great tragedy which primevally was here enacted. The forums are standing just as they stood when the lake of fire was poured upon the devoted city. The temples and their altars-strange illustrations of former worship-stand side by side with the baker shops and taverns. Barber shops and theatres, baths and tombs, are here-an unwritten history, a book of marvels, which the fire of the mountain has bound with its clasps of stone, to be pondered eighteen hundred years after by a wondering world.

The ride to this city of fire lies along the shore of the bay. The Apennines bound the vision upon the east; and between them and Naples lies the volcanic fountain. The city of Pompeii is upon the other side of the mountain, occupying a great plain. It was discovered in 1750 by peasants working in a vineyard. About one-third of it is uncovered; enough to show that the arts of painting, sculpture and poetry flourished greatly in the midst of as luxurious and wicked a people as ever were permitted to fester under heaven. What I saw has never been written, what I saw is evidence more than enough, even to a sense of disgust, of the deepest stains of sin, and the deepest depths of degeneracy. Sodom and Gomorrah were no doubt rank with iniquity. Pompeii, it seems to me, met with a similar fate for similar profligacy and corruption. No one (unless it be ladies, to whom such sights are not permitted) can go through these streets, look at the signs, examine the paintings and statues, without feeling that God took upon himself the office of Avenger, and used that mountain of lava as the instru


We entered upon our researches just outside the walls of Pompeii near some stables and tombs. The inscriptions tell, in very plain Latin, the story of the dead. We examined wells, the stones of which are worn with ropes, as if just used yesterday. Similar appearances along the curbing of the city, indicate places for hitching horses. Ovens like our own, in which bread was found rather well done, and which we saw to-day at

the Museum-were scattered about. The stones for grinding and working the dough were very curious. The different houses are named from some statue or bust found in them, as the house of Cicero, or of Sallust, or of Castor and Pollux. The dining rooms, as well as all the other rooms, are painted in yellow and red; and adorned with every variety of figures, mostly nude. Birds, fruits, and foliage in rare perfection ornament the walls. The rooms are all small, and lack ventilation. In nothing is our comfort so superior to the ancients as in this essential to health. The houses are only one story, except that of Diomede, which is two stories. The view on the subsequent page represents one of the villas near an ancient temple whose pillars yet stand. The different places of business can be told by some object found in them; as for instance, a large money, chest indicates the banking house; a figure in the wall (Cupid mending shoes), a shoemaker; the chair, a barber shop, and so on. The Pantheon with its twelve gods was found in fine order, surrounded by its forum; while the Temple of Isis, with the altar for the sacrifice and even the hole for the blood, with its Egyptian symbols, and the skeleton of the priest, stands out prominent in the midst of the ruins. This last place has a peculiar interest. In it were found skeletons of priests, who had been dining when overtaken by the eruption. Bones of fowls and fish, remains of eggs, bread and wine, and a garland of flowers were found. Another skeleton leaned against the wall, with the axe of sacrifice in his hands; and still another had escaped, carrying 360 coins of silver in a cloth, but was overwhelmed near the Tragic theatre.

We lunched in a fine old dining-room, assisted by our guides, who liked amazingly to drink the health of us Americans in the Falernian. A jolly old soul was our guide. He was continually twitting us in broken French, about our love of the "anteek." I tried to carry off some trophies, but his vigilance prevented He presented me with a big bug, and tried to catch a lizard for my pocket, remarking that they were "anteeks." Every


thing was exceedingly antique to him. The very flowers and orange-peels took the hue of antiquity. He introduced me to an old gray-haired, one-eyed, soldier, at the gate of the theatre near the house of Diomede, as the brother of Diomede-" an The old soldier chuckled most funnily at the old

anteek." joke.

We visited the amphitheatre, which you may remember was filled at the time of the great eruption, that buried the city, in August A. D. 79. Few skeletons were found in it. It is supposed that most of the inhabitants, including those in the theatres, escaped. Twenty thousand could find egress from the amphitheatre in two minutes and a half; and no wonder, with such a number of corridors and doors. There are 97 places of inlet. It seeems to me that the amphitheatre, of all other places, would receive the first warning. Open at the top-the fiery glare of the visible peak of Vesuvius would flash in upon the gladiatorial scene, while the rumble of the earth beneath would drown the loudest roar of the beasts in their subterranean dens, and startle the people from their spell of pleasure. There were about 300 skeletons found in Pompeii. Those of the soldiers in the barracks, and of seventeen persons, in a country-house whither they had fled for refuge, as well as the skeleton of the mother with her child in arms, are preserved in the studii of the Museum. As we walked upon the top of the amphitheatre, the sun of Italy was sinking in pink, orange and purple. That most beautiful of all skies seemed deep and full of the mellow lustre, weaving its witchery over ruin and mountain.

We visited another theatre. It was the favorite of the poets. It seemed as perfect as if but yesternight,

"The cothurns trod majestic

Down the deep Iambic lines,

And the rolling anapestic

Curled like vapor over shrines.”

Indeed every point of Pompeii speaks of the cultivation of dramatic poetry. Paintings of masks and of actors are abun

dant. But had Pompeii one poet, whose imagination-as it revelled in the paintings, statues and groves, the theatres and forums, the isles of the beautiful bay and the rock-bound villas of the Apennines-ever dreamed of the great Drama, whose persona were the elements, and whose unity was as unbroken as its destiny was terrific? Bulwer has lifted the curtain, and displayed the scenes of that drama. Has his vivid imagination even, done justice to the awful whelming which God poured upon this seat of art and luxury?

The soft twilight breeze creeps gently over the worn and desolated streets. A trembling and a fear rustles past on its wing, as we gaze upward to the dread mount whose hidden fires may again play the same tragedy upon unconscious Naples, now decked in her festal robes and illuminated with golden lights.

While endeavoring to make out an inscription before the stage of the theatre, we were startled at a wild actor, who leaped from behind the scenes, and held us in comic wonder for some ten minutes, by some fragments of a comic play. His contortions of face, and his gyrations in the dance, added grotesqueness to the scene. It seems that our guide Antonia had slipped him in front to surprise and regale us. I never heard such a fiddling twang to a human voice before. enough—as oddly as Punch himself. with a stick; and at the conclusion jumped into the chorus, with as much gusto as ever the Grecian chorus did under the spell of Eschylus. He danced it daintily, until a jerk of the body and a doff of the cap, which adroitly caught the expected coinended this specimen of the "antique."

He rung its changes oddly
He played a mimic flute

As a lawyer I visited the tribunal, where our respectable fraternity-if any such were permitted in so wicked a placewere wont to congregate. The seat of the judges was upon a forum, immediately over the prison cells, from whose gloom the prisoners could hear their own doom. An arrangement of the kind should commend itself to our civilized communities. It would save our courts much time in sending for, and remanding prisoners.

As we wend our way homeward, a heavy cloud, betokening, rain, enshrouds the apex of Vesuvius. All other parts of the horizon are clear and starry. A silence "deep as that between the trumpet summons and the judgment" sleeps in awe above. The very obscurity of the fount of fire, deepens the gloom and awe. It reminds us of the words of Festus; Obscurity hath many a sacred use. The sacred use of Vesuvius, I as firmly believe, as I believe in God's retribution, has been to punish godless profligacy. Is its use wholly set aside? Time may tell.

As we ride along under the illuminated garlands and altars, we perceive little shell fountains almost invisible in the foliage, out of which water is spouted of a sudden, on a crowd of laughing, mischievous rogues, assembled around the railings. Lighthearted Naples-what cares she for yon familiar fountain of fire?

We visited yesterday the tomb of Virgil. Driving down the shore on the western side of the city, we see the tomb above us upon the solid rock, overlooking the bay. To reach it we must take a longer drive. We enter a tunnel, some half a mile long, called the grotto of Posilipo, said to have been made originally by the devil. It bears other marks, however, those of wheel-hubs, all along the sides; the grotto having been cut down time after time to its present level. It is lighted finely. Two carriages can drive abreast in it, and its height is at least 100 feet. With jolly cracks of the whip we dash by the gala people, returning to the city. The grotto rings with their merriment. Soon we are in the country, having passed under the rocky ridge which divides the city from the suburban villas. Altars of red and gold arch the streets. Chestnut venders sing their nuts; soldiers are drinking and gaming; dark-browed citizens are rolling balls on the paves; boys are driving goats into the city; the hemp is rotting in the sun by the road side after the Kentucky style; all these objects pass rapidly by,-to be absorbed in the fine view which opens upon the shore. We stand near

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