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smoot!., vevel path, called Pensacola Avenue. mortality! It is well that fairies and giants Here are numerous forinations of crystallized are powerless in the nineteenth century, else gypsun, but not as beautiful or as various bad the indignant genii of the cave crushed as are found farther on. From various slopes his bones to impalpable powder. and openings, caves above and below are visi- i If you pass behind Satan's Throne, by :: ble. "The Meyca's shrine of this pilgrimage narrow ascending path, you come into a vası is Angelica's Grotto, completely lined and hall where there is nothing but naked rock covered with the largest and richest dog's | This empty dreary place is appropriately calltooth spar. A person who visited the place, ed the Deserted Chamber. Walking along a few years since, laid his sacrilegious hands the verge, you arrive at another avenue, in upon it, while the guide's back was turned to- closing sulphur springs. Here the guide warns wards higi. He coolly demolished a mag- you of the vicinity of a pit, one hundred and niticent mass of spar, sparkling most con- twenty feet deep, in the slape of a saddle spicuously on the very centre of the arch, Stooping over it, and looking upward, you and wrote his own insignificant name in its see an abyss of precisely the same shape over plage. This was his fashion of securing im- your head; a fact which indicates that it be
gan in the upper region, and was merely in the side of which you have a glimpse of a terrupted by this chamber.
small cave, called the Smoke House, because From this, you may enter a narrow and it is hung with rocks perfectly in the shape very tortuous path, called the Labyrinth, of hams. The River Hall descends like the which leads to an immense split, or chasm, slope of a mountain. The ceiling stretches in the rocks. Here is placed a ladder, down away-away-before you, vast and grand as which you descend twenty-five or thirty feet, the firmament at midnight. No one, who and enter a narrow cave below, which brings has never seen this cave, can imagine the exyou to a combination of rock called the Goth- citement, and awe, with which the traveller ic Window. You stand in this recess, while keeps his eye fixed on the rocky ceiling, which, the guided ascends huge cliffs overhead, and gradually revealed in the passing light, conkindles Bengal Lights, by the help of which tinually exhibits some new and unexpected you see, two hundred feet above you, a Goth- feature of sublimity or beauty. ic dome of one solid rock, perfectly overaw One of the most picturesque siglits in the ing in its vastness and height. Below, is an world, is to see a file of men and women abyss of darkness, which no eye but the Eter- passing along these wild and craggy paths nal can fathom. If, instead of descending slowly, slowly—that their lamps may have the ladder, you pass straight alongside the time to illuminate the sky-like ceiling, and gichasm, you arrive at the Bottomless Pit, be- gantic walls; disappearing behind the high yond which no one ever ventured to proceed cliffs, sinking into ravines, their lights shintill 1838. To this fact we probably owe the ing upward through fissures in the rocks ; meagre account given by Lieber, in the En- then suddenly emerging from some abrupt cyclopædia Americana. He says, “ This cave angle, standing in the bright gleam of their is more remarkable for extent, than the va- lamps, relieved against the towering black riety or beauty of its productions; having masses around them. He who could paint none of the beautiful stalactites found in the infinite variety of creation, can alone give many other caves.” For a long period this an adequate description of this marvellous pit was considered bottomless, because, when region. At one side of River Hall is a steep stones were thrown into it, they reverberated precipice, over which you can look down, by and reverberated along the sides, till lost to the aid of blazing missiles, upon a broad, black ear, but seemed to find no resting place. It has sheet of water, eighty feet below, called the since been sounded, and found to be one hun- Dead Sea. This is an awfully, impressive dred and forty feet deep, with a soft muddy place, the sights and sounds of which do not bottom, which returns no noise when a stone easily pass from memory. He who has seen strikes upon it. In 1838, the adventurous it will have it vividly brought before himn by Stephen threw a ladder across the chasm, and Alfieri's description of Filippo: “Only a tranpassed over. There is now a narrow bridge of sient word or act gives us a short and dubitwo planks, with a little railing on each side; ous glimmer, that reveals to us the abysses but as it is impossible to sustain it by piers, of his being; dark, lurid, and terrific, as the travellers must pass over in the centre, one by throat of the infernal pool.” As you pass one, and not touch the railing, lest they dis- along, you hear the roar of invisible waterturb the balance, and overturn the bridge. falls, and at the foot of the slope, the River
This walk brings you into Pensico Avenue. Styx lies before you, deep and black, overHitherto, the path has been rugged, wild, arched with rock. The first glimpse of it and rough, interrupted by steep acclivities, brings to mind the descent of Ulysses into rocks, and big stones; but this avenue has a hell. smooth and level floor, as if the sand had “ Where the dark rock o'erhangs the infernal lake, been spread out by gently flowing waters. And mingling streams eternal murmurs make.' Through this, descending more and more, Across these unearthly waters, the guide you come to a deep arclı, by which you enter can convey but two passengers at once; and the Winding Way; a strangely irregular and these sit motionless in the canoe, with feet zig-zag path, so narrow that a very stout man turned apart, so as not to disturb the balance. could not squeeze through. In some places, Three lamps are fastened to the prow, the the rocks at the sides are on a line with your images of which are reflected in the dismal shoulders, thén piled high over your head; pool. and then again you rise above, and overlook. If you are impatient of delay, or eager for them all, and see them heaped behind you, new adventures, you can leave your companlike the mighty waves of the Red Sea, parted ions lingering about the shore, and cross the for the Israelites to pass through. This toil- Styx by a dangerous bridge of precipices oversome path was evidently made by a rushing, head. In order to do this, you must ascend winding torrent. Toward the close, the wa- a steep cliff and enter a cave above, from an ter not having force enough to make a smooth egress of which you find yourself on the bank bed, has bored a tunnel. This is so low and of the river, eighty feet above its surface. narrow, that the traveller is obliged to stoop commanding a view of those passing in the and squeeze himself through. Suddenly he boat, and those waiting on the shore. Seen passes into a vast hall, called the Great Re. from this height, the lamps in the canoe glare lief; and this leads into the River Hall, at I like fiery eyeballs; and the passengers sitting
THE RIVER STYX. there, so hushed and motionless, look like meet another stream, appropriately called shadows. The scene is so strangely funereal Lethe. The echoes here are absolutely stunand spectral, that it seems as if the Greeks ning. A single voice sounds like a powerful must have witnessed it, before they imagined choir; and could an organ be played, it would Charon con veving ghosts to the dim regions deprive the hearer of his senzes. When you of Pinto. Your companions, thus seen, do have crossed, you enter a liigh level hall, indeed
nained the Great Wall, half a mile of which “Skim along the dusky glades,
| brings you to another river, called the Jordan. Thin airy shoals, and visionary shades."
In crossing this, the rocks, in one place, deIf you turn your eye from the canoe, to the scend so low, as to leave only eighteen inches parties of men and wonien, wbom you left for the boat to pass through. Passengers are waiting on the shore, you will see them, by obliged to double up, and lie on each other's the gleam of their lamps, scattered in pictu- shoulders till this gap is passed. This unresque groups, looming out in bold relief from comfortable position is, however, of short duthe dense darkness around them.
ration, and you suddenly emerge to where When you have passed the Styx, you soon the vault of the cave is more than a hundred
feet high. In the fall of the year, this river | This pass brings you into Wellington's Galoften rises, almost instantaneously, over fifty lery, which tapers off to a narrow point, apfeet above low-water mark; a phenomenon parently the end of the cave in this direction. supposed to be caused by heavy rains from But a ladder is placed on one side by which the upper earth. On this account, autumn you ascend to a small cleft in the rock, through is an unfavorable season for those who wish which you are at onco ushered into a vast to explore the cave throughout. If parties apartment, discovered about two years ago. happen to be caught on the other side of Jor This is the commencement of Cleveland's dan, when the sudden rise takes place, a boat Avenue, the crowning wonder and glory of conveys them, on the swollen waters, to the this subterranean world. At the head of the level of an upper cave, so low that they are ladder, you find yourself surrounded by overobliged to enter on hands and knees, and hanging stalactites, in the form of rich cluscrawl through. This place is called Purga- ters of grapes, transparent to the light, hard tory. People on the other side, aware of as marble, and round and polished, as if done their danger, have a boat in readiness to re- by a sculptor's hand. This is called Mary's ceive them. The guide usually sings while Vineyard; and from it, an entrance to the crossing the Jordan, and his voice is rever- right brings you into a perfectly naked cave, berated by a choir of sweet echoes. The on- whence you suddenly pass into a large hall, ly animals ever found in the cave are fish, with magnificent columns, and rich festoons with which this stream abounds. They are of stalactite, in various forms of beautiful perfectly white, and without eyes; at least, combination. In the centre of this chamber, they have been subjected to a careful scienti- between columns of stalactite, stands a mass fic examination, and no orgau similar to an of stalagmite, shaped like a sarcophagus, in eye can be discovered. It would indeed be a which is an opening like a grave. A Roman useless appendage to creatures that dwell Catholic priest first discovered this, about a for ever in Cimmerian darkness. But, as year ago, and with fervent enthusiasm exusual, the acuteness of one sense is increased claimed, “The Holy Sepulchre !” a name by the absence of another. These fish are which it has since borne. undisturbed by the most powerful glare of To the left of Mary's Vineyard, is an inlight, but they are alarmed at the slightest closure like an arbor, the ceiling and sides of agitation of the water; and it is therefore which are studded with snow-white crystalexceedingly difficult to catch them.
lized gypsum, in the form of all sorts of flowThe rivers of Mammoth Cave were never ers. It is impossible to convey an idea of crossed till 1840. Great efforts have been the exquisite beauty and infinite variety of made to discover whence they come, and these delicate formations. In some places, whither they go. But though the coura- roses and lilies seem cut on the rock, in basgeous Stephen has floated for hours up to his relief; in others, a graceful bell rises on a long chin, and forced his way through the nar- stalk, so slender that it bends at a breath. rowest apertures under the dark waves, so One is an admirable imitation of Indian corn as to leave merely his head a breathing space, in tassel, the silky fibres as fine and flexile as yet they still remain as much a mystery as can be imagined; another is a group of osever—without beginning or end, like eterni-trich plumes, so downy that a zephyr waves ty. They disappear under arches, which, it. In some nooks were little parks of trees, even at the lowest stage of the water, are in others, gracefully curled leaves like the under the surface of it. From an unknown Acanthus, rose from the very bosom of the cause, it sometimes happens in the neighbor- rock. Near this room is the Snow Chamber, hood of these streams, that the figure of a the roof and sides of which are covered with distant companion will apparently loom up, particles of brilliant white gypsum, as if snowto the height of ten or twelve feet, as he ap- balls had been dashed all over the walls. In proaches you. This occasional phenomenon another apartment the crystals are all in the is somewhat frightful, even to the most ra- form of rosettes. In another, called Rebectional observer, occurring as it does in a re- ca's Garland, the flowers have all arranged gion so naturally associated with giants and themselves into wreaths. Each seems to have genii.
| a style of formations peculiar to itself, though From the Jordan, through Silliman's Ave- of infinite variety. Days might be spent in nue, you enter a high, narrow defile, or pass, these superb grottoes, without becoming fain a portion of which, called the Hanging miliar with half their hidden glories. One Rocks, huge masses of stone hang suspended could imagine that some antediluvian giant over your head. At the side of this defile, is bad here imprisoned some fair daughter of a recess, called the Devil's Blacksmith's Shop. earth, and then in pity for her loneliness, had It contains a rock shaped like an anvil, with employed fairies to deck her bowers with all a small inky current running near it, and the splendor of earth and ocean. Like poor quantities of coarse stalagmite scattered about, Amy Robsart, in the solitary halls of Cumprecisely like blacksmith's cinders, called slag. nor. Bengal Lights, kindled in these beautiIn another place, you pass a square rock, co- ful retreats, produce an effect more gorgeous vered with beautiful dog's tooth spar, called than any theatrical representation of fairy. the Mile Stone.
| land; but they sınoke the pure white incrustations, and the guide is therefore very pro- forward. If the growth be a little more rapid perly reluctant to have them used. The re- on one side than on the other, a well-proporflection from the shining walls is so strong, tioned curve will be the result; should the that lamplight is quite sufficient. Moreover, increased action on one side diminish or inthese wonderful formations need to be exa- crease, then all the beauties of the conic and mined slowly and in detail. The universal mixed curves would be produced. The masses glitter of the Lights is worthless in compari- are often evenly and longitudinally striated son. From Rebecca's Garland you come in- | by a kind of columnar structure, exhibiting a to a vast ball, of great height, covered with fascicle of small prisms; and some of these shining drops of gypsum, like oozing water prisms ending sooner than others, give a petrified. In the centre is a large rock, four broken termination of great beauty, similar feet high, and level at top, round which se-to our form of the emblem of the order of veral hundred people can sit conveniently. the star.' The rosettes formed by a mamThis is called Cornelia's Table, and is fre- millary disk surrounded by a circle of leaves, quently used for parties to dine upon. In rolled elegantly outward, are from four inches this hall, and in Wellington's Gallery, are de- to a foot in diameter. Tortuous vines, throwposits of fibrous gypsum, snow-white, dry, ing off curled leaves at every flexure, like the and resembling asbestos. Geologists, who branches of a chandelier, running more than sometimes take up their abode in the cave for a foot in length, and not thicker than the weeks, and other travellers who choose to re- finger, are among the varied frost-work of main over night, find this a very pleasant and these grottoes; common stalactites of carbocomfortable bed.
nate of lime, although beautiful objects, lose Cornelia's Table is a safe centre, from which by contrast with these ornaments, and dwindle individuals may diverge on little exploring into mere clumsy, awkward icicles. Besides expeditions ; for the paths here are not these, there are tufts of hair salt,' native labyrinthine, and the hall is conspicuous from sulphate of magnesia, depending like adhering various neighboring points of view. In most snowballs from the roof, and periodically regions of the cave, it is hazardous to lose detaching themselves by their own increasing sight of the guide. If you think to walk weight. Indeed, the more solid alabaster straight ahead, even for a few rods, and then ornaments become at last overgrown, and torn short round and return to him, you will fall upon the floor of the grotto, which was find it next to impossible to do so. So many found covered with numbers quite entire, paths come in at acute angles; they look so besides fragments of others broken by the much alike; and the light of a lamp reveals | fall.” them so imperfectly, that none but the practis- A distinguished geologist has said that he ed eye of a guide can disentangle their wind- believed Cleveland's Avenue, two miles in ings. A gentleman who retraced a few steps, length, contained a petrified form of every near the entrance of the cave, to find his hat, vegetable production on earth. If this be too lost his way so completely, that he was not large a statement, it is at least safe to say that found for forty-eight hours, though twenty or its variety is almost infinite. Amongst its thirty people were in search of bim. Parties other productions, are large piles of Epsom are occasionally mustered and counted, to see salts, beautifully crystallized. Travellers have that none are missing. Should such an acci- shown such wanton destructiveness in this dent happen, there is no danger, if the wan- great temple of Nature-mutilating beautiful derer will remain stationary; for he will soon columns, knocking off spar, and crushing delibe missed, and a guide sent after him. From cate flowers—that the rules are now very the hall of congealed drops, you may branch strict. It is allowable to touch nothing, exoff into a succession of small caves, called cept the ornaments which have loosened and Cecilia's Grottoes. Here nearly all the beau- dropped by their own weight. These are oftiful formations of the surrounding caves, such ten hard enough to bear transportation. as grapes, flowers, stars, leaves, coral, &c., After you leave Alma's Bower, the cave may be found so low, that you can conve- again becomes very rugged. Beautiful comniently examine their minutest features. One binations of gypsum and spar may still be of these little recesses, covered with sparkling seen occasionally overhead ; but all round you spar, set in silvery gypsum, is called Diamond rocks and stones are piled up in the wildest Grotto. Alma's Bower closes this series of manner. Through such scraggy scenery, you wonderful formations. As a whole, they are come to the Rocky Mountains, an irregular called Cleveland's Cabinet, in honor of Pro- pile of massive rocks, from 100 to 150 feet fessor Cleveland, of Bowdoin College. Silli- high. From these you can look down into man calls this admirable series, the Alabaster Dismal Hollow - deep below deep—the most Caves. He says: “I was at first at a loss to frightful looking place in the whole cave. On account for such beautiful formations, and the top of the mountain is a beautiful rotunespecially for the elegance of the curves ex- da, called Croghan Hall, in honor of the prohibited. It is however evident that the sub- prietor. Stalactites surround this in the richstances have grown from the rocks, by incre-est fringe of icicles, and lie scattered about ments or additions to the base ; the solid the walls in all shapes, as if arranged for a parts already formed being continually pushed / museum. On one side is a stalagmite forma