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pencil; and, where the subjects are architectural, they bear testimony that the Moorish taste, so strongly cherished in Spain, has been transplanted, in the most decisive manner, into the Spanish colony of Mexico. It is a curious addition to Arabian history, that the arts of the Arabs, after being spread by themselves to the western limits of Europe, should have been carried by their Spanish subjects and scholars into America. The countries of the Pacific Ocean, which interposes itself between America and India, are thus, if even there, the only interval, in the circuit of the globe, in which the works and the influence of Arabian genius are not to be discovered !
A SWISS TOUR.--NO. V.
LEAVING Meyringen after noon, we proceeded through the valley to the small village of Brienz, on the shore of the lake. It is in a charming situation, and provided with a very good inn. Soon afterward we hired a boat to cross the lake, in order to view the falls of the Giesbach. After rowing about a league, we landed, and walked up a winding path to a chalet that stands just below the falls. It is inhabited by a family, consisting of husband, wife, and five or six children ; and each individaal is blessed in a certain way with a musical taste, and voice to give vent to it. This family circle is represented to the life in a coloured plate, sold amidst a host of other choice Swiss subjects: the old man seated at a piano, and each member, with mouth wide open, joining in the song. The piano is actually in the chalet, and any stranger may command a melodious display, just beside the cataract. The waterfalls of the Giesbach have a character as well as beauty altogether peculiar ; six of them are seen at one glance, descending in succession from the lofty and wooded heights of the mountain above. They have the appearance at first of artificial cascades in a superb garden, so elegant and tasteful is their appearance; but their grandeur, and the great body of water, quickly convince us that the band of Nature alone is there. The middle and highest fall is seen from a small gallery carried directly behind it, and the cataract rushes close beside, and almost on, the spectator ; but this contrivance diminishes instead of augmenting the effect, since it is perceived thereby that the torrent, which looked so resistless in front, is composed of a slender volume of water, through which the light pierces. The falls above, on the higher declivity, are very fine; and inferior in grandeur as the Giesbach undoubtedly is, altogether, to the more impetuous Reichenbach, imagination cannot conceive so lovely a situation as it enjoys; shrouded amidst the richest wood, the beautiful lake into which it plunges spreads directly underneath.
Quitting this attractive spot, we returned to the village of Brienz, and to our tranquil apartment that looked far over the shores. During supper, a company of female singers, said to be the best in the country, came into the adjoining apartment, and commenced a kind of shrieking lament,—not in the plaintive voice of sorrow, for it rang shrilly and wildly through the whole house. They were six in number, and each took her part in the air with infinite rapidity and in excellent time. We adjourned to the garden in front of the hotel, and it being a fine moonlight night, the singing sounded much softer than from within. They gave a variety of songs, during more than an hour, and would have continued till midnight, if permitted. The lake had a lovely appear
ance in the clear light, and the rush of the distant cataract on the other shore was distinctly heard. Next morning we took boat in order to cross the lake: the Belle Bateliere has given up her trade of rowing since her marriage, and with less captivating rowers we went on our
The shore opposite the village is particularly bold and well wooded all the way down toward Interlaken: about half way, the snowy mountains are seen in the distance ; a small isle, too, adds to the scene; yet, however attractive in many parts, this lake must yield in charm and variety to that of Thoun, from which it is separated by so small a territory.
Passing down the river Aar to a small wooden bridge, we landed and went to Interlaken : this village is greatly resorted to by travellers of all nations, as much for a residence of a few months or weeks, as for a transient survey. Here are two well-organised boarding houses for their reception. The situation of the place is central, and excellently adapted for excursions to some of the finest spots.' A residence here is also excessively cheap; indeed, the charge per day at the houses of reception is often so low as three francs, or half a crown, including board and lodging! The table d'hôte frequently displays a motley assemblage of guests; and as the neighbourhood is really beautiful--the Aar pouring its blue stream through luxuriant banks, and a high wooded eminence or knoll, with a kind of frail building on its summit that looks out on extensive prospects, the spot is absolutely like a fashionable watering-place—has tea-parties, fishing excursions, pic-nics; is perfectly romantic, and cannot fail to fascinate travellers upon their first journey from their own loved isle, and by whom the wonders of the land are yet unexplored. Great and rich is the variety of characters assembled ; most of them animated with an eager appetite for Nature, a devouring passion for glaciers, avalanches, and inaccessible mountains. What is Clifton, with its poor hot-wells, and its mean, miserable river filthily creeping along ? or even Matlock, with its pigmy mountains and shallow glens? Here the mighty Jungfrau is directly opposite the windows of the dining and bed-rooms: the Staubbach might be heard to roar, if it could possibly be detached from the rock to which it clings so closely; and lakes, gloomy valleys, and horrid precipices, may not be counted, for number! Dazzled by the variety and splendour of these objects, or rather lulled by the good accommodations and comforts of the boarding-house of Interlaken, how many a determined tourist, or family party, who left “ the city," or, maybe, the politer end of town, with energy and glorious hope, have lingered here ingloriously on the banks of the Aar, and returned, satisfied that the land had its good things, leaving its perils all untried.
Not thus, however, thought or acted a desperate traveller with whom two friends that were for a short time our companions, fell in contact on the heights of the Simplon. A Yorkshire gentleman, alone (at least accompanied only by his guide), and on foot, was overtaken by them, who were also pedestrians, about mid-day. He had a pair of top-boots, a great-coat with four capes, a staff of tolerable thickness, and a broad-brimmed hat. The day was excessively hot, it being in the month of July; yet so rapid was his pace, that they had some difficulty at first to keep up with him. Overjoyed, however, at meeting with two fellow-countrymen, he after a while slackened his progress,
and entered into a most animated conversation. He had travelled, he said, through the greater part of the country : kept a note of the number of lakes and mountains he had visited ; having come on purpose from Yorkshire to see all that was to be seen. He could not speak one word of French, and his guide only a few words of English,-80 that, between them, it is no wonder if mistakes were sometimes committed. Wiping his face from the perspiration that almost streamed over it, but still advancing at a round pace, he entreated them earnestly to tell him if there was any thing worth seeing in the road they were travelling. His guide had a hard birth of it, for he complained that the traveller often turned suddenly out of the road to the right or left, if any object at a distance caught his eye, and in spite of all his remonstrances, would not resume his journey till he had satisfied his curiosity. Great was the pleasure, the tourist declared, he had felt in a land so different from his own ; yet there were drawbacks; not in every part: his disappointment had sometimes been keen :--often had he toiled up a high mountain at the persuasion of some other traveller whom he bad encountered at the inns,—and wheni arrived on its summit, (which, with his top-boots and four-caped coat, had cost many an arduous step,) he had seen only dim and distant prospects; nothing clear or satisfying. He had not the least intention of passing the bounds of Switzerland, but had heard so much by the way of the road over the Simplon, that he determined to traverse it; and being now on the descent of the mountain, he believed he might as well see the whole of the road, and should go on to Milan, where it terminated. He inquired every ten minutes if there was nothing worth seeing in the place they were at, glancing his eyes eagerly on every side ; and whether the Lake Maggiore was not very fine, as he intended to pause on its banks. They came at last to the little inn on the descent of the Simplon, to the comforts of which in winter we had been so much indebted. Here they resolved to rest a few hours, and the impatient Yorkshireman, not brooking the delay, hurried down the mountain, after a hasty refreshment, on his way into Italy.
Returning once more to the village of Brienz, we resolved on the following morning to ascend the Brunig mountain : it had rained during the night, and the sky was covered with clouds when we departed, but they passed away soon after we quitted the village, and the sun shone out. It was the Sabbath morning, and it was extremely interesting to meet the numerous groups of well-dressed peasantry passing on from their villages to the church, the bells of which sent their tones far and wide among the hills. Aged peasants, with their silver locks and still muscular frames,-family groups,-and many a paysanne in her gayest looks and choicest attire, all unbonneted, their head-dress such as Nature gives, were seen descending from their hamlets on the mountain slopes, and from the solitary chalets scattered at long intervals.
The path up the Brunig was winding and full of interest, affording, every now and then, a rich view of the valley of its river and village. From the summit we descended slowly into the canton of the beautiful Unterwald ; which, placed in the heart of the other cantons, seems as if some of the choicest beauties of each had been given to enrich it. It does not contain a single town of any note, only a num
ber of villages and hamlets; its climate is peculiarly mild, and fruittrees of most kinds flourish extremely well. Its mountains are covered neither with rocks nor snow, but with rich woods, even to the summit; or, in default of these, with pasturage for the flocks. Mountains, lakes, and valleys, are on that diminutive yet rich scale, large enough for beauty, and singularly pleasing to the eye that has gazed so long upon objects whose vastness and grandeur have dazzled and confused. Surely no earthly land possesses the astonishing variety of scenery that Switzerland exhibits; its forms are ever changing, and never exhausted.
As we descended slowly the side of the Brunig, the sinall and lovely lake of Luneguen appeared just beneath, with its wooded banks, its village and church. On entering the inn, we were surprised at its extreme neatness and good accommodations, and were attended by a waiter, a handsome young fellow, with a Parisian air, and the address of one of its best cafés. A red waistcoat, a green velvet coat, blue stockings striped with white, and a gilt chain round his neck, formed part only of the singular costume of this waiter, who seemed, amidst all his civility, to stand on a perfectly good footing with himself. We understood, however, that this was the frequent dress of the young men of the canton, and peculiar to Unterwald ; though they did not all
, like the gay waiter, wear their gala dress every day. He soon set before us an excellent dinner, in which we were joined by a Frenchman and a Pole. The rain now fell in torrents, and the blue waves of the enchanting little lake rushed on the shore, (on the verge of which the inn stood). On the opposite bank, at the foot of the mountain, was another village with its tall spire. Our Frenchman was a light-hearted being, travelling in company with his friend the Pole; though in good spirits with every thing, he seemed to have little relish for the picturesque, and Alpine solitudes had few charms for him: he dwelt wholly on the mien and figures of the paysannes of the valley of Hasli, some of which he pronounced to be superbe. The rain at last ceased, and, bidding adieu to the village of Luneguen, we wound along the shores of the lake. In about an hour, passing through several villages of excessively neat and clean appearance, we came to the valley of Sarnen, one of the most uninteresting we had ever seen, and which has been selected, perhaps for its dreariness and tameness, to give a panoramic idea of the land! After a progress of several leagues, amidst gloomy weather and a wild country, we came in the evening, with no small pleasure, to the village of Alpnach, and the auberge situated at the edge of the lake of Lucerne. The house was a homely one, but extreme attention. made amends; the next morning, having procured a boat, we were rowed in a few hours to the town of Lucerne. It is a stupid town, and much cannot be said for the beauty of its situation; the portion of the lake on which it stands, resembling a large basin, with flat and fertile shores. There are some curious pieces of armour in the arsenal, reJiques of their memorable battles.
By taking a boat for Fluellyn, at the other extremity of the lake, the sublimity of its scenery, which commences after a progress of a few miles, is enjoyed to great advantage in a voyage of nine hours. During two days' stay the weather was so unfavourable as to render a visit to the Righi useless. The authorities were at this time occupied in the
affair of the death of the senator Keller, suspicions having attached to two other senators; they have been since acquitted, and the authors of the crime are said to be Clara Wenzel and her husband. This woman is very young, and possessed of talent as well as daring, having for some years been chieftainess of a small body of bandits, twelve in number. Her deeds have not often been marked by atrocity, and for several years she has set the authorities at defiance, by the secrecy of the proceedings of her band, and their taking refuge in difficult retreats, whereby they have, till lately, escaped detection. Had this woman lived under a different system of manners and national feelings, she would probably, have been another Helen Macgregor, adored by her mountain tribe, and sacrificing all to the honour and good of her clan. It is not yet certain that the senator's death lies at her door, for her's is more a system of theft than of violence, and some of the band resided in the villages that they might embrace the most favourablc occasions for plunder, or communicate them to their associates, Clara Wenzel is not married, having chosen to preserve her wild command undivided, and has clung to her lawless life and habits with the enthusiasm of a bandit chief of the Abruzzi. At so early an age (being only nineteen) it is a singular hardihood of mind that could enable her to extend her career to several cantons-to live a life of danger and secrecy, and preserve a hold over associates far fiercer and more experienced than herself. At present, she awaits her trial and sentence, which will probably consign her to an early death.
The Diet was now sitting, and the representatives of all the Cantons were at Lucerne, in which place it was held this year: the inns were consequently all full, particularly the large one at which we lodged; and the table d'hote, where we dined the first day, was chiefly filled by these worthies. The mountains and valleys had poured forth their most elegant subjects, proud to excess of their liberty, and glorying in their institutions. It must be admitted that a Swiss is the vainest creature alive! Not, let it be imagined, of his taste, or attainments in the fine arts; or of his extensive travel -strange as it may seem, there are very few in the land, even of the upper ranks, who have crossed the Alps into Italy, though so close to them. Of the grandeur and power of Switzerland as a whole, of her influence in Europe, a native is very ready to converse; but soon the theme changes to his own canton-its antiquity-its military force, finances and dominion. Let the equally haughty citizen of another canton, perhaps a neighbouring one, dispute this, then comes the tug of war; the fire of jealous indignation flashes from the eye-the big words roll like one of their own cataracts from the lips ; and France, with her lilies again looking bright, -imperious England-nay, the warring interests of the whole world, melt into thin air before those of Uri, Schwytz, or Waldstetten.
The public oratory in the senate, or in the separate meetings of the cantons, though not always brilliant, is often two hours in individual length, and at times atones, by the awfulness of its matter, for the dearth of the graces of style. One of the chief members ushered in a speech not long ago, at a sitting at Geneva, by observing with much solemnity, that seeing Geneva had for the present abandoned all ideas of farther conquest,” &c.
From Lucerne, two days' travel through a very rich and pleasant