five. A peasant boy of Arquá being asked who Petrarch was, replied, "that the people of the parssage knew all about him, but that he only knew that he was a Florentine."
Mr. Forsyth was not quite correct in saying, that Petrarch never returned to Tuscany after he had once quatted it when a boy. It appears he did pass through Ference ence on his way from Parma to Rome, and on his turn in the year 1350, and remained there long enough to form some acquaintance with its most distinguished abitants. A Florentine gentleman, ashamed of the aversion of the poet for his native country, was eager to point out this trivial error in our accomplished traveller, whom he knew and respected for an extraordinary
1 Remarks, etc. on Italy, p, 95, note, 2d edit.
Note 17. Stanza xxxiv.
The struggle is to the full as likely to be with demons as with our better thoughts. Satan chose the wilderness for the temptation of our Saviour. And our unsullied John Locke preferred the presence of a child tɔ complete solitude.
Note 18. Stanza xxxvi.
In face of all his foes, the Cruscan quire;
Perhaps the couplet in which Boileau depreciates
The biographer Serassi,2 out of tenderness to the reputation either of the Italian or the French poet, is eager to observe that the satirist recanted or explained away this censure, and subsequently allowed the author of the Jerusalem to be a "genius sublime, vast, and happily born for the higher flights of poetry." To this we will add, that the recantation is far from satisfactory, when
1 D. O. M. Francisco Petrarchæ
Parentibus præclaris genere perantiquo
Africa ob carmen hac in urbe peractum regibus accito
Juvenilium juvenis senilium senex
Comes Nicolaus Canonicus Cicognarus
Diva Januarie cruento corpore
B. M. P.
Sed infra meritum Francisci sepulchro
2 La vita del Tasso, bb. iii. p. 234. tom. u. edit Bergame 1790.