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is spread out one of the most fertile districts of | landscape is as perfectly level as if marked down country that the world can show. The route with plummet and line. Here are no hills forty
feet high; not even the smallest hillock or hollow from Szegedin to Temesvar leads through a lie
t ough, a is to be seen. All is smooth, unruffled, and flat, flat and often swampy country, but at the | as the ocean during a dead calm. same time so overladen with the riches of | “The landscapes of the Bapat might be compared production, that the prospect is one of sur
to-those of Holland, but there is one great differpassing luxuriance. In the season of the
ence between them. Holland is full of rivers,
canals, ditches, and dikes; all the country is interharvest, wide fields are waving with yellow
sected by them, and the boundaries of the fields grain, often so full in the head as to have are every where marked out by water. This fea. sunk under its own weight, and the whole ture is entirely wanting in the Banat. From St. plain seems alive with laborers.
Miklos to Szegedin, more than forty miles, we saw,
with the exception of a small arm of the Maros, The soil is a rich black loam, and its
on which Szegedin stands, but one trumpery little productive powers, heightened by a climate brook, which was running about, to what purpose more nearly tropical than temperate, are I know not, and in all probability it would have truly wonderful. The same crops are re- been puzzled itself to assign a reason for its existpeated year after year, on the same spots ;
ence. No canals intersect the country; the fields
are divided neither by hedges nor ditches; all is the ground is only once turned up to receive
one monotonous, dry, unbroken level. the seed; a fallow is unknown; manure is “Holland is richly cultivated, and is thickly sown esteemed injurious ; and yet, such abundant with populous towns and thriving villages. The produce as ill-treated, unaided Nature here
whole Torontal province, occupying the north
west, contains not a single town, and but one hunbestows on her children, excites the aston
dred and sixty villages and hamlets, making on ishment of the traveller from western Eu- an average about one inhabited spot in every rope. Except the olive and the orange, square mile. These villages are very unequally there is scarcely a product of Europe which arranged, lying sometimes close together, and does not thrive in the Banat. Wheat, bar
sometimes three or four miles apart. Between
them, all is one dreary and desolate plain, withley, oats, rye, rice, maize, flax, hemp, rape, out bush or tree, without hillock or stone. sunflowers, (for oil,) tobacco, (of different “Among the excellent sketches of Hungary, kinds,) wine, and silk are produced with lithographed by the Englishman Hering, which facility, and even cotton (tried as an experi
preserve the true character of the country with a ment) is said to have succeeded.
remarkable accuracy and fidelity, unlike any other The cli
representations of Hungarian scenery which I are approaches nearly to that of Italy; but have ever seen, there is a view of one of the desthe winters are still too severe for the olive olate plains of the Banat. The print, although and the orange. Even in summer, the | large, represents nothing whatever but one broad nights are often very cool. After the hottest
expanse of country, with a broad expanse of sky
above; the only object of relief being a stork, day, the sun no sooner sets than a cool
who stands beside a well in the foreground. In breeze rises, refreshing at first, but which spite of its monotony, the picture is striking, imbecomes dangerous to those who are unpre | pressive, indeed I may say highly picturesque and pared for it. The Hungarian never travels
| poetical, as every genuine representation of na
ture is sure to be. The sky is covered with light without his fur or sheep-skin coat, and the
clouds, faintly tinted by the morning sun, which want of such defense is often the cause of follow one another in long gradual perspective to fever to the unsuspecting stranger.
the distant horizon. The plain lies quite desolate The following description by Kohl will
and level in the foreground, and further and furserve to give one a good idea of the appear
ther, the long even parallel lines repeat them
selves again and again, fainter and fainter, into the ance of this remarkable country :
boundless distance of the far-off horizon. As the “The appearance of the Banat beyond St. Miklos eye follows these lines, it seems to descry conwas very peculiar. The country is, as I have tinually a further boundless desert, beyond what said, a perfect level. Many parts of Prussia and at first seemed the horizon. The colors change Holland are also quite flat and even, yet there is on all sides in the same gradual manner, from the an immense difference between the flatness of bright green of the foreground to a more bluish those countries and that of the Banat.
green, then to gray, and lastly to a pale distant “The neighborhood of Berlin, level as it appears, blue. There is a strange dreary solemnity in the does yet contain small swellings of the ground, spectacle; not even one little bird is to be seen little insignificant hollows and rises, and here and fluttering through the air. A slight line of shadthere sandy hillocks six or seven feet high. If we | ing on the horizon alone indicates the possibility view the country from a church tower, or any that some solitary herdsmen have kindled a fire other elevated point, there are sure to be visible at a distance. The lonely stork in the foreground somewhere in the wide landscape hills thirty or stands motionless, the only living thing in the forty feet high. Not so in the Banat, where every wilderness, save the frogs hopping about in the marshy ground around him. The pump at the bogs covered with white powder, and occasionally well is desolate and seldom visited, and the clank- meadows with fine cattle; such are the only vaing of its handle as the wind moving over the rieties seen when travelling on a Puste. Occaplain raises and stirs it, accompanies the croaking sionally a lonely Sallash or Tsharde,* or a soliof the busy frogs, and thus forms a dreary con- tary herdsman's hut, gives token of human habicert, which night and day is the only sound that tation; now and then a far-off pump rears and disturbs the perfect silence.
sways its long arm before us, and sometimes, too, “ This excellent picture of Hering is a true though more rarely, we behold the unfailing token representation of a great many scenes in Hungary. of our approach to a town or village, namely, a Let the reader imagine a great picture gallery, handsome, well-kept, large, white — gallows!" containing five hundred such pictures, each rep- (P. 342.) resenting the same objects, sky, plain, pump, and stork, with only this variation, that in one picture I know of no better way in which to the clouds shall be grouped differently from what conclude this account of Hungary, than with they are in another; in one the pump-handle is the patriotic apostrophe of Baron Joseph swinging to the right, in another to the left; in
Eötvös to her “green plain.”
It forms one the stork stands on his right leg, in another op his left; in one he is routing among his feathers
the conclusion to his novel, “ The Village with his beak, in another he has caught a frog. Notary":At every tenth picture, the prospect might be varied by the presence of a solitary herdsman
“But before I close this book, let me turn to the with his herd, and at every twentieth by some
boundless plain of my country, and to the scene distant village steeple on the horizon. The marsh |
of the joys and sorrows of my youth, to the banks in the foreground might here and there contain a
of the yellow Theiss! There is a beauty in the few reeds and rushes, with which variation, how
mountains; there is a charm. in the broad waters ever, the painter must by no means be too liberal;
of the Danube; but to me there is a rapture in and finally, every hundredth picture might repre
the thought of the pride of Hungary-Ker green sent the interior of a village. Such a gallery
plain! It extends, boundless as the ocean; it would be a perfectly correct representation of the
has nothing to fetter our view but the deep blue plains of eastern Hungary." (Pp. 327, 328.)
canopy of heaven. No brown chain of mountains
surrounds it; no ice-covered peaks are gilded by The same author has also given a not un- the rays of the rising sun! interesting description of the desert pusztas,
“Plain of Hungary! Thy luxuriant vegetation
withers where it stands; thy rivers flow in silence which are frequent between Szegedin and
among their feed-covered banks. Nature has dePesth:
nied thee the grandeur of mountain scenery, the
soft beauty of the valley, and the majestic shade “ Immediately after crossing the Theiss, the trav
of the forest, and the wayfaring man who traeller perceives that he has entered a new kind
verses thee will not, in later years, think of one of country. At Szegedin, the first sand-plain
single beauty which reminds him of thee; but he begins, and the ground is no longer as perfectly I will
tood flat as I have described it in the Banat. The
e admiring thy vastness; when the rising sun plain is broken by little sand-hillocks; agriculture
poured his golden light on thee; or when, in the more and more gives way to grazing. The popu- l sultry hours of noon. the mirage covered thy lation consists either entirely of Magyars, or, at shadéless expanse with flowery lakes of fresh least, is thoroughly Magyarized. The sand of
swelling waters, like the scorched-up land's dream this district is very fine, and is mixed with frag- l of the
of the sea which covered it, before the waters of ments of shells. It extends so deep that nowhere the
the Danube had forced their way through the have the inhabitants yet succeeded in boring
rocks of the Iron Gate; or at night, when darkthrough it, and reaching its clayey foundation.
ness was spread over the silent heath, when the Large tracts are entirely desolate, without any
stars were bright in the sky, and the herdsmen's trace of vegetation. In such places, the sand is
fires shone over the plain, and when all was so often raised by the wind into the air, as in the
still that the breeze of the evening came to the sand-storm of the Sahara. This sand-wind is
wanderer's ears, sighing amidst the high grass. much dreaded by the Hungarians, for in its course it often destroys the most fertile fields.
And what was the feeling which filled his breast
in such moments? It was perhaps less distinct “ Among the remarkable attributes of these
than the sensatioris which the wonders of Alpine deserts, is the total absence of water. In the two
scenery caused in him; but it was grander still, hundred German square miles between Pesth and
for thou, too, boundless Plain of my country, thou, Szegedin, there is no trace of running water, no
too, art more grand than the mountains of this single brook, river, or stream, and not even a soli
earth. A peer art thou of the unmeasured ocean, tary well, with the exception of one little bub
deep-colored and boundless like the sea, impartbling stream, which rises in a marsh near Kets.
ing a freer pulsation to the heart, extending onkemet. Another peculiarity of these deserts is
ward, and far as the eye can reach. . the total absence of trees. Every thing is bare,
" Vast Plain, thou art the image of my people. desolate, and naked; nowhere rises a cooling | Hopeful, but solitary; thou art made to bless grove, or even a solitary bush or tree.
“Sand-plains with sand-wind, green patches with wild birds, marshes with cranes and storks, soda | * Tsharde—a shed by the road-side.
generations by the profuseness of thy wealth. I magic lights and shades of a fitful sky; The energies which God gave thee are still slum- / forms a picture of the most exquisite beauty. bering; and the centuries which have passed over thee have departed without seeing the day of thy
From some fortunate elevated position, the gladness! But thy genius, though hidden, is tourist often beholds an extensive panorama mighty within thee! Thy very weeds, in their spreading at his feet-plains, valleys, rivers, profusion, proclaim thy fertility; and there is a and wooded mountains rising over each boding voice in my heart which tells me that the great time is at hand. Plain of my country,
other as far as the eye can reach. Here mayst thou flourish! and may the people flourish
and there he comes upon an ancient castle which inhabit thee! Happy he who sees the with its massive walls and weather-beaten day of thy glory; and happy those whose press towers, frowning from its crag over the ent affliction is lightened by the consciousness that they are devoting their energies to prepare
smiling vale beneath. Frequently, too, he the way for that better time which is sure to
will stumble upon a little mining hamlet, or come!"
be surprised by the sudden apparition of
blackened furnaces, and tall chimneys vomIt still remains that we give some brief iting flame and smoke amid the beauties of account of Transylvania, and of the Croatian soine secluded mountain retreat. and Servian dependencies of the crown of The valley of the Maros, occupying the Hungary,
central portion of the country, is remarkable Transylvania, in shape a somewhat irreg- for its beauty. From the old castle of Dera, ular trapezoid, contains about sixteen thou- situated about thirty miles from the Hunsand square miles, or rather more than the garian frontier, the view extends for a conunited areas of the three southern States of siderable distance along this beautiful vale, New-England. It is surrounded and inter- and on the east is bonnded by blue mounsected by mountain ranges, which are so tains, whose tops in the colder months are numerous as to give to the country the white with snow. The western part of this appearance of a mass of small mountains, valley is rich, well wooded, and occasionally traversed in various directions by rivers that ornamented with pretty country houses. have cut for themselves water-courses from Upon the borders of Hungary, however, the one hundred yards to a mile or two in scenery becomes wild to the last degreewidth, occasionally, where a tributary stream the river bound in its channel by precipitous lends its force, widening into small plains. rocks, and the valley darkened by forests of The principal roads are formed along these native oak which have never known the valleys, so that travelling in Transylvania woodman's axe. A distance farther to the presents a succession of beautiful scenes east again, at Kapolnas, the valley widens rarely to be met with in other lands. The considerably and presents a scene of extraorcountry is divided by two principal ranges dinary loveliness. For perhaps fifteen miles into three parts: the southernmost drained in length by three or four in width extends a by the Aluta; the central, by the Maros; plain covered with white villages, and groanand the northern, by the Szamos. Her- ing under the richest crops of grain, surmanstadt and Gronstadt are in the first of rounded on every side by mountains covered these, Carlsburg in the second, and Clau- to their summits by forests of oak, and trasenburg just over the border in the third. versed in its whole extent by the river. The traveller in the valley of the Hatszeg, The Maros is a wide and wayward stream, which lies in the extreme south-west por- and in summer has not more than two feet tion of Transylvania, finds ample consolation of water. There is no doubt, however, that for the badness of the roads in the exceed it might be made navigable, and probably ing loveliness of the landscape. In the it will be so soon as increased population on autumn, the whole plain from Varhely to its banks shall demand an outlet for its proHatszeg, yellow with the ripe maize, and ductions. traversed by half-a-dozen streams, broken The northern portion of Transylvania, in by low hills, and sprinkled over with cot- its general features, resembles the others, and tages and country houses; its mountain need not delay us at present. boundaries rising through the clouds which of the country as a whole, then, it may hang on their sides, and disclosing their be said, that it is a hilly region surrounded summits whitened by the first fall of the and penetrated with mountains, well waautumn snow; and all heightened by the I tered, of a diversified soil, which is excellently adapted in different portions to pasturage ish side there are only three points where and to tillage, much of it formed from strata the mountains are penetrable by an army, the of a volcanic origin, and notwithstanding the Dorna pass on the north-east, the arc south severity of a long winter capable of assum- of Cronstadt, and the Rothenthurm pass. ing a high rank as a wine-growing district. The last mentioned is a most beautiful valSays a German writer: "There is perhaps ley, with bold and precipitous cliffs, and rich no country which has not some beauties to woods hanging upon the steep mountain exhibit, but I never saw any which like sides, while here and there little green glades Transylvania is all beauty.”
are discovered, the loveliest that the heart of Its population in 1840 was a little more poet or painter could desire. Through this than 2,000,000, and probably has not in- pass in former days the Moslem hordes creased much since. The Magyars occupy | poured down upon the valleys of the Saxon the whole central and western portion, the land, and by the same road the Russian batSzeklers (a Magyar tribe with some diver- talions entered two years ago to aid the sities in language and customs) the northern Viennese Camarilla in crushing the liberties and eastern districts, while the south is of Hungary. On the Hungarian side likemostly in the hands of the "Saxons," who wise there are only three passes that are about the middle of the twelfth century practicable for artillery, and these all easily were invited by the Princess Helena to re-defensible. people her waste lands.
Croatia, and Slavonia or Servia, need deClausenburg in thenorth, and Cronstadt tain us but a moment. These countries have in the south, are the largest towns; the for- been dependencies of Hungary since the mer being the seat of government, and con- eleventh century. The soil of the former is taining about 25,000 inhabitants, and the inferior on the whole to that of Hungary, latter the principal place in the Saxon land, and but poorly cultivated. and a centre of considerable trade, with a The peasantry are oppressed by their Seipopulation of some 36,000. Hermannstadt, gneurs. The nobles and the prelates are rich, lying on a branch of the Aluta, and Carls- but the people are poor. Notwithstanding burg on the Maros, are likewise places of all this poverty and wretchedness, the travsome importance, the latter dating its origin eller sees more large churches and more from the time of the Romans. It is the images of sair ts in Croatia than in all the ancient Colonia Apulensis, and has still to rest of Hungary together. The Drave and exhibit many interesting memorials of anti- Save might easily be navigated into Croatia, quity. It seems to have been the mining and on the latter stream a line of steamcapital of the Romans in Dacia, the seat of boats has been established for a number of the Collegium Aurariarum, and the resi- years. dence of the Procurator of the Mines. The The soil of Slavonia in the eastern part region in the neighborhood is mountainous is exceedingly fertile, but being mostly in and rich in mineral wealth. At Vörös Patak the hands of a few great proprietors, the there is a hill, the entire rocky mass of which mass of the people are poof. Very few Magcontains gold; and it has been pierced through | yars are to be found in either of these provand through on every side, and has acquired inces. such a broken, perforated appearance that it A line of military posts stretches along is known in the region round about as the the southern frontier, all the way from Cro csetatie mike, or little fortress. In another atia to Transylvania. These border lands place the top of a mountain has been so exca- are divided into regiments and companies vated by the miners that the shell has fallen instead of counties and towns, and the adult in, and the summit presents now a hollow male inhabitants are all disciplined soldiers, similar to a volcanic crater.
dividing their time between agriculture and But the region is full of wonders, and in- arms. These Border Regiments are of course teresting as it would be to describe them independent of any provincial control, and here, our plan does not allow us the space. subject to the commands of the Emperor
It will be evident from what has been said alone, administered through his military subthat Transylvania is a country of great nat- ordinates. This district is a camp, and ural resources, and very strong in a military knows none but martial law. point of view. Upon the Russian and Turk- / Viewing now the kingdom of Hungary all together, we shall see that it is by naturecost. The wheat of Hungary is allowed to one of the richest countries in the world. be of excellent quality. Where the land is Possessing as it does a great variety of soil, of little or no value for other purposes, and and large quantities of the richest land in the rates of labor are low, it is difficult to Europe, with a corresponding variety and see how it can be produced any where more excellence of climate, filled with an abund- cheaply than here. Nor has any other cornance of all the chief staples of human sub-growing region better natural means of comsistence and civilized life, intersected with munication. The very richest portions of it navigable streams furnishing to every portion are those which border upon navigable rivof the country easy and cheap means of com-ers, viz., the region of the Batshka and the munication,-its surface adapted likewise in Banat, the plains on either side of the Theiss, a rare degree to the construction of railroads and the valleys of the Waas, the Raab, the and canals,—we should say that nature in- Drave, the Save, and the Maros. tended it for a great centre of wealth and of Such is Hungary in her natural resources. power.
Look now at her position. One of the most In the first place, there are the mountain remarkable features in the continent of Eudistricts of the north, and of Transylvania, rope, as it is presented to the eye by any rich in wines, in timber, and in minerals. good map, is the noble valley of the Danube It has been stated by Beudant that there is and its branches. Surrounded on the north, more gold and silver found in Hungary than west, and south by high ranges of mounin all the rest of Europe besides. Copper ains, the one reaching the sea, and the other is obtained in great abundance. Poorly as coming within one hundred and fifty miles the mines were worked, they yielded fifteen of it, this region is, geographically, a unit. It years ago 2,000 tons annually. Iron abounds embraces the whole of the present kingdom of through extensive districts, said to be of very Hungary, with Transylvania and Bosnia, Sersuperior quality for conversion into steel, via, Bulgaria, Wallachia, Moldavia, and perbut badly wrought. Lead, and indeed haps Bessarabia. Races and conquerors were every other metal, is obtained, but rather not careful however to study physical geogramore sparingly. Sulphur occurs in eight phy when they divided this fruitful valley different counties. The quantity of salt among themselves. The sword has assigned which this country can produce seems un- the upper part of it, the portion namely north limited; and it can be produced as cheap- of the Save, and of the southern mountains ly as in any part of the world. Soda, alum, of Transylvania, to the Hungarians. The potash and saltpetre are all abundant, but remainder has fallen to Turkey, and seems particularly soda, which occurs in great pu- about to be yielded all of it, as a part has rity and plenty in the plain near Debretzin, been already, to the mighty embrace of the as also in many other parts of the country. I northern Bear. Coal is found in several districts, and of the Now is it not clear that, so far as position very finest quality. The forests of Hungary and geographical relations are concerned, are capable of furnishing vast stores of wood, this great valley of the Danube, if it must especially of oak. Her hemp was several be divided politically at all, has been divided years ago both cheaper and better than that rightly? Hungary is a unit, marked off by of Russia. Her broad pastures are fitted to distinct and genuine natural boundaries yield an abundance of hides and tallow, of from all the surrounding countries. The horse hair, of bristles, and of wool; which Carpathians divide it from Poland and from latter has long been an important staple in Prussia; the Sablunka mountains, with the her commerce, chiefly because its exporta- Styrian and Illyrian Alps, from Germany tion has been untaxed. The Hungarian and Italy. Other mountains and a wide wines rival the best in the world, and are navigable stream serve as its boundary on produced over very extensive and very fruit- the side of Turkey; not so good indeed, not ful districts. Tobacco is raised easily and so genuine as the Balkan range would be, in abundance. A still more important ar- and yet a natural and sufficient boundary. ticle of produce is grain. Hitherto but a The region thus marked off has all the essmall portion of the land has been cultivated, sential characteristics and resources required and this although much of it is capable of by an independent State. It is capable of furnishing the richest crops at very slight existing without commerce, upon its own VOL. VIII. NO. II. NEW SERIES.