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not escape the witty Athenians; they de- 'Twas hither that Horace was sent by his scribed him in a verse, and ridiculously father; 'twas here that Cicero put his son said,
Marcus under Cratippus, one of the ablest Sylla's face is a mulberry, sprinkled with meal. philosophers then belonging to that city.
The sects of philosophers which we The devastations and carnage which he have already described, were still existing caused soon after, gave them too much when St. Paul came thither. We cannot reason to repent their sarcasm.
enough admire the superior eloquence of The civil war between Cæsar and Pom. that apostle, in his manner of addressing pey soon followed, and their natural love so intelligent an audience. We cannot of liberty made them side with Pompey. enough admire the sublimity of his exHere again they were unfortunate, for Ca. ordium; the propriety of his mentioning sar conquered. But Cæsar did not treat an altar which he had found there, and them like Sylla. With that clemency, his quotation from Aratus, one of their which made so amiable a part of his cha- well-known poets. Acts xvii. 22. racter, he dismissed them, by a ne allu- Nor was Athens only celebrated for the sion to their illustrious ancestors, saying, residence of philosophers, and the institu• that he spared the living for the sake of tion of youth: men of rank and fortune the dead.'
found pleasure in a retreat which contriAnother storm followed soon after this, buted so much to their liberal enjoyment. the wars of Brutus and Cassius with Au. The friend and correspondent of Cigustus and Antony. Their partiality for cero, T. Pomponius, from his long atliberty did not here forsake them; they tachment to this city and country, had attook part in the contest with the two pa- tained such a perfection in its arts and lantriot Romans, and erected their statues guage, that he acquired to himself the adnear their own ancient deliverers, Harmo- ditional name of Atticus. This great man dius and Aristogiton, who had slain Hip- may be said to have lived during times of parchus. But they were still unhappy, the worst and cruellest factions.
His for their enemies triumphed.
youth was spent under Sylla and Marius; They made their peace however with the middle of his life during all the sanAugustus; and, having met afterwards guinary scenes that followed; and when with different treatment under different he was old he saw the proscriptions of emperors, sometimes favourable, some- Antony and Octavius. Yet, though Citimes harsh, and never more severe than cero and a multitude more of the best under Vespasian, their oppressions were men perished, he had the good fortune to at le'ngth relieved by the virtuous Nerva survive every danger. Nor did he seek and "Trajan.
a safety for himself alone: bis virtue so Mankind, during the interval which he recommended him to the leaders of every gan from Nerva, and which extended to side, that he was able to save not himself the death of tbat best of emperors, Marcus alone, but the lives and fortunes of many Anto ninus, felt a respite from those evils of his friends. which a they had so severely felt before, and When we look to this amiable characwhich they felt so severely revived under ter, we may well suppose, that it was not Com:modus and his wretched successors. merely for amusement that he chose to
Athens, during the above golden pe- live at Athens; but rather that, by residriod, enjoyed more than all others the ge- ing there, he might so far realize philosoneral felicity, for she found in Adrian so phy, as to employ it for the conduct of gene rous a benefactor, that her citizens life, and not merely for ostentation. could hardly help esteeming him a second Another person, during a better period foup der. He restored their old privi- (that I mean between Nerva and Marcus lege s, gave them new; repaired their an- Antoninus), was equally celebrated for ciep .t buildings, and added others of his his affection to this city. By this person
Marcus Antoninus, although he I mean Herodes Atticus, who acquired did not do so much, still continued to the last name from the same reasons for she w them his benevolent attention. which it had formerly been given to Pom
If from this period we turn our eyes ponius. ba ck, we shall find, for centuries before, We have remarked already, that vicisthi at Athens was the place of education, situdes befal both men and cities, and ng it only for Greeks, but for Romans. changes too often happen from prosper
Ous to adverse. Such was the state of equalled the truth, the accuracy, and the Athens, under the successors of Alexan. elegance of Mr. Stuart, who, after having ander, and so on from Sylla down to the resided there between three and four years, time of Augustus. It shared the same has given such plans and elevations of the hard fate with the Roman empire in ge- capital buildings now standing, together neral, upon
the accession of Commodus. with learned comments to elucidate every At length, after a certain period, the part, that be seems, as far as was possible Barbarians of the North began io pour into for the power of description, to have rethe South. Rome was taken by Alaric, stored the city to its ancient splendour. and Athens was besieged by the same. He has not only given us the greatest Yet here we are informed (at least we outlines and their measures, but separate learn so from history) that it was miracu- measures and drawings of the minuier delously saved by Minerva and Achilles. corations; so that a British artist may (if The goddess, it seems, and the hero, both he please) follow Phidias, and build in of them appeared, compelling the invader Britain as Phidias did at Athens. to raise the siege.
Harris. Spon, speaking of Attica, says, that $ 209. The Account given by Synesius of the very peasants polished.'' Speaking of
the road near Athens was pleasing, and Athens, and its subsequent History.
the Athenians in general, he says of them Synesius, who lived in the fifth century, _“ ils ont une politesse d'esprit naturelle, visited Athens, and gives, in his epistles, et beaucoup d'adresse dans toutes les afan account of his visit
. Its lustre appears faires, qu'ils entrepreonent.”. at that time to have been greatly dimi- Wheeler, who was Spon's fellow-tranished. Among other things he informs veller, says as follows, when he and his us, that the celebrated portico or colon- company approached Athens : “ We benade, the Greek name of which gave name gan now to think ourselves in a more civito the sect of Stoics, had, by an oppres- lized country than we had yet passed; for sive pro-consul, been despoiled of its fine not a shepherd that we met, but bid us pictures; and that, on this devastation, it welcome, and wished us a good journey.” had been forsaken by those philosophers. p. 335. Speaking of the Athenians, he
In the thirteenth century, when the adds, “ This must with great truth be said Grecian empire was cruelly oppressed by of them, their bad fortune hath not been the crusaders, and all things in confusion, able to take from them what they have by Athens was besieged by one Segurus Leo, nature, that is, much subtlety or wit.” who was unable to take it; and, aster p. 347. And again. “ The Athenians, that, by a Marquis of Montserrat, to notwithstanding the long possession that whom it surrendered.
barbarism hath had of this place, seem to Its fortune after this was various ; and be much more polished, in point of manit was sometimes under the Venetians, ners and conversation, than any other in sometimes under the Catalonians, till Ma- these parts; being civil, and of respectful homet the Great made himself master of behaviour to all, and highly complimental Constantinople. This fatal catastrophe in their discourse." p. 356. (which happened near two thousand years Stuart says of the present Athenians, after the time of Pisistratus) brought what Spon and Wheeler said of their foreAthens, and with it all Greece, into the fathers; - he found in them the same adhands of the Turks, under whose despotic dress, the same natural acuteness, though yoke it has continued ever since. severely curbed by their despotic masters."
The city from this time has been occa- One custom I cannot omit. He tells me, sionally visited, and descriptions of it pub- that frequently at their convivial meetings, lished by different travellers. Wheeler one of the company takes what they now was there along with Spon, in the time of call a lyre, though it is rather a species of our Charles the Second, and both of them guitar, and after a short prelude on the inhave published curious and valuable nar- strument, as if he were waiting for inspiratives. Others, as well natives of this ration, accompanies his instrumental music island as foreigners, have been there since, with his voice, suddenly chanting some exand some have given (as Mons. Le Roy) tempore verses, which seldom exceed two specious publications of what we are to or three distichs; that he then delivers the suppose they saw. None however have lyre to his neighbour, who, after he has
done the same, delivers it to another; and it cannot fail being instructive, since went that so the lyre circulates, till it has past view through these the interior of human round the table.
nature. "Tis by these we perceive what sort Nor can I forget his informing me, that, of animal man is: so that while not only notwithstanding the various fortunes of Europeans are distinguished from Asiatics, Athens, as a city, Attica was still famous but English from French, French from Itafor olives, and Mount Hymettus for honey. lians, and (what is still more) every indiHuman institutions perish, but nature is vidual from his neighbour; we view at the permanent.
Harris. same time one nature, which is common to
them all. $ 210. Anecdote of the Modern GreeKS.
Horace informs us that a drama, wbere I shall quit the Greeks, after I have re- the sentiments and manners are well prelated a short narrative, a narrative, so far served, will please the audience more than curious, as it helps to prove, that even a pompous fable where they are wanting. among the present Greeks, in the day of Perhaps what is true in dramatic composervitude, the remembrance of their an- sition, is no less true in historical. cient glory is not totally extinct.
Plutarch, among the Greek historians, When the late Mr. Anson (Lord An- appears in a peculiar manner to have meson's brother) was upon his travels in the rited this praise. East, be hired a vessel to visit the isle of
Nor ought I to omit (as I shall soon reTenedos. His pilot, an old Greek, as they fer to thein) some of our best Monkish were sailing along, said with some satis- historians, though prone upon occasion to faction, “ There 'twas our fleet lay.” Mr. degenerate into the incredible. Anson demanded, “What fleet?"" What often lived during the times which they fleet!" replied the old man (a little piqued described, 'ıwas natural they should paint at the question)“ why our Grecian fileet the life and the manners which they saw. at the siege of Troy*." Ibid.
Ibid. $211. On the different Modes of History. $ 212. Concerning natural Beauty ; ils The modes indeed of history appear to
Ideu the same in all times—T'HESSALIAN be different. There is a mode which we
Tempe- Taste of Virgil and Homay call historical declamation : a mode,
RACE-of Milton, in describing Pawhere the author, dwelling little upon facts,
radise-exhibited of late years first in indulges himself in various and copious re
Pictures—thence transferred to English flections.
Gardens-not wanting to the enlightenWhatever good (if any) may be derived
ed Few of the middle Age-proved in from this method, it is not likely to give
LELAND, PETRARCH, and SANNAZAus much knowledge of facts.
RIUS—Comparison between the younger Another mode is, that which I call
Cyrus, and Philip Le Bel of France.
general or rather public history; a mode Let for a moment from the ele. abundant in facts, where treaties and alli- gant works of Art, to the more elegant ances, battles and sieges, marches and re- works of Nature. The two subjects are treats, are accurately detailed ; together so nearly allied, that the same taste usually with dates, descriptions, tables, plans, relishes them both. and all the collateral helps both of chrono- Now there is nothing more certain, logy and geography
than that the face of inanimate nature has In this, no doubt, there is utility: yet been at all times captivating. The vulgar, the sameness of the events resembles not a indeed, look no farther than to scenes of little the sameness of human bodies. One culture, because all their views merely head, two shoulders, two legs, &c. seem terminate in utility. They only remark,
, equally to characterise an European and that 'tis fine barley; that 'tis rich clover; an African; a native of old Rome, and a as an ox or an ass, if they could speak, native of modern.
would inform us. But the liberal have A third species of history still behind, nobler views; and though they give to is that which gives a sample of sentiments culture its due praise, they can be delightand manners.
ed with natural beauties, where culture was If the account of these last be faithful, never known.
* This story was told the author, Mr. Harris, by Mr. Anson himself.
Ages ago they have celebrated with en- Wantou'd as in her prime, and play'd at will
Her virgin fancies, pouring forth more sweet, thusiastic rapture, “ a deep retired vale
Wild above rule or art, enormous bliss! “ with a river rushing through it; a vale
IV. 292. “ having its sides formed by two immense " and opposite mountains, and those sides The painters in the preceding century “ diversified by woods, precipices, rocks, seem to have selt the power of these ele. - and romantic caverns." Such was the ments, and to have transferred them into scene produced by the river Peneus, as it their landscapes with such amazing force, ran between the mountains Olympus and that they appear not so much to have fol. Ossa, in that well known vale the Thessa- lowed as to have emulated nature. Claude lian 'Tempè.
de Lorraine, the Poussins, Salvator Rosa, Virgil and Horace, the first for taste and a few more, may be called superior among the Romans, appear to have been artists in this exquisite taste. enamoured with the beauties of this cha- Our gardens in the mean time were racter. Horace prayed for a villa where tasteless and insipid. Those who made there was a garden, a rivulet, and above them thought the farther they wandered these a little grove:
from nature, the nearer they approached
the sublime. Unfortunately, where they Hortus ubi et lecto vicious jugis aquæ fons, travelled, no sublime was to be found; Et paulùm sylvæ super his foret.
Sat. VI. 2.
and the farther they went, the farther they
left it behind. Virgil wished to enjoy rivers and woods, But perfection, alas! was not the work and to he hid under immense shade in the of a day. Many prejudices were to be recool valleys of mount Hæmus
moved; many gradual ascents to be made;
ascents from bad to good, and from good O! qui me gelidis in vallibus Hæmi
to better, before the delicious amenities Sistat, et ingenti ramorum prolegat umhrâ ?
of a Claude or a Poussin could be rivalled
in a Stourhead, a Hagley, or a Stow; or The great elements of this species of
the tremendous charms of a Salvator Rosa beauty, according to these principles, were be equalled in the scenes of á Piercefield, water, wood, and uneven ground; to which
or a Mount Edgecumb. may be added a fourth, that is to say,
Not however to forget the subject of our lawn. 'Tis the happy mixture of these
— four that produces every scene of natural inquiry. Though it was not before the beauty, as 'uis a more mysterious mixture
present century, that we established a of other elements (perhaps as simple, and this ins:ant are but learning it from us;
chaster taste; though our neighbours at not more in number) that produces a world or universe.
and though to the vulgar every where it Virgil and Horace having been quoted,
is totally incomprehensible (be they vul
in rank, or vulgar in capacity): yet, we may quote, with equal truth, our great even in the darkest periods we have been countryman, Milton. Speaking of the Howers of Paradise, he calls them flowers, thought to have been lost, we shall still
treating of, periods wben taste is often --which not nice Art
discover an enlightened few, who were by In beds and curious knots, but Nature boon no means insensible to the power of these Pours forth profuse un bill, and dale, and plain.
beauties. P. L. IV.245.
How warmly does Leland describe Soon after this he subjoins
Guy's Cliff; Sannazarius his villa of Mer
gillina; and Petrarch, his favourite Vauthis was the place,
cluse! A happy rural seat of various view.
Take Guy's Cliff from Leland in his He explains this variety, by recounting the owo old English, mixt with Latin - It is lawns, the flocks, the hillocks, the valleys,
a place meet for the Muses: there is sythe grots, the waterfalls, the lakes, &c. &c.
“ lence: a praty wood; antra in vivo saxo And in another book, describing the ap
“ (grottos in the living rock;) the river proach of Raphael, he informs us, that
“ rolling over the stones with a praty ibis divine messenger passed
His Latin is more elegant
“ Nemusculum ibidem opacum, fontes li--through groves of myrrh, And dow'sing odours, cassia, nard, and balm, s muscosa, rivi levis et per saxa decursus
“quidi et gemmei, prata, florida, antra A wilderness of sweets; for nature here
parts of his
“ nec non solitudo et quies Musis amicis- magnitude, dividing, as it runs, the “ sima.” – Vol. iv. p. 66.
" meadows beneath, and winding through Mergillina, the villa of Sannazarius, “ the precipices that impend from above." near Naples, it thus sketched in different This is an imperfect sketch of that poems:
spot, where Petrarch spent bis time with Exciso scopulo, fluctus unde aurea canos
so much delight, as to say that this alone Despiciens, celso se culinine Mergilline
was life to him, the rest but a state of puAttollit, nautisque procul venientibus offert. nishment.
Sanoaz. De partu Virgin. I. 25. In the two preceding narratives I seem Rupis O! sacræ, pelagique custos,
to see an anticipation of that taste for naVilla, Nympharum custos et propinquæ
tural beauty, which now appears to flouDoridos
rish through Great Britain in such perfecTu mihi solos nemorum recessus
tion. It is not to be doubted that the Das, et hærentes per opaca lauros Saxa : Tu fontes, aganippedumque
owner of Mergillina would have been Antra recludis.
charmed with Mount Edgecumb: and the Ejusd. Epigr. I. 2. owner of Vaucluse have been delighted
with Piercefield. -quæque iu primis mihi grata ministrat Otia, Musarumque cavas per saxa latebras,
When we read in Xenophon, that the Mergillina; novos fundunt ubi citria flores. younger Cyrus had with his own hand Citria, Medorum sacros referentia lucos. planted trees for beauty, we are not sur
Ejusd. De partu Virgin. III. sub fin. prised, though pleased with the story, as De Fonte Mergillino.
the age was polished, and Cyrus an accomEst mihi rivo vitreus perepui
plished prince. But when we read, that Fons, arenosum prope litius, unde
in the beginning of the 14th century, a Sæpè descendens sibi nauta rores.
king of France (Philip le Bel) should make Haurit amicos, &c. Ejusd. Epigr. II. 36. it penal to cut down a tree, qui a este gardè
pour sa beautè, 'which had been preserved It would be difficult to translate these for its beauty;' though we praise the law, elegant morsels. It is sufficient to express we cannot help being surprised, that the what they mean collectively—“ that the prince should at such a period have been “ villa of Mergillina had solitary woods;
so far enlightened.
Harris, “ had groves of laurel and citron ; bad “ grottos in the rock, with rivulets and
V 213. The Character of the Man of springs; and that from its losty situa
Business often united with, and adorned " tion it looked down
by, that of the Scholar and Philosopher, “ commanded an extensive prospect.' Philosophy, taking its name from the
It is no wonder that such a villa should love of wisdom, and having for its end enamour such an owner. So strong was the investigation of truth, has an equal rehis affection for it, that when, during the gard both to practice and speculation, in subsequent wars in Italy, it was demo- as much as truth of every kind is similar lished by the imperial troops, this unfor- and congenial. Hence we find that some tunate event was supposed to have hasten- of the most illustrious actors upon the ed his end.
great theatre of the world have been enVaucluse (Vallis Clausa) the favourite gaged at times in philosophical speculation. retreat of Petrarch, was a romantic scene, Pericles, who governed Athens, was the not far from Avignon.
disciple of Anaxagoras; Epaminondas “ It is a valley, having on each hand, spent his youth in the Pythagorean as you enter, immense cliffs, but closed school; Alexander the Great had Ăristoup at one of its ends by a semicircular tle for his preceptor; and Scipio made
ridge of them; from which incident it Polybius bis companion and friend. Why “ derives its name. One of the most stu- need I mention Cicero, or Cato, or Bru
pendous of these cliffs stands in the front tus? The orations, the epistles, and the
of the semicircle, and has at its foot an philosophical works of the first, shew him “ opening into an immense cavern. With- sufficiently conversant both in action and " in the most retired and gloomy part of contemplation. So eager was Cato for " this cavern is a large oval bason, the knowledge, even when surrounded with "production of nature, filled with pellu- business, that he used to read philosophy $ cid and unfathomable water; and from in the senate-house, while the senate was
this reservoir issues a river of respectable assembling ; and as for the patriot Bru