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French, though there was no lack of English. I was fortunate enough to arrive the very first, even before the lamps were lit, and had the pleasure to enjoy half an hour of very delightful conversation with the hospitable host and hostess, who are among the most agreeable people I have yet met with. Of the spaciousness and splendour of the mansion it is difficult to give any just idea. It occupies the corner of a very considerable portion of two streets, in one of which the carriages enter, and in the other take up. Among his paintings there is an original by David, that particularly struck me: it represents the ever-memorable exploit at the bridge of Lodi, where Napoleon is in the act of animating his brave followers to cross, while they fall in thousands about him, in the midst of a tremendous fire from a battery in front, that envelops the whole scene in smoke, and through which the only light that penetrates is the flash of the “ red artillery.” Napoleon is represented on foot, holding the tattered colours in one hand, and straining every nerve to keep up the spirit of his companions.
It was on this occasion that he uttered the
memorable command of “ qu'elle se taise !” in proud contempt of the death which the battery was dealing around.
I am compelled, in spite of my gallantry, to own that I was rather disappointed in the French women.
With half a dozen of exceptions, I saw nothing either in figure or face that was not decidedly below par of English beauty : but what they want in these is very much made up by the milliner and the graces. The music was first rate of its kind. The quadrilles and waltzes the choicest selections from the best composers; to which Collinet's flageolet gave a more lively effect than I could have had any idea of. About twelve o'clock, while the door still
“ opened to the thousand happy few, I left this earthly paradise of or-molu,"
not a little gratified with my evening.
10th.–To the Feydeau Opera. The entertainment consisted of two pieces, or operattas, Marie and Fiorella (by Auber), which I had
bad taste enough to prefer very much to the Donna del Lago, as it was executed at the Opera Italien : not that the music is intrinsically so good, but merely because, contrary to what occasioned my disappointment in the Donna, the leading songs really had leading singers. Last night was the twenty-fourth of its successive representation.
There was a notturno of great beauty and delicacy in the Fiorella, which reminded me of
“ The strains that float upon the wings
Of silence, through the empty vaulted night,
Last night satisfied me that the only part of a theatre, to hear music to perfection is the centre of the boxes. There is a perspective in music as well as painting, that requires distance to be enjoyed, or even comprehended,a point of hearing as well as a point of view. This is the case particularly with respect to an orchestra, where, as usually happens in theatres, the line of performers is extended,
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D-LECI GEITIi is considered Sari BALET Oss on this side, and penserery where, to express ar degree or ease at viewing this Fresch school of pare and light," that there is to altercaure but to be silepi, bowerer well we may be pleased, or else lose all credit for pretensions to taste, which of course no man in his senses would do, if he could help it. I am ready to own, that the train of reflection suggested by a small picture of Galileo in prison, left a deeper impression on my mind than the merits of the most splendid paintings in the collection. He is represented in prison, contemplating a diagram of his solar system, which appears wholly to engross his thoughts, as if satisfying himself whether there really could exist the possibility of a doubt that he might be wrong. What a lesson his fate presents against intolerance, and the infinite absurdity of all persecution on account of opinion! The infallible wisdom of popery had pronounced that the sun should not stand still without
permission from the Vatican; and so poor Galileo must irredeemably have rotted in his dungeon, had he not, after nineteen years' confinement, at the age of seventy, asked pardon for telling the truth, as the price of his enlargement.
13th. --Jardin des Plantes. To my great disappointment, the Museum of Natural History was the only thing accessible to-day, and truly it is well worth a day to itself. could not see, nor volumes describe it as
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