Imagini ale paginilor
PDF
ePub

tasteful to her, as she did not hesitate to signify to us in lending us the book to read.

The first day after our arrival was Sunday, when there was a grand military review by the King, Louis II., of Bavaria. Extending for a mile or more from the western boundary of the city is a level plain covering many acres, and admirably situated for such a display. The troops,- infantry, artillery, and cavalry, — with splendid bands, assembled at the further side, which was bordered by a hill, lined with spectators. The greater crowd of spectators, however, was on the south side, near the city, where we were content to take our stand, especially as no carriage was to be had, and we walked over a mile to this point. After maneuvering for some time in the distance, the troops came down in grand array, with colors flying, now with stirring music of drum and fife, next with that of a full brass band, of which there were several, and then would come the shrill sound of the trooper's horn, conveying some order readily comprehended and obeyed. The King and his staff, all mounted on splendid steeds, and in gorgeous uniforms, took position nearly in front of us, thus affording us a satisfactory sight as the various regiments passed in review. The King is a large, fine-looking man, with a full, round face, and light complexion. Near the close, the Queen, an elegant-looking lady, in company with two or three other ladies in a carriage, made her appearance on the field, when they were saluted by the King and his staff and loudly cheered by the crowd. The King was also vociferously cheered by the citizens, who were out in such numbers that few could have stayed at home. In the afternoon we atoned somewhat for our wickedness of the fore

noon by attending service at the English Episcopal church, whose temporary pastor from England was a boarder at our house.

We have visited here two or three of the finest cathedrals we have anywhere seen, in one of which is a large crucifix suspended from the center of the roof; and in some or all of them are private altars set around the sides, very richly ornamented, and abounding in choice pictures, statues, statuettes, etc. It was an odd sight here to see priests in their robes marching in a solemn manner through the streets, headed by attendants, also in caps and long gowns, bearing a crucifix and lanterns elevated before them.

There is a great deal of interest to be seen here, and we have been quite industrious in going to one or more places every day. The Museum must be one of the most extensive and interesting in Europe. Almost every old thing that could be thought of may be seen there, including all kinds of ancient armor, furniture, jewelry, coins, and statuary. The Glyptothek (Sculpture Building) is a fine edifice, plain outside, but highly finished and beautiful within. It has a number of galleries, and is filled with sculpture---some of the statues and busts being remarkably fine. The old Pinakothek is the gallery of old paintings, which rank no doubt with those of the best galleries in other cities. We have been many times to this gallery, and could spend weeks in it agreeably in looking at the pictures, numbering, it is said, nearly thirteen hundred. A great many of the paintings are by Rubens, while there are some by Murillo, Dürer, Van Dyck, Guido, Carlo Dolce, Correggio, and many other artists of the old school. Murillo's four celebrated pictures of Italian beggar children are here, and we have obtained photographs

of them. One room contains several thousand original designs by Michael Angelo, Rubens, Correggio, Dürer, Rembrandt, and others of the old masters. The new Pinakothek, like the old, is a magnificent structure, and contains fifty-two rooms filled with modern paintings and other works of art. The portrait of Lola Montez, which formerly hung in the Gallery of Beauties in the Royal Palace, is now in a room here devoted mainly to paintings on porcelain, which are remarkable for their beauty. We may remark in passing that we have seen the neat frame house which Lola Montez occupied when she was on such familiar terms with the late King. Happy as we are to gaze upon the celebrated works of the old masters, we are free to say that we enjoy the modern paintings we see here quite as well if not better. Whether on canvas, glass, or porcelain, it would seem impossible to excel these modern pictures. We have seen nowhere anything more perfect or more exquisitely beautiful. Most especially do we admire many of the landscape paintings and descriptions of rural life. Here was one of a little girl, which we imagined might be a picture of a dearly beloved one away across the water. She is represented as sitting down in the grass of a meadow, with straw hat on and red umbrella over her head, plucking buttercups and daisies. Her face was beautiful, and she appeared happy as a lark. The pictures of the Swiss and Tyrolese scenery, embracing lake, mountain, hill, and valley, are superb. In one room, peculiarly constructed as regards the light, there are twelve or fifteen very large paintings, reaching from the ceiling nearly to the floor, and filling the room--all descriptive of Eastern cities and country landscape. Their mellow, yellowish light casts over one a feel

ing of listless drowsiness; and thus surrounded, it would not be strange were we for the moment to believe ourselves actual travelers in those distant lands.

We went one day to the Art Exhibition Gallery, where there is a large collection of paintings for sale -all modern, and mostly, it is presumed, by German artists. The one we should prefer- the price of it being about $400— represents Beethoven at a piano, with four of his friends listening enraptured by his music. It is a perfect gem.

The Royal Palace, too, is filled with pictures, in one room of which we saw fourteen large historical paintings arranged after the manner of those in the rotunda of our Capitol. There are two rooms, called Halls of the Beauties, devoted exclusively to portraits of beautiful women. In company with us on our visit to this Palace were the English pastor already mentioned and another English gentleman who had spent thirty years as a teacher of English in Munich. The pastor facetiously called him our “guide, professor, and friend,” and he was entitled to be so considered, for he was very efficient as a guide; as a professor, he had taught several of the royal ladies, whose portraits were before us; and he was very friendly in his bearing toward us all. He gave us the names of many of these beauties, some of whom are still living, and all, we believe, are of modern times. The floors of some of the rooms are of polished marble. In one is an ancient ivory chandelier, made by one of the Electors of Maximilian I.; in another, costly tapestry, filling five large panels, besides a piece composing a magnificent bedspread to the bed here occupied by Napoleon in 1809. In the gold embroidery, which cost

eight hundred thousand florins, forty persons were constantly employed fifteen years. In the Throne Room are twelve large gilt bronze statues, costing five hundred ducats each. (A ducat is about two dollars and twenty-eight cents, and a florin forty cents.) In the Antiquarium is a large collection of Egyptian, Roman, Greek, and German antiquities, all more or less interesting. The Treasury Room is loaded with precious jewels, valuable stones, and other costly articles. The Chapel is highly adorned and contains many valuable articles appropriate to the place. We might speak of the many celebrated, paintings seen here, but our recollection of them is too imperfect to admit of our doing justice to them. In the Court is a curious grotto of shells, with busts of females, made or covered with small shells, presenting the appearance, at a little distance, of persons recovered from small pox. Under the arch of the entrance-way is a stone weighing three hundred and sixty-four pounds, and in the wall three spikes – one at the height of twelve feet, one at nine and a half, and the third a little lower. Duke Christopher, son of Albert III., is said to have hurled this stone to a great distance; and, showing his agility in leaping, the upper spike marks the point where his heel struck in leaping from the ground. The heel of Prince Conrad touched at the place of the second, and Prince Philippe's at the third nail.

We have been shown through the Royal Foundry, where we saw models of the statues of Washington, Jefferson, Marshall, Clay, Benton, Everett, Lincoln, and other Americans, and also of the bronze doors leading from the rotunda of our Capitol. We likewise saw portions of the bronze statue of Seward now being cast for the city of New York.

« ÎnapoiContinuați »