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Title: A July Holiday in Saxony, Bohemia, and Silesia
Author: White, Walter
Language: English
As this book started as an ASCII text book there are no pictures available.

*** Start of this LibraryBlog Digital Book "A July Holiday in Saxony, Bohemia, and Silesia" ***

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Internet Archive)

Transcriber's Note:

  Inconsistent hyphenation and spelling in the original document have
  been preserved. Obvious typographical errors have been corrected.

  Italic text is denoted by _underscores_.

  Listed Errata were corrected.

  Mis-spellings of non-English words were retained as printed.
    Readers noted the following:
    Grenzbäuden should be Grenbauden
    Kellnerinn should be Kellnerin.

  On page 144, the phrase starting "and perhaps for such a"
    seems to be missing words.


  [Illustration: Castle]




     "Ne wolde he call upon the Nine;
     'I wote,' he sayde, 'they be but jyltes:'
     Ne covet when he wander'd forth
     Icarus' wings--ne traytor stiltes."

     _Old Author._


     [_The right of Translation is reserved._]




     What the Bookseller said -- A Walk in Frankfort -- What the
     Portress said -- Glimpses of Landscapes -- Forest and River
     -- Würzburg -- Stein Wine -- View from the Citadel-hill -- A
     Change of Bedrooms -- Coming to an Understanding with the
     Reader -- Good Night!                                           1


     Würzburg -- The University -- Red, Green, and Orange Caps
     -- The Marienkapelle -- The Market -- The Cathedral -- The
     Palace -- Spacious Cellars -- A Professor's Hospitality --
     To Bamberg -- Frost -- Hof -- A Shabby Peace -- The
     Arch-Poisoner -- Dear Bread -- A Prime Minister Hanged --
     Altenburg -- The Park -- The Castle -- Reminiscences and
     Antiquities -- The Chapel -- The Princes' Vault -- Wends --
     Costumes in the Market-place -- Female Cuirassiers -- More
     about the Wends -- Grossen Teich -- The Plateau -- The
     Cemetery -- Werdau                                             11


     Origin of Altenburg -- Prosperous Burghers -- A Princely
     Crime -- Hussite Plunderers -- Luther's Visits -- French
     Bonfire -- Electress Margaret's Dream -- Kunz von
     Kauffungen -- "Don't burn the Fish" -- A Conspiracy --
     Midnight Robbers -- Two Young Princes Stolen -- The Flight
     -- The Alarm -- The Köhler -- The Rescue -- Kunz Beheaded
     -- The _Triller's_ Reward, and what a famous Author said
     concerning it                                                  25


     Zwickau -- Beer Bridge -- Beer Mount -- The Triller Estate
     -- Triller Bierbrauerei -- The Braumeister -- The Beer --
     Four Hundredth Anniversary of the Prinzenraub -- A Friendly
     Clerk -- "You will have a Tsigger?" -- Historical Portraits
     -- A Good Name for a Brewery -- A Case of Disinterestedness
     -- Up the Church Tower -- The Prospect -- Princess
     Schwanhildis -- The Fire-god Zwicz -- Luther's Table -- The
     Church -- Geysers -- Petrified Beds -- Historical Houses --
     Walk to Oberhaselau -- The Card-players -- The Wagoners        33


     Across the Mulde -- Scenery -- Feet _versus_ Wheels --
     Villages -- English Characteristics -- Timbered Houses --
     Schneeberg -- Stones for Lamps -- The Way Sunday was Kept
     -- The Church -- A Wagon-load of Music -- A Surly Host --
     Where the Pepper Grows -- Eybenstock -- Neustädl -- Fir
     Forests -- Wildenthal -- Four Sorts of Beer -- Potato
     Dumplings -- Up the Auersberg -- Advertisements -- The
     School -- The Instrument of Order -- "Look at the
     Englishman" -- The Erzgebirge -- The Guard-house -- Into
     Bohemia -- Romish Symbols -- Hirschenstand -- Another
     Guard-house -- Differences of Race -- Czechs and Germans
     -- Shabby Carpentry -- Change of Scenery -- Neudeck --
     Arrive at Carlsbad -- A Glass Boot -- Gossip                   43


     Dr. Fowler's Prescription -- Carlsbad -- "A Matlocky sort
     of a Place" -- Springs and Swallows -- Tasting the Water --
     The Cliffs and Terraces -- Comical Signs -- The Wiese and
     its Frequenters -- Disease and Health -- The Sprudel: its
     Discharge; its Deposit -- The Stoppage -- Volcanic
     Phenomena -- Dr. Granville's Observations -- Care's Rest --
     Dreikreuzberg -- View from the Summit -- König Otto's Höhe
     -- "Are you here for the Cure?" -- Lenten Diet --
     Hirschsprung -- The Trumpeters -- Two Florins for a Bed       61


     Departure from Carlsbad -- Dreifaltigkeits-Kirche --
     Engelhaus -- The Castle -- A Melancholy Village -- Up to
     the Ruins -- An Imperial Visit -- Bohemian Scenery -- On to
     Buchau -- The Inn -- A Crowd of Guests -- Roast Goose --
     Inspiriting Music -- Prompt Waiters -- The Mysterious
     Passport -- The Military Adviser -- How he Solved the
     Mystery -- A Baron in Spite of Himself -- The Baron's
     Footbath -- Lighting the Baron to Bed                          77


     Dawn -- The Noisy Gooseherd -- Geese, for Home Consumption
     and Export -- Still the Baron -- The Ruins of Hartenstein
     -- Glimpses of Scenery and Rural Life -- Liebkowitz --
     Lubenz -- Schloss Petersburg -- Big Rooms -- Tipplers and
     Drunkards -- Wagoners and Peasants -- A Thrifty Landlord --
     Inquisitorial Book -- Awful Gendarme -- Paternal Government
     -- Fidgets -- How it is in Hungary -- Wet Blankets for
     Philosophers -- An Unhappy Peasant                             86


     The Village -- The Peasant again -- The Road-mender --
     Among the Czechs -- Czechish Speech and Characteristics --
     Crosses -- Horosedl -- The Old Cook -- More Praise of
     England -- The Dinner -- A Journey-Companion -- Famous
     Files -- A Mechaniker's Earnings -- Kruschowitz -- Rentsch
     -- More Czechish Characteristics -- Neu Straschitz -- A
     Word in Season from Old Fuller -- The Mechaniker departs       96


     A Talk with the Landlord -- A Jew's Offer -- A Ride in a
     Wagen -- Talk with the Jew -- The Stars -- A Mysterious
     Gun-barrel -- An Alarm -- Stony Ammunition -- The Man with
     the Gun -- The Jew's opinion of him -- Sunrise -- A Walk --
     The White Hill -- A Fatal Field -- Waking up in the Suburbs
     -- Early Breakfasts -- Imperial and Royal Tobacco
     -- Milk-folk -- The Gate of Prague -- A Snappish Sentry --
     The Soldiers -- Into the City -- Picturesque Features and
     crowding Associations -- The Kleinseite -- The Bridge --
     Palaces -- The Altstadt -- Remarkable Streets -- The
     Teinkirche -- The Neustadt -- The Three Hotels                105


     The Hausknecht -- A Place to Lose Yourself --
     Street-Phenomena -- Book-shops -- Glass-wares -- Cavernous
     Beer-houses -- Signs -- Czechish Names -- Ugly Women --
     Swarms of Soldiers -- A Scene on the Bridge -- A Drateñik
     -- The Ugly Passport Clerk -- The Suspension-bridge -- The
     Islands -- The Slopes of the Laurenzberg -- View over Prague
     -- Schools, Palaces, and Poverty -- The Rookery -- The
     Hradschin -- The Courts -- The Cathedral -- The Great Tomb
     -- The Silver Shrine -- Relics -- A Kissed Portrait -- St.
     Wenzel's Chapel -- Big Sigmund -- The Loretto Platz -- The
     Old Towers -- The Hill-top and Hill-foot                      118


     The Tandelmarkt -- Old Men and Boys at Rag Fair -- Jews in
     Prague -- The Judenstadt -- Schools and Synagogues -- Remote
     Antiquity -- Ducal Victims -- Jewish Bravery -- Removal of
     Boundary Wires                                                131


     The Jewish Sabbath -- The Old Synagogue -- Traditions
     concerning it -- The Gloomy Interior -- The Priests -- The
     Worshippers and the Worship -- The Talkers -- The Book of
     the Law -- The Rabbi -- The Startling Gun -- A Birth at
     Vienna -- Departed Glory                                      136


     The Alte Friedhof -- A Stride into the Past -- The Old
     Tombs -- Vegetation and Death -- Haunted Graves -- Ancient
     Epitaph -- Rabbi Löw -- His Scholars -- Symbols of the
     Tribes -- The Infant's Coffin -- The Playground -- From
     Death to Life                                                 141


     The Kolowratstrasse -- Picolomini's Palace -- The Museum --
     Geological Affluence -- Early Czechish Bibles -- Rare Old
     Manuscripts -- Letters of Huss and Ziska -- Tabor Hill --
     Portraits -- Hussite Weapons -- Antiques -- Doubtful
     Hussites in the Market-place -- The Glückliche Entbindung
     -- A Te Deum -- Two Evening Visits -- Bohemian Hospitality
     -- The Gaslit Beer-house                                      146


     Sunday Morning in Prague -- Gay Dresses -- Pleasure-seeking
     Citizens -- Service in the Hradschin Cathedral -- Prayers
     and Pranks -- Fun in the Organ-loft -- Glorious Music -- A
     Spell broken -- Priests and their Robes -- Osculations -- A
     Flaunting Procession -- An Old Topographer's Raptures --
     The Schwarzes Ross -- Flight from Prague -- Lobositz -- Lost
     in a Swamp -- A Storm -- Up the Milleschauer -- After Dark
     -- The Summit -- Mossy Quarters -- The Host's Story           153


     Morning on the Milleschauer -- The Brightening Landscape --
     The Mossy Quarters by Daylight -- Delightful Down-hill Walk
     -- Lobositz again -- The Steam-boat -- Queer Passengers --
     Sprightly Music -- Romantic Scenery -- Hills and Cliffs --
     Schreckenstein -- How the Musicians paid their Fare --
     Aussig -- The Spürlingstein -- Fairer Landscapes -- Elbe
     _versus_ Rhine -- Tetschen -- German Faces -- Women-Waders
     -- The Schoolmaster -- Passport again -- Pretty Country --
     Signs of Industry -- Peasants' Diet -- Markersdorf --
     Rustic Cottages -- Gersdorf -- Meistersdorf -- School --
     Trying the Scholars -- Good Results -- A Byeway --
     Ulrichsthal                                                   162


     A Hospitable Reception -- A Rustic Household -- The
     Mother's Talk -- Pressing Invitations -- A Docile Visitor --
     The Family Room -- Trophies of Industry -- Overheating -- A
     Walk in Ulrichsthal -- A Glass Polisher and his Family --
     His Notions -- A Glass Engraver -- His Skill and Ingenuity
     -- His Earnings -- A Bohemian's Opinion on English Singing
     -- Military Service -- Beetle Pictures -- Glass-making in
     Bohemia -- An Englishman's Forget-me-Not -- The Dinner --
     Dessert on the Hill -- An Hour with the Haymakers --
     Magical Kreutzers -- An Evening at the Wirthshaus --
     Singing and Poetry -- A Moonlight Walk -- The Lovers' Test     174


     More Hospitality -- Farewells -- Cross Country Walk --
     Steinschönau -- The Playbill -- Hayda -- All Glass-workers
     -- Away for the Mountains -- Zwickau -- Gabel --
     Weisskirchen -- A Peasant's Prayer -- Reichenberg --
     Passport again -- Jeschkenpeak -- Reinowitz -- Schlag --
     Neudorf -- A Talk at Grünheid -- Bad Sample of Lancashire
     -- Tannwald -- Curious Rocks -- Spinneries -- Populousness
     -- Przichowitz -- An Altercation -- Heavy Odds -- The
     Englishman Wins -- A Word to the Company                      190


     Stephanshöh -- A Presumptuous Landlord -- Czechs again --
     Stewed Weavers -- Prompt Civilities -- The Iser -- A Quiet
     Vale -- Barrande's Opinion of the Czechs -- Rochlitz -- An
     offshoot from Tyre -- A Happy Landlord -- A Rustic Guide
     -- Hill Paths -- The Grünstein -- Rübezahl's Rose Garden --
     Dreary Fells -- Source of the Elbe -- Solitude and Visitors
     -- The Elbfall -- Stony Slopes -- Strange Rocks --
     Rübezahl's Glove -- Knieholz -- Schneegruben -- View into
     Silesia -- Tremendous Cliffs -- Basalt in Granite -- The
     Landlord's Bazaar -- The Wandering Stone -- A Tragsessel --
     A Desolate Scene -- Rougher Walking -- Musical Surprises --
     Spindlerbaude -- The Mädelstein -- Great Pond and Little
     Pond -- The Mittagstein -- The Riesengrund -- The Last
     Zigzags -- An Inn in the Clouds                               201


     Comforts on the Koppe -- Samples of Germany -- Provincial
     Peculiarities -- Hilarity -- A Couplet worth remembering
     -- Four-bedded Rooms -- View from the Summit -- Contrast of
     Scenery -- The Summit itself -- Guides in Costume --
     Moderate Charges -- Unlucky Farmer -- The Descent --
     Schwarzkoppe -- Grenzbäuden -- Hungarian Wine -- The Way to
     Adersbach -- Forty Years' Experience                          218


     The Frontier Guard-house -- A Volunteer Guide -- A Knave --
     Schatzlar -- Bernsdorf -- A Barefoot Philosopher -- A
     Weaver's Happiness -- Altendorf -- Queer Beer -- A Short Cut
     -- Blunt Manners -- Adersbach -- Singular Rocks -- Gasthaus
     zur Felsenstadt -- The Rock City -- The Grand Entrance --
     The Sugarloaf -- The Pulpit -- The Giant's Glove -- The
     Gallows -- The Burgomaster -- Lord Brougham's Profile --
     The Breslau Wool-market -- The Shameless Maiden -- The
     Silver Spring -- The Waterfall -- A Waterspout -- The
     Lightning Stroke                                              225


     The Echo -- Wonderful Orchestra -- Magical Music -- A _Feu
     de joie_ -- The Oration -- The Voices -- Echo and the
     Humourist -- Satisfying the Guide -- Exploring the
     Labyrinth -- Curious Discoveries -- Speculations of
     Geologists -- Bohemia an Inland Sea -- Marble Labyrinth in
     Spain -- A Twilight View -- After a'                          235


     Baked Chickens -- A Discussion -- Weckelsdorf -- More Rocks
     -- The Stone of Tears -- Death's Alley -- Diana's Bath --
     The Minster -- Gang of Coiners -- The Bohdanetskis -- Going
     to Church -- Another Silesian View -- Good-bye to Bohemia
     -- Schömberg -- Silesian Faces and Costume -- Picturesque
     Market-place -- Ueberschar Hills -- Ullersdorf -- An amazed
     Weaver -- Liebau -- Cheap Cherries -- The Prussian Simplon
     -- Ornamented Houses -- Buchwald -- The Bober -- Dittersbach
     -- Schmiedeberg -- Rübezahl's Trick upon Travellers --
     Tourists' Rendezvous -- The Duellists' Successors --
     Erdmannsdorf -- Tyrolese Colony                               240


     Schnaps and Sausage -- Dresdener upon Berliners -- The
     Prince's Castle at Fischbach -- A Home for the Princess
     Royal -- Is the Marriage Popular? -- View from the Tower --
     Tradition of the Golden Donkey -- Royal Palace at
     Erdmannsdorf -- A Miniature Chatsworth -- The Zillerthal --
     Käse and Brod -- Stohnsdorf -- Famous Beer -- Rischmann's
     Cave -- Prophecies -- Warmbrunn                               250


     The Three Berliners -- Strong Beer -- Origin of Warmbrunn
     -- St. John the Baptist's Day -- Count Schaffgotsch -- A
     Benefactor -- A Library -- Something about Warmbrunn -- The
     Baths -- Healing Waters -- The Allée -- Visitors -- Russian
     Popes -- The Museum -- Trophies -- View of the Mountains --
     The Kynast -- Cunigunda and her Lovers -- Served her right
     -- The Two Breslauers -- Oblatt -- The Baths in the
     Mountains                                                     256


     Hirschberg -- The Officers' Tomb -- A Night Journey --
     Spiller -- Greifenberg -- Changing Horses -- A Royal Reply
     -- A Griffin's Nest -- Lauban -- The Potato Jubilee --
     Görlitz -- Peter and Paul Church -- View from the Tower --
     The Landskrone -- Jacob Böhme -- The Hidden Gold -- A
     Theosophist's Writings -- The Tombs -- The Underground
     Chapel -- A Church copied from Jerusalem -- The Public
     Library -- Loebau -- Herrnhut                                  262


     Head-Quarters of the Moravians -- Good Buildings -- Quiet,
     Cleanliness, and Order -- A Gottesdienst -- The Church --
     Simplicity -- The Ribbons -- A Requiem -- The Service --
     God's-Field -- The Tombs -- Suggestive Inscriptions --
     Tombs of the Zinzendorfs -- The Pavilion -- The Panorama --
     The Herrnhuters' Work -- An Informing Guide -- No Merry
     Voices -- The Heinrichsberg -- Pretty Grounds -- The First
     Tree -- An Old Wife's Gossip -- Evening Service -- A
     Contrast -- The Sisters' House -- A Stroll at Sunset -- The
     Night Watch                                                   269


     About Herrnhut -- Persecutions in Moravia -- A Wandering
     Carpenter -- Good Tidings -- Fugitives -- Squatters on the
     Hutberg -- Count Zinzendorf's Steward -- The First Tree --
     The First House -- Scoffers -- Origin of the Name -- More
     Fugitives -- Foundation of the Union -- Struggles and
     Encouragements -- Buildings -- Social Regulations -- Growth
     of Trade -- War and Visitors -- Dürninger's Enterprise
     -- Population -- Schools -- Settlements -- Missions -- Life
     at Herrnhut -- Recreations -- Festivals -- Incidents of War
     -- March of Troops -- Praise and Thank-Feasts                  279


     A Word with the Reader -- From Herrnhut to Dresden -- A
     Gloomy City -- The Summer Theatre -- Trip to the Saxon
     Switzerland -- Wehlen -- Uttewalde Grund -- The Bastei --
     Hochstein -- The Devil's Kettle -- The Wolfschlucht -- The
     Polenzthal -- Schandau -- The Kuhstall -- Great Winterberg
     -- The Prebischthor -- Herniskretschen -- Return to Dresden
     -- To Berlin -- English and German Railways -- The Royal
     Marriage Question -- Speaking English -- A Dreary City --
     Sunday in Berlin -- Kroll's Garden -- Magdeburg --
     Wittenberg -- Hamburg -- A-top of St. Michael's -- A Walk to
     Altona -- A Ride to Horn -- A North Sea Voyage -- Narrow
     Escape -- Harness and Holidays                                291

     INDEX                                                         303


     Page 87, last line, for visitors, read villagers.
       "  153, 11 lines from bottom, for H_raba's_, read _Hraba's_.
       "  153, 11 lines from bottom, for P_strossischer_, read
       "  172, last line of text, for Heilen, read Heiles.





     What the Bookseller said -- A Walk in Frankfort -- What the
     Portress said -- Glimpses of Landscapes -- Forest and River
     -- Würzburg -- Stein Wine -- View from the Citadel-hill --
     A Change of Bedrooms -- Coming to an Understanding with the
     Reader -- Good Night!

"How happens it," I said to a bookseller in the _Zeil_, "that a map of
Bohemia is not to be had in all Frankfort?"

"How it happens?" he answered, with a knowing smile: "because no one
ever goes to Bohemia."

He searched and searched, as did a dozen of his fraternity whom I had
previously visited, and found maps in number of Switzerland, Tyrol,
Thuringia, Franconia, Turkey even, and Montenegro; but not the one I

"Such a thing is never asked for," he said, deprecatingly. "Suppose
you go to Franconia instead."

All at once he bethought himself of an inner closet, and there he
discovered a map of Bohemia; but not a travelling map: an overcrowded
sheet that confused the eye, and promised but little assistance for
the byeways. However, under the circumstances, I took it as better
than none.

"You will not get the map you want till you arrive at Prague," was the
sort of encouragement I got some twenty-four hours afterwards from a
Bohemian Professor in the Medical School at Würzburg.

I saw Frankfort under all the charm of a first visit. I perambulated
the narrow streets, and the _Judengasse_, where dwell not a few of the
nine thousand Jewish residents; and stood long enough on the bridge
that bestrides the muddy Main to note the ancient towers, and the bits
of antiquity peeping up here and there in the city and the
Sachsenshausen suburb--contrasted by the modern look of the spacious
quays. And of course I saw the house in which Goethe was born, and
Dannecker's Ariadne, and the Römer, that relic of the olden time,
crowded with reminiscences of the Empire. You may see the whole line
of Emperors in panels round the wainscot of the stately hall on the
first floor; some grim warriors in plate and mail; some in scholar's
gown; some in slashed sleeves and tight hosen, and some in velvet
robes. Here, after the crown had been placed on their heads in the
adjacent cathedral, they went through certain formal ceremonies with
cumbrous pomp and held their festival, as may be read in the vivid
descriptions of Goethe's _Autobiography_.

Having glanced at the imperial effigies from Conrad down to Francis,
and at the scene from the balcony outside, I dropped half a franc into
the hand of the lady portress, and had crossed the landing, when she
came tripping after me, and, with an air of lofty pity, returned the
coin, requesting me to "give it to a beggar."

The gentleman in charge of the Ariadne had made me a polite bow for a
similar fee; so I complied with the lady's request, and gave the piece
of silver among five beggars, each of whom favoured me with a blessing
in return.

At noon, on the 3rd of July, I left Frankfort for Würzburg. The
landscape at first is tame, and you will have to watch closely, in
more senses than one, as the train speeds across, for the scenes and
objects that relieve it. There are glimpses of the Taunus mountains;
of Wilhelmsbad, embowered in a pleasant wood; of Hanau, a dark-red
town, where the dark-red sandstone station is enlivened by Virginian
creeper running gracefully up the columns; and of memorable
battlefields. And of a dark-red mill, in a green grassy hollow, with
its dripping wheel; and in the middle of the garden a globe of fire
that dazzles your eye, and is nothing other than a carboy inverted on
a stake, after the Dutch manner, to serve as a mirror, in which may be
seen a panorama of the neighbourhood. And everywhere women cutting
down the rye, wearing bright red kerchiefs on their heads that rival
the poppies in splendour.

Beyond Aschaffenburg the country improves. Wooded hills alternate with
lengthy slopes of vines, deep shady coombs, and leafy valleys, where
brooks frolic along in frequent windings, and villages nestle, and
gray church spires shoot above the tree-tops. Then parties of
woodcutters, well armed with axes and wedges, enter the train, and
each man lights his pipe, and they talk of their craft among
themselves in a rustic dialect. And the train dashes into the forest
of Spessart, and under the hills, winding hither and thither between
miles of trees, the remains, as is said, of that great Hercynian
forest which schoolboys read about in their Latin studies. The nursery
of them that overthrew Rome; and one of the haunts of Freedom before
she took refuge in the mountains, and in a certain island of the sea.

At Lohr, a town prettily situate on the Main, the railway road and
river come near together, and the frequent windings of the stream
brighten the landscape. We saw the steamer labouring upwards on her
two days' trip from Frankfort to Würzburg. Then a village where the
Saal falls in, and more and more vines, and old walls gay with yellow
stonecrop, and on the right the ruin of Karlstadt, and by-and-by
Würzburg comes in sight, and our five hours' journey is over.

Bavarian art attracts and gratifies your eye as you alight. The
station is an elegant structure in the Pompeiian style, ingeniously
contrived for the purposes of the railway and post-office, and yet to
preserve the architectural character. An impatient traveller might
well beguile the time by admiring the proportions, the colouring, and
the tasteful decorations along the colonnades. The building forms one
side of a square in the newest quarter of the town.

A curious sign, the _Kleebaum_, caught my eye in the first street, and
I trusted myself beneath it. The _Kellner_ took my knapsack; asked if
"that was all," and led me high up to a small homely-furnished room on
the third floor, in which, however, the quality of cleanliness was not
wanting, and that is what an Englishman cares most about. At dinner I
treated myself to a pint of the Stein wine, for which the
neighbourhood is famous, and am prepared to add my testimony as to its
merits. The bottles have a jolly bacchanalian look about them, being
globes somewhat flattened at the sides, and contain, when honest, a
quart. The cost is from two to three florins a bottle; but a temperate
guest is allowed to drink and pay for the half only, at his pleasure.
With vineyards producing such wine around them, it is little wonder
that the Prince-Bishops were always ready to fight for their good city
of Würzburg. The _Strangers' Book_ followed the dinner as a matter of
course, and when the landlord saw that I signed my name as "from
London," and heard me inquire for the residence of one of the
Professors, he put off his natural manner and became obsequious: a
change that gave me no pleasure.

There is more of life, more to interest the attention in Würzburg,
than in some places which are much more frequented and talked of. The
streets generally are narrow, and built in picturesque disregard of
straight lines; now widening suddenly for a brief space, now
diminishing and bending away in a new direction. And you saunter
onwards, wondering at the panelled house-fronts with their profuse
ornament: grotesque carvings of animals' heads, of clustering fruits
in bold relief at the intersections; windows with quaint canopies and
curiously-wrought gratings; fanciful door-heads and gables; in short,
a variety of architectural conceits on which your eye will fondly
linger. Now, at a corner, you come upon an ancient turret with conical
roof, now a sculptured fountain, now images of the Virgin or some of
the saints over the doors; and anon huge statues of the Bishops remind
you of the men who built and prayed for Würzburg. So numerous are the
churches erected to perpetuate their memory or adorn their
inheritance, that you need not go many yards whenever you feel
inclined to meditate in a "dim religious light."

You meet numbers of soldiers, for there is a citadel beyond the river,
and water-bearers with their tall tubs slung on their backs going to
or from the fountains, and now and then a peasant woman with conical
hat and skirts the very opposite of the fashion; and except that
nearly all the women you see are bareheaded, there is nothing else
remarkable in costume.

Stroll to the river-side; what prodigious piles of firewood at one
side of the quay, and what a busy fleet of barges moored on the other.
The Main here is about as wide as the Thames at Richmond, and is
spanned by a bridge quite in keeping with the city. At either end
stands an arched gateway, with statues niched in the massive masonry,
and saints above the rounded piers.

Cross the bridge, and mount the citadel-hill on the left bank, and you
will have a surprise. The hill terminates in a craggy precipice,
crowned by the stronghold and its defences, and you look down on
shelfy gardens planted here and there among the rocks; and over the
whole city. The river flows by in a bold curve, cutting off a small
suburb from the main portion of the city, which spreads,
crescent-formed, on the opposite shore. An imposing scene. Thirty-one
towers, spires, domes, and steeples spring from the great masses and
ridges of dark-red lofty roofs, and these are everywhere dotted with
rows of little windows which resemble a half-opened eye. Indeed, the
curved line of the tiles makes the resemblance so complete, that you
can easily fancy the eyes are taking a sly peep at what is going on
below, or winking at the sunbeams, as a prelude to falling asleep for
the night.

The sun was dropping behind me in the west, and before me lay the
city, looking glorious in the golden light. Row after row of the
sleepy eyes caught the ray with a momentary twinkle; the gilded
weathercocks flashed and glistened, and the reflection falling on the
river made pathways of quivering light across the ripples.

Presently eight struck from the cathedral, and the clocks of all the
churches followed, each with its own peculiar note. One or two solemn
and sonorous, in imitation of the big bell; others shrill and saucy,
as if they alone had the right to record the march of the silent
footsteps; a few sedate, and one irresolute. Now here, now there, now
yonder, as if the striking never would cease, and suggesting strange
analogies between clocks and the race who wind them up.

Trees rise here and there among the houses, and form a green belt
round the city, thickest in the gardens of the royal palace, a stately
edifice comprising among its two hundred and eighty-four rooms the
suite in which the Emperors used to lodge when on their way to be
crowned at Frankfort. And beyond the trees begin the vines, acre after
acre to the tops of the whole encircling rim of hills. Broad slopes
teeming with wine and gladness of heart, but looking bald in the
distance from want of trees. One of these hills--the _Köppele_, so
named from a chapel on the summit--is a favourite resort of the
inhabitants, who perhaps find in the view therefrom a sufficient
reward for a long ascent, unrefreshed by shade or rustling leaves.

Seen from the hill, Würzburg is said to resemble Prague; not without
reason, as I afterwards found. It would be, in my opinion, the more
pleasing picture of the two, were its frame set off and beautified by
patches of forest.

I kept my seat on the outward angle of a thick wall till the golden
light, sliding slowly up the hills, at last vanished from their brow,
and left the whole valley in shadow. Then I went down and sauntered
about the streets, while the gloom within the porticos and gateways,
behind buttresses and up the narrow alleys, deepened and deepened; and
ended by discovering a stranger willing to talk in a well-lighted

On my return to the _Kleebaum_ the _Kellner_ lit two candles, and
conducted me, not to the little room "up three pair," but to the best
bedroom on the first floor.

What magic in that little item--"from London!"

Now, gracious reader, suppose we come to an understanding before I
get into bed. You are already aware that I am going to Bohemia, not to
scale snow-crowned mountains, or plunge into awful gorges, for there
are none. The highest summit we shall have to climb together is under
five thousand feet; and there is none of that tremendous and
magnificent scenery which is to be seen in Switzerland and Tyrol. If,
however, you are willing to accompany me to a peculiar country--one
which, like Ireland, is most picturesque around its borders--rich in
memorials of the past and in historical associations, fertile and
industrious, we will journey lovingly together. Now on foot, though
perhaps not so much as usual; now a flight by rail, or a steam-boat
trip, or by diligence or wagon, according as the circumstances befall.
We shall find on the way occasion for discourse, somewhat to observe,
for the people are remarkable, and subjects to read about; improving
the hours as best we may.

Our next halt shall be at the old Saxon town of Altenburg, where there
is something to be seen and heard of worth remembering; then over the
_Erzgebirge_ to Carlsbad, the bathing-place of kings, and through the
rustic villages to Prague. Then to the _Mittelgebirge_; down the Elbe,
to a scene of rural life and industry; away to the _Riesengebirge_--the
mountains haunted by Rübezahl--and the wonderful rocks of Adersbach.
Then over the frontier into Silesia, to Herrnhut, the head-quarters of
the Moravians, to Dresden and the Saxon Switzerland, Berlin,
Magdeburg, and Hamburg, from whence a voyage across the North Sea will
bring us home again.

It may be that this scheme is not to your liking. If so, we can part
company here, and you will perhaps never read the completion of that
"Story of the King of Bohemia and his Seven Castles," which Corporal
Trim began for Uncle Toby and never finished.

And so, good night!


     Würzburg -- The University -- Red, Green, and Orange Caps
     -- The Marienkapelle -- The Market -- The Cathedral -- The
     Palace -- Spacious Cellars -- A Professor's Hospitality --
     To Bamberg -- Frost -- Hof -- A Shabby Peace -- The
     Arch-Poisoner -- Dear Bread -- A Prime Minister Hanged --
     Altenburg -- The Park -- The Castle -- Reminiscences and
     Antiquities -- The Chapel -- The Princes' Vault -- Wends --
     Costumes in the Market-place -- Female Cuirassiers -- More
     about the Wends -- Grossen Teich -- The Plateau -- The
     Cemetery -- Werdau.

Würzburg is now the chief town of the Circle of the Lower Main; it was
once the capital of a principality governed by a line of eighty
bishops, and figures prominently in German history. The University,
founded in 1403, is deservedly famous, having numbered among its
professors many of first-rate abilities: a distinction it still
retains. What with schools, with resources in art and science,
cultivated society, and ample means of recreation, the old city is an
agreeable residence.

Under the guidance of Professor Kölliker, I visited the botanic
garden, the anatomical museum, and the medical school, which is one of
the best in Europe. The Julius Hospital, a noble institution, founded
by one of the Prince-Bishops, whose statue is erected not far from the
building, affords opportunities for study seldom found in provincial
towns. The students, after the manner of their kind, form themselves
into societies distinguished by the colour of their caps, as you will
soon discover by meeting continually in the streets little groups of
red, green, or orange caps, marking the three divisions.

Then, while the Professor lectured to his class, I strolled away to
the market-place, and saw how the women, leaving their shoulder-baskets
at the door of the _Marienkapelle_--Mary Chapel--went in and recited a
few prayers, kneeling on the floor. A commendable preparation, I
thought, for the work of buying and selling. The mounds of vegetables
in frequent rows, and numerous baskets of cherries and strawberries,
with heaps of fresh dewy flowers between, the many red kerchiefs and
moving throng, and the wares displayed at the wooden booths, made up
an animated spectacle. Live geese roosting contentedly in shallow
baskets awaiting their sale without an effort to escape, were
remarkable among the enticements of the poultry-market. A few yards
farther were little stalls with rolls of butter, resembling in shape a
ship's topsail-yard, alternating with piles of lumps or rather dabs of
butter, each wrapped in a piece of old newspaper. These were bought by
poor folk.

The _Marienkapelle_ is a fine specimen of pointed Gothic, with a
graceful spire, which having become dilapidated and unsafe, was
undergoing repair at the time of my visit. The inside is spoiled by
overmuch whitewash, and the outside by an irregular row of petty
shops--an uncouth plinthe--around the base; and this is not the only
church in the city which has its character and fair proportions marred
by such clustering barnacles.

On the spot where the cathedral now stands rearing its four towers
aloft, St. Killian, an Irish missionary, was martyred more than a
thousand years ago. The lofty arched nave is supported by square
columns, of which the lower portions are hidden by pictures. Marble
statues of the Bishops, with sword and crosier in hand, betokening
their twofold character of priest and warrior, are ranged along the
walls; and the whole interior has a bright and cheerful aspect.

Of the other churches, I need not say more than that the New Minster
enjoys the honour of possessing St. Killian's bones; that St. Peter's
at Rome is reproduced in the church of St. John; and that St.
Burkhardt's, at the foot of the citadel-hill, is built in the round

The spacious grounds and gardens of the palace are well laid out.
There are umbrageous avenues, terraces, fountains, paths winding among
flower-beds and away under the trees and through the shrubberies to
nooks of complete solitude. In some parts the plantations are left
untrimmed, and give an air of wildness to the scene. In the rear,
steps lead to the top of the wall, from whence you may look over
greater part of the grounds, and fancy yourself in a region of forest.
The townsfolk have free access; and you meet now and then a solitary
student poring over his book, or groups of strollers, or nursemaids
with troops of children. The palace, which dates from the year 1720,
shows the consequences of neglect. Hohenschwangau has greater
attractions for the royal family than Würzburg; and now, after a view
of the staircase and chapel, there is nothing in the rusty and faded
apartments that once exhibited the magnificence of the Bishops to
detain you. The cellars are large enough to contain 2200 tuns of wine.
What rollicking nights the retainers must have had!

The Professor proved himself not less hospitable than learned. We
dined together, and he introduced me to one of his colleagues, the
Bohemian mentioned in the second page, who gave me a letter to his
father at Prague. And then, after a sojourn of twenty-four hours, I

To see Nuremberg, and journey from thence into Bohemia, across the
_Böhmerwaldgebirge_, had been in my thoughts; but finding on inquiry
that more time would be required for that route than I could spare, I
decided for Saxony. So, away to Bamberg, sixty miles distant, the
starting-place of the Leipzig and Nuremberg trains. There was an hour
to wait, and then in deep twilight on we went for Altenburg.

Although the night was in July, I shivered with cold. The temperature,
indeed, was remarkable. Three days previously I had seen white frost
between Aix-la-Chapelle and Cologne, and for the first ten nights of
the month frosts occurred all over Germany. At two o'clock we came to
Hof, where there was a change of train, and time to drink a cup of
coffee, doubly acceptable under the circumstances. The country around
is bleak, a region of bare low hills, of unfavourable repute owing to
its cold. A farmer who came into the train told us there was thin ice
on the ponds. Here and there the hollows were filled with a dense
mist, and resembled vast lakes, and the outlook was so cheerless that
I was glad to sleep, till sunrise, with its splendours, woke up our
drowsy party to welcome light and warmth.

What a change since the former year! Then the war was all the topic
among those who were thrown together while travelling. Now, Sebastopol
and the Crimea seemed clean forgotten, and no one had a word to say
even about the Sick Man at Constantinople. No, all was changed, and
talkers busied their tongues concerning the "shabby peace," as they
called it, the dearness of food, and--William Palmer. The
simple-minded Bavarians could not understand why England should have
been so magnanimous towards her Muscovitish antagonist, until it was
suggested to them that France, having come to the bottom of her purse
notwithstanding all the flourishes to the contrary, the war had to be

"And could England have kept on?"

"Yes, for forty years, if necessary."

"What a country!" they exclaimed--"what gigantic wealth!" And then
they wondered that peace had not brought lower prices, and talked with
grave faces and timorous forebodings about the dearness of bread.
Scarcely a place did I visit where bread was not dearer than in

But the arch-poisoner was the prevailing theme; and eager discussions
on the incidents of his trial and execution showed how widespread was
the excitement he had occasioned. Even in little towns I saw _Prozess
gegen William Palmer_ for sale in the booksellers' windows. The
Germans, however, thought theirs the best law, as it inflicts
perpetual imprisonment only, and not death, in cases where the poison
is not discovered in the body of the victim; and they would by no
means agree that to hang a villain out of the way whether or no, was
the preferable alternative. While the talk was going on, some one was
sure to tell of what took place when the news of the execution was
flashed from England. _Palmer is hanged_, was the brief yet fearful
despatch. The clerk who received it, by some strange fatality, read
_Palmer_ as an abbreviation of _Palmerston_; and within an hour all
Germany was startled by the news, and bewildered with speculations as
to the causes which had induced the exemplary English nation to get
rid of their Prime Minister by so summary a process. "_Palmerston
gehänget!_" ejaculated one after another, with a chuckle.

At seven o'clock we arrived at Altenburg. A night in a railway train
is not the best preparation for a day of sight-seeing. However, after
the restorative of a wash and breakfast at the _Bayerische Hof_, the
first hotel that presented itself, I crossed the road to the grounds
belonging to the castle. By a bold undulating slope, laid out as an
English park, you mount to a plateau, where a well-kept garden
contrasts agreeably with the tall avenues and grouped masses of
foliage. Small pleasure-houses stand here and there among the trees,
and you see a pavilion built in the style of a Greek temple. A little
farther, and there are the ducal opera-house, the orangery, and the
stables--a handsome range of buildings. And beyond is the Little
Forest--_Wäldchen_--enclosed by a wall, where, among the stately
trees, you may see two, the Princes' Oaks--_Prinzeneichen_--so named
from an interesting event in Saxon history, of which we shall perhaps
have some particulars by-and-by. The plateau, moreover, commands views
of a fertile and well-wooded country all broken up by low hills, the
lowest slopes of the Ore mountains--_Erzgebirge_--which show their
dark swelling outlines far away in the south.

You descend suddenly into a gap, which isolates an eminence--the hill
of Stirling in miniature--terminating in a porphyry cliff, crowned by
the castle. A convenient ascent brings you into an irregular
court-yard, shut in on opposite sides by the oldest and newest parts
of the building. Architecture of the thirteenth century mated
curiously with that of the eighteenth; and both occupying the site of
what was already a fortress in the tenth. The castle owes its present
form to the Dukes Friedrich the Second and Third, who, in 1744,
completed their thirty-eight years of alterations.

The place is a strange medley. Gray, weatherbeaten walls, with square
towers and jutting turrets, intruded on by modern masonry--Neptune in
his cockle-shell car in the midst of a fountain, and sentries pacing
up and down, and soldiers lounging about their shabby-looking
quarters--grim passages, and uncomfortable chambers. The Austrian
arms, which you may yet see cut in the stone over a doorway, mark the
granary built by the Electress Margaret for stores of corn, in order
that, when grain became dear, she might save the townsfolk from
hunger. A little farther and you come to the _Mantelthurm_, a round
tower, with walls seven yards thick, commonly called the _Bottle_,
from the form of its slated roof. It has two ugly chambers, which
were used as dungeons up to 1641, after which it did duty as a
magazine; and now the lower part is a cinder-hole. Adjoining is the
_Jünkerei_--once the pages' quarters--in which are certain official
apartments and the armoury. The Imperialists plundered the castle,
during the Thirty Years' War, of most of its treasures and
curiosities; and later, many specimens of mediæval armour were carried
off to Coburg, leaving little besides objects which have an intimate
relation with Saxon history. Weapons old and new, banners, garments,
paraphernalia used in ducal funerals, and many things which belonged
to persons connected with the Robbery of the Princes (_Prinzenraub_).
In recent times a museum of antiquities has been added: articles of
furniture, books, and other rarities which perpetuate the memory of
eminent individuals--urns and other funereal remains dug up in the
neighbourhood--ethnographical specimens chiefly from Australia and the
Sunda Islands--and a collection of china, presented by the Minister
Baron von Lindenau.

The palace, or modern portion of the castle, dates from 1706. The
castellan will conduct you through the throne-room, the great hall,
where hang life-size pictures of the dukes on horseback by whom the
place was built, and paintings of historical scenes, and other
apartments bright with gilding and hung with elegant draperies.

The church, built in the old German style, on the spot once occupied
by the castle chapel, contains banners, and paintings, and numerous
monuments and tablets to the memory of the princely personages buried
beneath, and some admirable specimens of oak carving. To read their
names as you pass along is a lesson in Saxon genealogy. Among them is
that of the Electress Margaret, whose remains, after a rest of more
than three centuries, were removed to the Princes' Vault, the door to
which, studded with iron stars, you may see in the nave. But, in 1846,
Duke Joseph caused the old tomb to be cleared out and repaired, and
honouring the memory of her whose name is yet revered in Saxony, had
her coffin restored to its former place with solemn ceremony.

From the balconies or the tower you have a good view of the town lying
beneath on a steep hill-slope, with its large ponds, and many ups and
downs. And all around lie fields, and gardens, and rich pastures,
bearing fruitful testimony to the good husbandry of the Wends.

The main approach to the castle is by a road winding with an easy
slope up the steep side of the hill. Its upper extremity is crowned by
a gateway in the Romanesque style, and where its lower end sinks to
the level of the road stand two obelisks--pyramids as they are
called--bearing on their pedestals a statue of Hercules and Minerva.

The streets were full of life and bustle, for it was market day, and
the Wends coming into the town from all quarters increased the novelty
of the sight by their singular costume. The men wear a flat cloth cap,
a short tight jacket drawn into plaits behind, and decorated in front
with as many buttons as may be seen on the breast of a Paddingtonian
page, loose baggy breeches, and tight boots up to the knee. You will,
perhaps, think it a misfortune that the breeches are not longer, for
all below is spindle-shanky, in somewhat ludicrous contrast with the
amplitude above, and the broad, big foot. How such a foot finds its
way through so narrow a boot-leg is not easy to guess. The men are
generally tall, with oval faces of a quiet, honest expression.

But the women!--they are something to wonder at. Most of them are
bareheaded: some wear a close plain cap, which throws out their round
chubby faces in full relief; some display a curiously padded blue
horseshoe, kept in place by a belt that hides the ears, from which two
red streamers hang down their back; and others content themselves with
a ribbon, tying their hair behind in a flat wide bow. Their gown is
long in the sleeves and short in the skirt--short as a Highlander's
kilt, which it very much resembles, and is in most instances of a
carpet-like texture. Plum-colour, blue, pink, and green, dotted with
bright flowers or crossed by stripes, are the prevailing patterns;
their gay tints relieving the sombre blue and black of the men. The
skirt is made to fit pretty closely, much more so, indeed, than the
men's breeches, and as it descends no lower than the knee, you can see
that if Nature is niggard to the men she is generous to the women.
Such an exhibition of well-developed legs in blue worsted stockings I
never before witnessed.

Some of the younger ones had put on their summer stockings of white
cotton, and, with bodice and skirt of different patterns, went
strutting about apparently well pleased with themselves. But they
have another peculiarity besides the kilt: they all, young and old,
wear a species of cuirass, secured at the waist and rising to their
chin. I judged it to be made of light wood, covered with black stuff.
It gives them a grotesque appearance when looked at from the front or
sideways; suggesting an idea of human turtles, or descendants of a
race of Amazons. Some sat at their stalls with their chin resting on
it, or face half hidden behind; and many times did I notice the
breastplate pushed down to make room for the mouth to open when the
wearer wished to speak--the pushings down being not less frequent than
the shrugs of ladies in other places to keep their silly bonnets on.
Even little girls wear the cuirass, and very remarkable objects they

The spacious area of the market-place, enclosed by antique houses, was
thronged. Wendish women sitting in long rows behind their baskets of
cherries and heaps of vegetables; others arriving with fresh supplies
on low wheelbarrows, their white legs twinkling everywhere in the
sunshine. And many more who had come to buy roving busily from one
wooden booth to another among all sorts of wares--books, ironmongery,
jewelry, cakes and confectionery, coarse gray crockery, tubs and
buckets, deep trays and kneading troughs chopped from one block; but
the drapers and haberdashers, with their stores of gaudy kerchiefs and
gay tartans and piles of stockings, attracted the most numerous
customers. There was a brisk sale of sausages and bread--large, flat,
round loaves (weighing 12lb. English) of black rye bread, at one
groschen the pound, which was considered dear.

The men wandered about among the scythes, rakes, and wooden shovels,
or the stalls of pipes and cutlery, or gathered round the ricketty
wagons laden with small sacks of grain and meal which were continually
arriving, led by one of the tribe in dusty boots. And all the while
the townsfolk came crowding in to make their weekly purchases till
there was scarcely room to move.

Such a scene is to me far more interesting than a picture-gallery. I
went to and fro in the throng hearkening with pleasure to the various
voices, watching the buying and selling, and noting the honest,
cheerful faces of many of the women. Then escaping, I could survey the
whole market-place from the rising ground at its upper end, and
contemplate at leisure the living picture, framed by houses and shops
in the olden style, among which, on one side, rises the ancient
_Rathhaus_. It was built in 1562 with the stones of a church given to
the corporation by Duke Johann, whose portrait you may see hanging in
the hall inside among electors and dukes, and their wives; and, ever
since, it has been used for weddings, dances, and religious meetings,
as well as for the grave business of the council and police. Opposite
the entrance, the date 1770, inserted with black pebbles into the
paving, marks the spot where the last beheading took place under
authority of the council.

The Wends are the descendants of a Sclavonic tribe, which, according
to ethnologists, migrated from the shores of the Adriatic more than a
thousand years ago, carrying in their name (_Wend_ or _Wand_) a proof
of having once lived by the sea. They are remarkable for the tenacity
of their adherence to ancient habits and customs, which may, perhaps,
account for their still being a distinct people among the Germans by
whom they are surrounded. And they are not less remarkable for
honesty, health, and an amount of agricultural skill, which
distinguishes them from their neighbours. They are clever and
successful in rearing cattle; they get on, and save money; and the
women have the reputation of being most excellent nurses. The Bohemian
peasant on the farther side of the mountains used, if he does not now,
when his children were born, to stretch them out, sometimes at the end
of a pole, towards the country of the Wends, that the infant might
grow up as able and lucky as they. One of their immemorial practices,
still kept up, is to talk to their bees, and tell them of all
household incidents, and especially of a death in the family. Their
number is two hundred thousand, all within the limits of Lusatia.

A much-frequented promenade is the dam of the Great Pond--_Grossen
Teich_--on the southern side of the town, which, planted with
chestnuts and limes, forms a series of green and shady alleys, with a
pleasant prospect across gardens and meadows to the village of
Altendorf. Swans glide about on the surface of the water, which covers
sixteen acres, and a gondola plies to a small wooded island in the
centre, resorted to by lovers and picnic parties. A short distance
northwards lies the Little Pond, bordered by rows of poplars, and
three other ponds in different parts of the town are also made to
contribute to its attractions.

Another pleasure-ground is the "Plateau," on an eminence between the
railway station and the road to Leipzig, from which you may wander
through shady alleys to the old ruin of Alexisburg. The cemetery, on a
hill to the west of the town, is worth a visit for a sight of some of
the tombs, among which appears the entrance to the new Princes' Vault,
constructed in 1837, in the form of a small chapel, lighted by
richly-stained glass windows, through the floor of which the coffins
are lowered to the vault beneath. On St. John's Day the cemetery is
thronged by the townsfolk, decorating the graves of their departed
friends with flowers.

After a visit to all these places, and a peep into the two churches in
which Luther once preached--the Bartholomäikirche and the
Brüderkirche--I travelled on to Zwickau, and as there is little to be
seen on the way besides fields, low hills, and the tall-chimneyed,
smoking, stocking-weaving town of Werdau, we will glance at an
interesting event in Saxon history incidentally alluded to in the
foregoing pages.


     Origin of Altenburg -- Prosperous Burghers -- A Princely
     Crime -- Hussite Plunderers -- Luther's Visits -- French
     Bonfire -- Electress Margaret's Dream -- Kunz von
     Kauffungen -- "Don't burn the Fish" -- A Conspiracy --
     Midnight Robbers -- Two Young Princes Stolen -- The Flight
     -- The Alarm -- The Köhler -- The Rescue -- Kunz Beheaded
     -- The _Triller's_ Reward, and what a famous Author said
     concerning it.

Wends had long peopled the Pleissengau when King Henry I.--the Fowler,
as his contemporaries named him--conquered it during one of his many
inroads among his neighbours, and made it part of the _Osterland_
early in the tenth century. The newly-won territory was soon settled
by German colonists, who, finding an ancient fortification on the
summit of a bluff, rocky hill, called it _alte Burg_, whence the
present name of the town and principality of Altenburg. Henry, or his
successor, Otho, built a castle on the hill, no portion of which, or
of the one which replaced it, now remains. The town is first mentioned
in a document of the year 986. Its story is the old one: family feud,
rapine and revenge, chivalry and heroism, intermingled with quaint and
quiet glimpses of social life, characteristic of the "dark ages."
Earliest among its possessors were the Hohenstaufens; latest are the
Hildburghausens. At one time it was imperial; at another independent;
now pledged or given away by an emperor; now held by a duke. In 1286
its prosperity was such that the burghers went carried in sedan-chairs
to the council-house, and their wives walked to church festivals on
carpets spread before them in the street.

Six years later Friedrich the Bitted quarrelled with Adolf von Nassau
for having pledged Altenburg to King Wenzel of Bohemia; whereupon
Adolf invited Friedrich to a Christmas feast, and while he sat at
table employed a ruffian to murder him, as the speediest way of
settling the dispute. The blow, however, fell on the wrist of a
burgher of Freiberg who rushed between, and lost his hand in
preventing the crime. Friedrich escaped, changed his dress, and, under
cover of night, fled the city; but, having gained a battle in the
interval, he returned as ruler in 1307. The scene of this malignant
assault is supposed to have been a house in the market-place.

Then came a succession of Friedrichs: the Earnest, the Strong, the
Warlike, the Quarrelsome, the Mild, and such like. It was in 1430,
during the lifetime of the last mentioned, that those fierce
Reformers, the Hussites, came across the mountains and made an inroad
into the principality. They chose Three-Kings' Day for their attack on
the town, which was abandoned to them by the inhabitants, who fled to
neighbouring villages, or took refuge in the castle; and, having burnt
and plundered to the satisfaction of their cupidity or their
conscience during four days, they left the place to recover as best it

The same Elector, Friedrich the Mild, married the Austrian Princess
Margaret--fit wife for such a prince, if we may judge from her
endeavours to prevent bread becoming too dear for the townsfolk.

Luther was in Altenburg from the 3rd to the 9th of January, 1519, to
hold a conference with Karl von Miltitz, the papal legate. The two met
in the house of George Spalatin, who became a firm friend of the great
Reformer. Luther visited the town also when on his famous journey to
Worms, and on several occasions afterwards.

The council-house was the scene of a religious conference from
October, 1568, to March of the following year. The parties in presence
were--the theologians of Electoral Saxony on the one hand, of Ducal
Saxony on the other; and among the subjects mooted they discussed the
questions, "Whether good works were needful for salvation?" and,
"Whether man can co-operate in the attainment of his own salvation?"
and with the usual result; for the disputants separated without coming
to a decision.

The old town suffered from the disasters and commotions of the
Peasants' War. The Imperialists quartered themselves upon it after the
fatal battle of Lützen. The troubles of the Seven Years' War fell upon
it, and of the campaigns that ended in the downfall of Napoleon. In
1810, the French commissioners seized a quantity of English
manufactures in possession of resident merchants, and made a great
bonfire therewith in the market-place. In 1813, the Emperors of
Austria and Russia and the King of Prussia visited the town, and in
the same year it afforded quarters to 671 generals, 46,617 officers,
and 472,399 ordinary troops.

Now we must go back for awhile to the year 1455, the times of
Friedrich the Mild. On the night of the 6th of July in that year the
Electress Margaret, his wife, dreamt that two young oaks, growing in a
forest near the castle, were torn up by a wild boar. Herein her
maternal heart foreboded danger to the two princes Ernest and Albert,
both still in their boyhood. The times were indeed disquieting, what
with Hussite wars, territorial quarrels, and the ominous foretokens of
the coming Reformation. Mild as Friedrich was, he, too, had had some
fighting with his brother, Duke Wilhelm, about their lands. Among his
officers was a certain Conrad, or, as he was commonly called, Kunz von
Kauffungen, formerly captain of the castle, who, through
disappointment, had come to entertain two causes of quarrel against
his master. One was that, having been sent to surprise and capture
Gera, he was taken himself, and only recovered his liberty by payment
of four thousand florins ransom. Of this sum Kunz claimed
reimbursement from the Elector, and met with denial. The second was, a
demand for the restoration of estates of which he had been granted
temporary possession, but which, defying legal authorities, he refused
to give up until the coveted four thousand florins should be once more
in his pocket. Chafing under his twofold grievance, he broke out into
threats of reprisal, to which Friedrich answered jocularly, "Don't
burn the fish in the ponds."

Baffled and exasperated, Kunz devised a scheme for bringing the
question to a speedy issue: persuaded Hans Schwalbe, one of the
scullions at the castle, into his interest; concerted measures with
his brother Dietrich von Kauffungen, Wilhelm von Mosen, and others,
thirty-seven altogether, and watched his opportunity.

Treacherous Schwalbe failed not in the service required of him, and
gave information of the Elector's absence: called away by affairs to
Leipzig. Whereupon Kunz and his confederates, mounting to horse, rode
to Altenburg, and halted under cover of a wood--where now the
pleasure-ground is laid out at the foot of the castle--between eleven
and twelve in the night of the 7th of July. Finding all quiet, he sent
his body-servant, Hans Schweinitz, forward to fix a rope ladder, with
Schwalbe's help, at a window above the steepest side of the rock, and,
following with Mosen, the two climbed up and got into the castle. Once
in, they hastened to the chamber of the young princes, and each
seizing one, made their way to the gate. But, instead of Albert, the
little Count Barby had been picked up. Kunz was no sooner aware of the
mistake, than, giving Ernest, whom he carried, into Mosen's arms, he
hurried back with the terrified count, and brought out Albert.
Quicker, however, than the robbery was the spread of an alarm. The
Electress, apprehensive, perhaps, because of her dream on the previous
night, appeared at a window, imploring Kunz to restore her children,
and promising to intercede with the Elector in favour of his demands.
Her entreaties and lamentations fell on deaf ears; Mosen had already
made good his retreat, and Kunz speedily followed him through the
gate, which was easily opened, there being but a single invalid on
guard. The time was singularly favourable for the success of the plot,
as nearly all the residents and functionaries were enjoying
themselves at a feast given by the Chancellor in the town.

The alarm-bell began to ring. Mosen and the others galloped off with
their prize, and Kunz, mounting his horse with young Albert before
him, and attended by Schweinitz, lost no time in making for the
frontier. If Isenburg could be reached before the pursuers came up,
the game would be in his own hands. On they went in the dim night
through the Rabensteiner Forest, along rugged and darksome ways, where
they wandered from the track, their horses stumbled or floundered in
miry holes, forced to choose the wildest and least-frequented routes,
for dogs were barking and alarm-bells ringing in all the villages,
warning honest folk that knaves were abroad. The dewy morning dawned,
birds twittered among the branches, the sun arose, daylight streamed
into the forests, and still the fugitives urged their panting horses
onwards. A few hours later the young prince, worn out by want of rest
and the increasing heat, complained of thirst; whereupon Kunz, though
still a half-score miles from the Bohemian frontier, halted not far
from the village of Elterlein, and crept about in the wood to pluck
berries for the boy's refreshment. While the captain was thus
occupied, a certain charcoal-burner--George Schmidt by name--at work
near the spot, attracted by the glint of armour between the trees,
approached the halting-place, made suspicious, perhaps, by the
alarm-bells. To his surprise, he saw horses showing marks of hasty
travel, and a fair-haired boy well attired, who said at once, "I am
the young prince. They have stolen me." No sooner spoken than the
_Köhler_, running up to Kunz, who was still stooping over the
berries, felled him with a blow of the stout pole which he used in
tending his fires. A shout brought up a gang of his comrades, sturdy
fellows with long hair and grimy faces, who promptly laid hold of Kunz
and Schweinitz, bound their hands, and carried them off for safe
keeping to the neighbouring monastery of Grünhain. Thither also was
the young Albert borne in friendly arms, and from thence, on the
following day, an escort, among whom went the _Köhler_, conducted him
back to his weeping mother--a real triumphal procession by the time
they arrived at Altenburg.

Mosen and his troop, meanwhile, had betaken themselves to a
hiding-place not far from the castle of Stein, on the right bank of
the Mulde, about half way towards the frontier. While some made good
their retreat to secret quarters, the principals concealed themselves
with Prince Ernest in a rocky cave screened by trees, waiting for a
favourable opportunity to renew their flight. But hearing, while on
their look-out, sundry passers-by talk of the capture of unlucky Kunz,
they sent a messenger to Friedrich von Schonburg at Hartenstein,
offering to deliver up the prince on condition that they should be
left free to depart unmolested. The condition was granted: they gave
up their captive, and were seen no more in all the province; and
Schonburg conveyed Ernest to Chemnitz, where he was received by his
father the Elector.

Unlucky Kunz having been carefully escorted to Freiberg, was there
beheaded on the 14th of July--an example to knightly kidnappers. On
the next day the _Köhler's_ homely gaberdine and the garments of the
princes were hung up in the church at Ebersdorf, not far from the
scene of the rescue. As for the _Köhler_ himself, he had but to speak
his wishes, for the Electress, in the joy of her heart at the
restoration of her sons, could not sufficiently reward the man who had
saved the younger. "I worried them right well"--(_wohl getrillt_)--he
said, when recounting how he had laid about him with his pole at the
time of the rescue; and ever afterwards was he known as the _Triller_.
His wishes were modest enough;--a little bit of land, and liberty to
hunt and cut wood in the forest--and amply were they gratified.

Such is in brief the story of the _Prinzenraub_, as it happened four
hundred years ago--a memorable event in Saxon history. A walled-up
window in the castle at Altenburg, on the side towards the Pauritzer
Pond, is said to indicate the place where in the former building the
robbers entered. The Princes' Oaks still flourish; and the cave in
which Ernest was hidden is still known as the _Prinzenhöhle_. And our
own history is involved in the event, for from that same Ernest
descends the Consort of our Queen.

To most English readers the _Prinzenraub_ was an unknown story until a
few years ago, when Thomas Carlyle published it from his vigorous pen
in the _Westminster Review_, where all the circumstances are brought
before us in the very vividness of life. "Were I touring in those
parts, I would go and see," says the author, referring to the rumour
that the estate bestowed on the _Triller_ remained still in possession
of his posterity. By inquiry at Altenburg, I learned that this estate
lay in the neighbourhood of Zwickau, so, as I also was bound for the
Bohemian frontier, I did go and see on the way.


     Zwickau -- Beer Bridge -- Beer Mount -- The Triller Estate
     -- Triller Bierbrauerei -- The Braumeister -- The Beer --
     Four Hundredth Anniversary of the Prinzenraub -- A Friendly
     Clerk -- "You will have a Tsigger?" -- Historical Portraits
     -- A Good Name for a Brewery -- A Case of Disinterestedness
     -- Up the Church Tower -- The Prospect -- Princess
     Schwanhildis -- The Fire-god Zwicz -- Luther's Table -- The
     Church -- Geysers -- Petrified Beds -- Historical Houses --
     Walk to Oberhaselau -- The Card-players -- The Wagoners.

The dark roofs of a few dull streets, a lofty old church tower, the
tall chimneys, and clouds of steam and smoke of a busy suburb, rising
amid orchards, gardens, and hop-grounds in the pleasant and
thickly-wooded valley of the Mulde, are the features presented by
Zwickau as you approach it from the terminus. There needs no long
research to discover that the _Prinzenraub_ is a household word among
the people: hanging on the wall in the hotel you may see engravings of
the _Prinzenhöhle_, the castle of Stein, the monastery at Grünhain,
and other places incidental to the robbery; and the waiters are ready
to tell you that the Triller estate lies near Eckersbach, about half
an hour's walk to the east of the town.

On my way thither I crossed the Mulde, a lively stream, flowing
between steep slopes of trees, broken here and there by a red
fern-fringed cliff. A Saxon liking--one which the Anglo-Saxon has not
forgotten--is betrayed in the name of the bridge--Beer Bridge; it
leads to Beer Mount, which conceals within its cool and dark interior
countless barrels of the national beverage. While walking up the
hollow road that winds round the hill, you see on one side the
entrances to the deeply excavated cellars, on the other a tavern,
overshadowed by linden-trees, offering refreshing temptations to the
thirsty visitor.

The road presently rising across open fields brings you in sight of a
pile of huge bright-red brick buildings, erected on the farther side
of a deep, narrow dell, contrasting well with the green of a cherry
orchard and woods in the rear. There lies the _Triller_ estate. Times
are changed; and where the sinewy _Köhler_ tilled his field and reared
his family, now stands a brewery--_Triller Bierbrauerei_. The wakeful
genius of trade has taken possession, and finds in the patriotic
sentiment inspired by the history of the place a handsome source of

I addressed myself to the _Braumeister_--_Brewmaster_--who on hearing
that one of England's foremost authors had published the story of the
_Prinzenraub_, manifested a praiseworthy readiness to satisfy my
curiosity. The estate had long been out of the hands of the _Triller_
family, so long that he could not remember the time--perhaps fifty
years. But the _Trillers_ were not extinct: one was living at
Freiberg, and two others elsewhere in Saxony. The place now belongs to
a company, under whose management _Triller_ beer has become famous in
all the country round; and not undeservedly, as I from experience am
prepared to affirm. There is a large garden, with paths winding among
the trees, and open places bestrewn with tables and chairs enough for
the innumerable guests who quench their thirst at the brewery.

As we strolled about the premises, the _Braumeister_ called my
attention to a writing over the main entrance--

     _Dulcius ex ipso fonte bibuntur aquæ_,

remarking that he had never known a visitor disposed to quarrel with
it. Then, abandoning his laconic phrases, he told me how the four
hundredth anniversary of the _Prinzenraub_ had been celebrated on the
8th of July, 1855. It was a day to be remembered in all the places
made historic by the event. From Schedewitz, on the farther side of
Zwickau, a long procession had walked to the Brewery, under triumphal
arches erected on the way. First came a troop of Coalers, in forest
garb, then friends of the company on foot and in wagons, and bands of
music; altogether eight hundred persons, and among them the three
_Trillers_. Airs were played and songs sung that made all the fire of
patriotism glow again; and so earnestly did the multitude enter into
the spirit of the celebration, that--a merry twinkle gleamed in the
_Braumeister's_ eye as he told it--"They drank a hundred eimers of
beer. There they are: look at them," he added, pointing to an
engraving of the whole procession--the _Trillerzug_, as he called it.

A similar festival was held at Altenburg, Hartenstein, and Grünhain on
the same day, to the entire satisfaction of all concerned, and the
reinvigoration of Saxon loyalty.

I was seated at one of the tables with a tankard of beer before me,
when a young man came up, looked at me inquisitively, and said, "E
shmall Eng-lish speak"--meaning, "I speak a little English."

I felicitated him on his acquirements, when he proceeded to tell me
that he was one of the clerks employed in the counting-house, and
having heard of my arrival from the _Braumeister_, could not resist
the desire of speaking with an Englishman. Moreover, he would like to
show me certain things which I had not yet seen, and he said, "If you
pleasure in _Prinzenraub_ find, so is glad to me."

We were friends in a moment. He led me first to the counting-house,
and showed me the bust of Herr Ebert, who, as chief proprietor, had
headed the procession in the former year, but was since deceased,
saying, "We very, very sorry; every man love him. Ah! he was so good."
Then running up-stairs to a large whitewashed apartment--one of the
drinking-rooms used when guests are driven in-doors by bad
weather--where a few portraits hung on the walls, he cried, "Here is
something to see. But wait--you will have a tsigger?"

"With pleasure," I answered, "if it's good to drink."

"No, not drink," he replied. "What you call him?--to shmoke."

The room echoed with my laugh, and he prolonged it, as I rejoined,
"Oh! you mean a cigar! No, thank you. Tobacco is one of the things I

"What you call him?" he exclaimed, in amazement--"cigar! Then what for
a teacher is mine. But he is a German."

Our friendly relations were in no way deranged by my dislike of a
"tsigger;" and we turned to the portraits, which comprised some of the
personages involved in the _Prinzenraub_. The brave old _Triller_ is
represented in the costume of the period--a stalwart fellow, with
ample black beard, bare legs, broad-brimmed hat, and loose frock tied
by a belt round the waist. In one hand he grasps his pole, with the
other supports the prince, who wearing red hosen and peaked red boots,
looks up to him with tearful eye. Kunz appears lying down in the
background, looking half-stunned and miserable. There are two
miniatures--of the _Triller_ and his wife--apparently very old,
believed to be likenesses. In the excitement occasioned by the four
hundredth anniversary, a poor shoemaker, hearing it talked of, came to
the brewery with the paintings in his hand, and sold the two for a
shilling. Besides these there are seven or eight other portraits,
among which the features of Kunz impress you favourably. He has dark
curly hair, a high forehead, a clear bright eye, moustache and pointed
beard; the whole appearance and expression reminding you of Sir Philip

What with fluent German and broken English the young clerk worked
himself into enthusiasm, and showed me everything that had the
remotest connexion with the subject, ending with a book containing the
latest history of the _Prinzenraub_, and engravings of its incidents.
Nor could he think of letting me depart till I had seen the whole
premises, and the enormous cellars.

"The _Triller_ is a good name for the brewery," he said, as we paced
between the furlongs of barrels.

On my return to the town I found out the ancient dame who keeps the
key of the church tower, and as she unlocked the door offered her a
small silver coin. "No! no! no!" she exclaimed, "that is too much. A
_Dreier_ (halfpenny) is enough for me." A rare instance of
disinterestedness. Once admitted, you find your way alone up to the
topmost chamber, where dwells a woman with two or three children. She
was winding up from the street below her daily supply of water when I
entered out of breath with the ascent of so many steps, and paused in
her task to conduct me to the platform, a height of about two hundred
feet, from which the steeple springs one hundred and fifty feet
higher. Wide and remarkable is the prospect: the rows of poplars which
border the roads leading on all sides from the town divide the
landscape into segments with stiff lines that produce a singular
effect as they diminish gradually in thickness and vanish in the
distance. Plenty of wood all around, merging towards the south into
the vast fir forest which there darkens the long swells and rounded
summits of the _Erzgebirge_: a region of contrasts, with its abounding
fertility and unpicturesque foundries and mining-works. The town
appears to better advantage from above than below, for the many green
spots in the rear of the houses come into the view, and you see
gleaming curves of the Mulde, and a great pond as at Altenburg, and
the remains of the old walls, and the ditches, now in part changed
into a garden promenade.

The mind becomes interested as well as the eye. You may grow dreamy
over the fabulous adventures of the fair Princess Schwanhildis, in
whose adventures, as implied in hoary tradition, the place originated;
and if you desire proof, is it not found in the three swans, still
borne in the town arms? Or you may revert to the sixth century only,
when the Wends had a colony here, and worshipped Zwicz, one of their
Sclavish fire-gods in the _Aue_, or meadow--whence the present name,
Zwickau. Or you may remember that Luther often mounted the tower to
gaze on the widespread view; and imagine him contemplating the scenes
on which your eye now rests--a brief pause in his mighty work of
rescuing Europe from the toils of priestcraft. A clumsy table yet
remaining on the platform, though tottering and fallen on one side
with age and weakness, is called "Luther's table;" the great Reformer
having, as is said, once sat by it to eat. But the sentiment which
such a relic should inspire is weakened by the inference that as the
Zwickauers take no pains to preserve it from the weather, they at
least are sceptical concerning its merits.

And the church itself. It is the largest, the finest specimen of
Gothic, and has the biggest bell, in all Saxony, and excepting two
towers in Dresden, is the highest. It dates from the eleventh century,
and has been more than once restored. The interior well repays a
visit. The slender, eight-sided pillars of the nave, the rare carvings
of the bench-ends, and others about the choir and confessional, and in
the sacristy, the high altar, by Wohlgemuth, of Nuremberg, the only
one remaining of twenty-five which formerly stood around the walls,
raise your admiration of art. If curious in such matters, you may see
a splinter of the true cross--a relic from Popish times--still
preserved. There are some good paintings, of which one by Lucas
Cranach the Younger represents Jesus as "Children's Friend." It was
painted at the cost of a burgomaster in honour of his wife's memory.

For one with time at discretion, Zwickau and the neighbourhood would
yield a few days of enjoyable exploration. A remarkable instance of
volcanic action is to be seen between Planitz and Niederkainsdorf,
which has existed from time immemorial. Steam is continually bursting
up from the coal strata beneath, of so high a temperature that the
ground is always green even in the hardest winters. An attempt was
made, a few years ago, to utilize the heat by establishing a
forcing-garden on the spot; and in the adjacent forests there are
land-slips, produced by disturbances of the strata, which are
described as romantic in their effects. The valley of the Mulde offers
much pleasing scenery; the castle of Stein and the _Prinzenhöhle_ are
within half a day's walk; and somewhat farther are the singular rocks
at Greifenstein, a pile as of huge beds petrified. The legend runs
that a princess, having married while her betrothed, whom she had
promised never to forget, was absent, the fairies, exercising their
right of punishment, turned her and all her household gear into stone,
and the beds remain to commemorate the perfidy. There are, besides,
baths and mineral springs at the village of Oberkainsdorf, and at
Hohensteiner Bad; and curious old carvings in the castle of
Schönfels; and, if you incline to geology, the coal measures abound in
fossil plants and shells, while of minerals there is no stint.

The town has attractions of another sort: early-printed books, rare
manuscripts, original letters by Luther and other Reformers, in the
Library; the _Rathhaus_, on the front of which, over the door, you may
see the three swans; and, among the archives, more letters by Luther
and Melancthon. There are portraits of the two, by Cranach, in the
neighbouring castle of Planitz. The house, No. 22, in the
market-place, is that in which Luther lodged in 1522; Melancthon
sojourned in No. 444, in the _Burggasse_; and No. 576, in the
_Schergasse_, is where Napoleon had his quarters in 1812.

It was evening when I slung on my knapsack and began my walk in
earnest. A short stage at the outset is no bad preparation for the
work to follow. The road runs between the noisy factories, past
vitriol works, smelting furnaces, and, thick with dust, is, for the
first three or four miles, far from pleasant. At length the busy
district is left behind, the trees bordering the highway look greener,
and the river, separated but by a narrow strip of meadow, is near
enough for its rippling to be heard. Excepting a miner now and then,
wearing his short leathern hinder-apron, and a general shabbiness of
dress, the people I met might have been mistaken for English, so
marked is the similarity of form and feature. Transported suddenly to
any of the roads leading out of Birmingham, no one would have imagined
them to be foreigners.

About three hours, at an easy pace, brought me to a wayside
public-house near Oberhaselau, where I halted for the night. There
were sundry rustic folk among the guests, one of whom told me, while I
ate my supper, that he had taken part in the _Prinzenraub_
celebration, along with hundreds of foresters and villagers, at a
_Wirthshaus_ built on the spot where the _Triller's_ cabin stood--a
day to be remembered as long as he lived. He had, moreover, seen the
_Triller's_ gaberdine hanging in the monastery at Ebersdorf.

Later in the evening came in three men of dignified appearance, who
sat down at a card-table in one corner, to a game of what might be
described as three-handed whist. Gustel, the maid, showed them much
deference, and placed before each a quart-glass of beer. They were,
she whispered to me, the _Actuarius_ of the village, and the Inspector
and Doctor. From time to time, during the game, they broke out into a
rattling peal of laughter, as one of them threw a set of dice on the
table and handed round a few extra cards. I requested permission to
look at the cause of merriment, and, to my amazement, discovered that
both cards and dice were disgustingly obscene, out of all character
with the respectable appearance of their possessors.

Before the game was over, some six or eight wagoners, who had arrived
with their teams, spread bundles of straw on the floor, pulled off
their boots with a ponderous boot-jack chained to the door-post, and,
stretching themselves on their lair, soon united in a discord of


     Across the Mulde -- Scenery -- Feet _versus_ Wheels --
     Villages -- English Characteristics -- Timbered Houses --
     Schneeberg -- Stones for Lamps -- The Way Sunday was Kept
     -- The Church -- A Wagon-load of Music -- A Surly Host --
     Where the Pepper Grows -- Eybenstock -- Neustädl -- Fir
     Forests -- Wildenthal -- Four Sorts of Beer -- Potato
     Dumplings -- Up the Auersberg -- Advertisements -- The
     School -- The Instrument of Order -- "Look at the
     Englishman" -- The Erzgebirge -- The Guard-house -- Into
     Bohemia -- Romish Symbols -- Hirschenstand -- Another
     Guard-house -- Differences of Race -- Czechs and Germans --
     Shabby Carpentry -- Change of Scenery -- Neudeck -- Arrive
     at Carlsbad -- A Glass Boot -- Gossip.

The road crosses the Mulde near Oberhaselau, and, winding onwards
between broad, undulating fields, and through patches of forest, rises
gradually, though with frequent ups and downs, into a region more and
more hilly. A bareness of aspect increases on the landscape as you
advance, in contrast with which the stripes and squares of cultivation
on the slopes appear of shining greenness. The views grow wider. They
are peculiar and striking, though deficient in beauty, for the range
of the _Erzgebirge_, as the name indicates, hides its wealth
underground, and makes up by store of mineral treasure for poverty of
surface. Yet, is there not a charm in the tamest of mountain scenery?
It animated me as I walked along on that bright sunshiny morning.
Though the river was far out of sight, were there not a few ponds
gleaming in the hollows? while little brooks ran tinkling down their
unseen channels, and fountains began to appear at the wayside with a
ceaseless sound of bubbling and splashing that fell gratefully on the
ear; and the breeze made a gladsome rustling among the birches that
flung their graceful shadows across the dusty road. Nature is kind to
him who goes on foot, and makes him aware of beauties and delights
never discovered to the traveller on wheels.

There are signs of a numerous population: church spires and villages
in the distance--among them Reichenbach and its ruined castle--and in
little valleys which branch off here and there, teeming with foliage,
snug cottages thickly nestled; and as your eye wanders along the
broken line of tree-tops, it sees many wavy columns of smoke betraying
the site of rural homes scattered beneath. And you begin to notice
something unfamiliar in the dress of the people who inhabit them: blue
and red petticoats are frequent, and scarcely a man but wears the
straight tight-legged boots up to the knee, all black and brightly
polished; for the groups I met were on their way to church. The honest
English style of countenance still prevails; and another English
characteristic may be seen, if you look for it, in the decayed and
illegible condition of the finger-posts.

If the landscape be not picturesque, many of the houses are, with
their timbers, forming zigzags, angles, squares, diamonds, and other
fanciful conceits. Some old and gray, assimilating in colour to the
weather-stained masonry; some painted black in strong relief upon a
pale-red wall. While pausing to examine the details, you will not fail
to admire the taste and skill of the builders of three centuries ago,
who knew how to impart beauty even to the humblest habitations. Now
and then you come upon a house of which the upper storey, faced with
slates, appears as if supported by arches and pilasters fashioned in
the wall beneath; and specimens of these several kinds of architecture
gratify the eye in all the hill-country of Saxony.

Schneeberg, lying in a valley backed by a dark slope of firs, has a
singularly gloomy aspect, which disappears as you descend the hill. It
was eleven on Sunday morning when I entered the town. Because summer
had come, the street lamps were all taken down; but that the chains
and ropes might not hang idle, the lamplighter had tied a big stone or
large brick, by no means ornamental, to the end of every one. A
military band was playing in the market-place; a few shops were open;
and a man hurrying from corner to corner was posting up bills of plays
to be acted in the evening--a little comedy, followed by a piece in
five acts. The prices were, for the first places, 6d., the second,
3d., the third, 2d., which would hardly exclude even the poorest. So,
in Saxony, as elsewhere on the Continent, not only Papists but
Protestants are willing to recreate themselves with music and the
theatre on a Sunday. A half-dozen postilions, who were strutting about
in the full blaze of bright-yellow coats, yellow-banded hats,
jack-boots, and with a bugle slung from the shoulder, seemed as proud
of their dress as the peacocky drum-major did of his.

I ordered a steak at the _Fürstenhaus_. "Will you have it
through-broiled or English-broiled?" asked the waiter, and looked a
little surprised at my preference of the former. When the band stopped
playing, numbers of the listeners came into the dining-room for a
_Halbe_ of beer, and sat down to play at cards.

The church, a spacious edifice, crowns the height above the
market-place. After walking twice round it, I discovered a small door
in an angle, which being unfastened gave me admittance. The interior,
with its worn and uneven brick floor, has somewhat of a neglected
look, not unusual in Protestant churches; but there are a few good
paintings, and the altar-piece, representing the Crucifixion, shows
the hand of a master. I was quite alone, and could explore as I
pleased. The altar rises to a great height, adorned with statues, and
crowned by figures of angels. Near it two or three tall crucifixes
lean against the wall; the font, and a lectern upborne by an angel
stand in the centre of the nave, and everywhere are signs of the
Lutheran form of worship. Here and there, constructed with an apparent
disregard of order, are glazed galleries, pews, and closets, and
others that resemble large cages--ugly excrescences, which mar the
fair proportions of the lofty nave. The gallery is fronted by a thick
breastwork of masonry, bearing a heavy coping, and the brick floor is
in many places worn completely through, and the loose lumps are strewn
about. The view from the tower, commanding miles of the mountain
range, more than repays the trouble of the ascent.

There are three services on the Sunday. From six to seven, and from
eight to half-past nine in the morning, and from one to two in the
afternoon. The rest of the day is free; but not for work, as in other
countries. Haymaking, as I was informed, is the only Sunday work
permitted by the law of Saxony. The Sunday school is well attended,
and is not confined to religious subjects, for writing, arithmetic,
and drawing are taught.

While trudging up the hill beyond the town, I passed one of the
springless country wagons, crammed with a military band, the fiddles
and big bass viol hanging behind, on the way to amuse the folk at
Stein with music. They undertake a similar expedition every Sunday in
fine weather to one or other of the surrounding villages.

I met with two novel experiences during the afternoon. One was, that
to sit down in the church at Neustädl is a penance, for the pews are
so narrow that you have to lift up the hinged seat before you can
enter. The other, a few miles farther on the way, was of a surly
_Wirth_, dwelling under the sign of the _Weisses Lamm_ (White Lamb),
whom I begged to draw me a glass of beer cool from the cellar. Instead
of complying, he filled the measure from a can which had been standing
two or three hours on the dresser in all the suffocating heat of the
stove, and placed it before me with a grunt. I ventured to remind him,
with good-humoured words, that lukewarm beer was not acceptable to a
thirsty wayfarer on a hot day; whereupon he retorted, snarling more
like a wolf than a lamb, "Either drink that, or go and get other
where the pepper grows"--_wo der Pfeffer wächst_.

The old sinner availed himself of a form of speech much used among the
Germans to denote a place of intensely high temperature, and
sulphureous withal, in which pepper, being so very pungent a product,
may be supposed to grow.

"Suppose you go first," I answered, "and see if there be any left."
And turning away, I shut the door upon the snarl which he snarled
after me, and went on to Eybenstock, where cool beer in plenty was
forthcoming as soon as asked for.

I told the hostess of my adventure with old Surly. "Just like him,"
she replied, laughing merrily; "nobody ever goes to the _White Lamb_
that can help it. You didn't see any one besides him in the room, I'll
engage." True enough, I did not.

A long, steep acclivity rises between Schneeberg and Eybenstock, from
which you look down into deep, dark gulfs of fir forest, and away to
hills swelling higher and higher in the distance--all alike sombre. So
that when you come to a green vale, with its little hay-fields watered
by a noisy brook, streaked in places with foam, it appears lovely by
contrast. The road makes long curves and zigzags to avoid the heights,
but the old track through the trees still remains, and shortens the
distance at the expense of a little exertion in climbing.

The wildness increases beyond Eybenstock. The forest descends upon the
road, and you walk for an hour at a stretch under the shade of firs,
with beech and birch sparsely intermingled, and here and there a
stately pine springing from a mighty base to a height far above the
rest, the topmost branches edged with gold by the declining sunbeams.

Emerging from the grateful shade, we come to Wildenthal, a little
green hollow at the foot of the Auersberg, enclosing a saw-mill, a
school, a few cottages, fields and gardens, and an inn, _Gasthaus zum
Ross_. Great slopes of firs rising on every side shut it out, as it
were, from the rest of the world. The aged hostess at the _Gasthaus_
bustled about with surprising alacrity to answer the calls of her
rustic guests for beer. "_Einfach_," cried one; another, "_Weisses_;"
"_Lager_," broke in a voice from among the party of card-players,
accompanied by a rapping of the pewter tankard-lid; "_Bayerisches_,"
shouted others from the ninepin-alley outside; and she, with her ready
"_Gleich_"--directly--appeasing their impatience.

Of these four kinds of beer, the first--literally Simple--is
equivalent to our small-beer, and is much in request by a certain
class of topers from its low price, and because they can drink it the
whole day without fear of becoming stupid before the evening. The
second--White--is very foamy, and has somewhat the lively flavour of
ginger-beer: after standing some time in the glass a shake round
revives its briskness. The third--Store-beer--is of sufficient
strength to bear a year's keeping; and the fourth--Bavarian--is of a
similar quality. The last two were the most to my liking.

There was greater choice of beer than of viands; and the half-bent old
dame thought fit to apologise because she could give me nothing for
supper but omelettes and _Klese_; the latter a sort of dumpling made
of potatoes and a sprinkling of wheaten flour. "If she had only
known," and so forth. However, I found them palatable, and ate
heartily, and therein she took comfort. Many times did I eat of such
dumplings afterwards, for the relish for them is not confined to
Saxony. Under the name of _Knädeln_, or _Kipfeln_, they are a standing
dish among the Bohemians. To hundreds of families in the _Erzgebirge_
they are the only variety--but without the wheaten flour--in a
perpetual potato diet: rarely can they get even the sour black bread
of the country, and in the years of the potato disease famine and
misery desolated many a hearth.

The guests went away early, and then, as twilight fell, nothing
disturbed the stillness of the vale save the murmur of running water
and the whisper of the breeze among the slopes of firs, inviting to a
contemplative stroll.

I rose on the morrow soon after the sun, and scrambled up the
Auersberg. It was really a scramble, for I pushed at a venture into
the forest, aiming direct for the summit. How the grass and the
diminutive black-eared rye glistened with dewdrops! Early as it was,
the saw-mill had begun its busy clatter, and here and there on the
hills the woodcutters' strokes sounded in the calm morning air. Once
under the trees all signs of a track disappeared; and there were
slopes slippery with decayed vegetation; little swamps richly carpeted
with exquisite mosses; dense patches of bilberry, teeming with berries
as purple ripe as when Kunz plucked in another part of the forest but
a few miles distant. And after all, owing to the tower on the top
having fallen down, and the trees having grown up, the view is
limited to a narrow opening on either side, where an avenue, now
rarely used, affords an easy though tedious ascent. A square block of
stone stands near the remains of the tower, dedicated to an upper
forest-master, who had fulfilled fifty years of service, by his
friends and subordinates. However, there is such a charm in the wild,
lonely forest, that one need not regret half an hour's exertion in
scrambling up a steep hill under its shadow.

I amused myself during breakfast with the _Erzgebirgischer Anzeiger_,
a small quarto newspaper, published at Schneeberg thrice a week; the
price twelve _neugroschen_ (about fifteen pence) per quarter. Beer and
amusements occupied a large space among the advertisements; for every
village and every _Wirthshaus_ in the forest, of any notoriety,
promised music or dancing on Sundays, sometimes both; and fortunate
was the one that could announce the military band. Double _Lager_
beer, a penny the pot, was offered in abundance sufficient to satisfy
the thirstiest. "Stewed meat and fresh sausages next Friday," is the
inducement held out by one ambitious little alehouse: and an
enterprising refectioner declares, "In my garden it gives fine
weather." And, as the _Dresdner Anzeiger_ shows, they do similar
things in the metropolis. A coffee-house keeper, "up four steps,"
says: "My most honoured sir, I permit myself the freedom to invite you
to a cup of coffee next Sunday afternoon at three o'clock." Certain
young men publish their sentiments concerning their hostess, beginning

     "Angels until now have led thee,"

and so on. A fortunate husband and father thanks Madame Krändel for
the "happy _Entbindung_" of his wife, and publishes his wife's maiden
name. Parents announce the death of a child, and invite their friends
to "quiet sympathy." A stray Berlin paper makes it clear that a like
practice prevails in the capital of Prussia. But most amusing of all
was the advertisement, in French and English, of the landlord of the
_Golden Star_, at Bonn. Here it is:

     "De cet hôtel la renommée
     Promet sans exagération
     Que vous y trouverez
     Le comble de la perfection.
         Le luxe de la salle à manger
         Surpassera même votre idée."

     "By all visitors of the Rhine
     Known as one of the most fine
     And best conducted models
     Of all Continental hotels.
         The dining-room allowed to be
         A grand pattern of luxury."

Which does not say much for the bard of Bonn. Besides these there was
the _Illustrated Village Barber_, a paper published at Leipzig, full
of humorous cuts, over which the rustics chuckled not a little.[A]

Wildenthal has no church; the people, therefore, are dependent on
Eybenstock, three miles distant, for sermons, baptisms, marriages, and
burials; but, in common with other villages, it has a good
schoolhouse. Hearing the sound of voices as I passed, I went in, and
had a talk with the master, who was a model of politeness. He had
about a hundred scholars, of both sexes, in a room well-lighted and
ventilated, with a spelling-frame, and black music board, ruled for
four parts, and other appliances of education placed along the walls.
Threepence a week--two and a half _neugroschen_--is the highest rate
paid at country schools; but there are two lower rates to suit folk of
scanty means, and the very poorest pay nothing. The children attend
school from the age of six up to fourteen, with no vacations except a
fortnight at each of the three rural ingatherings--haymaking, harvest,
and potato-digging. The hours of attendance are from seven to ten in
the forenoon, one to four in the afternoon.

"Yes, they are pretty good children," said the master, in reply to my
inquiry; "I have not much trouble to keep them in order; but, in case
of need, here is a little instrument (_kleines Instrument_) which
comes to my aid;" and he produced a small birch from a secret place
behind his desk.

A general nudging went through the school, and quick, sly looks from
one to the other, at sight of the interwoven twigs. "Ha! ha!" cried
the master, "you see they recognise it. However, 'tis very seldom
called for."

Then, mounting his rostrum, he said: "Now, children, tell me--which is
the most famous country in the world?"

"_Eng-land!_" from all the hundred voices.

"Is it a most highly renowned country?"


"And how is the chief city named?"

"_Lundun_"--the _u_ sounded as in full.

"And when Saxony wants factories, and steam-engines, and
spinning-machinery, and railways, who is it sends them hither, or
comes over and makes them?"

"_Eng-land!_" again, and with enthusiasm.

"Good. Now, children, look at the _Herr_ standing here by my
side--look at him, I say, for he comes from that famous

It was a trial to my courage to become thus unexpectedly the object
for all eyes, and feeling bound to say something in return for the
master's compliment, I replied that, "If England did do so much for
Saxony, it was only paying back in another form the prowess and vigour
which the Saxons long time ago had carried into England. Moreover, in
Saxony all children could read; but in England there were many boys
and girls who could not read."

"Is it possible!" exclaimed the master, holding up his hands. "How can
that be?"

"It is part of our liberty. Any one in England is perfectly free to be
ignorant if he likes it best."

"Remarkable!" answered the dominie; and he inquired concerning the
amount of salary paid to schoolmasters in England. His own appeared
very small in comparison; but were it not that bread was unusually
dear, and firewood five dollars the _Klafter_--notwithstanding the
vast forests--he was quite content, and could live in comfort.

Beyond Wildenthal, the ascent is almost continuous: now the road
traverses a clearing where the new undergrowth hides the many
scattered stumps; now a grassy slope thickly bestrewn with wild
flowers; now a great breadth of forest, where boulders peer out
between the stems, and brooks flow noisily, and long bunches of hairy
moss hang from the branches, and the new shoots of the firs, tipped
with amber and gold, glisten and glow in the light of the morning sun.

Ever deeper into the hills; the solitude interrupted now and then by a
gang of charcoal-burners with their wagons, or an aristocratic
carriage, or an humble chaise, speeding on its way from Carlsbad. Or
the sound of the axe echoes through the wood, followed by the crash of
a falling tree. And always the wind murmurs among the trees, swelling
at times to a fitful roar.

I saw a stone-breaker at work, afflicted with a huge goitre. He earns
a dollar and a half per week, and complains sadly of the dearness of
bread, and the hardness of the blue granite.

Gradually the tall forest gives place to scrubby-looking firs, stony
patches, rough with hardy heath, offering a wild and dreary prospect.
Presently a square stone, standing by the road, exhibits on one side
_K. Sachsen_ (Kingdom of Saxony), on the other _K. Boehmen_, and
passing this you are in Bohemia. Near it is the guard-house, where two
soldiers are always on the watch. One of them asked me if my knapsack
contained anything for duty, accepted my negative without demur, and
invited me to sit down and have a chat on the turfy seat by the side
of the door. It was a pleasure to see a new face, for their life was
very monotonous, looking out, from noon of one day to noon of the
next, for honest folk and smugglers, suffering none to pass
unquestioned. They were not much troubled with contrabandists, for
these free-traders shun the highway, and cross the frontier by secret
paths in lonely parts of the mountains.

The summit here forms a table-land some three thousand feet above the
sea-level, with a prospect by no means cheering; limited by the
stunted firs, except towards the south-west, where a few black,
dreary-looking undulations terminate the view. The road, however, soon
begins to descend to a less inhospitable region, and presently makes a
sudden dip, for the slope of the _Erzgebirge_, long and gradual
towards Saxony, is abrupt on the Bohemian side. The other mountain
ranges present a similar formation. Then we come to tall trees, and
grassy glades, stony clearings, and acres of bilberries. A little
farther, and the sight of a crucifix, bearing a gilt Christ, by the
wayside, and of miserable wooden cottages, roofed with shingles,
convinces you that the frontier is really crossed. A valley opens
where haymakers are busy; the men wearing the straight tight boots,
the women barefoot, and with a kerchief pinned hood-fashion under the
chin. "_Gelobt sei Jesus Christus_"--Praised be Jesus Christ--salute
the children as you pass, and some of them stand still with an
expectant look. Then posts, and a toll-bar, painted in the diagonal
stripes of black and yellow, which symbolise imperial Austria. The bar
is kept down, but sufficiently high above the ground for a man to walk
under it without ducking. Having passed this you are in
Hirschenstand--the first Bohemian village.

"Perhaps you come out of Saxony?" said a man, stepping from a house
that had a double eagle above the door, and holding out his hand for
my passport.

He was very civil, and also very positive in his assurance that he
could not grant me a _visa_ for Prague; only for Carlsbad, and he
wished me a pleasant journey. A few yards farther I turned into the
inn to dine, and at once met with characteristic specimens of the two
races who inhabit Bohemia. There was the German, with a round, flat,
hairy face, stolid in expression, and somewhat sluggish in movement,
and by his side the Czech, or Stock-Bohemian, whose oval countenance,
high intellectual forehead, arched eyebrows, clear olive complexion,
unrelieved by moustache or whisker, presented a marked contrast; the
Sclavonian, bright-eyed and animated; the Teuton, dull and heavy. Yet
the latter is gaining upon his lively neighbour. The German population
is every year increasing, and the Czechish language is spoken within a
narrower circle. The contrast between the two races will be something
for observation during our walk, and with another noticeable
difference when we approach the frontier of Silesia.

There was something peculiar in the room as well as in the guests; at
one side a tall clock, and very tall candlesticks; in the middle a
chopping-block, bearing a heap of sausage-meat; a washing-tub and
copper-pans in one corner, and on the opposite side a species of
bagatelle-board, on which the ball is expected to find its way into
the holes between long palisades of little wires: an exciting game;
for even the slow German was quickened as he watched the constant
repulsions of the little globe hovering round the highest number only
to fail of entering.

Here, too, were the tall wooden chairs which are seldom seen beyond
the Austrian frontier. It made me smile to renew acquaintance with the
lanky, spider-legged things. Not the most comfortable contrivance for
dispelling weariness, as you would perhaps think, reader, were you to
see one. They are, however, very cheap; not more than thirty-five
kreutzers apiece, made of pine, and a florin when of hard wood. Both
curiosities in their way.

Hirschenstand will hardly prepossess you in favour of Bohemian
villages, for its houses are shabby boarded structures, put up with a
wonderful disregard of order and neatness--windows all awry, the
chimney anyhow, and the fit of the door a scandal to carpentry. And
the cottages scattered about the valley, and for some distance along
the road, preserve the family likeness strongly marked. They would
have a touch of the picturesque with far projecting eaves, but the
roofs are not made to overhang. You might easily fancy that the land
had not yet recovered from the effects of the exterminating Hussite
wars, out of which arose the proverb, "Scarce as Bohemian villages."

But Carlsbad is nearly seven hours distant, and we must hasten
onwards. The road still descends: the prospect opens over forests far
broader than on the Saxon side: valleys branch off, and the scenery
improves. Rocks choke the brooks, and burst out from the slopes; rows
of ash, lime, and cherry-trees, bordering the road, succeed to the
firs, and large whitewashed houses with tall roofs to the shabby
cottages. Then iron works; and little needle factories driven by a
mere spoutful of water rattling and buzzing merrily as grasshoppers.

Then Neudeck, where a high rock overtops the houses, and projects into
the street, having the appearance, when first seen, of an ancient
tower. We shall see similar strange-looking rocks, from time to time,
on the hill-side, as if to prepare us for rocky scenes of wonderful
character in a subsequent part of our travel. A high steep hill close
to the town is cut up with zigzags, by which the devout may ascend
from station to station to the Calvary on the top, from whence the
view, at all events, will repay the trouble. The road was made, and
the stations and chapel were built, at the cost of an ancient maiden
lady, who a few years ago expended 27,000 dollars in the purchase of
the hill for the good of her soul.

Now the road descends through a vale between broad fields of wheat and
potatoes, to the smoky porcelain manufacturing town of Alt, where your
eye will, perhaps, be attracted by a few pretty faces among the women,
set off by a pink, blue, or green jacket, and petticoat of a different
colour. But for the most part the women have a dowdy appearance, of
which the Czechs, as we shall by-and-by see, exhibit the dowdiest

Still the road descends towards the black group of hills which
encircle Carlsbad. It was nearly dark when I crossed the bridge and
entered the celebrated watering-place. At first I thought every house
an inn, for every front carries a sign--somewhat puzzling to a belated
stranger. At length the _Gasthof zum Morgenstern_ opened its door to
receive me; much to my comfort, for I was very tired, having walked
altogether thirty miles. Great was my enjoyment of rest. At supper the
landlord brought the beer in a large boot-shaped glass, and placed it
before me with the chuckling remark that he liked his guests to be
able to say they had one time in their lives drunk out of a boot.

His wife, who appeared to be as good-humoured as she was
good-looking, amused me with her gossip. Her especial delight was to
laugh at the peculiarities of her guests, and their mistakes in
speaking German. One, a bilious Greek, had come down one morning with
his hand to his head complaining of _Fuss-schmerz_--foot-ache. The
Saxons, she said, could not cook, or make good butter, and were ready
to drink a quart of any kind of brown fluid, and believe it to be


[A] In Saxony there are published 220 newspapers; in Austria, 271; in
Bavaria, 178.


     Dr. Fowler's Prescription -- Carlsbad -- "A Matlocky sort
     of a Place" -- Springs and Swallows -- Tasting the Water --
     The Cliffs and Terraces -- Comical Signs -- The Wiese and
     its Frequenters -- Disease and Health -- The Sprudel: its
     Discharge; its Deposit -- The Stoppage -- Volcanic
     Phenomena -- Dr. Granville's Observations -- Care's Rest --
     Dreikreuzberg -- View from the Summit -- König Otto's Höhe
     -- "Are you here for the Cure?" -- Lenten Diet --
     Hirschsprung -- The Trumpeters -- Two Florins for a Bed.

"To lie abed till you are done enough," says Dr. Fowler, of Salisbury,
"is the way to promote health and long life;" and he justifies his
assertion by living to the age of ninety, with promise of adding yet
somewhat to the number. Remembering this, I let duty and inclination
have their way the next morning, and the market-women in front of the
inn had nearly sold off their baskets of flowers and vegetables before
I set out to explore the wonders of Carlsbad.

"It's a Matlocky sort of a place!" cried a young lady, as I passed an
elegant party, who were sauntering about the pleasant grounds behind
the _Theresienbrunn_--"it's a Matlocky sort of a place!" And a merry
laugh followed the iteration of her ingenious adjective. That it is
not altogether inappropriate is apparent as soon as you arrive on the
upper terrace and overlook a small town, lying deep between hills on
either side of the Teple, a shallow and sharply-curved stream.

All the springs but two are on the left bank, a few yards from the
water's edge. There is a little architectural display in the buildings
by which they are covered: a domed roof, supported on columns, or a
square, temple-like structure, flanked by colonnades. The water flows
into a cavity, more or less deeply sunk below the surface, surrounded
by stone steps, on which sit the nimble lasses, priestesses of health,
who every morning from six to ten are busily employed in dispensing
the exhaustless medicine. A few vase-like cups stand ready for use;
but numbers of the visitors bring their own glass, carried as a
bouquet in the hand, of tasteful Bohemian manufacture, striped with
purple or ruby, and some of the purest white. All are made of the same
size--to contain six ounces--and a few have a species of dial
attached, by which to keep count of the number of doses swallowed. The
visitors, having their glasses filled at the fountain, walk up or down
the colonnade, or along the paths of the pleasure-ground, listening to
music, or form little groups for a morning gossip, and sip and chat
alternately till the glasses are emptied. The rule is to wait a
quarter-hour between each refilling, so that a patient condemned to a
dozen glasses dissipates three hours in the watery task. The number
imbibed depends on the complaint and constitution: in some instances
four glasses are taken; in others, from twenty to forty.

I tasted each spring as I came to it, and felt no inclination to
repeat the experiment. The temperature of the _Theresienbrunn_ is 134
deg., of the _Mühlbrunn_ 138 deg., of the _Neubrunn_ 144 deg., in
itself a cause of dislike, especially in hot weather, and much more so
when combined with a disagreeable bitter, and a flavour which I can
only compare to a faint impression of the odour of a dissecting-room.
No wonder some of the drinkers shudder as they swallow their volcanic
physic! But more about the waters after we have seen the _Sprudel_.

In some places the cliff comes so near to the stream that there is no
more than room for a colonnade, or narrow road, and here and there the
path, stopped by a projecting rock, is carried round the rear of the
obstacle by little intricate zigzags. And every minute you come to
some ramifications of the narrow lanes, which here, so limited and
valuable is the space, serve the purpose of streets, and afford ready
access to the heights above. The houses rise tier over tier, in short
rows, or perched singly on curious platforms excavated from the rock,
in situations where back windows would be useless. The topmost
dwellers have thus an opportunity to amuse their idleness by a
bird's-eye view of what their neighbours are doing below. From May to
September the influx of visitors is so great that every house is full
of inmates.

As every house has its sign or designation, ingenuity has been not a
little taxed to avoid repetitions. One ambitious proprietor writes up
_At the King of England_; another, contenting himself with his native
tongue, has _König von England_; a third, _English House_. A little
farther, and you see _Captain Cook_; _The Comet_; _The Aurora_; and
many varieties of Rings, Spoons, and Musical Instruments.
_Israelitisch Restauration_ notifies the tribes of a dining-room; here
_The Admiral_, there _The Corporal_, yonder _The Pasha_ claims
attention; and in a steep street leading towards Prague I saw _The A B
C_. And here and there a doll in a glass-case fixed to the wall,
representing St. Anne--a favourite saint of the Bohemians--looks down
on the sauntering visitors.

Continuing up the left bank you enter the market-place, where the
indications of life and business multiply, and a throng are sipping
around the _Marktbrunn_. This spring burst up from under the
paving-stones in 1838; a temple was built over it, and ever since it
has served as a temple of ease to some of the more crowded springs. A
little farther, and you come to the _Wiese_, or meadow, which retains
no more of grass than Hatton-garden does of gravelled paths and
flower-beds: a row of houses and shops on one side, on the other a
line of wooden booths concealing the river, and all between planted
with trees which shelter an irregular regiment of chairs and tables.
Here is the place where visitors most do congregate, pacing leisurely
to and fro, or lounging on the chairs in front of the cafés, gossiping
over the newspapers, or trifling around the stalls and shop windows.

A remarkable throng, truly! Some with an air highly dignified and
aristocratic; but the greater part somewhat grotesque in appearance.
Graceful ladies with those ungraceful sprawling bonnets not uncommon
in Germany; men, lanky and angular, and short and round, and square
and awkward, wearing astonishing wide-awakes. Such a variety of loose,
baggy trousers, magnificent waistcoats, and gauzy gowns, that look
impalpable almost as a cloud! Here comes a Polish Jew with manifest
signs of having remained unclean beyond more than one evening; here a
Czechish count, who has not forgotten his military paces; here a
spectacled professor, with boots turned up peak-wise, and toes turned
broadly out; here a group of Hebrews glittering with jewelry; and here
a miscellaneous crowd from all the countries of Europe, but Germans
the most numerous. Of English very few. There is nothing stiff or
formal about them; to make things pleasant seems to be a tacit
understanding, for disease has brought them all to one common level.
All are animated by the hope of cure, and find therein an inspiration
towards gaiety.

But who shall be gay in an hospital, among sallow, haggard faces,
sunken eyes, and ghastly features? Some you see who, preyed upon by
disease for years, have well-nigh lost all faith in the smiler who
lingers so long at the bottom of the box; some afflicted by
hypochondriasis appear to wonder that the sun should shine, that
others can be happy while they themselves are so miserable. The lively
fiddles, and twanging harps, and jingling tambourines--the Tyrolese
minstrels--the glib conjuror, all fail to bring a flash of joy back to
their deadened eye; to win for mirth one responsive thrill. I have
never been more thankfully sensible of the blessing of robust health,
than while strolling on the _Wiese_ at Carlsbad.

What with its many stalls and shops, the _Wiese_ resembles a bazaar.
All sorts of trifles and knick-knacks tempt the visitor, and entice
money from the purse. Among queer-looking toys you see WINDSOR SOAP
labelled in good, honest English; pipes, ribands, and pocket-books,
fans, satchels, and jewelry, among specimens of _Sprudelstein_, and
crystals and minerals, from the surrounding hills. Money-changers
abound; and polyglot placards--English, French, German, Czechish,
Hungarian--everywhere meet the eye. And not only here, but all over
the town, brisk signs of business and prosperity are apparent. But to
quote the gossip of my hostess, "many in Carlsbad have to endure
hunger during the winter." The place is then deserted, for the season
lasts only from May to September.

Turn into a short _Gasse_ from the market-place, cross the
foot-bridge, and you will see a Geyser without the fatigue of a voyage
to Iceland. It is the far-famed _Sprudel_, or Bubbler. At one end of a
colonnade open to the river on the right bank, a living column of
water springs perpetually from the ground. Through an orifice in the
centre of a basin about three feet deep, the water leaps and plays
with a noise of gurgling, splashing, and bubbling, to a height of six
or eight feet, and throwing off clouds of steam. Now it forms a column
with palm-leafed capital--now a number of jets tumbling over in
graceful curves--now broken, fan-like masses, all throbbing and
dancing in obedience to the vigorous pulsations under ground. There is
something fascinating in the sight. Allowing for the artificial
elevation of the floor, the whole height of the jet is about twelve
feet; and so has it leaped for ages, and with but one interruption
since its fabulous discovery in the fourteenth century.

The _Sprudel_ is the hottest of the springs, scalding hot, in fact,
marking a temperature of 167 deg. Fahrenheit: hence the attendant
Naiads--here a couple of strong-armed women--make use of a cup fixed
to one end of a staff for filling the glasses. When a visitor
approaches, the staff is held out to receive the glass; and after a
plunge into the steaming jet, is handed back to the expectant drinker,
who, taking his glass from the cup, swallows the contents at
pleasure--if he can. The drinkers were but few when I came up, for ten
o'clock was nigh; stragglers, who having arrived late, were sipping
their last glasses--some not without a shudder. While the dose cooled,
they examined the heads of walking-sticks, snuff-boxes, seals, and
other specimens of _Sprudelstein_, on sale at a stall; or the
time-tables and advertisement photographs hanging about the colonnade.
The Naiads, in the interval, emptied ladles full of the water into
stone-bottles, which a man rapidly corked in a noisy machine.

The waste water flows away along a wooden shoot to the river, where it
sends small light wreaths of steam floating about on the surface. But
I saw nothing at all like what has been often described as a cloud of
steam perpetually hovering above the _Sprudel_, visible from afar.
Regarded near at hand, or from a distance, there is no cloud visible
in July, whatever may be the case in the cool months.

The quantity of water poured out every day by the _Sprudel_ alone is
estimated at two million gallons. Multiplied by 365, it becomes truly
amazing. In this quantity, as shown by Gilbert, a German chemist, ten
thousand tons of Glauber salt, and fifteen thousand tons of carbonate
of soda are thrown up in a year. And this has been going on from
immemorial ages, the waters depositing calcareous matter in their
outflow, which has slowly formed a crust over the vast boiling
reservoir beneath. And on this crust Carlsbad is built.

The constituents of all the springs, as proved by analyses, are
identical with those of the _Sprudel_--soda in the form of carbonate,
Glauber salt, and common salt; carbonic acid gas, and traces of iron
and iodine. Bitumen is also found in a notable quantity, and a
peculiar soapy substance, a species of animal matter, the cause,
perhaps, of the cadaverous flavour already mentioned. The water, which
when first caught is bright and clear, becomes turbid if left to cool,
and throws down a pale-brown sediment. Ehrenberg, the celebrated
microscopist of Berlin, who has examined specimens of this sediment
under his microscope, declares it to be composed of fossil animalcules
inconceivably minute; these animalcules being a portion of the
material out of which Nature builds up the solid strata of the globe.
Some patients have feared to drink the water because of the concreting
property; but the medical authorities assure that in this respect it
produces no injurious effect on the animal economy. Shopkeepers turn
it to profit, and offer you fruits, flowers, plants, and other
objects, petrified by the _Sprudel_ water.

The roof of the colonnade above the spring is discoloured by the
ascending steam; and standing on the bridge you can see how the wall
is incrusted with calcareous matter, as, also, the big hump swelling
up from the bed of the stream--a smooth ochreous coat, brightened in
places by amber, in others darkened into a rich brown, or dyed with
shades of green. This concretion is the _Sprudelstein_, or
Sprudel-stone, noticed above; firm and hard in texture, and
susceptible of a beautiful polish. A portion of the waste water is
led into an adjoining building, where it undergoes evaporation to
obtain the constituent salts in a dry state for exportation. From the
other shoot, as it falls into the river, supplies are constantly
dipped by the townsfolk, who use it to cook their eggs, to scald pork
and poultry, and other purposes. All day long you may see women
filling and carrying away on their shoulders big bucketfuls of the
steaming water. Notwithstanding this constant inflow of hot water, the
Teple appears to agree with fish, for I saw numbers swimming about in
good condition but a short distance lower down. As a stream, it adds
little to the salubrity of Carlsbad, for it is shallow, sluggish in
places, and tainted by noisome drainage. Another cause of offence to
the nostrils exists in what is so often complained of on the
Continent, the obtrusive situation of the _latrinæ_ at the principal
springs. Only in England are such matters properly cared for.

In 1809, and for ten years thereafter, the _Sprudel_ ceased to flow,
and the water broke through at a spot some fifty feet distant, to
which the name _Hygieas Quelle_ was given. Here it continued to play
till 1819, when it reappeared at the former source, and from that date
there has been no interruption in the copious discharge of the
_Sprudel_. The underground action is at times so powerful as to rend
the crust and form new openings, and these, if large, have to be
stopped, to prevent the loss of the springs. The yellow hump mentioned
as swelling up from the river's bed, is nothing but a thick mass of
masonry, braced together by iron bars, covering a great rent through
which the waters once boiled up from below. Similar outbreaks
occurred in 1713, and again fourteen years later, when attempts were
made to ascertain the depth of the great subterranean reservoir by
splicing poles together to a length of one hundred and eighty feet,
but neither bottom nor wall could be touched in any direction. The
hills around are of granite, containing mica and pyrites, and one of
them, the _Hirschsprung_, is said to be the source of all the Carlsbad
springs. Their bases come near together, and it is easy to imagine a
huge cavern formed between them descending deep down into the bowels
of the earth.

As regards the efficacy of the Carlsbad waters, let us hear Dr.
Granville, an authority on the subject: "They exert their principal
sanative action," he says, "1st, on all chronic affections which
depend on debility of the digestive organs, accompanied by the
accumulation of improper secretions; 2ndly, on all obstructions,
particularly of the abdomen, which, as Becher, the oracle of Carlsbad,
observes, they resolve and disperse; 3rdly, on the acrimony of the
blood, which they correct, alter, evacuate, or drive towards the
extremities and the surface of the body; 4thly, on calculous and
gravelly deposits; 5thly, on many occult and serious disorders, the
nature of which is not readily ascertained until after the partial use
of the waters, such as tic doloreux, spasms, rheumatisms, and gout."

As if here were not virtues sufficient, the Doctor proceeds: "My own
experience warrants me in commending the Carlsbad waters in all
obstinate cases of induration, tumefaction, tenderness, and sluggish
action of the liver; in imperfect or suppressed gout; in paralysis,
dependent on the stomach, and not fulness of blood in the head; in
cases of tic and nervous disorders; finally, in obstructions of the
glands of the mesentery, and distended state of the splenetic
vessels." The effect on stones in the bladder is almost magical, so
promptly are they polished, reduced, rendered friable, and expelled,
leaving the patient a happy example of perfect cure.

"It is the despondent," to quote once more from the Doctor, "the
dejected, misanthropic, fidgetty, pusillanimous, irritable,
outrageous, morose, sulky, weak-minded, whimsical, and often
despairing hypochondriac--for he is all these, and each in turn--made
so by continued indigestion, by obstinate and unremitting gout, by
affections of the nerves of sympathy and of the gastric region, and by
other equally active causes, that Carlsbad seems pre-eminently to
favour." After reading this, the wonder is, not that the visitors
number from five to six thousand in the course of the season, but that
they are not ten times as many.

The Doctor finds nothing nauseous in the taste of the water. "Once
arrived in the stomach," he says, "it produces an exhilarating
sensation, which spreads itself to the intestinal canal generally." To
him I leave the responsibility of this statement; for, preferring to
let well alone, I sipped by spoonfuls only, and can therefore bring no
testimony from my own experience. The practice of drinking the waters
has almost set aside the once exclusive practice of bathing; but baths
are always to be had, as well of mud and vapour as of the water of the

Now, after this stroll through the town, let us take a wider survey.
As we follow the street down the right bank, we see parties setting
off in carriages for excursions to the neighbourhood, and rows of
vehicles in the open places ticketed, _Return to Marienbad_, _to
Eger_, _to Töplitz_, _to Zwickau_, and the like, and drivers on the
alert for what your London cab-driver calls "a job." A short distance
beyond the _Morgenstern_ a path zigzags gradually up the hill and
brings you soon under the shade of trees, and to many little nooks and
sheltered seats contrived for delightful repose. One remote bower,
apparently but little frequented, is inscribed, _Care's Rest: make
thyself happy_. A little farther, and crossing a carriage-road, we
come to a temple where you may have another rest, and enjoy at the
same time the opening panorama. From hence the paths zigzag onwards to
the top of the _Dreikreuzberg_--Three-Cross Hill--by easy shady
slopes, which even a short-winded patient may ascend, while those with
strong legs may shorten the distance by the steep cut-offs. An
agreeable surprise awaits you at the top: a large, well-kept garden,
gay and fragrant with flowers, surrounded by arbours of clipped fir,
and a graceful screen of trees, while at one side stands a spacious
_Restauration_--all clean and cheerful of aspect. From an elevated
platform, or from the arched recesses on the terrace in front of the
garden, you see all Carlsbad and the hilly region around.

Now you see how singularly crooked is the narrow valley in which the
town is built; how the white houses gleam from the steep green sides
of the farther hills, and straggle away to the wooded hollow at the
head of the valley, from whence the river issues in a shining curve.
In and out flows the stream past the church, past the springs and
public buildings, cutting the town in two, on its way to fall into the
Eger. Your eye takes in the life of the streets, the goings to and
fro, but on a reduced scale--such tiny men and women, and little
carriages! 'Tis as if one were looking into Lilliput. Opposite rises
the precipitous rocky hill, the Hirschsprung, to the craggy summit of
which we shall climb by-and-by; and beyond it, ridgy summits, away to
the gloomy expanse of the _Schlaggenwald_. Many are the paths that
penetrate the rearward valleys, and white roads curving along the
hill-sides high above Carlsbad, and far up the distant slopes.
Altogether the view is striking, and somewhat romantic; yet in the
eyes of the Germans fresh from their flat, uninteresting country, it
is "_wunderschön_"--an epithet which they never tire of heaping on the

From the garden a path leads along the ridge to a higher elevation,
where the three tall crosses, seen for miles around, spring from a
rocky knoll at the rear of a small semicircular opening, enclosed by
firs, prettily intermingled with beech and birch. Heath and yellow
broom grow from crevices in the rocks, and the wild thyme, crushed by
your foot, fills the air with aromatic sweetness, for the spot is left
to the nurture of the winds and the rain. It commands the same view as
from the garden; but with a wider scope, and the town lying at a
greater depth.

The path still curving along the ridge brings you presently to _König
Otto's Höhe_--King Otto's Height--the highest point of the hill. This
is also an untrimmed spot, with two or three seats, and a fluted
granite column, surmounted by a globe and star, rising in the midst.
You now look over some of the nearer hills, and get fresh peeps into
the valleys, discovering topographical secrets. Raised high into the
region of cooling breezes, yet easily accessible, it is a pleasant
place for quiet recreation.

I took the shortest way down from Otto's Height, crossing the rough
declivity and the fields that stretch far up the lower slope of the
hill, and made a circuit to Findlater's monument at the upper
extremity of Carlsbad. From the eminence on which it is erected you
get a new prospect of the town, and up the valley of umbrageous
retreats much resorted to by visitors on sultry afternoons.

On my way back to the _Morgenstern_ I had another look at the
_Sprudel_. The place was now deserted; the Naiads had departed; the
stall-keeper had locked her glazed doors and withdrawn; and there was
nothing near to subdue the vivid rushing sound of the water. So to
remain till evening, when a few anxious patients would appear to quaff
new draughts of health.

The inn was in all the bustle of dinner, after the manner of a _table
d'hôte_, but without its formality--twenty little tables instead of a
single large one. By this arrangement the guests formed small parties,
and ate and chatted at pleasure. Many came in who were not lodgers in
the house--among them a countess, from Moravia, to whom no more
attention was paid, nor did she appear to expect it, than to the
others. The absence of stiffness was, indeed, an agreeable
characteristic of the company, who were mostly Germans.

"Are you here for the cure?" said an old gentleman who sat opposite
me, and looked at my tankard of beer and salad with an air of
surprise. "Are you not afraid?"

My answer reassured him. Visitors who come to drink the waters are
required by medical authority to conform to a simple regimen. To eat
no salad, fruit, or vegetables--to drink no beer or wine--to eat no
bread. The exceptional cases are rare; hence the provision consists
but of sundry preparations of meat, decanters of water, pudding
resembling boiled pound-cake, and baskets of small rolls. The latter,
made of wheaten flour, are not recognised as bread, but come under the
common term, _Semmel_--the simmel of which we read in descriptions of
lordly banquets in our Plantagenet days. The term bread is confined to
the large brown and black loaves made of rye meal, the staple of
household diet in Bohemia; and to Carlsbad patients this is forbidden.
So Nature always goes on vindicating her simple laws, convincing
mankind, in spite of themselves, of the wholesome effects of fresh
air, daily exercise, plain food, and spring water; and mankind,
returned to crowded cities and artificial pleasures, go on forgetting
a lesson which is as old as the hills.

In the afternoon I mounted to the top of the _Hirschsprung_, and
passed two or three hours on the jutting crags which overlook the town
and a wide expanse of rolling fields and meadows towards Saxony.
Stairs and fenced platforms on the outermost points enable you to
survey in full security. The conformation of the crags is not unlike
that which prevails in the Saxon Switzerland. Here and there tablets
in the rock record the visits of royal personages, and on the topmost,
surmounted by a cross, is an inscription in Russian, and the name of
Czar Peter, who included among his exploits that of riding up the
_Hirschsprung_ on horseback in 1711.

You cannot be long in Carlsbad without hearing a flourish of trumpets
from the top of the Watch-tower, announcing the arrival of visitors.
No sooner do the trumpeters spy a carriage approaching from their
lofty station, than they begin to sound, and, in proportion to the
appearance of the vehicle, so do they measure out their blast--most
wind for the proudest. While I was looking down, a sudden note,
unusually prolonged, woke up the drowsy echoes, for rattling down the
zigzagged highway from Prague came his unenviable majesty, Otho of
Greece, to undergo a course of the _Sprudel_--at least, so said the
newspapers. Not till he had alighted at the hotel did the trumpeters
cease their salute, for kings can pay well; but let a dusty-footed
wayfarer, with knapsack on shoulder, come into the town, and not a
breath will they spare to give him welcome.

At six in the evening--having surveyed Carlsbad from within and
without, and from the highest points on either side--I started to walk
to Buchau, a village about ten miles off--an easy distance before
nightfall. The _Morgenstern_ charged me two florins for my bed, and
less than two florins for all my diet--supper, breakfast, and dinner;
which, in one of the dearest watering-places in Europe, was letting me
off on reasonable terms.


     Departure from Carlsbad -- Dreifaltigkeits-Kirche --
     Engelhaus -- The Castle -- A Melancholy Village -- Up to
     the Ruins -- An Imperial Visit -- Bohemian Scenery -- On to
     Buchau -- The Inn -- A Crowd of Guests -- Roast Goose --
     Inspiriting Music -- Prompt Waiters -- The Mysterious
     Passport -- The Military Adviser -- How he Solved the
     Mystery -- A Baron in Spite of Himself -- The Baron's
     Footbath -- Lighting the Baron to Bed.

Some years ago Carlsbad was scarcely accessible by vehicles coming
from the interior, so abrupt was the declivity of its western hill.
Now the difficulty is overcome by the zigzags of an excellent road,
such as Austrian engineers know well how to construct. The shortest
way out of the town for one on foot is up a street painfully steep,
which brings you at once to an elevation, whence there is a view of
the hills and hollows at the head of the valley. The zigzags are long,
and there are no cut-offs, whereby you lose sight but slowly of the
Valley of Springs.

Once past the brow and a view opens over a hilly landscape in the
opposite direction, repeating the characteristics of Bohemian
scenery--large unfenced fields, with clumps of firs and patches of
forest on the highest swells, and the road, in long undulations,
running between rows of birch and mountain-ash. There is a monotony
about it, varied only by the difference of crops, the rise and fall of
the ground, or rags of mist which, after a shower, hang about the dark
sides of distant hills. By-and-by the ruined castle of Engelhaus,
crowning a conical hill, peers up on the left, higher and higher as
you advance, till at length it stands out a huge mass, looking grimly
down on a village beneath.

But now a low building on the right attracts your attention. It is a
small, low, triangular church--_Dreifaltigkeits-Kirche_--in a narrow
graveyard, where the few mounds and the low wooden crosses that mark
them are scarcely to be seen for tall grass and weeds. The interior,
so far as I could see through a chink in the rusty, unpainted door,
contains nothing remarkable except a rude altar, and a small gallery
in each angle. A chapel and arcades are built against two sides of the
enclosing wall, and four life-size figures of apostolic aspect sit,
recline, and kneel in front of a half-length figure, bearing a
crucifix, placed in a recess. They seemed fit guardians of a place
which wears an appearance of neglect.

A little farther and there is a byeway, leading across the fields to
Engelhaus, about a quarter-mile distant, and a very Irish-looking
village it is; squalid and filthy, built in what, to a stranger,
appears a total disregard of the fitness of things. Here and there the
noise of a loom--a noise which denotes a poverty-stricken
existence--sounded from some of the cottages, and the aspect of the
villagers is quite in keeping with their environment. And yet a
wandering musician, who carried a trestle to rest his organ on, was
trying to coax a few _Kreutzers_ out of their pockets by airs most
unmelodious; as if the worst kind of music were good enough for folk
so deficient in a sense of propriety. The inside of the houses is no
better than the outside. Seeing a pale, damp-browed weaver at a
window, I stopped to put a question. He opened the casement, and out
rushed a stream of air so hot, stifling, and malodorous as fully
accounted for his abject looks, and made me content with the briefest

A steep path, completed in one place by a wooden stair, leads you up
and along the precipitous side of the hill to the principal entrance
of the castle, an old weatherbeaten arch bestriding the whole of the
narrow way. Here a few tall trees form the commencement of an avenue,
which the young trees planted farther on will one day complete, and
increase the charm of the ancient remains. The path skirting the bold
crags passes an old tower, and enters a court which, since the visit
of the Emperor and Empress in 1854, is called the _Kaiserplatz_. Three
young trees, supported by stakes painted black and yellow, and blue
and white, are growing up into memorials of the incident, and
dwarf-firs, set in the turfy slope, form the initials F i E--_Francis
Joseph, Elizabeth_. A small pool in one corner reflects the
dilapidated walls; the mountain-ash, trailing grasses, and harebells
grow from the crevices, trembling in the breeze; and the place, cool,
green, and sequestered, is one where you would like to sit musing on a
summer afternoon.

The steep and uneven ground adds much to the picturesque effect of the
ruin. You make your way from court to court by sudden abrupt ascents
and descents, protected in places by a fence--now under a broken
arch, now creeping into a vault, now traversing a roofless hall,
climbing the fragment of a stair, or pacing round the base of the
mighty keep. Loose stones lie about, bits of walls peer through the
soil, or, concealed beneath, form grassy hummocks, showing how great
have been the ravages of time and other foes. Here and there stands a
portion of wall on the very brink of the precipice, and a railing
stretched from one to the other enables you to contemplate the
prospect in safety. The appearance of the country is such that the
hill appears to be in the centre of a great, slightly-hollowed basin,
which has a dark and distant rim. The basin is everywhere heaving with
undulations, patched and striped with firs and the lines of trees
along the highways, while a few ponds gleam in some of the deepest
hollows. A few widely scattered cottages, or the white walls of a
farmstead, dot the green surface of the fields; and such is the
general character of the scenery all the way from the _Erzgebirge_ to
Prague--indeed, all the central region of Bohemia. One league, with
small differences, is but a repetition of the other.

I prowled so long about the ruins, enjoying the lusty breeze that
shook the branches merrily and roared through the crevices, that long
shadows crept over the landscape, raising the highest points into bold
relief, and veiling the remoter scenes before I descended. The sun,
fallen below the Saxon mountains, lit up an immense crescent of angry
clouds with a lurid glare, from which the twilight caught a touch of
awfulness. The ponds shone with unearthly lustre for a few moments,
and then lay cold and gray, and there seemed something spectral in the
thin lines of firs as they rose against the glare.

I returned to the road, and found the last two or three miles solitary
enough, for not a soul did I meet, and the way lay through a forest
where the only light was a faint streak overhead. It was near ten
o'clock when I came to Buchau--a village of low houses built round a
great square--in which stood some twenty or thirty laden wagons. The
appearance of things at _The Sun_ was not encouraging: a dozen
wagoners in blue gaberdines lay stretched on straw in the
sitting-room, leaving but a small corner of the floor vacant, where
sat the host, who made many apologies for having to turn me away. I
walked across the square, and tried _Der Herrnhaus_, and on opening
the door met with a rare surprise. The large room was crowded with
some threescore guests, including a few soldiers, seated at narrow
tables along the sides and across the middle, every man with his
tankard of beer before him. In one corner a party of gipsies played
wild and lively music, making the room echo again with the sounds of
flageolet, violin, and bass, and electrifying the company with their
wizard harmonies. Some, unable to contain themselves, chanted a few
bars of the inspiriting measure; others beat time with hands or feet,
and joined in a whoop at the emphatic passages; and all the while a
gruff outpouring of talk struggled with the bass for the mastery.
There was a clatter of knives and forks, a rattling of pewter-lids by
impatient tipplers, and hasty cries for pieces of bread. And over all
hung a cloud of smoke, rolling broader and deeper as the puffs and
swirls went up from fifty pipes.

This scene bursting upon me all at once made me stand for a minute in
doubtful astonishment, half dazzled by the sudden light, and half
choked by the reeking atmosphere, while I looked round to discover
the trencher-capped _Wirth_. If _The Sun_ had no room, what was to be
hoped for here? However, the landlord, after a consultation with his
wife, assured me of a chamber to myself; and placing a chair at the
only vacant end of one of the tables, professed himself ready to
supply "anything" for supper. He rung the changes on beef, veal, and
sausage, with interpolation of roast goose. The meats were good, but
the goose was prime; he could recommend that "_vom Herzen_," and he
laid his hand on his heart as he said it. So I accepted roast goose;
and presently a smoking dish of the savoury bird was set before me,
with cucumber salad and rye bread. The landlord had not overpraised
his Bohemian cookery, for he gave me a most relishing supper.

As my eyes became accustomed to the smoky atmosphere, the forms and
features of the company came out more distinct than at first. Among
the wagoners and rustics who made up the greater number, I saw two or
three heads of a superior cast--unmistakable Czechish heads--in marked
contrast to the rest. A gentleman with his wife and brother,
travelling to their estates, preferred quarters in the _Herrnhaus_ to
a midnight stage, and sat eating their supper, apparently not less
pleased with their entertainment than I was. By their side sat half a
dozen tramping shoemakers, each busy with a plate of roast goose; and
next to them, in the narrow space between the stove and the wall, lay
a woman and her two children, sleeping on straw. The musicians came
round for a largesse, and, reanimated by success, played a few tunes
by way of finish, which made sitting still almost impossible. Every
one seemed inclined to spring up and dance; and the host and his
servants ran to and fro quicker than ever, under the new excitement.
No sooner was a tankard emptied, than, following the custom of the
country, it was caught up by one of the nimble attendants and
refilled, without any asking leave or any demur, except on the part of
one of the guests. Trencher-cap would by no means believe that I could
be satisfied with a single measure, and I had to compromise for a
glass of wine, which, when brought, he assured me proudly was genuine
'34 _Adelsberger_. Whether or no, it was very good.

Presently he asked for a sight of my passport, that his son might
enter my name with those of the other travellers. I spread the
document before him on the table; he bent down and examined it
curiously, as an antiquary over a wormeaten manuscript, but with a
look of utter bewilderment, for he had never before seen an English
passport. He turned it upside down, sideways, aslant, back to front,
every way, in short, in his endeavour to discover a meaning in it; but
in vain. He caught eagerly at the British Minister's eagle, and the
German _visas_, yet found nothing to enlighten him therein. His son
then took a turn in the examination; still with no better result; and
the two looked at one another in blank hopelessness.

Presently the father, recollecting himself, beckoned secretly to one
of the soldiers, who came to help solve the mystery. Taking the
passport, he held it at arm's length, turned it every way as the
_Wirth_ had done before, brought it close to his eyes; but could make
nothing of it. Then, as if to assist his wit, he hooked one finger on
the end of his nose, spread the mysterious document on the table, and
pointing to the first paragraph, which, as tourists know, stands
printed in good round hand, he began to read at all hazards:

"_Vill--Vill--Vill--yam. Ja, ja. Villyam._ Ah! that's English!" Then
he attacked the second word--"_Fre--Fre--Fre--Fredrich. Ja, ja._ That
is English!"

The next word, _Earl_, looked awkward, so, skipping that, he went on
with many flourishes of his forefinger, "_Cla--ren--don. Ja, ja.
Clarendon._ That's English!"

Encouraged by success, he made a dash at the following word,
"_Baron_," and stopped suddenly short, hooked his finger once more on
his nose, stood for a minute as if in deep study, then repeating
slowly, "_Villyam Fredrich Clarendon, Baron_," he gave the passport
back into the landlord's hands, and said in a whisper, pointing slily
to me, "He's a Baron."

Hereupon the son, with nimble pen, entered me in the book as "_Villyam
Fredrich Clarendon, Baron_."

"You have made a pretty mistake," I interposed. "See, that's my name,
written lower down, quite away from the titles of our Foreign
Minister." But it was in vain that I spoke, and argued, and protested,
the opposite party would not be convinced, and Trencher-cap, folding
up the passport, looked at me with that expression which very knowing
folk are apt to assume, and said, as he replaced it in my hand, "_Ja,
ja._ We are used to that sort of thing. You wish not to travel in your
real name. Yes, yes, we know. _Herr Baron_, I give you back your

I reiterated my protest, and vehemently; but all in vain. "_Herr
Baron_" I had to remain for all the rest of the evening. Trencher-cap
made a bow every time he addressed me, and went among his guests,
telling them he had caged an English Baron. One and another came and
sat near me for awhile, and talked with so much of deference, that at
last I felt quite ashamed of myself--as if I were an accomplice in a
hoax. The talk, however, was very barren; the only items of real
information it brought forth were, that a good many needles were made
in the neighbourhood, and that Buchau could muster ninety-nine master

So it went on till eleven o'clock, when mine host, approaching with
another bow, said, "_Herr Baron_, are you quite sure that it is a cold
foot-bath you want?"


"I told the maid so," he replied; "but she says she cannot believe
that a _Herr Baron_ will have cold water, and thinks it should be

Satisfied on this point, he summoned the incredulous maid to light me
to bed. She stooped low with what was meant for a curtsey, and would
on no account turn her face from me, but went backwards up the stairs,
holding the candle low, and begging me at every step not to stumble.

"Verily," thought I, "the whole household joins in the conspiracy."

She carried the candlestick delicately, as if it were of silver and
not mere iron, placed it on a little deal table in the bedroom with a
ceremonious air, made another low curtsey, and retreated to the door.

Then, with one hand on the latch, she said, after a momentary pause,
"_Herr Baron_, I wish you a good night;" and withdrew, leaving me
alone to sleep as best I might under the burden of an unexpected


     Dawn -- The Noisy Gooseherd -- Geese, for Home Consumption
     and Export -- Still the Baron -- The Ruins of Hartenstein
     -- Glimpses of Scenery and Rural Life -- Liebkowitz --
     Lubenz -- Schloss Petersburg -- Big Rooms -- Tipplers and
     Drunkards -- Wagoners and Peasants -- A Thrifty Landlord --
     Inquisitorial Book -- Awful Gendarme -- Paternal Government
     -- Fidgets -- How it is in Hungary -- Wet Blankets for
     Philosophers -- An Unhappy Peasant.

Neither nightmare nor anything else disturbed me till the wagoners,
hooking on their teams amid noisy shouts, filed off in two directions
from the square, at the earliest peep of dawn. The quiet that returned
on their departure was ere long broken by a succession of wild and
discordant cries, which, being puzzled to account for by ear, I got
out of bed and used my eyes. The gooseherd stood in the middle of the
square, calling his flock together from all quarters, with a voice, as
it seemed to me, more expressive of alarm and anger than of
invitation. However, the geese understood it, and they came waddling
and quacking forth from every gateway and lane, and the narrow
openings between the houses, till some hundreds were gathered round
the herd, who, waving his long rod, kept up his cries till the last
straggler had come up, and then drove them out to the dewy pasture
beyond the village. A singular effect was produced by the multitude
of long necks, and the awkward movements of the snow-white mass,
accompanied as they were by a ceaseless rise and fall of the quacking
chorus. Such a sight is common in Bohemia; for your Bohemian has a
lively relish for roast goose, regarding it as a national dish; and
mindful of his neighbours, he breeds numbers of the savoury fowl for
their enjoyment. Walk over the _Erzgebirge_ in September, and you will
meet thousands of geese in a flock, waddling slowly on their way to
Leipzig, and the fulfilment of their destiny in German stomachs, at
the rate of about three leagues a day.

I doubted not that when the landlord had a fair look at me by
daylight, he would recall the title conferred amid the smoke and
excitement of the evening before. But, no! he met me at the foot of
the stair with the same profound bow; hoped _Herr Baron_ had slept
well; and would _Herr Baron_ take breakfast; all my remonstrances to
the contrary notwithstanding. I drank my coffee with a suspicion that
the sounding honour would have to be paid for; but I did the worthy
man injustice, for when summoned to receive payment, he brought his
slate and piece of chalk, and writing down the several items, made the
sum total not quite a florin. Not often is a Baron created on such
very reasonable terms.

Even after I left his door, the host continued his attentions: he
would go with me to the edge of the village, and point out the way to
the castle, and the shortest way back to the main road. He must tell
me, too, that the church was dedicated to St. Michael the Archangel;
and of a spring not far off, known among the villagers as the "iron
spring." Then, as we shook hands and parted, he made another low bow,
and hoped I would recommend all my friends to seek for entertainment
under his sign. It would be ungracious not to comply with his wish; so
should any of my friends have the patience or courage to read these
pages, and an inclination to visit Buchau, I hereby counsel them to
tarry at the _Herrnhaus_.

The castle, or rather the ruin, rises on the summit of a rounded hill
about a mile from the village. There is but little in them to charm
either the eye or the fancy, for their name and place recall nothing
that lingers in the memory. A few words suffice to tell that here once
stood the castle of Hartenstein, otherwise Hungerberg, sheltering
knights as lawless as any reiving Johnstone, till King George
Podiebrad, intolerant of their wild ways, rooted them out in 1468, and
knocked their stronghold to pieces. He showed them the less mercy,
from having had, the year before, to lay siege for twelve weeks to a
castle near Raudnitz, held by conspirators who set him at defiance.
Engelhaus, as is believed, felt the first touch of ruin some fifty
years later.

Nevertheless, the half-hour spent in the excursion is not time lost,
for the spiral path that winds round the hill is well-nigh hidden by
wild flowers--a right royal carpet, and perfumed withal, swept by all
the breezes. And then there is always the view while you scramble
about among the broken walls and bits of towers, getting peeps at
parts of the landscape framed by a shattered window. It is something
to note how unvarying is the scenery: hills shaped like barn roofs;
the same undulations; vast fields; a few ponds; dark masses of firs,
lacking somewhat of cheerfulness notwithstanding the sunshine; and
the village in the midst of all, an irregular patch of gray and white.
Far as eye can reach it is the same, and so shall we find it all the
way to Prague.

The wind increased mightily while I was on the hill, and as it swept
coldly over the broad slopes of grain and clover, the whole landscape
seemed to become a great, green, rippling sea.

My recollections of this day include--a flock of geese grazing on a
bit of common about every league; men leading oxen by a strip of hide
to pasture on the roadside grass; women cutting fodder in nooks and
corners; shepherds, whose booted legs gave them anything but a
pastoral appearance; rows of cherry-trees, and the guards in straw
huts keeping watch over the fruit; and miles of road irksomely
straight between plum-trees.

Here and there you come to a homestead or _Gasthaus_, surrounded by a
high and thick whitewashed wall, with one or more arched gateways, as
if the inmates could not give up the mediæval habit of living within a
fortress. On approaching Liebkowitz, the pale colour of the land
changes to a warm red, and fields of peas which seem endless, and
small plantations of hops, diversify the surface, and contrast with
the village, where the clean white pillars of the gateways, the red
roofs, topped here and there with a purple ball, engage your eye.

At Lubenz, where the main road, with its bordering of tall poles and
telegraphic wire turns aside to the Saatzer Circle, I struck into the
direct route for Prague, and keeping on at an easy pace, getting a
passing view of Schloss Petersburg on the right--a factory-like
building--I came at eventide to the _Gasthof zum Rose_ at Willenz.

There is many a chapel in England smaller than the common room at the
_Rose_, and the same may be said of nearly every roadside inn at which
I stayed. Large as the rooms are, it is sometimes difficult to find a
seat among the numerous guests; and on Sundays especially they are
overcrowded. Here in one corner stood the stove enclosed by a dresser,
on which all the preparations for cooking were carried on; and, in the
opposite corner, the bar behind a wooden fence, running up to the
ceiling. Bread, smoked sausage, _schnaps_, and liqueurs, are served
from the bar; beer is fetched directly from the cellar.

The host was thrifty, and kept his four daughters busy in waiting on
customers. The eldest presided at the stove, and the other three went
continually to and fro, refilling the tankards of beer-drinkers, or
dealing out delicacies from the bar. Comely damsels they were, dressed
in purple bodices, and pink skirts that trailed on the floor in all
the amplitude prescribed by the milliners at Paris. I could not fail
to be struck by the frequency of their visits to the cellar to supply
the demands of about twenty men, who, seated at one of the tables,
appeared to have been making a day of it. Tankard after tankard was
swallowed with marvellous rapidity, and still the cry was "more." For
the first time, in my few trips to the Continent, I saw drunkards, and
these were not the only sots that came before me during the present
journey: all, however, within Bohemia.

Casual customers would now and then drop in, call for beer, drink a
small quantity, and leave the tankard standing on the table and go
away for half an hour, then return, take another gulp, and so on. One
of the tables was covered by these drink-and-come-again tankards, and
though all alike in appearance, I noticed that every man knew his own
again. Among these bibbers by instalments the landlord was
conspicuous, for he took a gulp from his tankard every five minutes,
and never left it a moment empty.

Now and then slouched in a troop of dusty-booted wagoners, who drank a
cup of coffee, and went slouching forth to their wearisome journey. At
times a half-dozen peasants strode noisily in, and refreshed
themselves with a draught of beer for their walk home; and sausage and
little broils were in constant request. The host rubbed his hands, and
well he might, for trade was brisk; and when he brought me a baked
chicken--which, by the way, is another favourite dish in Bohemia--for
my supper, and heard my praise of his beer, he told me that he brewed
his own beer and grew his own hops. "You will see two big pockets of
hops on the landing when you go to bed," he added, with the look of an
innkeeper thoroughly self-satisfied. And then he sat down and gave his
two sons a writing-lesson.

After supper, one of the pink-robed damsels placed a wooden
candlestick, nearly a yard in height, on the table, and brought the
inevitable book--that miscellaneous collection of travellers'
autographs, kept for the edification of the Imperial police. More
inquisitorial than any I had yet seen, this book contained three
columns, in one of which I had to note whether I was married or
single; "Catholic or other beliefed;" acquainted with any one in any
of the places I intended to visit, or not!

Having entered the required particulars, the damsel leaning over the
page the while, I asked her what use would be made of them?

"The gendarme comes to look at the book," she answered, "and if he
found the columns empty, so would he blame my father sorely, and wake
you up with loud noise to ask the reason. Ah! sometimes he comes
before bedtime; sometimes not till midnight, when all folk are asleep.
Then must doors be opened and questions answered; and if he discovers
some one in bed whose name is not yet in the book, then he makes great
outcry, and my father must pay a fine, and the stranger must to the
guard-house if he have not good passport. Truly, the law is strong
over the book."

Happy land! Paternal government is so careful of the governed, so
anxious to encourage sedentary virtues, that no one is allowed to go
more than four hours, about twelve miles, from home without a passport
or ticket of residence (_Heimathschein_); and should any one not quite
so tame as his fellows wish to overpass the prescribed limit, paternal
government not unfrequently keeps him waiting three days for the
precious permit, or refuses it altogether. In a town which we shall
come to by-and-by, I saw a poor woman, who begged leave to visit one
of her children some fifteen miles distant, turned away with an
uncompromising denial. Think of this, my countrymen!--Islanders free
to jaunt or journey whithersoever ye will: be ye mighty or mean--even
ticket-of-leave holders.

Whatever the cause, the regulations concerning passports are in
Bohemia very rigorous. It may be that the people have not forgotten
they once had a king of their own, or that a remarkable intellectual
movement is taking place among the Czechs, or that a simmering up of
Protestantism has become chronic within the ring of mountains;
whatever the cause, the pressure of authority's heaviest hand is
manifest. For my own part--to mention a little thing among great
things--I was more fidgetted about my passport in Bohemia than ever
anywhere else.

It is worse in Hungary. In that province the burden of oppression is
felt to a degree inconceivable by an Englishman. Passports for France
or England were peremptorily refused to Hungarians of whatever degree
during the year 1855; and in 1856, when the rigour was somewhat
relaxed, leave was granted for three months only. And should any one
be known to have paid a visit to Kossuth while in London, even though
he might believe the exile to be a better orator than ruler, he would
find the discipline of imprisonment awaiting him on his return _home_.
Think of Albert Smith, or any other enterprising tourist, having to
ask Lord Clarendon's permission to steam up the Rhine, ascend Mont
Blanc, or travel anywhither! 'Tis well the Magyars are not a hopeless

The members of the Hungarian Academy at Pesth are not allowed to hold
their weekly meetings unless an Imperial Commissioner be present to
watch the proceedings, and stop the discussion of forbidden subjects.
Not a word must be spoken concerning politics, or liberty in any form.
History is tolerated only when she discourses of antiquities--urns,
buildings, dress and manners, philology, or art. Science even must
wear fetters, and preserve herself demure and orthodox. A speculative
philosopher might as well attempt to utter high treason, as to read a
paper demonstrating by geological proofs the countless ages of the
earth's existence, or to quote a chapter from the _Vestiges of
Creation_. This work is included among the prohibited books, of which
a list is sent to the Academy once a week. One copy of the _Times_--a
solitary feather from Liberty's wing--finds its way into Pesth: a rare
indulgence for the Englishman who reads it. Imagine Sir Richard Mayne
sitting at meetings of the Royal Society, with power to stop Sir
Roderick Murchison in his Silurian evidences; or the Rev. Baden Powell
in his speculations and inferences concerning the _Unity of Worlds_;
or the utterance of Professor Faraday's opinions concerning
gravitation; and telling them they shall not read Hugh Miller's
_Testimony of the Rocks_!

But to return. Among those who dropped in was a tall, grizzly peasant,
who presently began a talk with me about what he called his sad
condition. His lot was a hard one, because the country was kept down;
and hoping for better times would be vain while France and England
maintained their alliance. All who felt themselves aggrieved--and
their number was great--saw no prospect of redress but in a new
outbreak of strife between those two nations; let that only come, and
from the Rhine to the Vistula all would be in revolution, wrong would
be punished, and the right prevail. He knew many a peasant who was of
the same way of thinking.

Not being able to flatter him with hopes of a rupture between the Lion
and the Cock, I suggested his taking the matter into his own hands,
and making the best of present circumstances. Thrift and diligence
would do him more good than a revolution. Whereupon he told me how he
lived; how hard he worked to cultivate his plot of ground; how rarely
he ate anything besides bread and potatoes; and as for beer, it was
never seen under his roof.

"Do you think it fair, then," I rejoined, "to sit here drinking? Why
not carry home a measure of beer, and let your wife share it?"

He made no answer; but rose from his seat, shook me by the hand, and
walked heavily away.


     The Village -- The Peasant again -- The Road-mender --
     Among the Czechs -- Czechish Speech and Characteristics --
     Crosses -- Horosedl -- The Old Cook -- More Praise of
     England -- The Dinner -- A Journey-Companion -- Famous
     Files -- A Mechaniker's Earnings -- Kruschowitz -- Rentsch
     -- More Czechish Characteristics -- Neu Straschitz -- A
     Word in Season from Old Fuller -- The Mechaniker departs.

A hilly site, gardens, orchards, and green slopes, houses scattered at
random among chestnuts and elders, and a general suspicion of Czechish
carelessness, give to Willenz a touch of the picturesque: at least,
when seen as I saw it, with the morning dew yet glistening on thatch,
and flowers, and branches. Cherry-trees form a continuous avenue up
the hill beyond, and here and there huts of fir branches were built
against a stem, to shelter the guard set to watch the ripened fruit,
and gatherers were busy aloft. You may pluck a cherry now and then
with impunity; but not from the trees marked by a wisp of straw
twisted round a conspicuous branch, for of those the fruit is sold,
and the watchman eyes them jealously.

Coming to the brow of the hill, I saw what seemed a giant standing on
a high bank above the road. It was the grizzly peasant magnified
through a thin haze. As soon as he saw me he came plunging down the
bank, gave me a cheerful "_Gut' Morgen_," seized my hand, and said, "I
have been waiting long to see you. I talk gladly with such as you, and
could not let you go without asking whether you will come back this
way. If so, then pray come to my house for a night. It is not far from
Schloss Petersburg. We will make you comfortable."

To return by the same road was no part of my plan, and when I told him
so, the old man's countenance fell; he pressed my hand tighter, and
cried, with a tone of disappointment, "Is it true? Ah! my wife will be
so sorry. I told her what you said, and she wanted to see you as much
as I."

As there was no help for it, we had another talk, he all the while
holding my hand as if fearful I should escape. The burden of his
discourse was "a good time coming," mingled, however, with a dread
that when it came it would not be half so desirable as the good old
times, and between the past and future his life was a torment.

"Whether you shall be miserable or not," I answered, "depends more on
yourself than on the rulers of Bohemia. Why should a man grumble who
has a house, and food, and land to cultivate? Only carry your
enjoyments home instead of consuming them by the way, and cheerfulness
will be there to gladden your wife as well as you."

"Yes; but in the old times----"

I bade him good-bye, and pursued my walk. Turning round just over the
brow of the hill, I saw him still in the same spot, gazing after me.
"Farewell, good friend!" he shouted, and strode away.

Half an hour later I came to a road-mender, who told me he earned
twenty kreutzers a day, and was quite content therewith. He had a wife
and child; never ate meat or drank beer; lived mostly on potatoes, and
was, nevertheless, strong and healthy, and by no means inclined to
quarrel with his lot. The road was a constant source of employment;
and if at times bad weather kept him at home for a day or two, his pay
went on all the same.

I mentioned my interview with the old peasant. "Ah!" he answered,
laughing, "it is always so. No grumbler like a _Bauer_. All the world
knows that peasants think everybody better off than themselves"--and
down came his hammer with crashing force on a lump of granite. Wayside
philosophy clearly had the best of it, and heartily approved the fable
of the _Mountain of Miseries_ which I narrated.

Every mile brings us more and more among the Czechs. Oval faces and
arched eyebrows become more numerous, and women's talk sounds shrill
and shrewish, as if angry or quarrelsome, as is remarked of the women
in Caernarvonshire; and yet it is nothing more than friendly
conversation. To a stranger the language sounds as unmusical as it is
difficult; and to learn it--you may as well hope to master Chinese.
Czechish names and handbills appear on the walls; the names of
villages, with the usual topographical particulars, are written up in
German and Czechish, of which behold a specimen:


     Ort und Gemeinde.      _Misto á Obec._
     Bezirk Jechnitz.       _Okres Jesenice._
     Kreis Saaz.            _Krái Zatéc._
     Königr. Böhm.          _Kral: Ceské._]

In some of the villages no one but the landlord of the best inn can
speak German, and you have only your eyes by which to study the
natives and their ways. For my own part, my Czechish vocabulary being
foolishly short, I could not ask the villagers why they preferred
sluttishness to tidiness, though I longed to do so. It comprised three
words only: _Piwo_, _Chleb_, _Máslo_--Beer, Bread, Butter.

Crosses are frequent, erected at the corners where bye-roads branch
off. Not the huge wooden things you see in Tyrol; but light iron
crucifixes, graceful in form and brightly gilt, and mounted on a stone
pedestal. Nearly all have been set up by private individuals to
commemorate some family event: _By the married Pair_, you may read on
one; _Dedicated to the Honour of God, by two Sisters_, on another; _In
Memory of my Daughter, by Peter Schmidt, Bauer_, on a third--all
apparently from some pious motive.

While eating a crust under the pretentious sign, _Stadt Carlsbad_, at
Horosedl, I saw how the dowager hostess practised her domestic
economy. She was preparing dinner for the family, after her manner,
drawing her hand repeatedly across her nose, for the stove was hot and
the day sultry. She sliced cucumbers with an instrument resembling a
plane, sprinkled the slices with salt, then squeezed them well between
her hands, and exposed them to the sun in a shallow basket, one of
five or six which, woven almost as close and water-tight as
calabashes, served her as dishes. Then she grated a lump of hard brown
dough, and used the coarse grains to thicken the soup--a substitute
for vermicelli common among the peasantry.

The hostess, meanwhile, chatted with me and set the table. She
professed to admire the English, and thought it an honour that an
Englishman had once slept a night in her house, "although he had to
look into a book for all he wanted to say." She coincided entirely in
the Saxon schoolmaster's opinion, that all best things came from

As the clock struck eleven in came half a dozen serving men and
maidens, and sat down to dinner with the master and mistress. The
dowager supplied them with soup, beef, a mountain of potato-dumplings,
and cucumber salad, and ate her portion apart with undoubting
appetite. An old beggar crept in and stood hat in hand imploring
charity for God's sake! She scolded him for his intrusion, and then
gave him a smoking hot dumpling and a word of sympathy, which he
received and acknowledged with humble thanks and the sign of the

It is a relief along this part of the road to see frequent hop
plantations, and here and there rocks as richly red as the crimson
cliffs of Sidmouth, while at rarer intervals a pale mass of sandstone
on a distant hill-slope puts on the appearance of an enormous
antediluvian fossil. I was pacing briskly along, enjoying a fresh
breeze that had sprung up, when I heard a voice behind me: "_Ach!_ at
last. I saw you from far, and said to myself, Perhaps that is a
journey-companion--let me overtake him."

Immediately a man, who walked as if he enjoyed the exercise, and wore
what looked like his Sunday suit, came up to my side, and proposed to
join company, so as to shorten the way with talk. We soon got through
the preliminaries, and started topics enough to last all the rest of
the day. The stranger notified himself as a _Mechaniker_ from Neudeck,
going to Prague on business for his master. He, too, had much to say
in praise of England. He had once worked with an Englishman, a certain
James, or _Ya-mes_, as he pronounced it, and had ever since held him
in the highest esteem and admiration. "That was a man!" he exclaimed;
"if all Englishmen are the same, no wonder their nation is so great."

English files also were not less praiseworthy--a fact of which
Sheffield ought to be proud, seeing that her handicraft has often been
reproached of late. "To dance," said the _Mechaniker_, "is not more
pleasure than to file with an English file. How it bites, and lasts so
long! Even an old one that has been thrown away for months is better
than a German file. One is honest steel--the other is too much like
lead." Some folk will, perhaps, feel surprised by this scrap of
experimental testimony in favour of Hallamshire.

We talked about wages. The _Mechaniker's_ earnings were six hundred
florins a year; a small sum, as it seems, to English notions for a
skilled workman in machinery--one held in high consideration by his
master. Ordinary workmen get one-third less; he was, therefore, well
content, and told me he could spare something for the savings bank,
but not so much as formerly, owing to the increased price of

So with sundry discourse we came to Kruschowitz, where we dined,
looking out on thick belts of fruit-trees, that embower the village,
and relieve the pale green of little plantations of acacias that show
here and there among the bright-red roofs. Most of the houses exhibit
the Czechish style, which shuns height and dispenses with an upper
story. Then we went on at an after-dinner pace to Rentsch, where,
striking into the old road to Prague, now but little frequented, we
shortened the distance by four or five miles. All Czechish now, both
to eye and ear. A difference is perceptible in the fields, the
implements, sheds, and vehicles; they are not so neat or workmanlike
in appearance as in the German districts, and yet the broad crops of
wheat, already turning yellow, betoken glad abundance.

Now we found pleasant footpaths through the beech-woods that border
the road, and enjoyed the cool shade and the sound of rustling leaves.
The men we met had a slouching gait, and the women, wearing coarse,
baggy cotton stockings, and flimsy cotton gowns, and shabby kerchiefs
on their heads, were unmistakable dowdies--an appearance which has
come to be considered essentially Celtic. However, they failed not to
salute us with their "_dobrýtro_" (good day) as we passed.

The aspect of Neu Straschitz, the next village on our way, shows how
we are getting into the heart of the country--the land of the Czechs.
Wide streets, which make the low whitewashed houses look still lower
than they are; a great, uneven square, patched here and there with
ragged grass, bestrewn with rough logs of timber, ornamented at one
side by a row of saplings, unhappy looking, as if pining for the rank
of trees; on the other by a statue of St. John Nepomuk. Very lifeless!
No merry noise of children in summer evening gambols; no fathers and
mothers chatting in the cool lengthening shadows. The only living
creatures are a man, a woman, and a dog, all three as far apart as
possible. There is nothing stirring even around the _Bezirksamt_ or
the church.

Glazed windows are few: an opening in the wall, with a hinged shutter,
suffices for most of the houses. And for door they have a big archway
closed by heavy wooden gates, looking very inhospitable. Here and
there one of these gates stands a little open, and you may get a peep
at the interior, a square court, enclosed by stable, barn, and
dwelling, heaped with manure and ugly rubbish. No notion here, you
will say, of the fitness of things. Look at the wagon--a basket on
wheels--the wheelbarrow, the rakes, huddled away anyhow, as if they
were just as well in one place as another. Perhaps they are. Quaint
old Fuller says of the Devonshire cotters of his day, "Vain it is for
any to search their houses, being a work beneath the pains of a
sheriff, and above the power of any constable." You will, perhaps, say
the same here. Look in-doors! the same slovenliness prevails. The room
would be just as comfortable, or rather uncomfortable, if chairs and
table changed places; if the higgledy-piggledy at one end were
shifted to the other. The condition of the utensils is by no means
unimpeachable; and repelled by the pervading odour, you will not be
less thankful than proud that your lot is not cast among the Czechs.

The inn is an exception, and has the appearance of being too good for
the village. The _Kellnerinn_ told us we could have as many bedrooms
as we chose, for they were all empty. I was content with my day's
walk, about twenty-five miles; but the _Mechaniker_, impatient to
arrive at Prague, resolved to travel two hours farther; so, after he
had finished his tankard of beer, we shook hands, and he went on
alone, the _Kellnerinn_ assuring him as he departed that he would find
good sleeping quarters almost every half-hour.


     A Talk with the Landlord -- A Jew's Offer -- A Ride in a
     Wagen -- Talk with the Jew -- The Stars -- A Mysterious
     Gun-barrel -- An Alarm -- Stony Ammunition -- The Man with
     the Gun -- The Jew's opinion of him -- Sunrise -- A Walk --
     The White Hill -- A Fatal Field -- Waking up in the Suburbs
     -- Early Breakfasts -- Imperial and Royal Tobacco --
     Milk-folk -- The Gate of Prague -- A Snappish Sentry -- The
     Soldiers -- Into the City -- Picturesque Features and
     crowding Associations -- The Kleinseite -- The Bridge --
     Palaces -- The Altstadt -- Remarkable Streets -- The
     Teinkirche -- The Neustadt -- The Three Hotels.

The landlord came in a few minutes afterwards, and, to encourage me to
tell him all he wished to know about myself, declared himself a
German. That he should ever have been so stupid as to tempt fortune at
Neu Straschitz was a mistake haunting and vexing him continually. A
living was not to be got in such a miserable village, and among such
miserable people, and he meant to migrate as soon as he could find
some one more stupid than himself to take the inn off his hands.

I had seen two or three German names in the street, and asked him if
they were of long standing. "Not very." And he went on to say that the
Stock-Bohemians, as the Czechs are called, are perpetually encroached
on, pressed within narrower limits by the German element. Though a
good deal was said about Czechish vigour and intellectuality, some
folk thought that the language would at no distant day cease to be
spoken. As for the character of the Czechs, there was scarcely a
German who did not believe them to be sly, false, double-faced. And
what says the proverb?--Dirt is the offspring of Lying and Idleness.
For his part, he knew the Czechs were dirty, but he didn't quite know
whether, in other respects, they were worse than their neighbours. Any
way, he rather liked the thought of removing from among them.

After all this, mine host thought he had a fair claim on me for a
sight of an English gold coin, and answers to all his questions
concerning England. I was doing my best to satisfy him, when the
_Kellnerinn_ called my attention to a _Herr_ who was going to start
with his _Wagen_ in the course of the evening for Prague; and she
suggested, very disinterestedly as it seemed to me, that the
opportunity was too good to be lost.

_Wagen_ is as comprehensive a word as our "conveyance:" the _Herr_
looked like a man who might be going to Prague in a carriage, so, as
he promised plenty of room, and asked no more than a florin for the
twenty miles, I accepted his offer. Having yet business to settle, he
went out, and promised to call for me at nine o'clock. He had no
sooner left the room, than the landlord said, "He is a Jew; but you
need not be afraid of him. He is a very honest fellow, and comes here

I saw no reason to be afraid, and when the Jew came back at the
appointed hour was ready to accompany him. He led the way to a back
street, where we waited in front of one of the low, undemonstrative
houses. Presently the big gate swung back, and out came the
_Wagen_--one of the four-wheeled basket wagons, drawn by a single
horse pulling awkwardly at one side of the heavy pole. I had imagined
something a little better than that; however, as the wagon was half
full of new hay, with a comfortable back-cushion of clover, I
scrambled in on one side while the Jew did the same on the other, and
the driver, a Czech, perched himself uncomfortably on a bar in front.

The wagon was just wide enough for two; and, what with the elastic
sides and soft hay, there was no painful jolting. The west shone
gloriously with the golden arch of sunset as we drove out of the
village and entered on a bad road winding across the open fields; and
Twilight came on so softly that you might have fancied Day was
lingering to lend her his palest rays. The Jew was disposed to talk,
and betrayed no little curiosity on the subject of travelling. Was it
not very irksome to be away from home? was it not very expensive? and
how much money did one need to carry? was there no danger? and so
forth. But what interested him most was the question as to the money:
he returned to it again and again.

Next, he had much to ask concerning London--the sort of business
transacted in the great city--the rate of profit--in short, he put me
through a whole social and commercial catechism, from which he drew a
conclusion that London would not be an undesirable place of residence.

So it went on, interrupted only by his saying a few words now and then
to the driver in Czechish, until my turn came, and I opened my
questioning about Prague. The Jew, however, was readier in asking
questions than in answering; indeed, he was stingy in reply, as if
words were worth a florin the dozen.

As the stars brightened the night became cold, and set me shivering.
The Jew brought two cloaks out of a bag, and, wrapped in one of these,
I lay on my back looking up at the sky, thinking of home-scenes and
home-friends as my eye wandered from one bright spot to another; and
solemn was the impression made on me by the sight of the glorious

     "For the bright firmament
       Shoots forth no flame
     So silent, but is eloquent
       In speaking the Creator's name."

I could not fail to note that astronomers have reason for telling us
that meteoric phenomena are more common on any night than would be
believed by those not accustomed to observe the heavens, for I saw
twelve shooting-stars within two hours.

As we went on, the lights in the public-houses became fewer, and ere
long disappeared, and the silence was only disturbed by the fitful
barking of dogs in the distance, and the slow noise of the wheels. Our
horse dropped into a walk, and the driver off to sleep, and I was
still gazing at the stars when I heard footsteps near the side of the
wagon. Turning my eyes, without rising, I saw the top of a gun-barrel
about two yards off, apparently resting on some one's shoulder. The
sound of the footsteps woke the driver, who immediately began to
quicken the horse's pace, but very cautiously, as if to avoid
suspicion. The Jew seemed uneasy, and muttered a word or two in a low
tone; the whip was used, the horse broke into a trot, but the
gun-barrel was not left behind; I could still see it in the same
place, keeping pace with the wagon.

What did it mean? One time I fancied that perhaps the hay on which I
lay so innocently was but a disguise for something contraband, whereof
a cunning gendarme had gotten scent. Then I remembered the landlord's
desire to see a gold coin, and the Jew's curiosity as to the amount
and quality of a traveller's money, and a faint suspicion of having
fallen into a trap did occur to me. Meanwhile the horse trotted in
earnest; the gun-barrel was left in the rear; then the whip was plied
vigorously; the Jew spoke energetically; the driver jumped from his
perch, picked up two big stones, threw them into the wagon, and drove
quickly on again.

"There is one for you, and one for me," said the Jew to me, in a loud

"What do you mean?" I asked.

"The stones," he replied; "one for you, and one for me, if we are

"Attacked or not, we are three to one, and one of the three is an

The Jew did not answer, for the footsteps were again heard approaching
at a run, and soon the gun-barrel appeared once more abreast of the
wagon. The driver kept the horse up to his speed, the Jew fumbled
about with his feet for the big stones, and the chase--if such it
could be called--continued for about ten minutes.

All at once the gun-barrel darted from the road-side towards the
wagon. I immediately sat up, and found myself face to face, and but a
few inches apart, with the bearer of the weapon--a wild-looking
fellow, wearing a slouched cap and hunting-jacket. A faint exclamation
of surprise escaped him, and, whether it was that he saw two persons
in the wagon, besides the driver, or that we did not look worth his
trouble, I know not, but he gradually dropped behind, and we lost
sight of the gun-barrel.

A minute passed. "Now," said the Jew, "we are rid of him."

But scarcely had he spoken, than a shrill whistle sounded afar through
the silence of the night, followed after a short interval by a whistle
at a distance from the road.

"Quick! quick!" was now the word to the driver. "He is calling his
comrades: they will be down upon us. Quick! quick!"

The Czech seemed well inclined to obey; the pace was quickened into a
gallop, and, in about a quarter-hour, we came to a village, where,
stopping in front of the inn, he filled the rack with clover from the
wagon, and gave the horse to feed.

The place with its littery appendages looked unked, lying half in deep
shadow; the door was fast, and not a light shone from the windows,
cheating my hope of a cup of coffee. The Jew now sat up, talked for
awhile vehemently with the driver, then said, turning to me, "We have
had an escape. That fellow meant nothing good--nothing good--nothing
good. A real bad fellow!"

"Was he a robber?"

"Perhaps worse. He meant nothing good. We are well out of it. I hope
we shall not see him again."

We did not; and by-and-by, as we went on again, and I lay looking up
at the stars, they seemed to grow dim, then twinkle strangely, and at
last they disappeared. It may be that I slept, for when next I looked
at the sky it was flecked by streams of rosy tints, the fields were
covered with dew as a veil, and, by the timid chirping of birds, and
other signs, the eye might note the preparations for lifting the veil
at the approach of the sun. My sheltering cloak, my hair and eyebrows,
were thickly covered with dew, cold as the brightening dawn. The Jew,
similarly bepearled, lay sleeping soundly, the Czech nodded on his
perch, and the horse, taking advantage of the slumber, was moving only
at a sober walk.

It was not yet five when I alighted about three miles from Prague, to
get warm by walking the remaining distance. The Jew took his florin
with much demonstration of thanks, horse and driver roused up, and the
wagon was soon out of sight.

A few minutes brought me to the _Weissenberg_--White Hill--a
battle-field not less fatal than famous. The road is bordered by ample
rows of trees; woods thick with foliage clothe the neighbouring
hollows and acclivities, and on the left, sloping gently upwards, with
here and there a break, rises the hill. Here, then, was the scene of
which I had often read, where Frederick of the Palatinate, who had
married a princess of England, daughter of James I., lost the crown of
Bohemia. Not long had he worn it--indeed, some of his contemporaries
called him the Winter King--when he was forced to flee, with his wife
and children, among them the infant Rupert, who afterwards won renown
as chief of the Cavaliers in England. Treachery, as late researches
show, aided the combined forces of Ferdinand of Austria and Maximilian
of Bavaria, and from that day Bohemia ceased to be an independent
monarchy, and became a province of the Austrian Empire, a loss yet
mourned by many, who join in the poet's lament:

     "Ach Gott! die Weissenberger Schlacht
     Erreicht wohl Ostrolenka's Trauer,
     Und die darauf erfolgt die Racht,
     Hat trübere als Sibiriens Schauer."

Terrible, indeed, was the _night_ that followed! And when one reads of
Ferdinand's faithlessness and cruelty, his murderous vengeance on the
chiefest of the conquered people, the wonder is not that Bohemia
should have revolted, but that she did not reconquer her birthright.

Thoughts of the past came crowding through my mind as I paced across
the ground, and presently pursued my walk. I was approaching a city
remarkable in itself, and in its historical associations, but for the
moment my attention was drawn to immediate objects. As I went on down
the now continuous descent, the tops of towers and spires came into
view in the distance below, and on either hand appeared indications
that a metropolis was not far off. Early folk were opening the booths,
shops, and public-houses, which, scattered among the trees, presented
ere long an unbroken line on both sides of the road. Cooling drinks
were set out on tables, and many a shutter invited the passer-by to
_Beer_ and _Brandy_, in various phrase. Now stalls covered with
cherries and currants alternate with piles of bread, hard-boiled eggs,
cheese, and smoked sausages; and working people stop to eat their
earliest breakfast. Every few yards sits a woman with a basket of
fresh, tempting _Semmel_--fancy bread, as we should call it--most of
the little loaves thickly sprinkled with poppy-seeds, dear to the
native palate. And here and there stands what looks like a roomy
sentry-box, painted yellow, and adorned with the Austrian blazon--an
_Imperial and Royal Booth for the sale of Tobacco_.

Already the road is alive with vehicles, for from every lane and
byepath speed dog-carts, or little wagons on two wheels, or large
wagons on four wheels, all laden with tin cans of milk for the city.
How the dogs pant, and the horses snort! for the driver, and his or
her two or three companions, keep the animals at full speed, sparing
neither lash nor voice. Long before they come into sight you can hear
their shrill chatter, mingled with merry laughter, and, as they burst
into view, a shout from all the others adds excitement to the race,
and away they go, each trying to be first.

Half a mile farther, and I overtake many of them at the turn of the
road, where the women are sitting on the bank, putting on stockings
and shoes. Some remount the wagons; others walk quietly onwards,
showing a neat ankle and clean white leg to the morning sun. Now the
city wall frowns towards you, and, once round the turn, there is the
gate--_Reichsthor_--a few soldiers hanging about, and many persons
passing to and fro, while the curious towers of the Strahow monastery,
where Rupert was born, peer above trees and vine-slopes on the right.
I passed through the gloomy arch unchallenged by any of the guards,
and had got some distance down the steep street, when a man made me
aware that shouts in the rear were intended for me. I turned: a
soldier, who had come a few yards from the cavern-like gate, was
making very peremptory use of his voice, and, as soon as I saw him,
he beckoned with angry gestures. I retraced my steps, but at too slow
a pace to satisfy the Imperial functionary, for he turned again and
again, each time with the same impatient gesture. No sooner did I come
within earshot, than he cried, snappishly, "Why did you not give me
your passport?"

"For two reasons," I answered, with a laugh; "this is my first visit
to Prague, and I have not yet learnt your regulations; and secondly,
why did you let me go by without asking me for it?"

The lounging group of soldiers laughed as this was spoken, and my
questioner having led the way to his darksome den, built at the elbow
of the arch so as to command both approaches, took my passport and
gave me the official receipt without further parley.

As I emerged again into the sunshine, one of the soldiers said, "Do
you know what? When any one goes away into the city without stopping
at the guard-house, he must always come back to the gate where he
entered, and give up his passport."

I thanked him for his information, and took my way once more down the
street. It was just six o'clock: all the shops were open; working
people thronged the footways; heavy teams toiled slowly up the hill
towards the gate; the milk-folk hurried down with noisy clatter, while
men wearing glazed hats and a canvas uniform swept the streets. Signs
of early rising everywhere.

The peculiar features of the city multiply as you advance. High on the
left, its cathedral tower springing above the rest, appears the
Hradschin--an imposing mass of building in the factory style of
architecture, stretching, as one might guess, for half a mile along
the bold eminence, commanding the country for miles around. You can
count four hundred windows. There, as every one knows, the Thirty
Years' War began, by certain angry Bohemian nobles pitching two
Imperial commissioners and their secretary out of one of the windows.
Little did the haughty ejectors think of the consequences of their
exploit--that before thirty years were over, 30,000 villages and more
than a million men would be destroyed by war!

Being very hungry, I was fain to drink a draught of milk and eat one
of the poppy-seeded loaves at the door of one of the little shops,
looking round all the while on curious gables, panelled fronts,
ancient gateways, more numerous as we descend. Lower down, we are in
the oldest part of the city, among the palaces of the great nobles
whose names figure in history--Kollowrat, Lobkowitz, Wallenstein, and
others. Massive edifices, whereby your eye and steps are alike
arrested. And on every side are narrow lanes and courts, some nothing
but a steep stair, and these, winding in and out, increase the charm
of the ornamented architecture, and produce wonderful bits of
perspective. Such effects of light and shade, and glorious touches of

Then a church crowded with carvings; old women sitting on the steps,
young women and matrons going in to the early mass, of which, as the
doors swing to and fro, you hear the loud notes of the organ. Then a
square, and tall obelisk, and arcaded houses; and turning a corner
there rises the bridge tower, strikingly picturesque. As my eye caught
sight of its graceful roof and slender finials, I could not repress an
exclamation of surprise and pleasure. Then through the narrow arch,
and we are on the ancient bridge, looking down on the broad stream of
the Moldau, flowing with noisy rush through the sixteen arches built
600 years ago; at houses, palaces, and churches rising one above
another in the _Kleinseite_ through which we have just passed, and in
the _Altstadt_ on the opposite side; at the mosaic pavement; at the
gigantic statues which terminate every pier, noteworthy saints from
the Bohemian calendar, chiefest among them St. John Nepomuk, who with
his crescentic belt of five large ruby stars might be taken for
another Orion. In no city that I have yet seen have I felt so much
pleasure, or such varied emotions, as during my walk into Prague.

Then we pass under the equally picturesque bridge tower of the
_Altstadt_, and enter narrow streets lined with good shops, and full
of bustle; and after many puzzling ins and outs, we emerge into the
spacious area of the Ring--a lively scene, people crossing in all
directions, or sauntering under the arcades; here and there sentries
pacing up and down, and small parties of soldiers, in gay uniforms,
marching away to beat of drum. And above the farther houses there
shoot up the two towers of the _Teinkirche_--one of the most famous
churches in Prague--which were built by George Podiebrad. The church
itself is screened by the houses; but, whenever you see those graceful
towers, you recognise the site of the edifice which was one of the
strongholds of Hussite preachers, and where Tycho Brahe lies buried.

More narrow streets; across the end of a market-place, and passing
under the arch of the ancient Powder Tower, we enter the broad streets
of the _Neustadt_. The Bohemian professor at Würzburg had recommended
me to lodge at the _Blaue Stern_, so to the _Blue Star_ I went, and
asked for a room.

"Quite full," said the _Kellner_, at the same time surveying me
inquisitively from head to foot.

Two doors off was another hotel, where the answer, accompanied by a
similar inquisition, was, "Nothing empty."

A third replied, "Perhaps, to-morrow."

I began to fancy that my not having been in bed all night--boots still
dusty, and a few stalks of hay clinging to my coat--might have
something to do with these denials. However, hotels are thickly
grouped in this quarter of the city, and not many yards farther the
_Schwarzes Ross_, in the _Kolowrat-strasse_, gave me quarters as
comfortable as could be wished.


     The Hausknecht -- A Place to Lose Yourself --
     Street-Phenomena -- Book-shops -- Glass-wares -- Cavernous
     Beer-houses -- Signs -- Czechish Names -- Ugly Women --
     Swarms of Soldiers -- A Scene on the Bridge -- A Drateñik
     -- The Ugly Passport Clerk -- The Suspension-bridge -- The
     Islands -- The Slopes of the Laurenzberg -- View over
     Prague -- Schools, Palaces, and Poverty -- The Rookery --
     The Hradschin -- The Courts -- The Cathedral -- The Great
     Tomb -- The Silver Shrine -- Relics -- A Kissed Portrait --
     St. Wenzel's Chapel -- Big Sigmund -- The Loretto Platz --
     The Old Towers -- The Hill-top and Hill-foot.

I had not been many minutes in my room when the _Hausknecht_--the
German boots--brought me a printed form, in which, besides the
inevitable particulars, I had to state the probable duration of my
stay in Prague. For three days' residence the police authorities
charge nothing, but if you enter on a fourth day you must pay two
florins for a permit to reside. I escaped the tax by not having more
than three days to spare.

The day was all before me, and I made haste to

                       "go lose myself,
     And wander up and down and view the city."

Losing one's-self is not difficult in Prague--easier, indeed, than in
any city I have yet visited; for the _Altstadt_ so abounds in queer
nooks and corners, narrow streets and lanes all crooked and angular,
running hither and thither in such unexpected directions, or coming
to a sudden stop, as completely to puzzle a stranger. Even my organ
of locality well-nigh failed me in the intricate maze.

Among all these zigzags you discover the leading thoroughfares only by
the busy appearance, the continuous stream of citizens going and
coming, straggling all across the narrow roadway, now darting aside to
escape a passing carriage, or slowly giving place to a long lumbering
dray that rolls past with deafening rumble, the horses clattering on
shoes with tall calkins that put you in mind of pattens. Here, too,
are the best shops, displaying attractive wares behind coarse and
uneven panes. The booksellers' windows exhibit a good variety of
standard books, of maps and engravings, denoting the existence of a
wholesome love of literature; very different from what is to be seen
in the southern states of the empire. Some shops display none but
Czechish books, and if you glance over the title-pages, you will
discover that topography of their own country, and descriptions of the
beautiful city _Praha_--as they call Prague--are favourite subjects
with the Czechs.

There is no uniformity. Next door to a cabinet-maker's, whose
large-paned window exhibits a variety of tasteful furniture, you will
see a cavern-like grocery without any window, and the wares all in
seeming confusion. Next, beyond, is a shop resplendent with Bohemian
glass, elegant forms in ruby, gold, and azure, each one a triumph of
art and industry. England is a generous customer for these fragile
articles, as may be seen any day in some of the best shops in London.
Then comes a sullen-looking front, with grim grated window, showing no
wares, and looking as if it had not cared about customers since the
days of King George Podiebrad. Then a smirking coffee-house, with
muslin curtains and touches of gilding. A little farther, and there is
a great open arch, running far to the rear--a beer-house--the space
between the street and the bar filled with tables bearing brown loaves
cut in quarters, _Semmel_, and corpulent sausages. Turn which way you
will, you find an endless diversity.

"_Glück auf!_" writes up a little trader. "_Here are best Coals.
Radnitzer Coal._" People who live on the upper floors hang a small
wooden cruciform sign from their windows by a long string, low enough
to catch the eye and strike the heads of those walking beneath; and on
these dangling crosses, when they are not spinning round in the wind,
you may read that a Dentist, Shoemaker, or Teacher aloft in his garret
would be happy to supply your wants on reasonable terms.

Judging from the number of queer-looking names over the doors, Prague
must be the head-quarters of the Czechs, and yet one meets
comparatively few examples of the fine intellectual brow and handsome
features of which I had seen noble specimens in the villages. Most of
the faces struck me as of a very common cast; and as for the gentle
sex, never have I seen so many ugly women as in Prague. Those of the
working classes are very dowdies, not to say slatterns, in many cases;
and the rows of market-women squatting by their baskets resemble so
many feather-beds tied round the middle, in a flimsy cotton dress, and
crowned by a red or yellow kerchief pinned under the chin. Even among
the graceful and gaily-dressed ladies I saw but very few pretty faces.
Perhaps I expected too much, or it might be, as I was told, that all
the pretty women had gone away to the watering-places!

Surprising to a stranger is the number of soldiers, sauntering among
the other pedestrians, in uniforms blue, green, gray, or white; or
marching in short files at a brisk pace behind a corporal. Not once
did I take a walk in Prague without seeing three or four of these
little troops stepping out towards one or other quarter of the
compass. What is there to be kept down that can need such an imposing
force? At all events, it heightens the picturesque effect of the

Stand for half an hour on the bridge and you will see, while noting
that scarcely any besides boys and priests take off their hats to St.
John of the five stars, how great is the proportion which the army and
the church bear to the rest of the inhabitants. At times the black and
the coloured uniforms appear to have the best of it. All besides may
be divided into two classes--the well-dressed and the shabby--for
nothing appears between the two. There are, however, but few of those
very miserable objects such as haunt the streets of large towns in

Now a man hurries past carrying a tall circular basket filled with
piled-up dinners in round dishes; now another wheeling bundles of
coloured glass rods; now another with a barrow-load of bread, and many
a slice will you see sold for a noonday repast. Then comes a troop of
lawless-looking street-musicians; then beggars grinding out squeaky
music from tinkered organs; then a girl carrying a coffin, painted
black and yellow, under her arm, which bears a cross on its gabled
lid. And now and then, among all these, your eye is arrested by a
singular, wild-looking figure, whom you will think the strangest of
all. He has lank black hair hanging to his shoulders from under a
fluffy, round-crowned, broad-brimmed hat--of the fashion still worn by
a few old Quakers in out-of-the-way places. He disdains a shirt, and
wears a tight jacket and hosen of whitey-brown serge. He goes
barefoot, walking with long, stealthy strides, looking, so you guess,
furtively around. On his shoulder he carries a coil of fine iron wire,
and in his hand a broken red pan or stone pitcher. Wild, however, and
out of place as he looks, he is only a Wallachian plying his honest
calling. He is a _Drateñik_--or _Drahtbinder_ (Wirebinder), as the
Germans call it--going about to mend broken pans and pitchers by
binding the fractures together with wire; a task which he performs
with neatness and dexterity.

I went to the _Polizeidirection_ to reclaim my passport. About a dozen
persons were waiting. To some who looked poor and timid the clerk
spoke roughly, assuming beforehand a something "not regular." One
might fancy that his ungracious occupation had told upon his looks,
for he was the ugliest man I ever saw, and, unlike the women, who gave
themselves airs in the streets, he seemed to be aware of Nature's
unkindness towards him. When my turn came, he asked, "Where are you

"To the _Riesengebirge_."

"_So!_ But we can't sign a passport for the mountains. You must tell
us the name of some town."

"Make it Landeshut, if you will; or any frontier town in Silesia."

"Can't do that. We must have some town on this side the mountains."

"I don't yet know which of three routes I shall take. Say some town
nearest to the mountains. Does it make any difference?"

"_Schön!_ You can come back here when your mind is made up." And with
this rejoinder, Ugly turned away to consider a timid lady's request
for permission to go a journey of fifteen miles.

There was time enough, so I strolled away to the
suspension-bridge--_Kaiser Franzens Brücke_--which, more than 1400
feet long, crosses the Moldau and the _Schützen Insel_, a short
distance above the stone bridge. The view midway will make you linger.
On the right bank, _Franzens-quai_, stretching from one bridge to the
other, forms a spacious esplanade, in the centre of which, surrounded
by gardens, rises the monument erected by the Estates of Bohemia to
the honour of Francis I. Beyond and on either side the towers and
palaces are seen in a new aspect, differently grouped from our early
morning view. Those of the _Kleinseite_, backed by the leafy slopes of
the _Laurenzberg_, while immediately beneath your eye rests on the
green sward and shady groves of three or four islands. The river
rushing past to the dam makes a lively ripple, imparting a sense of
coolness enjoyed by the visitors who throng the islands during the
summer season. The _Sophien Insel_, named after the Archduchess
Sophie, the emperor's mother, with its pleasure-grounds,
dancing-floors, orchestras, refreshment-rooms, and baths, is the chief
resort, especially on Sundays. The large ball-room was the scene of
noisy public meetings in '48; the Sclave Congress was held there,
followed by a Sclavonic costume ball. These islands are a pleasing
feature in the view, and, with their shady bowers and the noise of the
water mingling with strains of music, contrast agreeably with the
matter-of-fact of the city. The _Schützen Insel_ is resorted to by
rifle companies, and you may hear a brisk succession of shots from the
practice that appears to be always going on.

During the outbreak of June, 1848, the floor of the bridge was taken
up, and the passage across completely interrupted for some weeks by
the military. And it was to Prince Windischgratz's demonstrations
during the same month that the inhabitants were indebted for an
extension of their handsome quay. An old water-tower, and sundry
ricketty wooden mills that stood at the end of the stone bridge, were
set on fire by a shell from the prince's artillery, and the space
cleared by the flames was taken into the newly-formed area.

Passing from the bridge through the _Aujezder Thor_, you come to the
pleasant slopes and gardens of the _Laurenzberg_, a hill that
overlooks the city and country around. Winding paths agreeably shaded
lead upwards, until you are stopped on the summit by massive
fortifications; the great "Bread-wall," or "Hunger-wall"--for it is
known by both names--which Karl IV. built all round the city five
hundred years ago to give work to the citizens in a season of
distress. From a buttress which projects clear of the trees, that
cover all the hill-side with a broad mass of foliage, you have a wide
prospect. Greater part of the city from the Jews' quarter to the
Wissehrad lies beneath the eye as a panorama. The Moldau--breaking
from between low hills, with here and there a _Kahn_ floating, or a
long, narrow raft drifting to the gap in the dam--flows past in a
grand curve between towers and palaces, wretched hovels and stately
churches, and onwards round the hills below to join the Elbe. The
islands are open as a map, and you see the puffs of smoke from the
rifles on the _Schützen Insel_. It is a striking but disappointing
view, for notwithstanding the ancient gables and various towers that
shoot aloft, the city has somewhat the aspect of a collection of
factories, so monotonous are the long lines of white, many-windowed
wall, bearing their long slopes of bright red roof. Street after
street stretching away, all of the same character, and scattering on
the outskirts into a tame country, cruelly disappoint your
expectations of the picturesque. Here and there are large patches of
green among houses, and rows of poplars shooting up. Yet, after all,
there is something in the view which makes you linger. In some of its
architectural forms and features it partly realizes your mental
pictures of the East, and your imagination flies back to the remote
days when the Czechs left their far-away home towards the sunrise, and
wandered on till their leader, looking down from the hills on the
valley of the Moldau, determined that here should be the seat of his
empire. I sat for an hour on the rough coping of the buttress looking
down on the scene, while the leaves rustled cheerfully in a cooling
breeze, and the sunbeams glistened and flashed from a thousand
windows, and gilded weathercocks, and the lively ripples of the muddy

If inclined for a quiet stroll, you may wander among the trees and
rocks on the crown of the hill, or visit the church of St. Lawrence,
from whom the hill takes its name. From the highest summit, in very
favourable weather, it is possible to see _St. Georgsberg_, near
Raudnitz, and peaks of the _Mittelgebirge_ and _Riesengebirge_--mountains
on the Saxon and Silesian frontier.

On coming down from the hill, I prowled for awhile about the
_Kleinseite_, where, besides the antiquities and rare old palaces, you
are struck by the number of schools and institutions for education.
Strange groupings indeed in this quarter of the city! Palaces as rich
in treasures of art and literature as in historical associations, side
by side with miserable hovels and narrow, crooked streets, where
poverty lurks in rags and squalor. Little bits of architecture, that
are a delight to look on, catch your eye in unexpected places, peering
out in some instances from among things that delight not the eye. But
the schools are close by, and innovation creeps slowly on though few
perceive it.

You may mount to the Hradschin by some of these byeways, where you
will see how many windows have inner gratings, and how here and there
the prison-like aspect is relieved by plants and flowers that screen
the iron bars; and by these signs may you know where honest poverty
dwells. In the _Hohler Weg_ and _Neue Welt_ you have specimens of the
Rookery of Prague. At length, after many ins and outs and bits of
steep stair, you find yourself on the terrace in front of the
Hradschin, and you will be tempted to pause on the steps and survey
the view across the house-tops.

The mass of buildings here is large enough, and shelters inhabitants
enough to form a town. It includes a royal fortress--the archbishop's
residence--a nunnery and monastery, a penal reformatory, besides
lodgings of the official functionaries.

A considerable portion of the huge pile is now used as barracks for
infantry and cavalry, and things military abound within its courts.
There are sentries on duty, and soldiers off duty lounging about the
guard-house, while their muskets lean against a rail painted black and
yellow. But you pass unchallenged, and while crossing the quadrangle
may see the word SALVE in large characters in the pavement.

In the third court you come to the cathedral, an unfinished edifice
dedicated to St. Vitus, still showing marks of Hussite mischief, and
of the Great Frederick's cannon-balls. It covers the site of a church
built in 930 in honour of the same saint by Wenzel the Holy--he who
planted the first vineyard in Bohemia, on the eastern slope of the
Hradschin hill. The foundation-stone of the present structure was laid
by Charles IV., during the lifetime of his father John; and although
the building went on for forty-two years, it was never completed. In
1673 Leopold I. made an attempt to finish it according to the original
plan; but he did nothing more than build a few columns in different
styles, which stood in the fore-court until 1842, when they were
pulled down, as the beginning of a new effort for completing the
structure. Stimulated by the zeal of Canon Pesina, a Prague Cathedral
Building Union was founded, with Count Francis Thun for chief; and
preparations were made for the work, and for raising a million florins
to pay for it, when the troubles of 1848--fatal to so many hopes and
noble purposes--put a stop to the proceedings.

If the outside disappoint you by sundry additions and contradictory
ornaments, which spoil the pure effect of the original Gothic, you
will find cause enough for astonishment inside. At the western end of
the nave stands the richly-carved mausoleum, erected in 1589 by Kollin
of Nuremberg, at the cost of Rudolf II. It is of Carrara marble, and
in magnitude and beauty of sculpture may well vie with Maximilian's
tomb in the Court Church at Innsbruck. Royal dust is plentiful in the
vault beneath, for therein lie, besides Rudolf himself, Charles IV.
and his four wives, Wenzel IV., Ladislaus Posthumus, George von
Podiebrad, Ferdinand I. and his wife Anna, Maximilian II., and the
Archduchess Maria Amelia, who was buried in 1804. From admiring the
manifold carvings, which show the touch of the true artist, you will
perhaps look next at the tomb of St. John Nepomuk, on the right near
the altar. Surely no other saint, or living bishop, even in this age
of testimonials, ever had such a service of plate presented to him as
that! It is a small mountain of silver. On high, silver angels hold a
canopy over a silver shrine, which, borne aloft by angels, life size,
contains the martyr's body in a crystal coffin, set off by shining
statues, glittering ornaments, bas-reliefs, and tall candlesticks, all
alike made of silver. If current testimony may be relied on, there are
nearly two tons of the precious metal therein dedicated to the holy
Johannes. No wonder that you see the saint's statue on so many bridges
in Bohemia, and even for a few miles beyond the frontiers.

The curiosities of the church are more than can be examined in a brief
visit. There are twelve chapels ranged about the nave--the last fitted
up as an oratory for the Imperial family. In one of them you may see
the foot of a candlestick, which, according to tradition, was one of
those made for Solomon's Temple, from whence it was conveyed to Rome,
and afterwards to Milan, where Wladislaus I. seized the precious
relic, and he brought it to Prague. At all events, the workmanship
shows signs of great antiquity. And near the western end there hangs a
"true image"--a head of Christ, the holy placid features showing a
trace of sadness, the eyes looking at you with an earnest, though
pitying expression. It is a remarkable specimen of early art; much
venerated by the devout, who would soon obliterate it by kisses were
it not protected by glass. A moustachioed man came up, and, taking off
his hat, pressed his lips upon the sacred mouth while I was still
looking at the painting.

Frescoes bordered by gems adorn the walls of St. Wenzel's chapel; and
here are preserved the saint's helmet and coat of mail, a brass ring
to which he clung when he fell murdered by his brother's hand, and
other relics. Here also the Bohemian regalia are kept in rigorous
security under seven locks: St. Wenzel's sword is among them, and with
this, after his coronation, the monarch creates knights of St.
Wenzel's order.

The verger gives you his cut-and-dry description; but, as he may omit
to tell you a little bit of history, it would be well to remember that
in this chapel the Archduke Ferdinand was chosen King of Bohemia in
1526, whereby the kingdom has ever since belonged to the house of

Further concerning statues, lamps, tombs, and paintings, and the
organ, with its 2831 pipes, the treasure-chamber, where, among other
things, are sixteen leaves of St. Mark's Gospel in the hand of the
Evangelist--the rest said to be at Venice--the trinary chapel, and
the seven bells in the tower, among which "Big Sigmund" weighs
thirteen tons, and the octagon chapel, and the pulpit in the
fore-court, may be read in guide-books.

Go next to the _Loretto Platz_, and look at the palace which once
belonged to Count Czernin, and at the Loretto chapel--an exact copy of
the far-famed Holy House in Popedom. Or perhaps you will take more
interest in remembering that in a house near this chapel Tycho Brahe
made the observations from which he and Kepler produced the _Tabulæ
Rudolphinæ_--a work well known to astronomers; perpetuating in its
title the name of their munificent patron.

As old engravings testify, the Hradschin once looked picturesque when
its twenty-two high-roofed towers were all standing. Of these only
four remain; and in the Black Tower you may see fearsome specimens of
mediæval dungeons. If those grim walls could speak, the fate would be
known of some of Bohemia's worthiest, who, within a year after the
battle of the White Hill, suddenly disappeared from among their
families and friends, and were never more heard of.

You may end your exploration by crossing to the opposite side of the
hill, and taking a view of the great range of buildings from the
_Staubbrücke_, which crosses the _Hirschgraben_, and commands a
prospect over the north-western environs of the city, and of the
contrasts between the palace on the hill-top and the frowsy haunts at
the foot.


     The Tandelmarkt -- Old Men and Boys at Rag Fair -- Jews in
     Prague -- The Judenstadt -- Schools and Synagogues --
     Remote Antiquity -- Ducal Victims -- Jewish Bravery --
     Removal of Boundary Wires.

From the Hradschin, with its imperial associations, living and dead,
to an Old Clothes Market, is a change over which you may laugh or
lament, according to your mood. If you have seen Rag Fair in London,
you can form a weak notion of what I saw in the _Tandelmarkt_ at
Prague on my return to the _Altstadt_ from the palatial hill. For,
besides the difference of architecture, which heightens the general
effect, foreign Jews, whether in consequence of shabbier clothes or
dirtier habits, have always a more picturesque appearance than their
brethren in England.

What a gabble! accompanied by gesticulations so violent that you would
think the traders were coming to blows. Old men bent by age, of
venerable aspect and beard patriarchal, stand chaffering as eagerly
for cast-off garments as if they had Methuselah's years before them in
which to enjoy the proceeds. "It is naught," argues the buyer; and the
graybeards whine over their frippery, and turn it about, and display
it to the best advantage, and reply in a tone that extorts at last the
reluctant coins from the customer's pocket.

Look at the boys! How they ply nimbly hither and thither, picking up
stray bargains: adepts already in the craft of their grandsires. Look
at their fathers! No whining in their traffic: but hard altercation,
in which patient subterfuge proves more than a match for vehemence.
Here and there, however, a cunning Czech, by sharp practice with his
tongue, and a timely exhibition of his money, succeeds in carrying off
a blouse or hosen on his own terms; and the Hebrew, while pouching the
coins, sends after him low mutterings, which forebode ill to the next

As you wander among the stalls, and push between the busy groups,
noting how much of the merchandise appears utterly worthless, you will
find cause enough for laughter and for lamentation.

According to the census of 1850, the number of Jews in Prague is about
nine thousand, of whom nearly eight thousand are natives. Besides
these, there are many resident in some of the neighbouring villages;
but the number is less now than formerly. Daily perambulations of the
city with the old, familiar, dingy bag on shoulder, in quest of "clo,"
and the trade of the _Tandelmarkt_, are the resources to which most
betake themselves.

The place assigned for their residence, known as the _Judenstadt_
(altered of late years to _Josefstadt_), is a few acres of the
_Altstadt_, lying between the _Grosser Ring_ and the river: by far the
most densely populated part of Prague. It is crowded with houses:
traversed by narrow streets not remarkable for cleanliness, and has
altogether an uninviting aspect. Your sanitary reformer would here
find a strong case of overcrowding: two or three families in one
room, and a dozen, and, in some instances, more than twenty owners for
a single house. The number of faces of men, women, and children at the
windows, and the many comers and goers along the devious ways and in
and out of the darksome passages, leave you no reason to doubt the
fact. And in these miserable tenements dwell some of the chiefest men
of the community--men appointed to places of trust and honour, who sit
in the old Jewish council-house, and officiate in the synagogue.

But even here the ancient complexion and character are changing. New
and commodious houses built in a few places are a standing reproach to
the rest of the neighbourhood, and to the partisans of dirt. And while
prying about you will hear the voices of children in sundry schools,
where the teachers talk and work as if they were in earnest. Nor is
spiritual culture neglected, for you will see some four or five
synagogues, and a _Temple of the Reformed Israelitish God's-worship_.

In Prague, the manners and customs of the Jews are said to retain more
of their primeval characteristics than in any other place out of Asia;
the chief cause being the bitter persecutions to which the race, as
everywhere else, were subjected. Some accounts assign their first
settlement here to the fabulous ages of history, and make it
seventy-two years earlier than that of the Czechs, or in the year 462
of the present era. And the tradition runs, that on the ground now
occupied by the _Judenstadt_, and on part of the _Kleinseite_, the
first buildings were erected.

In the early days the Jews lived in whatever quarter of the city
suited them best; but, in consequence of many corrupt practices, Duke
Spitignew II. banished them all from Bohemia in 1059. Eight years
later, Duke Wratislaw II., moved to pity, granted leave for their
return, though not on compassionate conditions. Besides doubling their
former amount of yearly tax, they were to pay an annual fine of two
hundred silver marks, to purchase twelve houses near the river in the
_Kleinseite_ for their residence, and to wear a yellow cloak as a
distinguishing garment. Their number was never to exceed one thousand;
but in a few years it had grown to five thousand, whereupon the
surplus were banished; and, to check smuggling among the remainder,
they were removed from the _Kleinseite_ to their present quarters.

The yellow cloak having fallen into disuse, Ferdinand II. revived the
regulation with sharp severity in 1561. From the Second Ferdinand (in
1627) the Jews obtained important privileges, in consideration of a
yearly gift of forty thousand gulden: liberty to choose their own
magistrates and judges, to establish schools, and multiply in numbers
without limit. In 1648 they took a valiant part in the defence of
Prague against the Swedes, and the banner won by their bravery is
still preserved in the old synagogue. In 1745 they were once more
banished, but had permission to return the following year. Joseph II.
placed them on an equality with other citizens, and allowed them to
buy land, and dress as they pleased.

In the good old times, whenever any turbulence occurred in Prague, it
was always made the excuse for plundering or persecution of the Jews;
and in this particular their history accords with that of their
brethren in all other cities of Europe. They did but barely escape in
the memorable '48. Their town once had nine gates, which were shut at
nightfall; and subsequently, wires stretched across the streets,
marked the boundary between Hebrew and Christian: these were removed
in the year last mentioned, and have not since been replaced.


     The Jewish Sabbath -- The Old Synagogue -- Traditions
     concerning it -- The Gloomy Interior -- The Priests -- The
     Worshippers and the Worship -- The Talkers -- The Book of
     the Law -- The Rabbi -- The Startling Gun -- A Birth at
     Vienna -- Departed Glory.

My second day in Prague being a Saturday, I went to see the Jews at
worship in their synagogue. The _Josefstadt_ was comparatively quiet;
but few persons in the streets, and those dressed in their best; the
boys carrying prayer-books, and the men with what looked like an apron
rolled up under their arm. On entering the synagogue, I found that the
apron was a white scarf (_talis_), with blue striped ends, which each
man put on across his shoulders before taking his seat.

But first, a few words about the building itself. On approaching it
along the narrow _Beleles-gasse_, you are struck at once by its
appearance of great antiquity--visibly the most ancient among
buildings decrepit with age. It is sunk low in the ground, down a
flight of some ten or twelve steps, as if the first builders,
worshipping in fear, had sought concealment. Of architectural display
there is none. Walls blackened by the dust and storms of centuries,
with two or three narrow-pointed windows, looking so much more like a
bride-well than a temple of the living God, that not till I had seen
the steady procession of men and boys to the door could I believe it
to be really the synagogue.

No wonder that its foundation is referred back to days ere Europe had
a history. One tradition says, that no sooner was the Temple at
Jerusalem destroyed, than angels immediately set about building this
synagogue on the bank of the Moldau. According to another, certain
people digging in a hill which once covered the spot, came upon a
portion of a wall, and, continuing their excavation, cleared away the
hill, and found a synagogue built already to their hands. And, as
before mentioned, there is the tradition which dates it seventy-two
years earlier than the arrival of the Czechs.

It was a remarkable sight that met my eyes as I descended into the
building. If the outside conveys an impression of extreme age, much
more does the inside. The deep-sunk floor, the dim light, the walls
and ceiling as black as age and smoke can make them, are the features
of a dungeon rather than of a place of thanksgiving. The height, owing
to the low level of the floor, appears to be greater than the length,
and, looking up, you can easily believe that cleansing has never been
attempted since the first prayer was offered. Old-fashioned brass
chandeliers hang from the ceiling, and here and there a brazen shield
on the wall. The _almemmar_, or rostrum, occupies the centre of the
floor, and in the narrow space on either side and at one end are the
seats and stools for the congregation, with numerous reading-stands
crowded between. These stands have a shabby, makeshift look, no two
being alike in height or pattern, as if each man had constructed his
own. Hence a general look of disorder as well as of dinginess.

The doorkeeper requested me to keep my cap on; and I saw that all
present sat covered. Even the officiating priests wore their hats, and
in dress and appearance were in no way different from the hearers.
Every man had his _talis_ on, and was continually fidgetting and
shrugging to keep it on his shoulders, and his Hebrew prayer-book from
slipping off the stand. The priests walked restlessly up and down the
_almemmar_, but whether they were praying or exhorting I could not
tell, for all sounded alike to me--a glib and noisy gabble. And all
the while the men on the darksome seats under the gallery kept up a
murmur of talk in twos and threes, in a way that sounded very much
like a discussion of questions left unfinished on the _Tandelmarkt_.
Now and then a "Hush! Hush!" was impatiently ejaculated by one of the
devout who sat near with eyes fixed on his book; but the back seats
took no heed, and, though in the temple, ceased not to talk of
merchandise. Very few were they who maintained a fixed attention; a
ceaseless rocking of the body to and fro, as, with half-closed eyes,
they went through their recitations, distinguished them from the rest.

Now and then the priests paused in their uneasy walk, drew together,
and had a little bit of quiet talk among themselves, seasoned by a
pinch of snuff all round. Then they separated, and one, pacing from
side to side, gave repeated utterance to a short phrase, in a wailing,
sing-song tone, while the others went behind the veil, and presently
came forth again, one bearing what at first sight looked like a thick
double roll surmounted by two silver candlesticks. It was the Book of
the Law; and no sooner did the bearers appear than a cry of joy was
set up by the whole assembly. A shabby wrapper and the silver
ornaments were taken off, and then the sacred parchment was seen wound
on two cylinders, so that as a portion was read from one it might be
rolled up on the other.

The scroll was laid on the table with some formal ceremony, and the
priests, unrolling a part, began to read, but in such a snuffling tone
and careless manner as indicated but little reverence. After each one
had snuffled in turn, the old rabbi, wearing a long gown and fur cap,
was assisted on to the _almemmar_, and, bending low over the scroll,
he read a few passages solemnly and impressively, though in a voice
weak and tremulous with age: audible to all, for the talkers under the
gallery held their peace. His task finished, he was led back to his
seat: the roll was wound up, and, with the wrapper and ornaments
replaced, was returned to its place behind the veil.

The monotonous murmur was renewed: one of the priests commenced a
recitation, but he had scarcely opened his lips than the report of a
cannon boomed loudly from the Hradschin, startling all within hearing,
and making the streets echo again.

"Ah!" cried the talkers, "that's for the empress. Is it prince or
princess this time?"

The priest halted in his recitation as the thunderous shocks
succeeded--one, two, three, and so on, up to twenty-five--when, after
another pause of listening expectation, "Ah!" cried the talkers
again, "'tis only a princess;" and they took up once more the thread
of their murmur.

Then followed more gabbling and snuffling from the rostrum; and, as I
listened and looked round from face to face, noting the expression,
something like sadness came over me; for were not those slovenly
utterances a hopeless lamentation over the glory that had departed?
Was it clean gone for ever? Did no trace remain of that solemn and
gorgeous ceremonial, instituted when the glory came down and filled
the house in the presence of the king, and of the Levites and singers
"arrayed in white linen, having cymbals, and psalteries, and harps;"
and of the people? When the king prayed, "Now therefore arise, O Lord
God, into Thy resting-place, Thou, and the ark of Thy strength: let
Thy priests, O Lord God, be clothed with salvation, and let Thy saints
rejoice in goodness."

An hour passed, and still the recitations and murmur went on. I had
seen enough, and thought, as I stepped forth into the daylight, that
the cry, "His blood be on us, and on our children!" had been fearfully


     The Alte Friedhof -- A Stride into the Past -- The Old
     Tombs -- Vegetation and Death -- Haunted Graves -- Ancient
     Epitaph -- Rabbi Löw -- His Scholars -- Symbols of the
     Tribes -- The Infant's Coffin -- The Playground -- From
     Death to Life.

The old synagogue and old Jewish burial-ground (_Alte Friedhof_) are
but a few yards apart. On my way from one to the other I passed sundry
groups, chiefly women, talking with animation about the interesting
event signalized from the Hradschin. And more than one expressed a
wish that a prince and not a princess had been born to the House of

The angle of a wall, overtopped within by foliage, marks the site of
the burial-ground. The doorkeeper unlocked the gate, and, passing in,
I felt as if, instead of merely stepping across a threshold, a long
stride had been taken back into the Past. The living world is all shut
out, and you are alone with the dead--the dead of long ago.

_Beth Chaim_, or the House of Life, is the name in Hebrew; but there
is no life save that of gnarly elder-trees, gooseberry-bushes, and
creeping weeds that struggle up into a wild maze from among the
overcrowded tombs and gravestones. The stones, thick and massive, are
so incredibly numerous, that they are wedged and jammed together in
most extraordinary confusion. Some lean on one side; some forwards,
some backwards, and many would fall outright were they not propped up
by others standing near. Hence all sorts of curious holes and corners,
in which grow choking weeds and coarse grass, hiding the inscriptions,
and producing a strange impression of neglect and decay.

With this impression comes a sense of the mysterious, heightened by
the nature of the ground, which, irregular in outline and very uneven,
confines your view to but a small portion at once. Though the
enclosure takes up about one-twelfth of the _Judenstadt_, your idea
becomes one of a succession of patches of tangled foliage drooping
over mouldering tombs. Now the path mounts a broken slope; now dips
into a narrow way between the walls of encroaching streets and houses;
now enters a widening area, where the fragrant blossoms and branches
of the elders droop gracefully over the ancient memorials--or comes to
an end in some out-of-the-way nook. Thus you are led on pace by pace,
always wondering what will appear at the next turn.

And there is something mysterious in the associations of the place.
Tales are told of ghosts that haunt the tombs; unhappy spirits
bringing terror and doom to the living, or goblins playing gruesome
tricks. And again in its antiquity: anticipating by a hundred years
the building of Prague, as proved by a date on a tombstone. No wonder
that the ground is heaped high, and full of ups and downs! Thousands
of Jews have turned to dust beneath the surface.

Something, however, must be deducted from its antiquity. If, as
careful investigation gives reason to believe, the old synagogue was
built in the thirteenth century, we may suppose the opening of the
burial-ground to have taken place within the same period. The notion
arose from misreading the stone, whereby one thousand was subtracted
from the date. The inscriptions are in the Hebrew character, and, for
the most part, deeply cut. The stone in question is inscribed:

_In Elul (August) the 22nd day: lamentation ... was the ornament of
our head snatched away. Sara, whose memory stands in high praise,
wife of Joseph Katz, died. She was modest; and reached out her hand to
the poor. Her speech was mild and agreeable, without shame or vice.
Her desire was after the house of the Creator. She gave herself up to
whatsoever is holy, and continued steadfast. She trained up her
children according to the law of God._

One of the most remarkable tombs is that of Rabbi Löw (or Lyon)--a
handsome temple-formed sarcophagus, distinguished by a sculptured
lion, and the beauty of its workmanship. The rabbi himself was a
remarkable man in his day; eminent for nobleness of mind and great
learning; and it is recorded of him that he was honoured by a visit
from the Emperor Rudolf II. in his own house. He lies here in good
company; for on both sides of his tomb extends a row of gravestones,
thirty-three in number, marking the resting-place of thirty-three of
his favourite scholars; and not far off a taller stone shows the grave
of his son-in-law.

On many of the slabs you will see curious devices deeply cut, and
figures resembling a coat-of-arms. These indicate the tribe, or
family or name of the deceased. There lies one of the house of Aaron,
as shown by the two hands; a pitcher denotes the tribe of Levi; and
Israel is signified by a bunch of grapes. The name _Fischeles_ or
_Karpeles_ is symbolised by a fish; Lyon by the royal quadruped; and
_Hahn_ by a domestic fowl; and so forth.

All these and many other noteworthy objects will you see while
wandering about this mortal wilderness; and the doorkeeper, if in the
mood, will tell you many a legend, and point out the tombs of Simeon
the Just, and Anna Schmiedes, concerning whom something might be said
should the humour serve. No burials have been permitted since the
reign of Joseph II.; and from that date, except that the path is
clean, the whole place appears to have been abandoned to the influence
of the seasons. Many of the stones are broken; here and there the
slabs of the tombs are crumbled away, leaving large holes through
which you may look and see green stains and patches of dark mould. In
a dry spot at the foot of a wall I saw a bundle nailed up within rough
staves of fir; it was a still-born infant in its coffin; and perhaps
for such a little hole may still be dug in the ancient ground.

Notwithstanding that the backs of a few old houses look down on the
graves, they fit in with the scene, and your impression of deep
loneliness remains undisturbed, except in one corner, where the
surface is clear and level. It is used at times as a playground for
the children, whose voices you hear from the open windows of the
schoolroom that encloses one side. Painter and poet might alike make a
picture of childhood, full of mirth and happiness, playing in the
sunshine; and in the background, all too near, the haunted tombs of
their forefathers.

A few years ago the Jews, finding their quarter much too small for
commodious or decent habitation, petitioned the authorities for leave
to widen their boundaries, and in answer were recommended to destroy
their venerable _Friedhof_, and build houses upon the ground. No
willingness has yet been manifested to adopt the recommendation.

As on entering, so on departing, are you aware of a strange
impression; from the field of death, from silence and solitude, you
pass at once to the noisy life of the streets, and the spell wrought
upon you by the brief saunter where sits

     "The Shadow cloak'd from head to foot
     Who keeps the keys of all the creeds,"

is broken with a shock. And by-and-by, when in the noisier
thoroughfares, vague fancies will come to you of having had a
sepulchral dream.


     The Kolowratstrasse -- Picolomini's Palace -- The Museum --
     Geological Affluence -- Early Czechish Bibles -- Rare Old
     Manuscripts -- Letters of Huss and Ziska -- Tabor Hill --
     Portraits -- Hussite Weapons -- Antiques -- Doubtful
     Hussites in the Market-place -- The Glückliche Entbindung
     -- A Te Deum -- Two Evening Visits -- Bohemian Hospitality
     -- The Gaslit Beer-house.

The _Kolowratstrasse_ is one of the finest streets in Prague. It is
broad, straight, and well paved; contains the best hotels, the most
elegant coffee-houses, the handsomest shops, and a palace or two. It
was always known as the _Graben_; for here once flowed the ditch
separating the _Alt_ and _Neustadt_, and _Graben_ it still remains,
the folkname prevailing over that of the Imperial minister after whom
it was named some twenty years ago.

One of the palaces formerly belonged to Wallenstein's opponent, Count
Octavio Picolomini; the other now contains the Bohemian Museum, which,
an honour to the city, is a praiseworthy example of the intellectual
movement among the natives. The Museum Company, formed in 1818, to
collect works of art, natural productions of the country, curiosities,
and antiquities, appointed a committee in 1830 to promote a scientific
cultivation of the Czechish language and literature, and to create a
section of archæology and natural history. Under the designation
_Matice ceská_ (Bohemian Mother), a fund was established and
vigorously maintained, out of which the desired objects were
accomplished; particularly as regards the literature. To call Palacky
into activity--a historian of whom Bohemia is justly proud--was no
trifling achievement. Up to 1847 the collections were kept in the
Sternberg Palace at the Hradschin; but in that year they were removed
to their present more convenient and accessible quarters.

Later in the day I went to the Museum: I wished to see with what sort
of carnal weapons the Hussites had gained so many victories over their
fellow-countrymen. First you enter the department of geology and
mineralogy, the richest and most important of the whole collection.
The specimens are well arranged, and among them you may see minerals
and fossils which give a special interest to the geology of Bohemia.

Concerning these fossils, the late Dean of Westminster says, in his
_Bridgewater Treatise_: "The finest example of vegetable remains I
have ever witnessed, is that of the coal mines of Bohemia. The most
elaborate imitations of living foliage upon the painted ceilings of
Italian palaces bear no comparison with the beauteous profusion of
extinct vegetable forms with which the galleries of these instructive
coal-mines are overhung. The roof is covered as with a canopy of
gorgeous tapestry, enriched with festoons of most graceful foliage,
flung in wild, irregular profusion over every portion of its surface.
The effect is heightened by the contrast of the coal-black colour of
these vegetables with the light groundwork of the rock to which they
are attached. The spectator feels himself transported, as if by
enchantment, into the forests of another world; he beholds trees of
forms and characters now unknown upon the surface of the earth,
presented to his senses almost in the beauty and vigour of their
primeval life; their scaly stems and bending branches, with their
delicate apparatus of foliage, are all spread before him, little
impaired by the lapse of countless ages, and bearing faithful records
of extinct systems of vegetation, which began and terminated in times
of which these relics are the infallible historians."

If you care but little for botany and zoology, with plants, fossils,
and creatures from before the Flood, the attendant will lead you at
once to the archæological department, and uncover the glass-cases
containing rare old manuscripts. Among them are a poem of the ninth
century about Libussa, a somewhat mythical Queen of Bohemia, from whom
Palacky has cleared away the fable; the _Niebelungenlied_ in Czechish;
a Latin Lexicon with Bohemian gloss, date 1102; seven editions of the
Bible in Czechish, all translated before Luther's, show how the
Bohemians profited by the reading of Wycliffe's books which were sent
to them from England; and a remarkable hymn-book, written at the cost
of different guilds, each of whom ornamented their portion with
exquisite paintings in miniature; specimens of the earliest
representations of musical notes; and the first book printed in
Bohemia, _Historia Trojanska_, 1468.

You will look with interest at the letters by Huss, and the challenge
which he hung up on the gate of the University, declaring his
religious opinions, and his readiness to maintain them by argument
against all comers: Latin documents, in a stiff, formal hand. Equally
stiff is a letter written by Ziska, dated from the Hussite camp at
Tabor; but there is a world of suggestion in those hard characters.
That rusty leaf sets your memory recalling the events of five hundred
years ago: the journey of Huss to face the wicked Council, and
martyrdom at Constance, under a safe-conduct granted by the Emperor
Sigismund, requiring all men to let the valiant preacher go and come,
and tarry freely and unharmed;--the furious outbreak of the
Protestants at the accursed condemnation of their teacher to the
flames;--their sanguinary battles, and fiery zeal, and avowed
determination to root out their enemies, whereby for eighteen years
the land was laid waste with fire and sword, and the name of Hussite
became a very terror:--and their redoubtable leader, Ziska the
one-eyed, standing out from among them in bold relief, a captain most
resolute and skilful, the instrument of righteous vengeance upon the
execrable Sigismund; who, though he lost that single flashing eye of
his, yet never lost a battle, nor the confidence of his followers. We
see him amidst his rough and ready fighting men in the camp, on the
heights to which, in the pride of their hearts, they gave a name from
Scripture; and where they quenched their thirst in the water of
Jordan, exulting,

     "What hill is like to Tabor hill in beauty and in fame?"

From the letter you turn to look at a portrait of the warrior. It is a
miserable painting, very much in the signboard style, yet you can mark
the breadth of shoulder beneath the gleaming corslet, the oval face,
aquiline nose, large bright eye, and lofty forehead, shaded by thick,
black, curling hair, and picture to yourself a proper hero. There is
another and a better portrait in the Strahow monastery, and by noting
the best points of each you will improve your idea, though perhaps not
to full satisfaction. The attendant, moreover, will call your
attention to a portrait of Huss, whose features express but little of
the intellectual qualities and the steadfastness by which he was

A few paces farther, and there are the weapons with which the Hussites
fought and won battles in the name of the Lord. Flails, shields, and
firelocks of a very primitive construction. And such flails! The short
swinging arm is hung by strong iron staples to the end of a stout
staff, about six feet in length, and is braced up in iron bands, which
bristle with projecting points, the better to make an impression on an
enemy's skull. Truly a formidable weapon! Try the weight. The arm must
be strong that would wield it with effect; and mighty must have been
the motive that sent whole ranks armed therewith rushing to the
onslaught as to a threshing-floor. Looking at these things, you
realize somewhat of the shock and storm of the events in which they
were employed.

Besides the stacks of weapons, the room contains in glass-cases round
the walls numerous ivory carvings of singular merit and rarity, and
other curiosities with which you may divert your thoughts. And in a
neighbouring apartment there hangs an engraved view of Prague as it
stood a few years before the fatal day of the White Hill, well worth
inspection. The Hradschin and Wyssehrad, at opposite ends of the city,
look really picturesque crowned with numerous towers.

Walking afterwards through the markets, and seeing the dowdies
sitting by their stalls under large red umbrellas, and the number of
shabby men loitering about, I wondered if they were indeed the
descendants of those who, under Ziska's command, had wielded the
flails. However, in 1848, the men proved that the fighting-blood still
circulated in their veins.

The authorities had lost no time, and on every corner placards were
posted, announcing in loyal terms the "_glückliche Entbindung_" of the
empress; but though crowds stopped to read, I saw no manifestations of
joy. Great was the concourse, too, in the _Grosser Ring_, where a _Te
Deum_ was offered with pomp and ceremony in presence of the city
militia: close ranks of green uniforms interposed between priests and

The letter of the Würzburg professor opened for me the hospitable
doors of a pleasant house on a hill-slope beyond the city. Father,
mother, and the two daughters joined in showing kindness to one who
came to them with credentials from son and brother. The young ladies
spoke English fluently, and while we sauntered between odorous
flower-beds and under drooping cherry-trees, they took pleasure in
exercising their acquirement. Then we had tea in a pretty
garden-house, all open to the breeze and quivering sunbeams and
rustling vespers of the leaves. A Bohemian tea--cutlets, potatoes,
salad, cheese, and butter, bottled beer, _Toleranz_, and the fragrant
beverage itself poured from a real teapot. _Toleranz_ was something
new to me: it is a pungent, relishing preparation, in which
horseradish is a principal ingredient, and at your first taste you
will think it appropriately named.

It was while chatting over this delightful repast that I was told all
the pretty women had left Prague for the watering-places. Two at
least were left behind. The conversation of the Czechish servants who
waited on us, heard at a short distance, sounded like a screechy
quarrel; and on my remarking that I had noticed similar discords
during a ramble in Wales, one of the young ladies replied, in
explanation, "Our friends often think we are scolding our servants,
when all the while we are speaking to them in a quiet, natural tone.
Your ear is deceived. There is nothing but good-humour among them."

It was late each evening when I walked back across the fields to the
city; just the hour, as it seemed, when the great arched beer-vaults
in the _Rossmarkt_ were in their prime. There was something striking
in the long gas-lit vista viewed from the entrance, every table
crowded with tipplers, dimly seen through tobacco-smoke; waiters
flitting to and fro with tankards; the damsel at the sausage-stall
trying to serve a dozen customers at once; while high above the
rumbling, rattling din, sounded the liveliest strains of music. I sat
for awhile on an upturned barrel watching the scene. Here workmen and
labourers, and those of lower degree, the proletaires of Prague, were
enjoying their evening--making merry after the toils of the day. These
were the folk who would fight whether or no in 1848; whose
bullet-marks are yet to be seen on many of the houses. Either the beer
was strong, or they drank too deeply, for many staggered into the
street, and went reeling homewards; conquered more hopelessly by their
own hand than by Prince Windischgratz's bombardment.


     Sunday Morning in Prague -- Gay Dresses -- Pleasure-seeking
     Citizens -- Service in the Hradschin Cathedral -- Prayers
     and Pranks -- Fun in the Organ-loft -- Glorious Music -- A
     Spell broken -- Priests and their Robes -- Osculations -- A
     Flaunting Procession -- An Old Topographer's Raptures --
     The Schwarzes Ross -- Flight from Prague -- Lobositz --
     Lost in a Swamp -- A Storm -- Up the Milleschauer -- After
     Dark -- The Summit -- Mossy Quarters -- The Host's Story.

The streets were alive before the lazy hours approached on Sunday
morning. Here and there the walls covered with handbills, red, blue,
green, and yellow, presented a gay appearance. The Summer Theatre, in
which you sit under the open sky and see plays acted by daylight, was
open--_Jubelfest!_ ran the announcements: _Health and Prosperity to
the House of Hapsburg_. Music and a ball on the Sophia Island--music
on the Shooting Island--music at _Hraba's_ Railway Garden--music at
the _Pstrossischer_ Garden--music at Podol--music at Wrssowitz--music
at the _Fliedermühle_--a military band at Bubencz--in short, music
everywhere. And everywhere "_Pilsen beer, in Ice_." And so the streets
were alive at an early hour with citizens going to an early mass that
longer time might remain for pleasure, or starting for some of the
neighbouring villages, or for the White Hill, where a saint's festival
was to be celebrated--all dressed in their Sunday clothes, and looking
as if they had made up their minds for a holiday.

The morning is bright and the breeze playful, and the sober colours
having all chosen to stay at home, there are none but the gayest tints
abroad in the sunshine. Pink appears to be the favourite. Pink skirts,
pink scarfs, pink ribands, pink bonnets; but no lack of all besides,
and more than make up the rainbow. Not a work-a-day dowdy to be seen.
Here come father, mother, and half a dozen children, the sire carrying
a basket, and one or two of the youngsters a havresack, all eager with
anticipated pleasure. Here half a dozen sweethearts going to make a
day of it. Here a troop of lads nimble of foot, noisy in talk, and
proud of their orange and purple decorations in waistcoat and necktie,
while now and then a _Fiaker_ trots past laden with a party who prefer
a holiday on wheels; and always there come the eternal soldiers, rank
and file, or tramping at liberty.

The spectacle is animated in the spacious area of the _Grosser Ring_,
where the gay throngs mingle and traverse from all directions;
entering or leaving the _Teinkirche_, where service is performed in
the Czechish tongue. Striking is the contrast between them and a group
of sunburnt haymakers squatted in the centre, men and women in rustic
garments, gazing wonderingly around from amid many-coloured bundles,
piles of scythes, and scattered sickles. They look half amazed at
finding themselves in a great city, and as if fearful of ever finding
their way out again.

All this and much more did I see while on my way to hear the service
in the metropolitan church on the Hradschin. The steep stair-flights
which, avoiding the narrow, crooked streets, lead directly up to the
palace, were all a-blaze with shining silks and satins, the wearers
of which were mounting slowly upwards on dainty feet in the full glare
of the hot sun. Already nearly every seat in the church was filled,
and as the service went on the aisles were thronged, the women on one
side, the men on the other, though with exceptions. The opportunity
was favourable for seeing something of the better class of citizens,
for of such the congregation appeared chiefly to be. Again I looked
for pretty faces along the variegated aisle, and though there was no
dearth of grace and animation, I was forced to believe that the
beauties had not yet returned from the watering-places. Meanwhile the
service went on; three robed priests officiated at the altar, the
little bell tinkled, the host was lifted up, every head was bowed, and
incense floated around the cross, while the boys set to feed the
censers pulled one another's hair on the sly, and played pranks in
their corner.

I crept quietly up to the organ-loft when the time for music was near,
and saw seedy men take their post at the bellows, and in the front
seat of the gallery a row of young men and boys tuning up their
fiddles. The great height prevents the twang and scrape from being
heard below, and affords, moreover, opportunity for fun, for as they
screw and twang they reach across and tweak ears, or prod a cheek with
the end of a bow, or bend down and tell some joke which well-nigh
chokes them with suppressed laughter. At last the signal is given, and
as if by one impulse they strike into a symphony, in which the organ
joins at times with a sonorous note. I crept down to the aisle to
listen. The harmonies, at first timid, grew gradually in volume and
power, till at length they swelled into glorious music that filled the
whole place, and held every ear entranced. Then the organ broke out
with an exulting response, and all the echoes of the lofty roof and
soaring arches repeated the sound, until there came a sudden pause, in
which you presently heard the faintest of tones, like a plaintive
wail, from the stringed instruments. Then strength came once more to
the trembling notes, and again the strains which angels might have
stayed to hearken to floated through the air.

Where could such music come from? I felt constrained to go up again to
the organ-loft. There sat the same boys carrying on their sports
during the rests and pauses--the same seedy men at the bellows--earthly
hands producing heavenly music which held the listeners spell-bound.

For me the illusion was over, and I felt curious to see what sort of
men they were who in stately robes had gone through the ceremonial at
the altar. Surely they would exhibit signs of spiritual life. I placed
myself close to the door by which they would have to pass to the
sacristy, and observed them as they withdrew. They were men of
sluggish feature, lit by no gleam of spirituality, and walked as if
released from a wearisome duty. And the robes which seemed rich and
costly in the distance, showed faded and shabby near at hand--unworthy
attire for priests of a church that boasts a silver shrine. Here,
thought I, we must not look for the Beauty of Holiness.

Many a kiss did I see imprinted on the sacred picture of Christ as the
congregation departed; and then, as they streamed forth and dispersed
in groups in many directions, I hastened forwards to catch the view
of the many-coloured procession as it descended the great stair,
flaunting in the sun between the gray old houses.

While crossing the ancient bridge for the last time, my impression was
strengthened that from thence you get the best view of Prague--a view
which conceals the damaging features seen from the hills. "Oh! it is a
ravishing prospect!" exclaims an old topographer; "your eye knows not
whether it shall repose on the mighty colossus of stone which appears
to bid defiance to the broad Moldau stream, or whether it shall
pasture on that romantic slope, from the summit of which the huge
imperial fortress, and the highly-famed cathedral church, together
with many palaces and churches, shine down upon you. Surprise, wonder,
and bewilderment overcome him who for the first time turns hither and
thither to look at the sight." If your raptures rise not to this lofty
pitch, you will hardly fail, even at your last view, to sympathise
with the antiquated narrator's enthusiasm.

The _Schwarzes Ross_ has a worthy reputation, and deserves it, for the
entertainment is good, the plenishing clean, and the beer excellent.
Dinner is served, after the Carlsbad manner, at twenty or more small
tables--an arrangement which favours conversation; and after the soup
has disappeared, the host enters with his best coat on--a plump man,
whose appearance does honour to his own viands--and he makes a solemn
bow to every table. I had the happiness of catching his eye on three
successive days.

It was not by enchantment--though it seemed like it--but by steam,
that, four hours later, having lost the way, I was trudging about in
swampy meadows at the foot of the _Milleschauer_. My mind was confused
with pictures of Prague, with glimpses of the journey, and, unawares,
I had wandered from the track. At two miles from the city our train
was entered by two soldiers, one of whom stood guard at the carriage
door, while the other went from passenger to passenger demanding
passports, that he might inspect the visas. This done, the
_Podiebrad_--so the locomotive was named--hurried us past fruitful
slopes, orchards, and poppy-fields; past bends of the river; between
hills that come together in one place and form a glen, where tunnels
pierce the projecting crags; across a broad plain, till at Raudnitz we
saw the Elbe, and peaks and ridges in the distance, indicating our
approach to the mountains. At Theresienstadt we stopped twenty minutes
for the passing of the train from Dresden, there being but a single
line of rails, beguiling the time by looking at the rafts on the
river, and the broken line of hills. Then to Lobositz, where the folk
appeared less wise than at Prague, for the flour-mill and
chicory-factory were rattling and roaring in full work.

I left my knapsack at the _Gasthof zum Fürst Schwarzenberg_, and
started for the _Milleschauer_. Half an hour along the Töplitz road,
bordered all the way by fruit-trees, and you come in sight of the
mountain--a huge cone, two thousand seven hundred feet in height, one
of the highest points of the _Mittelgebirge_. At the village of
Wellemin you leave the road for an obscure track across uneven slopes;
and here it was that, keeping too faithfully to the left, according to
direction, I lost the way.

I was trying back, when a fierce squall swept up from the west. The
sky grew dark, the rain fell in torrents, the mountain disappeared
shrouded in gloom, and from the woods that clothe its sides from base
to cope, tormented by the cold wind, there came a roar as of the sea
in a storm. I took shelter behind a thick-stemmed willow, and waited;
but twilight crept on before the growl ceased. There were paths enough
to choose from, too many, in fact, as there commonly are round the
base of minor hills; however, by dint of making way upwards, through
dripping copse and plashy glades, I came at last to a single track,
completely hidden by the woods.

It was part of a great spiral winding round the cone--now rising, now
falling, but reaching always a higher elevation. The clouds still hung
overhead; the sun had set, and under the trees I could see but a few
yards ahead. I stopped at times to listen for some companionable
sound, but heard only the heavy drip-drip from the leaves, and
melancholy sighs among the branches. A little higher, and there, in
the beds of moss around the roots, gleamed the tiny lanterns of swarms
of glowworms--more than ever I had seen before--and the way felt less
lonely with the pale green rays in view. Moreover, holding my watch
near one of the tiny lanterns, it was possible to see the
hour--half-past nine. Farther on I came to a little wagon standing in
a gap, and then the path became exceedingly steep and hard to climb,
and scarcely discernible in the increasing darkness. Steeper and
steeper grew the path, and with it the prospect of a bivouac, when the
trees thinned away, and a dark barrier stopped further advance. It was
a rough stone wall, along which I felt my way, and coming presently
to a door, kicked upon it vigorously. A dog barked. Footsteps
approached, and a man's voice asked:

"Who's there?"

"An Englishman."

"Good," replied the voice; and forthwith the bolt was shot, and the
door opened. A man, whom I could scarcely see in the darkness, took my
arm and led me down a short steep path, and round a corner into a
small gloomy room, dimly lighted by a single lamp. Presently he
brought another lamp, and then I saw that the seeming gloom was an
effect of colour only, for the low apartment was lined with dark brown
moss; a settee, thickly covered with the same production, ran from end
to end along each side; and overhead you saw, resting on unhewn
rafters, the rough underside of a mossy roof.

To find such a sylvan retreat, comfortably warmed, too, by a stove,
was an agreeable surprise. I stretched myself on the soft and springy
couch, while the man went away to get my supper. He soon returned with
a savoury cutlet and a pitcher of good beer; and while I enjoyed the
cheer with an appetite sharpened by exercise, he sat down to talk. The
place, he said, belonged to him. It comprised a group of huts, all
built of poles and moss, in which he had often lodged sixty guests at
once. There were a few sitting-rooms and many bedrooms, a garden, a
dancing-floor, an oratory, a poultry-yard, pigeon-house, and other
benevolent contrivances, as I should be able to see in the morning.
The wagon which I had seen at the foot of the steep belonged to him.
It was hard work for a horse to drag it up heavily laden; but harder
still to carry the stores from thence on one's shoulder to the summit.
He came up in May with his first load, and set to work to repair
roofs, walls, and fences, to renew the moss and dry the beds, and then
stayed till October busy with guests, who arrived by tens or twenties
every day, chiefly from Töplitz, about ten miles distant. The voices
we heard from time to time in an adjoining hut were those of a party
of four, who had come from the fashionable spa to see the sun set, and
had been disappointed by the storm. Perhaps sunrise would repay them.
They and I were, as it happened, the only guests this night, so the
host had time to talk without interruption.

Supper over, he went before me with a lantern through the cold night
wind to a hut some yards distant, where, with a friendly "_Gute
Nacht_," he left me. What a snug little mossy chamber! At one end two
beds--thick piles of moss with plenty of blankets, and sheets as clean
as pure water and mountain breezes can make them. At the other, two
washstands, a looking-glass, and little window. I had it all to
myself, and was soon sound asleep.


     Morning on the Milleschauer -- The Brightening Landscape --
     The Mossy Quarters by Daylight -- Delightful Down-hill Walk
     -- Lobositz again -- The Steam-boat -- Queer Passengers --
     Sprightly Music -- Romantic Scenery -- Hills and Cliffs --
     Schreckenstein -- How the Musicians paid their Fare --
     Aussig -- The Spürlingstein -- Fairer Landscapes -- Elbe
     versus Rhine -- Tetschen -- German Faces -- Women-Waders --
     The Schoolmaster -- Passport again -- Pretty Country --
     Signs of Industry -- Peasants' Diet -- Markersdorf --
     Rustic Cottages -- Gersdorf -- Meistersdorf -- School --
     Trying the Scholars -- Good Results -- A Byeway --

Sunrise! a bell rings loudly to waken the sleepers; and the host cries
"_Frisch auf!_" at the door of the hut. I was up as the first rays
from the great luminary streamed across the landscape. Not a cloud
dimmed the sky, and it was a grand sight to see the ruddy light kindle
on all the lower hill-tops, tremble on the tall clumps of forest, and
creep down the slopes, till field after field caught the beams, and
ponds glistened and windows twinkled. And anon the thin veil of mist
was lifted from the valleys, and farms and villages rejoiced in the
new-born day. Every moment the great panorama revealed more and more
of its features, and bits of cliff, and glenlike hollows, ruined
towers, and miles of road emerged from the obscure.

And while the light strengthened, there stretched towards the west the
mighty shadow of the mountain itself, eclipsing acres of the
landscape, which lay dim between the streaming radiance rushing to an
apex on either side. But the sun mounts apace, and the shadow grows
shorter continually.

The number of cone-like hills is remarkable, and here and there you
see one of those circular, flat-topped elevations bristling with dark
woods, which characterize much of Bohemian scenery along the Saxon
frontier. While gazing on the singular forms, you may imagine them to
be the crumbling remains of stupendous columns erected by giant hands
in the old primeval ages.

In the distance you see the Elbe, a long, pale stripe, resembling a
narrow lake, and you wish there were more of it, for the want of water
is a sensible defect in the view. The region is fruitful and well
peopled: had it a few large lakes besides, your eye would roam over it
with the greater pleasure. The expanse is wide. In very clear weather,
so mine host assured me, you can see Prague, and _Schneekoppe_ in the
_Riesengebirge_, each fifty miles distant.

To enable you to get the view all round clear of the trees a circular
wooden tower is built, from the platform of which you may gaze on far
and near. Immediately beneath you look down into the walled enclosure,
upon the huts, the flower-beds, the potato plot, the sheltering hazel
copse, and all the ins and outs of the place. You see mossy arbours
open to the south, and little nooks where you may recline at ease and
contemplate different points of the view.

I was glad after awhile to take refuge in one of these nooks, for the
wind blew so strong and keen that my teeth chattered as I walked round
the platform. However, there is steaming coffee ready to fortify you
against the influences which mar the poetry of sunrise.

The garden, sheltered by its wall and screen of hazel, teems with
flowers, a pleasing sight as you go and come in your explorations. I
surveyed the whole premises from the dairy to the dancing-floor; noted
the inscriptions here and there with which the owner seeks to
conciliate your good opinion; looked at his bazaar, where you may buy
_Recollections of the Milleschauer_, and so round to the little altar
under the bell. Here the inscription runs:

         Frisch auf!
       Zur Arbeit dran,
     Gott segne meine Plan:
       An Gottes Segen
       Ist Alles gelegen.

Two hours passed. I took a farewell view under the broad sunlight, and
then, having to meet a steamer at Lobositz, strode merrily down the
hill. What a pleasant walk that was! Once below the summit, among the
trees, and the temperature was that of a summer morning; and the woods
looked glorious, fringed with light reflected from millions of
raindrops--memorials of the former evening's storm, now become things
of beauty. Beech, birch, and hazel, intermingled with larch and fir,
robe the hill from base to cope, through which the path descends with
continued windings; an ever-shifting aisle, as it seems, overarched by
green leaves, among which you hear the gladsome chirp and warbling of
birds. All the breaks and hollows which appeared so grim and gloomy
the night before, the mouths of yawning caverns, now open as narrow
glades or twinkling bowers, in which a thousand lights dart and quiver
as the cheerful breeze sweeps through, caressing the leaves. Such a
walk favours cheerful meditation, and prepares your heart for cloudy
weather and dreary prospects; and in after days many a thought born
within the wood flits back on the memory.

It was like having been robbed of something to step out of the woods
upon the rough grassy slopes at the foot of the hill, and presently to
tramp along a hard, beaten road. However, there was the sight of the
lofty cone rising in its forest vesture high into the sunlight for
repayment; and the lively breeze ceased not to blow.

The ill-favoured clerk at Prague had refused to accredit me beyond
Lobositz, so here at nine o'clock I had to go to the _Bezirksamt_ for
another visa. Again did I request that the name of some place at the
foot of the mountains, or beyond the frontier, might be inserted; but
no! I was going a trip down the Elbe, with intention to disembark at
Tetschen, so for Tetschen the visa was made out, and the clerk, who
was very polite, wished me a pleasant journey.

I found a number of passengers waiting at the river side, reclining on
the grass or strolling among the trees. Presently came a large flat
boat and conveyed us all to an island, where, by the time we had
assembled on the rude landing stage, the steamer _Germania_ arrived
and took us on board; not without difficulty, for the deck was
literally choked with queer-looking people and rubbishy baggage. What
could such a company be travelling for? Wedged in among them sat a
party of wandering musicians, men and women, with harps, guitars,
fiddles, and flute: the space all too narrow for their movements.
However, as soon as the vessel resumed her course down the rapid
stream they began to play, and kept up a succession of airs that
seemed to convert the exhilarating motion, the breeze and the sunshine
into frolicsome music.

I got a seat on the top of a heap of bundles, with clear outlook above
the heads of the crowd. It was a delightful voyage, between scenes
growing more and more romantic at every bend of the river. Now we
shoot past scarped hills, split by narrow gullies dark with foliage,
from whence little brooks leap forth to the light; now past sheltered
coombs where rural homesteads nestle, and vines hang on the sunny
slopes; now past variegated cliffs, all ochre and gray, that come near
together, and compel the stream to swerve with boiling eddies and long
trains of impatient ripples; now past fields and meadows where the
retiring hills leave room for fruitful husbandry, and from far your
eye catches the speck of colour--the red or blue petticoats of the
women around the hay-wagons.

And along the road which skirts the shore there go men and women,
horses and vehicles, and there is always something strange to note in
costume and appearance. And close by runs the railway, its course
marked by the painted wicker balloons hanging aloft on the signal
posts, and the bright colour of the jutting rocks through which the
way is hewn, or by a train dashing past with echoing snort and tail of

The hills crowd closer and higher at every bend. Here and there rises
a cliff forming an imposing palisade of rock; then comes a wild mass
of crags backed by woods that screen a little red-roofed chapel
perched high aloft; then the tower of _Schreckenstein_ comes into
view, crowning a tall, gray buttress, which gives a finishing touch to
the picturesque.

My attention was diverted from the scenery by a leaf of music held out
by one of the musicians. Who could refuse a fee for such strains as
theirs? Kreutzer after kreutzer, a few small silver coins, and two or
three twopenny bank-notes were dropped into the receptacle, which was
presently emptied into the ready hands of the fluteplayer. He counted,
shook his head, and saying, "Not enough yet!" gave the signal for a
fresh burst. Now came forth music singularly wild and inspiriting--the
reserve, perhaps, for an emergency--and none within hearing could
resist its influence. Had there been room, every one would surely have
danced; as it was, eyes sparkled, heads wagged, and fingers snapped,
keeping time with the measure. There seemed something magical about
the leader, and I could not help fancying that her fiddle began to
speak before the bow had touched the strings. They speak wisely who
bid us go to Bohemia for music.

The leaf went round once more, and not in vain; but the fluteplayer
still shook his head, whereupon a song and a duet were sung; and then
the flute, brought to a conclusion with his cares, went to the little
crib by the paddle-box and bought tickets for the whole party.

Then Aussig came into sight, and I soon ceased to wonder whither the
queer-looking crowd were going. It was to Aussig fair. Bundle after
bundle was pulled so rapidly from the heap on which I reclined that I
was quickly brought down to the level of the deck, and a scramble and
hubbub arose easier to be imagined than described. The musicians made
haste to put the leathern covers on their instruments, and along with
her fiddle I saw that the leader buckled up a spare stay-bone and a
few miscellaneous articles of her toilet. The women carried the harps,
and the men huge knapsacks, stuffed with their wives' gear as well as
their own, and with a thick-soled boot staring out from either end.
Once at the landing, a few minutes sufficed to clear the deck, and no
sooner had the vagabonds departed than a boy came with a broom, and
all was presently made clean, as behoved in a vessel bound to Dresden.

Half an hour's stay gives you time to look at Aussig, to admire its
pleasing environment, its busy boat-builders, and gondola-like
pleasure-boats floating on the stream, and to commend the good quality
of its beer. Among the passengers who came on board were a party of
students, certain of them wearing gowns not larger than a
jacket--which, as some say, betoken learning in proportion.

Away we went again, and always with fairer landscapes to greet our
eyes. Past great high-prowed barges, towed slowly against the current
by horses; past small barges, towed still more slowly by a dozen or
twenty men. Past the _Spürlingstein_, and bastion-like cliffs, and
hollows, beyond which you catch sight of far-away peaks. Then a
village of timbered houses, the fronts showing broad lines of
chequer-work and quaint gables, and every house standing apart in its
own garden, among hills hung with woods to the water's edge; and rocks
peering out here and there from the shadow of the trees, shutting you
in all round as in a lake.

The sight of the varied features which open on you, increasing in
beauty at every bend, will suggest frequent comparison. Here among the
hills nature hems the Elbe in with loveliness, as if to prepare the
great river for its long, dreary course from Dresden to the sea. You
see not so many castles, but more variety than on the Rhine; more of
untamed scenery, and less of monotonous vine-slopes; and perhaps you
will incline to agree with those who hold that from Leitmeritz to
Pirna the Elbe excels the far-famed stream that flows past Cologne.

Beautiful is the view of Tetschen, backed by grand wooded hills; the
river, spanned by a chain-bridge, making a sudden bend; the castle
looking down on the stream from a forward cliff. Though topped by a
spire, the castle will inevitably remind you of a factory; and you
will be constrained to look away from it to the tunnelled cliff
through which the railway passes, and the noisy stream that tumbles in
on the opposite side.

It had just struck one when I landed. The passport office was shut for
two hours, that the functionaries might have time to dine--a
praiseworthy arrangement, though trying at times to a traveller's
patience. I dined at the _Golden Crown_, at one side of the great
square, and regaled myself with a flask of _Melniker_--a right
generous wine. The inn is the starting place for some twenty coaches
and vans, and, looking round on the numerous guests as they went and
came, it was easy to see you had left the Czechish for the German part
of the population--oval faces for round ones.

In the centre of the square stands a building, which, in appearance a
pedestal for a big statue, is a little chapel in which mass is said
twice a day. I spent a few minutes in looking at it, then strolled to
the castle garden and the bridge, from whence I saw carts backed axle
deep into the river to receive cotton bales from a barge, and women
loading a boat wading out above their knees with heavy sacks on their
shoulders. Then to the school--a sight that gave me real pleasure, so
spacious is the building, so numerous are the scholars, so earnest the
master in his work. His discourse was that of one who has found his
true vocation: he was seldom cast down, and felt persuaded that it was
a master's own fault if he had no joy in his scholars. After our few
brief words I thought the inscription at the door yet more

     Der Schule Saat reift für Zeit und Ewigkeit.[B]

At three o'clock I sought out the passport clerk, and found him not a
whit more willing to give a visa for the mountains, or a place over
the border, than his fellows elsewhere. He admitted the argument that
one of the pleasures of travel was an unrestricted choice or change of
route, but "could not" do more; so I looked at my map, and chose
Reichenberg as my next point of departure, and the official stamp and
signature were forthwith applied. But the gentleman discovered an
irregularity, and did not let me depart till it was rectified--that
the leaves containing the visas and the passport were separate sheets.
He fastened them together with a broad seal and a loop of black and
yellow thread, and then wished me a pleasant journey.

The wish was realized, for the route lies through a pretty country,
the most populous and industrious part of Bohemia. It is heavy uphill
work soon after leaving Tetschen, but the view from the top over the
valley of the Elbe repays the labour, and rivals that from the
_Milleschauer_. A little farther, and the prospect opens in the
opposite direction, across a great wave, as it seems, of cones,
ridges, scars, and rounded heights, sprinkled with spires and
hamlets--a cheerful scene that invites you onwards.

At every mile you see and hear more and more of the signs of industry.
Men pass you wheeling barrows laden with coloured glass rods--material
for beads and fragile toys, to be manufactured at home in their own
little cottages, keeping up the olden practice. Now you hear the hiss
and whiz of the polishing wheel; now the rattle of looms, and the
croak of stocking-weavers. And at times comes a man pushing before him
a great barrowful of bread--large, flat, brown loaves--on his way to
supply the off hamlets which have no bakery. And now and then old
women creep by, bending under a burden of firewood. Two whom I
overtook told me they walked three miles twice a week to fetch a
bundle of sticks from the forest; and when I asked if they ate meat or
cheese, answered with a "_Gott bewahr!_ never. Nothing but bread and

At Markersdorf I left the highway for a cross-road, leading through a
succession of hamlets, so close together that you can hardly tell
where one begins and the other ends. Now the signs of labour multiply,
and there is a ceaseless noise of the shuttle and polishing wheel. The
little houses have a very rustic appearance, built of squared logs
black with age, set off by stripes of white clay along all the joints,
and a stripe of green paint around the windows. There is variety in
their architecture: some imitate the Swiss style, with tall roofs and
outside galleries; some exhibit dumpy gables and arched timbers along
the lower story; and pretty they look in the midst of their
poppy-strewn gardens and embowering orchards, watered by little
brooks, which here and there set little mills a-clacking.

Not a hamlet without its school; and you will see with pleasure how
the importance of the school is recognised. Over the door of one at
Gersdorf I read:

     Den Kleinen will die Schule frommen
     O laß sie alle, alle kommen.[C]

At Meistersdorf, a furlong or two farther, on a little hill that
overlooks miles of country, the school-house is one of the best
buildings in the place. And here again a rhyming couplet, embodying a
benevolent sentiment, crosses the lintel:

     Kommt hier zu mir ihr Kleinen, O kommt mit frommen Sinn
     Ich führ den Weg des Heiles euch zu dem Vater hin.[D]

And the children really are taught. Scarcely a day passed that I did
not stop boys and girls on the highway, and get them to talk about
their school and what they learned. Not one did I meet above the age
of eight who could not read and write, and do a little arithmetic, or
recite the multiplication table, as I fully ascertained by sitting
down on the bank and playing the schoolmaster--not a frowning
one--myself. They answered readily, and wrote words on a scrap of
paper, and seemed pleased to show off what they knew, and still more
pleased at finding a kreutzer in their hand when the questions ended.
In many of the schools the pupils may learn mathematics if they will,
and drawing is taught in all. To this early acquaintance with the
rules of art the Bohemian glass engravers are indebted for a resource
that enables them to make the most of their skill and ingenuity. The
school fees are from one penny to twopence a week.

A short distance beyond the school I left the village road for a rough
byeway across fields, and after a walk of five hours from Tetschen
came to a row of wooden cottages, or farmsteads, as they might be
called, each standing apart in its own ground, flanked by sheds, and
fortified by a dungheap close to the door. Were it not for overhanging
trees and garden plots they would wear a shabby look.

Ulrichsthal was my destination; but here was no valley, only a slope.
However, on inquiring at the last but one in the row of cottages, I
found that I was really in Ulrichsthal, and at the very door I wanted.


[B] The school's seed ripens for time and eternity.

[C] The school will profit the little ones,
    O! let them all, all come.

[D] Come here to me ye little ones, oh, come with pious mind!
    I lead you on the way of salvation to the Father.


     A Hospitable Reception -- A Rustic Household -- The
     Mother's Talk -- Pressing Invitations -- A Docile Visitor
     -- The Family Room -- Trophies of Industry -- Overheating
     -- A Walk in Ulrichsthal -- A Glass Polisher and his Family
     -- His Notions -- A Glass Engraver -- His Skill and
     Ingenuity -- His Earnings -- A Bohemian's Opinion on
     English Singing -- Military Service -- Beetle Pictures --
     Glass-making in Bohemia -- An Englishman's Forget-me-Not --
     The Dinner -- Dessert on the Hill -- An Hour with the
     Haymakers -- Magical Kreutzers -- An Evening at the
     Wirthshaus -- Singing and Poetry -- A Moonlight Walk -- The
     Lovers' Test.

I once promised a Bohemian glass engraver, who showed me specimens of
his skill under the murky sky of ugly Birmingham, that when the
favourable time came I would find out his native place, and have a
talk with his kinsfolk. The favourable time had come in all ways, for
no sooner did I make myself known to the old man who was summoned to
the door, than he took my hand and said, "Be welcome to my house."
Suiting action to word, he led me into a large, low room, hot as an
oven, where his wife and daughters and a sweetheart sat chatting away
the dusk. At first they were somewhat shy; but when I brought out a
little letter from the son in England, and the eldest daughter, having
lit a candle, read it aloud, the mother, overjoyed at hearing news
from "our Wilhelm," sprang up, gave me a kiss, and cried, "Only
think, an Englishman is come to see us!" Here was an end to the
shyness; and having shaken hands with all the lasses and the
sweetheart, I became as one of the family.

Of course I would stay all night; they could not think of letting me
go to seek quarters at the public-house, unless, indeed, their own
rustic entertainment would make me uncomfortable; and the entreaties
were accompanied by preparations for supper. Who could resist such
hearty hospitality? Not I; and forthwith an understanding prevailed
that whatever pleased them best would please me best; excepting, that
I should have leave to open one of the casements and sit close to it,
for to me the temperature of the room was unbearable. Besides the heat
from the stove, there was an odour of kine from the cowstall, which
forms one half of the house, separated from the living room only by a

We had merry talk while I ate my supper of eggs, coffee, and bread and
butter. "Our Wilhelm" was, however, the mother's favourite topic, and
she returned to it again and again. She must tell me, too, of her
other sons, one in America, another at Pesth; and how that one night
they were all awoke by a loud knocking at the door, and a voice
begging for a night's lodging. How that the stranger would not go
away, but continued to knock and beseech, until all at once the mother
recognised a tone, and cried, "Father, father, open the door! That's
our David's voice. Our David, come home to see us, all the way from
Hungary!" And then the joyful meeting that followed! Her eyes
glistened with tears as she told me this.

There were two beds in a little slip of a chamber opening from the
principal room, of which the one nearest the window was given up to
me, as I again had to stipulate for an open casement; and the more so,
as notwithstanding the heat, I was expected to bury myself between two
feather-beds, as the custom of the country is; the other was occupied
by the old man. As for mother and daughters, they retreated to some
place overhead, which must have been very like a loft.

Had I slept well? was the question next morning; and this being
answered in the affirmative, the family resolved by acclamation that I
should stay with them a fortnight at least, nor would they at first
believe that I could only spare them a single day. Could not an
Englishman do anything? What mattered it if I returned to London a
week sooner or later? The theatre at Steinschönau would be opened on
Sunday, and it would be such a nice walk to go and see the play. Why
should I be in a hurry to reach the mountains? Would it not be the
same if I went to the top of all the hills around Ulrichsthal?

So said the daughters, with much more of the like purport, and to
resist persuasions backed by bright eyes, good looks, and blithesome
voices, was a hard trial for my philosophy. However, I kept my
resolution even when the mother rounded up with, "Only a day! that's
not long enough to taste all my cookery." The good soul had risen
early to make fresh _Semmel_ for breakfast.

To pacify them, I promised to eat as much as ever I could, and to let
them do whatever they liked with me during the day. Thereupon two of
the damsels put on their broad-brimmed straw hats, shouldered their
rakes, and betook themselves to the hay-field; the youngest, a lassie
of fifteen, apprenticed to a glass engraver, said, "_Leb' wohl_," and
went away to her work; the old man, privileged to be idle through age
and infirmity, crept forth to find a sunshiny bit of grass on which to
have a snooze; the mother began to bustle with pot and pan about the
stove; and the eldest daughter, having put on her hat and a pink
scarf, claimed the right to show me all that was worth seeing in

We began with the room itself. Its furniture was simple enough: wooden
walls and ceiling; an uncomfortable wooden seat fixed to the wall
along two sides; a table and a few wooden chairs; and the old man's
polishing-bench, a fixture in one corner. The treadle and crank were
still in place, but motionless; half a dozen wheels and sundry tools
hung on the wall, memorials of the veteran's forty years of industry,
and the bench did duty as dresser and bookshelf. Among the books were
_Schiller's Werken_, in sixteen volumes, belonging to "our Wilhelm."
With that simple machinery, hoarsely whirring day after day all
through the prime of his manhood, had he gained wherewith to buy his
two plots of land, and the comfort of repose in declining age. Here,
in this overheated room, at once workshop, kitchen, and parlour, had
been reared those four comely daughters, and the tall son whom I had
met in England; all strong and hearty, in spite of high temperature
and certain noxious influences arising out of a want of proper decency
in the household economy. "We are used to it," was the answer, when I
expressed my surprise that they could bear to live familiar with
things offensive, and yet fearful of a passing breath from spring and
summer. But this want of perception is not confined to Ulrichsthal;
you cannot help noticing it in many, if not in most, Bohemian
villages, and on the Silesian side of the mountains.

But the damsel is impatient. We set off towards a row of houses on a
higher part of the slope. Each has its long and narrow piece of land,
an orchard immediately behind the house; then patches of wheat,
barley, poppies, beetroot, grass, and potatoes, cultivated, with few
exceptions, by the several families. But labourers can be hired when
wanted, who are willing to work for one or two florins a week.

We went into one of the houses. There sat a family grinding and
polishing glass, alternating field-work by a day at the treadles. The
operations were not new to me, but there was novelty to see them
carried on in such a homely way; to see elegant vases, dishes,
goblets, and jugs, fit ornaments for a palace, in the hands of
rustics, or lying about on a rough pine shelf. The father, a tall,
pale-faced man, with a somewhat careworn expression, stopped the noise
of the wheels as soon as he heard of a visitor from London, and talked
about that which he understood best--his business. Full thirty years
had he sat at the bench, training up his children to the work one
after another, but had not realized all the benefits he once hoped
for. The brittle ware came to him in boxes from Prague, forty-five
miles, and, when polished, was sent back in the same way; he having to
bear the loss of whatever was broken while in his hands. "Look here,"
he said, showing me a large handsome jug; "my daughter spent a whole
month over that jug, and then, as you see, broke the handle off. So I
must keep it, and lose fifteen florins." To him it was useless: he
could only place it apart with other crippled specimens--memorials of
misfortune. "Ah! if glass would not break, then he would not be poor.
However," he added, "we always get bread. God be thanked! And our bit
of land helps." Cutters and polishers earn about four florins a week.
He thought it good that young men got away to England, for they not
only earned great wages, but escaped the remorseless military service.
"A young man is not safe here: perhaps he works for twelve, eighteen
months, and thinks he will be left quiet for the rest of his term,
when all at once comes a sharp order, and he must away to Italy for a
year or two."

Then he set his treadle going, to show me that in Bohemia the polisher
holds his glass against the bottom of the wheel, and, consequently,
has the work always under his eye; while, in England, he holds it
against the top of the wheel, and must be always turning it over to
look at the surface.

Higher up the slope we came to another house, where, instead of the
harsh sound of grinding, we heard but a faint, busy hum. A change came
over Röschen's manner as she entered, and saw a young man sitting at a
lathe; and their greeting, when he looked round, was after the manner
of lovers before a witness. On being told that I had come to see glass
engraving, the young man plied his wheel briskly, and, taking up a
ruby tazza, in a few minutes there stood a deer with branching antlers
on a rough hillock in its centre--a pure white intaglio set in the
red. I had never before seen the process, and was surprised by its
simplicity. All those landscapes, hunting-scenes, pastoral groups, and
whatever else which appear as exquisite carvings in the glass, are
produced by a few tiny copper wheels, or disks. The engraver sits at
a small lathe against a window, with a little rack before him,
containing about a score of the copper disks, varying in size from the
diameter of a halfpenny down to its thickness, all mounted on
spindles, and sharpened on the edge. He paints a rough outline of the
design on the surface of the glass, and, selecting the disk that suits
best, he touches the edge with a drop of oil, inserts it in the
mandril, sets it spinning, and, holding the glass against it from
below, the little wheel eats its way in with astonishing rapidity. The
glass, held lightly in the hands, is shifted about continually, till
all the greater parts of the figure are worked out; then, for the
lesser parts, a smaller disk is used, and at last the finest touches,
such as blades of grass, the tips of antlers, eyebrows, and so forth,
are put in with the smallest. Every minute he holds the glass up
between his eye and the light, watching the development of the design;
now making a broad excavation, now changing the disk every ten
seconds, and giving touches so slight and rapid that the unpractised
eye can scarcely follow them; and in this way he produces effects of
foreshortening, of roundness, and light and shade, which, to an
eye-witness, appear little less than wonderful.

The work in hand happened to be _tazzi_, and in less than half an hour
I saw deer in various positions roughed out on six of them, and three
completely finished. Then the engraver fetched other specimens of his
skill from up-stairs--a dish with a historical piece in the centre,
and vignettes round the rim--a bowl engirdled by sylvan scenes, where
fauns and satyrs, jolly old Pan and bacchanals, laughed out upon you
from forest bowers and mazy vineyards--all, even to the twinkling
eyes, the untrimmed beards, and delicate tendrils, wrought out by the
copper wheels.

The merchants at Prague took care that he should never lack work, and,
according to the quality, he could earn from four to eight florins a
week, and save money. Beef cost him 11 kreutzers the pound, veal 10,
and salt 6 kreutzers. His bread was home-made. The lathe was his own:
it cost forty florins; and the house, and the long strip of ground
that sloped away behind, half hidden by the orchard. He did no
field-work, but left that to his mother, who lived with him, and hired
labourers. "It goes better in the house where a woman is," he said,
with a glance at Röschen.

The cleanliness and order of his own room--workshop though it
was--justified his words. And though old habit would not yet permit
him to sit with open door and window, he did not aggravate summer-heat
by stove-heat, but had a cooking-place in an outer shed. His house had
four rooms, of which two up-stairs, and a loft--all built of wood. The
floor of the room above formed the ceiling, all the joints covered by
a straight sapling split down the middle, resting on joists big and
strong enough to carry a town-hall. Between these massive timbers hung
pictures of saints, a drawing of trees, and a guitar. The engraver
could play and sing, and recreated himself with music in the evenings,
and on Sundays.

He had heard that the English were fond of music, and thought there
must be plenty of good singing among the working-people; and it
surprised him not a little to be told that the Islanders' love for
sweet sounds went far--far beyond their power of producing them.
"Ah!" interrupted Röschen, "my brother writes that there is no music
in his English workmates' singing."

The engraver thought it a great privation, and could not well
comprehend how the evenings could pass agreeably without a little
music at home. "And when you are away from home," he went on, "it
seems still better. Like all the young men here, I have been a
soldier, have marched to Bucharest, to Pesth, to Trent, and Innsbruck,
and what should we do on those long marches, and in dull quarters, if
we could not sing?"

Concerning the military service, he thought it a hardship to be
obliged to serve, whether or no, but compensated by advantages. It
added to a young man's knowledge and experience to march to distant
lands, to see strange scenes, and strange people. You could always
tell the difference between one who had travelled, even as a soldier,
and a stay-at-home; the one had something to talk about, the other had
nothing. Then, the pleasure of coming home again--a pleasure so sweet,
that the thought of marching forth once more could hardly embitter it.
For his part, he had been at home eighteen months, glad to resume his
craft, and for the present saw no prospect of a call to arms. But
there remained yet one year of his term unexpired, and he was liable
at any moment to get an order requiring him to leave everything, and
march. "Who can tell," he said, "how hard it is to go away so
suddenly, to leave the little home, and all friends? Right glad shall
I be when the year is over."

Röschen looked as if she would be glad too, and, to make me aware of
all the young man's cleverness, she took down the frame of trees from
the wall and put it in my hands. I then saw that what looked like a
coloured drawing was a picture made of insects. The engraver had a
taste for natural history, and with a collection of beetles of all
sizes, black, brown, green, gold, and sapphire, had constructed the
group of trees which, when looked at from the middle of the room,
showed as a highly-finished drawing. You saw here and there a withered
branch shooting from the foliage--it was nothing but the horns and
legs ingeniously placed, and those deep hollows in the trunks, places
where owls may haunt, are produced by an artful arrangement of wings.

Then Röschen would have him fetch down his trays of moths and
portfolio of drawings. The moths had all been collected in walks about
the neighbourhood, and were carefully preserved and labelled. The
drawings showed the hand of an artist. The engraver had begun to learn
to draw in school at the age of eleven, and had practised ever since,
for without good drawing one could not engrave glass. He spoke of
Röschen's youngest sister as a real genius, who would one day outstrip
all the engravers in Ulrichsthal.

Bohemia was the first to rival, and soon to excel, Venice in the art
of glass-making. In her vast forests she found exhaustless stores of
fuel and potash, and quartz and lime in her rocks, and produced a
white glass which won universal admiration until about the beginning
of last century, when English manufacturers discovered the process for
making flint-glass with oxyde of lead as an ingredient. There was
nothing superior to this glass, so it has been said, but the diamond,
and the Bohemians, finding their craft in danger, introduced coloured
glass, frosted glass, and pleasing styles of ornament. This practice
they have since kept up. Their works are mostly situate in the great
forests on the Bavarian frontier, where fuel and labour are alike
cheap: the managers are well taught, and have a good knowledge of
chemistry, and by striving always after something new, reproducing at
times long-forgotten Venice patterns, they have achieved a reputation
due more to the taste and elegance displayed in the forms of their
manufactures than to their quality. From the rude forest villages the
articles are sent all across the kingdom to the northern districts,
where, as we have seen, the finishing touches that are to fit them for
stately halls and drawing-rooms, are applied by the hands of humble

We were about to leave, when the engraver asked if I would not like to
try my hand at the lathe, and, without waiting for an answer, he
brought out a small, plain beaker of thick glass, and begged me to cut
a forget-me-not upon it as a memorial of my visit. The process looked
so easy, that I thought there would be no great risk in an attempt, so
I sat down, spread out my elbows to rest upon the cushions, put my
foot to the treadle, and the glass to the wheel. Whiz--skirr-r-r-r,
and there was a fine white blur which, by a stretch of fancy, might
have been taken for a cloud. Karl--as Röschen called him--took the
beaker, and, leaning across me as I sat, speedily converted the blur
into a rose, and bade me try again. I presented the opposite side, and
this time with better effect, for the result was a very passable
forget-me-not. I have seen many a worse on _A Trifle from Margate_.

Röschen then said something about meeting in the evening, and we made
haste home, for it was dinner-time. Immediately on arrival she
proceeded to roll out a small piece of dry brown dough into a thin
sheet, which she cut into strips, and these strips, laid three or four
together, and shredded down very thin, produced an imitation of
vermicelli, which was thrown into the soup.

Now all was ready, and a proud woman was the mother as the soup was
followed by two kinds of meat, stewed and roast--salad, potatoes, and
a cool, slightly acid preserve, made from forest berries. And for
drink there was pale beer from the _Wirthshaus_. She did not fail to
remind me of my promise to "eat a plenty."

Nor, after we had sipped our coffee, did Röschen fail to remind me of
my morning's surrender, and pointing to the high hill-top, about two
miles off, she said, "I mean to take you up there." So, as my docility
remained unimpaired, we braved the hot sun, and had a very pretty walk
over broken ground, and down into a bosky valley, watered by a noisy
brook, before we reached the hill-foot. Then flowery meads, and
presently the shadow of a forest, where we regaled ourselves with a
second dessert of juicy bilberries and wild strawberries, both growing
in profusion. From a little clearing, not far from the top, we saw
heaving darkly against the blue, the hills of the Saxon Switzerland.
The last bit was steep and pathless; but at length we came out upon a
little hollow platform, the summit of a precipice, from which, the
trees diverging and sinking on either hand, there was a grand view
over the vale we had left, and far away, over field and hamlet, meadow
and coppice, to a wavy line of hills, gray, purple, green, and brown,
blended on the horizon. We sat for an hour; and after scanning the
principal features Röschen pointed out the details, naming every house
and field within a great sweep. Each man's little property lay
distinctly mapped out, and we could see the neighbours and her sisters
working in the sunshine.

Our way back led us across the hay-field, where the lasses were
bustling to finish in time for some evening's diversion, the nature of
which was a secret. I proposed to help them, threw off my coat, seized
a fork, and flung the hay up to the lass in the wagon quicker than she
could trim it. Röschen took a rake, and had enough to do in gathering
up the heaps which, pitching too vigorously, I sent clean over the
wagon. All at once, as I was stooping, down came a mountain on my
back, and the three lasses, taking advantage of my fall, came piling
heap on heap above me--Pelion upon Ossa--till I was well-nigh
smothered, and they went almost wild with laughter. They sat down to
recover themselves; but when they saw me, after laborious thrust and
heave, come creeping ingloriously out, their jocund mirth broke out
again, and provoked me into a spirit of retaliation.

     "As bees flee hame wi' lades o' treasure,
     The minutes wing'd their way wi' pleasure."

Then we fell to work once more, and when the wagon was laden I showed
to the ragged urchin who was hired to drive, three of the lumbering
old copper coins, bigger than penny-pieces, which pass for kreutzers
in the neighbourhood, and at sight thereof he made the old horse drag
the load home and come back for another in less time than horse had
ever accomplished the task in Ulrichsthal. The second load was the
last: by the time it was all pitched up our shadows grew long, and we
followed it up to the house, where the mother had coffee and _Semmel_
ready for us.

Now Röschen, reminding me once more of my promise to be tractable,
revealed the secret. Karl was coming down, and Gottfried--the
sweetheart I had seen the night before--and perhaps another, and then
we were all to go to the _Wirthshaus_, about half an hour's walk.
Presently the young men came in, and the lasses having changed their
rustic garb for holiday gowns and dangling gold ear-drops, we walked
in procession across fields to the rendezvous. A shout of welcome
greeted our arrival from the young fellows already assembled--the
Londoner was duly introduced, and treated by the host with especial
favour, and we all sat down to a table, every man with his tankard of
beer. The cup circulated literally, the custom being that everybody
should drink from everybody's tankard. The lasses took their turn,
though modestly and with discretion, as became them. The talk crackled
merrily for awhile, and when it flagged a small tray bearing a set of
little ninepins which were to be knocked down by a teetotum was placed
on the table. The pins were so contrived that they could be all
erected at once by pulling a string at one end of the tray, and the
game went round not less briskly than the tankards, shouts of laughter
repaying him who set the teetotum a-spinning without molestation to
the pins. Then I proposed a song, and Karl charmed all ears with a
musical ditty: another followed with a harmonious ballad, which had a
chorus for burden, and as the tuneful harmony filled the room I could
not help contrasting it with what would have been heard in a similar
rustic alehouse in England. The ballad led to a talk about poetry, and
one and another recited stanzas of favourite poems, and all seemed
familiar with the best authors, drawing illustrations from Bürger's
_Lenore_, Schiller's _Song of the Bell_, Goethe's _Erl King_, and one
or two ventured upon the _Niebelungenlied_.

The moon was high in heaven when we broke up, and gently the night
wind swept across the fields laden with the freshness of dew. As we
walked along the narrow paths Gottfried had to undergo a test: his
maiden plucked a large ox-eye daisy, pulled the petals off one by one,
keeping time with a few spoken surmises[E]:

     "_Du liebst mich vom Herzen,
                   mit Schmerzen,
                       ein Wenig,
                 oder gar nicht._"

The last petal came off with _vom Herzen_, but yet the inquirer was
not quite content. It was all very well to be loved _from the heart_;
but _with pain_ or _grief_ would have been much better. Then nothing
would do but Röschen must try the experiment on me, and reciting and
plucking she went round the frail circlet, and ended with _gar nicht_.
She looked curiously at Karl, and Karl looked as if he were not by
any means dissatisfied that she had got _not at all_ for a

It was past twelve when we came to our door, and then "farewell" had
to be said, and "adieu till to-morrow;" and so ended for me a day of
rural life that I shall long remember.

If, reader, you should ever pay a visit of inquiry to the
Ulrichsthalers, I feel assured they will tell you that next to
themselves the best fellow in the world is an Englishman.


[E]  Thou lovest me from the heart:
                         with pain:
                          a little;
                     or not at all.


     More Hospitality -- Farewells -- Cross Country Walk --
     Steinschönau -- The Playbill -- Hayda -- All Glass-workers
     -- Away for the Mountains -- Zwickau -- Gabel --
     Weisskirchen -- A Peasant's Prayer -- Reichenberg --
     Passport again -- Jeschkenpeak -- Reinowitz -- Schlag --
     Neudorf -- A Talk at Grünheid -- Bad Sample of Lancashire
     -- Tannwald -- Curious Rocks -- Spinneries -- Populousness
     -- Przichowitz -- An Altercation -- Heavy Odds -- The
     Englishman Wins -- A Word to the Company.

Fresh _Semmel_ for breakfast again the next morning, and renewed
entreaties for my stay. I could only reply by putting on my knapsack.
The old man grieved that infirmity prevented his showing me the
shortest way to Hayda, some ten miles distant, where I should strike
the main road. "But," he said, "Röschen knows the way, and she will be
glad to go. I can trust her with you, for you are an Englishman."

I felt bound to thank him for his compliment to my nationality, and
not less for the unexpected pleasure of his daughter's company.
Röschen went to put on her round hat, and then the mother said she
would like to go too, "just a little half-hour," and tied on her
kerchief. Then I had to give a kiss to the rest of the family--barring
the old man--and with cordial hand-grip and many a good-bye I stepped
from beneath the hospitable roof.

The day was as bright and breezy as heart could wish, and it was
delightful walking in and out, choosing the short cuts across the
fields. The "little half-hour" brought us to a great cross by the
wayside, where the mother, who lamented all the way that I would not
let her carry my knapsack, gave me a hearty kiss, hoped I would soon
come again and stay a month, bade Röschen take care of me, and turned
away homewards with tears in her eyes.

I thought to myself, if my gracious masters--long may they live!--did
but grant me an uncircumscribed holiday, I would stay a month now. And
would I not, oh, worthy hearts! strive to repay your hospitality by
lessons to that young daughter of yours, who craves to learn English
as a hungry man for bread. I had no claim on you: you had never heard
of me, and yet you entertained me as if I had been your son. May the
love that befalls the cheerful giver dwell ever with you!

Röschen knew all the byepaths and little lanes running through belts
of copse, by which, with many a rise and fall among the hills, we took
our way, she all the time wondering at my pleasurable emotions at
sight of the picturesque cottages and pretty scenery. To her they were
nothing remarkable. By-and-by we saw Steinschönau on the left, where
the surrounding hamlets buy groceries, hardware, and napery, and
resort at times for a holiday. While skirting it we saw here and there
on a cottage wall bills of the next Sunday's play. It would be, so
states _Herr Direktor Feichtinger_, _In celebration of the highest
delighting occurrence of the birth of an Imperial Sproutling, with
festive Illumination. First, the Heart-elevating Austrian Folks-hymn:
then Hanns Sachs, Shoemaker and Poet, a_ _Drama in Four Acts._ And he
ends with a notification: _Price of Places as always. But to
Generosity no Limit will be set._ Röschen promised herself much
pleasure from a sight of the play.

Hayda, though a small town, is a place of much importance in the glass
trade. You hear the noise of wheels in every house. "None but
glass-workers here," said the landlord of the inn where we dined. The
repast over, I said good-bye to Röschen, vexed with myself for having
occasioned her so long a walk, and taking the road which I had left at
Markersdorf, stepped out for the _Riesengebirge_--distant a three
days' tramp. The country between teems with manufactures and
population--a cheerful country, hill and dale, grain, flax, and
fruit-trees, and the people for the most part good-looking. Their
faces are round, but not flat, and seemed to me to combine some of the
best points of the German and Czech.

You see dye-works and hear looms at Zwickau--not the Saxon town we
explored a fortnight ago, but a dull place, with a great dull square;
the wooden houses dingy, the brick houses rough and ragged. Beyond, we
pass strange-looking rocks and short ranges of cliffs, the castle and
grounds owned by Count Clam Gallas, and so to Gabel, a town which
bears a _fork_ in its coat-of-arms; and is burdened with recollections
of disasters from fire and sword. It has of course a great square, in
the centre of which stands a tall column, surmounted by a figure of
Christ looking towards the domed church. Its aspect is cheerful,
notwithstanding that the old wooden houses with projecting gables are
blackened by age.

Then the road becomes more hilly, and the distance appears
mountainous. We pass a singular mass of boulders--huge compressed
bladders turned to stone; and from time to time other strangely formed
rocks, betokening extraordinary geological phenomena, as if to prepare
us for what we shall see a few days hence at Adersbach.

By-and-by a deep glen, dark with firs above, green with birches below,
into which you descend by long zigzags. Here among the trees sat a
cuckoo, piping his name loud enough for all that passed to hear. It
was the second time I had heard the gladsome note in Bohemia: the
first was on the White Hill, while walking into Prague. Broad views,
bounded always by hills, open as you emerge from the last slope, and
there in a hollow lies the little village of Weisskirchen, where I
tarried for the night. The innkeeper calls his house the _Railway
Inn_, although there is no railway within half a day's walk, and in
matter of diet all he could offer was smoked sausage--which is my
abomination--and bread and butter.

On the way to Reichenberg next morning I saw a small, tasteful iron
crucifix, with a lamp, set up on a stone pedestal by the wayside, at
the cost, so runs the inscription, of _Gottfried Hermann, Bauer in
Rosenthal_; and underneath the devout peasant adds a prayer for the
solace of wayfarers:

     An dem Abend wie am Morgen,
     Unter Arbeit, unter Sorgen,
     In der Freude, in dem Schmerz,
     In der Einsamkeit und Stille,
     Lenk' O Christ, mit Dankesfülle
     Zu dem Kreuz, das fromme Herz![F]

At ten o'clock I came to Reichenberg: a town pleasantly situate on
hilly ground, and animated by many signs of industry. It is the
capital of the manufacturing region, and in importance ranks next to
Prague. In 1848 the German Bohemians, not relishing the dictatorial
tone of the Czechs in the metropolis and southern parts of the
kingdom, made it the seat of their Reform Committee, and held
meetings, in which speech, intoxicated by sudden, and, as it proved,
short-lifed freedom, mistook words for things, and, before the mistake
was discovered, lay once more fettered--faster than ever.

I found out the _Bezirksamt_ at the farther end of the town, and was
there told to go back to the middle, and get my passport signed at the
_Magistratur_. I had to wait while four others passed the desk. The
first, a portly gentleman, evidently of some consideration, was
dismissed in half a minute, and treated to a pinch of snuff by the
clerk. The second, a petty trader, was kept five minutes, and had to
tell why he wished to journey, and what he meant to do. The third, a
peasant, was only released after a cross-examination, as if he had
been a conspirator; and a rigorous scrutiny of his passport, which
occupied a quarter-hour. The fourth, a poor woman, as I have before
mentioned, was denied, and went away with tears in her eyes. Then came
my turn.

"Where are you going?"

I had always the same answer: "To the _Riesengebirge_."

But as no visa could be given for mere mountains, I named Landeshut, a
few miles beyond the frontier, telling the functionary at the same
time that I had no intention of visiting the town, and should in all
probability not go thither.

Apparently it mattered not, for the visa was made out and stamped.
This done, the clerk took my passport, and withdrew to an inner room.
His brother clerks in all the offices I had yet entered had done the
same. What did it mean? Is there a secret chamber where some highest
functionary sits with a black list before him, in which he must search
for suspected names? No one would tell me. After five minutes the
clerk returned, gave me back my passport, but, less courteous than his
fellows, did not wish me a pleasant journey.

I dined at the _Rothen Adler_; strolled through the market-place and
the arcades of the old houses on either side, noting the ways of the
crowd who were buying and selling meal, fruit, and vegetables. Groups
of countrywomen were passing in and out of the church at the upper
end; and countrymen arrived with trains of bullock-wagons--the
vehicles so disproportionately small when contrasted with the animals,
that you could not look at them without laughing. However, they carry
away cotton bales and dyestuffs, of which you see good store in the
warehouses. You see piles of woollen cloth, too, and troops of
factory-girls going to dinner.

You will tarry awhile to admire the view from the hill beyond the
town, and will, perhaps, think the tall chimneys rising here and there
without the crowding roofs rather picturesque than otherwise. All
around is hill and dale; the graceful peak of the _Jeschken_, 3000
feet high, is in sight; and away to the north-east, inviting you on,
rise heaps of blue mountains. And as you proceed you descend every two
or three miles into a charming little valley, where you see little
factories, and stripes of linen stretched out to bleach on the grassy
slopes. So at Reinowitz; so at Schlag; so at Neudorf; so at
Morchenstern. At Grünheid, where I stayed for a half-hour's rest,
there was a noticeable appearance of cleanliness. The inn, inviting of
aspect, would have satisfied even a Dutchwoman. While drinking my
glass of beer I had a talk with the hostesses--two happy-looking
sisters, who presently told me they had a brother in England, at
Oldham, learning how to spin cotton and manage a factory. Did I know
Oldham?--had I ever been there?--could I tell them anything about
it?--and so forth. Having visited more than once that hard-working
town, I was enabled to gratify their curiosity. Then they told me of
an Englishman who was employed in a factory about a mile distant. He
had been there three years, yet his manners were so coarse and
disagreeable that no one liked him, although at first many would have
been his friends. He had learned but very little German, and that of
the worst kind, and was over fond of drinking too much beer. "He has
been trying for some time," they said, "to get a wife; but no woman
will have him. While good Bohemian husbands are to be had, who would
marry a bad Englishman? And so now he is going to fetch a wife from
his own country."

And then they asked, "Are all Englishmen such as he?"

Need I record my answer? It enlightened them as to the real value of
the sample they had described, and made them fully aware that I for
one did not regard Lancashire as England's model county.

More curious rocks as we drop down towards Tannwald--a place, as its
name indicates, of fir forests. It lies deep among hills, watered by a
stream brawling along a stony bed, and here and there you see the
weatherbeaten heads of huge boulders peering from among the trees. The
road makes short and frequent windings by the side of the stream; now
skirted by groves of mountain ash, and slopes red with clustering
loosestrife; now by feathery larches, green and graceful, contrasting
beautifully with the melancholy firs. Then you pass an enormous
spinnery, its thousand spindles driven by the dashing torrent; and
peeping between the plants and flowers with which nearly every window
is adorned, you see an army of girls within, busy at the machinery.
Another and another spinnery succeeds; the houses of the masters
appear aloft on pleasant sites, and signs of prosperous trade crowded
into the bend of a narrow valley. In one place you see a broad alley
through the firs to the top of the highest hill, cut at the masters'
cost for the recreation of the workpeople. Thickly-strewn cottages
betoken a numerous population. "I wish there were more factories,"
said the landlord of the _Goldene Krone_, "for we have people
enough--more than enough." Every year things got dearer, greatly to
the folks' surprise. Not many months ago a traveller has passed
through, who told them that things would never be cheap again; but no
one would believe him. Some of the best spinners could earn from five
to six florins a week: thriftiness, however, was a rare virtue, and to
earn the money easier than to save it. Perhaps mine host was the man
of all others in Tannwald best able to speak with knowledge on this
economical question.

If so minded, you can travel from Reichenberg to Tannwald by
_Stellwagen_; beyond, the road becomes more and more hilly, and
worsens off to a stony track broken with deep ruts. By taking a short
cut directly up the hill you may save a mile or more on the way to the
next village--Przichowitz; a name that looks unpronounceable. It is a
steep climb for about half an hour, provoking many a halt, during
which you enjoy the ever-widening view. From the expanse of hill and
dale to the numberless cottages all around you, each fronted by a
fenced flower-garden, and haunted by the noise of looms, you will find
ample occupation for the eye. And if you wish to observe domestic
labour competing with the factory-units with an organized
multitude--the opportunity is favourable.

Przichowitz stands on what appears to be the very top of the hill till
you see the wooded eminence, _Stephanshöh_, beyond. There are two
inns: the _Grünen Baum_, with a fourth share of a bedroom; the
_Gasthaus zur Stephanshöh_, somewhat Czechish in its appointments. I
quartered myself at the latter; and discovered two redeeming
points--good wine and excellent coffee.

At bedtime the landlord demanded my passport, with an intimation that
he should keep it in his possession all night. I demurred. He might
bring his book and enter my name if he would: as for giving up to him
a document so essential to locomotion anywhere within sight of the
black and yellow stripes, I saw no reason why I should, and therefore

"But you must."

"But I won't."

"The gendarme will come."

"Let him come. He will find at least one honest man under your roof."

The hostess came forward and put in her word: the company present, who
were topping-off their three hours' potation of _Einfach_ with a glass
of _Schnaps_, ceased their conversation, and put in theirs:

     "Wi' tippenny we fear nae evil,
     "Wi' usquebaugh we'll face the devil."

the _Kellnerinn_ waiting all the while with my bed-candle in her hand.
Every one, except the serving-maid, who held her peace, sided with the

I urged the same reply over and over again, that not having been asked
at any other _Wirthshaus_ to yield possession of my passport for a
night, I could not believe that any regulation to the contrary
prevailed for Przichowitz.

At length the company, as it appeared, having exhausted their
suggestions, the landlord fetched his book, and had dipped a pen into
the inkstand, when two soldiers, who were eating a supper of sausage,
brown bread and onions, at a table apart, beckoned him, and whispered
something in his ear.

The whisper revived his suspicions, and would have renewed the
altercation; but I took up my knapsack, asked what was to pay, and
declared for a moonlight walk to Rochlitz.

The demonstration made him pause: he opened the book, dipped the pen
once more into the inkstand, and looked wonderingly at my passport,
which I held open before him. He tried to spell it out; but in vain.
The pen went into the inkstand again; but to no purpose. He was
completely bothered; and at last, putting the pen in my hand, he said,
not now in a peremptory tone--"Will you enter your own name, if I let
you do it?"

It would have served him right had I refused, and left the task
entirely to him. However, not to be too hard upon him, I promised not
to inscribe Brown, Jones, or Robinson, and wrote what was required.

Then, looking round on the company, I said: "A pretty set of cowards
you are! Here are nine of ye, two of them soldiers, and you all take
the part of a suspicious landlord against one--and that one a
foreigner. No wonder you are all afraid of a gendarme; and submit to
ask leave when you want to go a day's journey. Try, in future, and
remember that honesty does not become rogue by travelling on foot.
Good night!"

"So, now it's settled," said the _Kellnerinn_, who still waited with
the candle in her hand; and she led the way up-stairs.

Before sleeping I repented of my speech; for what could be expected
from people who never attended a vestry meeting--never saw a general
election--never exercised the privilege of booting a candidate on the

And never had a _Times_ to publish their grievances.


[F]  In the evening as at morning,
     Under work, under cares,
     In joy, in sorrow,
     In solitude and silence,
     Lead, O Christ, with thankfulness
     To the Cross, the pious heart.


     Stephanshöh -- A Presumptuous Landlord -- Czechs again --
     Stewed Weavers -- Prompt Civilities -- The Iser -- A Quiet
     Vale -- Barrande's Opinion of the Czechs -- Rochlitz -- An
     offshoot from Tyre -- A Happy Landlord -- A Rustic Guide --
     Hill Paths -- The Grünstein -- Rübezahl's Rose Garden --
     Dreary Fells -- Source of the Elbe -- Solitude and Visitors
     -- The Elbfall -- Stony Slopes -- Strange Rocks --
     Rübezahl's Glove -- Knieholz -- Schneegruben -- View into
     Silesia -- Tremendous Cliffs -- Basalt in Granite -- The
     Landlord's Bazaar -- The Wandering Stone -- A Tragsessel --
     A Desolate Scene -- Rougher Walking -- Musical Surprises --
     Spindlerbaude -- The Mädelstein -- Great Pond and Little
     Pond -- The Mittagstein -- The Riesengrund -- The Last
     Zigzags -- An Inn in the Clouds.

Soon after six the next morning I was on the top of
_Stephanshöh_--about twenty minutes' walk from the inn--prepared to
enjoy the view: and did enjoy all that was not concealed by mist.
Every minute, too, as the heaving vapour melted away, so did the
landscape widen and rejoice in the sunbeams. We are here on the roots
of the _Riesengebirge_, and all around is a rolling country, rising
higher and higher towards the north. Because of the view the height is
famous throughout the neighbourhood; visitors come to it even from

While I was drinking my early cup of coffee, the landlord came
forward, made a bow, and expressed his hope to see me again some day.

"Hope not," I replied, "for besides plaguing folk about their
passport, you lodge them between dirty sheets over an unswept floor.
Good morning!"

Beware, reader, of Przichowitz!

The road winding along a hill-side leads you onwards high above the
valleys that open at every bend. After about an hour it narrows into a
footpath, which presently branches off into many paths down the steep
slope of a secluded vale. A woman of whom I asked the way shook her
head, and answered, "_Böhmisch_," and to my surprise I found myself
once more among the Czechs. A Sclavonic wedge, so to speak, here cuts
between the German-speaking population who inhabit the northern
border. With its base in the heart of the kingdom, it stretches away
to the Silesian frontier, traceable for the most part by the names of
numerous villages ending in _witz_.

I chose a path for myself which led down between patches of clover and
rye, beetroot and potatoes, through little orchards, under rows of
limes, to a house which, at a distance, had an imposing, spacious
appearance; deceitful till you come near. The ground stage is nothing
but a rough mass of masonry supporting that which is really the
house--a low wooden edifice, swarming with weavers, reared aloft,
probably, to keep it out of the way of floods. As I mounted the rude
steps in quest of information, a weaver opened a casement and put out
his head, letting out, at the same time, a rush of the depraved air in
which he and his mates were working. I asked the way.

He shook his head, and answered, "_Böhmisch_."

He did more. He started up from his loom, came actually forth into
the wholesome air, and ran to a cottage some distance off, making
signs to me to wait his return. He came presently back wearing a
triumphant look, accompanied by another weaver, who could speak German
enough to assure me that I was on the right track for Rochlitz, and
that the mountain stream flowing so merrily past was the Iser. Poor
men! they both had a pale, sodden look, which moved me to recommend
fresh air and open windows. But no: they shivered, and could not weave
when the windows were open.

A bright stream is the Iser, and plenteous of trout: a water such as
the angler loves, now brawling over shallows, now sleeping in
hazel-fringed pools. You will pause more than once while climbing the
hill beyond to scan the vale. All the greater slopes are broken up
with lesser undulations--wherein much is half seen, and
thickly-patched with wood; little cottages nestle everywhere among the
trees, the little chapel near the summit; and here and there on the
outskirts a dark ridge of firs reminds you of the melancholy miles of
forest beyond. Here, far from great roads, all breathes of calm and
content, all sights and sounds are rural; you hear the water babbling
to the whispering leaves, and might fancy yourself in the very home of
happiness. But

     "The statutes of the golden age,
       That lingered faint and long
     In sylvan rites of olden time,
       So dear to ancient song,
     The world hath trampled in its haste
       At Mammon's shrine to bow;
     And many a Tyre our steps may find,
       But no Arcadia now."

With the Iser the Czechs are left behind. While taking leave of the
oval-faced people, the opportunity seems fitting to bring forward a
few words of testimony concerning them, which may be weighed against
that mentioned in a former page. Barrande, the distinguished
geologist, says, in his _Silurian System of Bohemia_, that, in 1840,
he and his friends commenced a regular exploration of strata,
employing native labourers in different parts of the country, either
singly making new excavations, or in groups opening quarries. "These
labourers," he continues, "provided with the necessary tools, and
practically instructed by working with us for some time, soon acquired
the knowledge indispensable for distinguishing every organic
trace--the objects of our studies--at the first glance. In this
respect we have often had occasion to admire the intelligence of the
Bohemians (Czechs), even of those belonging to the humblest class.
Some among them employed in our researches during ten or twelve years
acquired a remarkable skill as seekers of fossils. They gather up and
put together the smallest fragments which belong to any specimen
broken in splitting the rock; they use a lens to discover the fugitive
traces of the minutest embryo, and they know very well how to
distinguish all rare or new forms in the district to which they are
attached. A sort of nomenclature, improvised by themselves out of the
Bohemian language, has served us to designate both the species and
formations in which they are found."

Thus, with his rustic Czechs, Mr. Barrande could carry on
investigations at a distance, while in his study at Prague he prepared
his truly great work for publication. One of the diggers brought in
the specimens once a week; and in this way were discovered fifteen
hundred species of what geologists call Silurian and Cambrian fossils,
the existence of which in Bohemia was before unknown.

It is not far to Rochlitz--perhaps a mile--but the vale is hidden ere
you arrive by the shoulder of the hill. Almost the first house is
_Gast und Einkehr Haus zur Linde_, and it has a living sign--a
beautiful linden-tree. Here cleanliness prevails, and the speech is
German; but the room is so hot from the scorching stove, that I prefer
to eat my second breakfast on the grass in the shadow of the lime, and
listen to the busy hum of countless bees among the branches. The room,
however, was a study--a sort of museum: racks overhead, three glass
closets, twenty-four pictures, a sofa, a score of daddy-longlegs
chairs, a guitar and fiddle, two beds in view besides one shut off by
a screen, and all the sundries common to a public-house. But for good
housewifery it would be hideous.

The landlord, a man of friendly speech, came out for a talk. From his
orchard we could look down into a charming dell: a sylvan retreat,
marred, alas! by an offshoot from Tyre. From among the trees there
rose the tall chimney and staring walls of a factory; and while we
talked, a dozen men went past, each wheeling a barrow-load of lime,
from a distance of two miles, for the building. Mine host felt glad at
the prospect of work for the people. "We have nine thousand
inhabitants in Rochlitz," he said; "'tis a great place. To walk
through it you must take three hours." And he pointed out a cliff
overlooking a valley where mining works had just been bought by a
Russian for two hundred thousand florins. "Yes, there would be work
enough for the people." Plenty of work at little wages. A weaver earns
one florin twenty-four kreutzers a week, and the happy few who achieve
two florins are regarded as rich by their neighbours: perhaps with
envy and admiration.

Then he pointed out his own ground, and his forest run reaching to the
very hill-top, all of which had cost him fifteen thousand florins; and
he turned to all quarters of the compass with the air of a man well
pleased with himself. "Those," he said, stretching his finger towards
a row of short, round, wooden columns with conical roofs--"those are
my beehives; come and look at them."

These hives are about four feet high, fixed clear of the ground by
stakes driven through the turf, and are constructed in compartments
one fitting above the other. The bees begin to work in the lowest,
and, when that is filled, ascend into the upper stories. One among
them seemed deserted.

"Let us see what's the matter," said the landlord; and he lifted off
the top story. Immediately there swarmed out thousands of earwigs.

"Huhu! that's not the sort of bees we want. Coobiddy, coobiddy!" And
judging from the lusty crow that followed it, chanticleer and his
seraglio must have had a satisfactory repast.

But _Schneekoppe_ was yet far off, and there was no time to be lost if
I wished to reach that Mont Blanc of German tourists before night. I
inclined to leave the rough-beaten track through the valleys for short
cuts across the hills, and asked the landlord about a guide. His
woodcutter, who was splitting logs close by, knew great part of the
way, and was ready to start there and then and carry my knapsack for a
florin. He put a piece of coarse brown bread into a bag, which he
lashed to one of the straps, and away we went.

"Good-bye!" said the landlord: "a month later and you would have had
company enough; for then students come in herds to see the mountains."

We struck at once up a grassy hill on the left, and could soon look
down on Rochlitz--houses scattered along either side of a narrow road
in a deep valley; and, far in the rear, on Hochstadt, a wee town of
great trade. Then we came to a _Jägerhaus_, and plunged into a pine
forest, walking for two or three miles along winding paths, paved with
roots, under a solemn shade where, here and there, sunny gleams sought
out the richest brown of the tall, straight stems, and the brightest
emerald among the patches of damp moss. At times we came to graceful
birches scattered among the firs, and their drooping branches and
silvery boles looked all the more beautiful amid companions so

We emerged on a bare, turfy slope, and came presently to a stony ridge
on the right--the _Grünstein_--so named from a large bright green
circle of lichen on the broken rocks which first catch your eye. A
little farther along the same ridge, and the guide points to a great
ring of stones on the slope as _Rübezahl's_ Rose-garden, and the name
makes you aware that here is the classic ground of gnomery. You
remember the German storybooks read long ago with delight, wonder, or
fear: the impish pranks, the tricks played upon knaves, the lumps of
gold that rewarded virtue; the marvellous world deep underground, and
all the weird romance.

You will perhaps think that imps had a right to be mischievous in such
a region. On the left opens a wild, dreary expanse of fells--the
coarse brown turf strewn with hassocks of coarser grass, and pale
lumps of quartz intermingled, and rushy patches of darker hue showing
where the ground is soft and swampy. It has a lifeless aspect,
increased by a few scattered bushes of _Knieholz_ that look like firs
which have stunted themselves in efforts to grow. Now and then an
Alpine lark twitters and flits past, as if impatient to escape from
the cheerless scene.

We crossed these fells, guided by an irregular line of posts planted
far apart. In places the ground quakes under your foot, and attempts
to cut off curves are baffled by treacherous sloughs. On you go for
nearly an hour, the view growing wilder, until, in the middle of a
spongy meadow, known as the _Naworer Wiese_, you see a spring bubbling
up in a circular basin. It is the source of the Elbe.

Here, 4380 feet above the sea-level, the solitude is complete. Here
you may lie on your back looking up at the idle clouds, and enjoy the
luxury of silence, for the prattle of the water disturbs it not. You
will think it no loss that nothing now remains of monuments which the
Archdukes Joseph and Rainer once erected here to commemorate their
visit: the lonely scene is better without them. There are monuments
not far off more to your mind. Towards the south rises the _Krkonosch
Berg_[G]--sometimes called the _Halsträger_--and _Kesselkoppe_
towards the west; great purple-shaded slopes of darkest green.

Not often during the summer will you find real solitude, as we did;
for the Germans come in throngs and sit around the little pool to
quaff the sparkling water, or pour libations of richer liquor. Is not
this the birthplace of the Elbe, the river that carries fatness to
many a broad league of their fatherland, and merchandise to its marts?
Many a merry picnic has _Krkonosch_ witnessed, and many a burst of
sentiment. Hither used to come in the holidays--perhaps he comes
still--a certain rector of a Silesian school with his scholars; and
after their frolics he would teach them that the life of a river was
but the symbol of their own life; and then, after each one had jumped
across the sprightly rivulet, he bade them remember when in after
years they should be students at Wittenberg, how they had once sprung
from bank to bank of the mighty stream. The Elbe has, however, two
sources: this the most visited. The other is ten miles distant on the
southern slope of _Schneekoppe_. They unite their waters in the

A stream is formed at once by the copious spring. We followed it down
the slope--

     "Infant of the weeping hills,
     Nursling of the springs and rills"--

to a rocky gulf, where it leaps a hundred feet into the precipitous
chasm, and chafes onwards in a succession of cascades far below,
gathering strength for its rush through the mountain barrier--the
Saxon Highlands--and its long, lazy course through the plains of
Northern Germany. Here a little shanty is erected, the tenants of
which dam the water, and let it loose for its plunge when tourists
arrive who are willing to pay a fee to see Nature improved on. But you
may scramble about the rocks and down to the noisy influx of the
_Pantsche Fall_ as long as you please, and peep over into the deep
gulf, without any payment.

Then up a steep stony acclivity to a higher elevation, another of the
great steps or terraces which compose the Bohemian side of the
mountains. From the top we should have seen _Schneekoppe_ himself, had
he not been hidden by clouds; however, we saw a mass of gray cumulus
behind which old Snowhead lurked, and that was something.

Rougher and rougher grows the way: more and more of the big boulders
lying as if showered down; and here and there singular piles of rock
appear. Some resemble woolsacks heaped one above another, and
flattened; some a pilastered wall, all splintered and cracked, sunken
at one end; some heathen tombs and imitations of Stonehenge; and some
animal forms hewn by rude people in the ancient days with but
indifferent success. On one, an experienced guide--which mine was
not--will show you the impression of a large hand, and tell you it is
_Rübezahl's_ glove.

The path makes many a jerk and twist among the rocks; at times through
a dense scrub of _Knieholz_--a dwarfish kind of fir, crooked as
rams'-horns, peculiar to these mountains, and, as travellers tell us,
to the Carpathians. To its abundant growth some of the hills owe their
dark green garment. Half an hour of such walking brought us in sight
of _Rübezahl's_ chancel--walls of rocks split into horizontal
layers--and strangely piled, as if by the hands of crazy Cyclopean
builders. A fearsome place in olden time; now a shelter to the
_Schneegrubenhaus_, where you will choose to rest and dine before
further exploration.

The house stands on the verge of a mighty precipice, from which you
have a wide view over the most beautiful and picturesque part of
Silesia. It was a glorious sight, miles of hill and dale, forest and
meadow stretching far away--yellow and green, and blue and
purple--touched here and there by flashing lights where the sun fell
on ponds and lakes; villages, seemingly numberless, basking in the
warmth of a July sun. The _Hirschbergerthal_, into which we shall
travel ere many days be over, lies outspread beneath as in a map;
Warmbrunn, with its baths in the midst, five hours distant, and yet
apparently so near that you fancy a musket-shot would break one of the
gleaming windows. Although, as some say, there is a want of water, you
will still think it a view worth climbing the _Riesengebirge_ to see.
"There is only one Silesia!" cried the Great Frederick, when he looked
down upon it from the _Landeshuter Kamm_.

Having feasted your eye with the remote, you will turn to look at the
two _Schneegruben_--greater and lesser snow-gulfs. To the right and
left the precipice is split by a frightful chasm a thousand feet deep,
between jagged perpendicular cliffs. Looking cautiously over the edge,
you scan the gloomy abyss where the sun never shines except for a
brief space in the early morn. You see a chaos of fallen blocks and
splinters, where the winter's snow, often unmelted by the summer
rains, forms miniature glaciers, from one of which the Kochel springs
to charm wondering eyes with its fall in the lowlands by Petersdorf.
You see how the jutting crags threaten to tumble; how the heaps far
below are overgrown by treacherous _Knieholz_, and form ridges which
dam the sullen waters of two or three small lakes. A patch of green, a
small meadow, smiles up at you from the lesser gulf; and it surprises
you somewhat to be told that a painstaking peasant makes hay there, by
stacking the grass on high poles, and carries it in winter when snow
enables him to use a sledge.

If sure of foot, you may scramble down the ridge and look at the
cliffs from below, and on the way at a remarkable geological
phenomenon. In the western declivity the ruddy granite is cut in two
by a stratum of basalt, which broadens as you descend, its surface cut
up by pale gray veins resembling a network. It is said to be the only
instance in Europe of basalt found at such a height, and in such
intimate neighbourhood with granite. It is laborious walking at the
base, and dangerous where vegetation screens the numerous crevices.
However, if you take pleasure in botany, there are rare plants to
repay the exploit; and if you care only for the romantic, to have been
frowned down upon by the tremendous cliffs will suffice you.

When you climb back to the summit the host will ask you to look at his
museum, and collection of knick-knacks for sale--memorials of the
_Schneegruben_. There are crystals, and specimens from the
neighbouring rocks, and carvings cut out of the _Knieholz_, an
excellent wood for the purpose. Among these latter are heads of
_Rübezahl_, with roguish look and bearded chin, to be used as
whistles, or terminations for mountain-staves. Or, if you desire it,
he will fire a small mortar to startle the echoes. You may, however,
rouse echoes for yourself by rolling big stones into the gulf; but
beware lest you meet the fate of Anton, the guide, who, in 1825, while
starting a lump of rock, lost his balance, fell over, and was dashed
to pieces against the crags.

Such cliffs are said to be characteristic of the _Riesengebirge_.
Another example of a _Schneegrube_ occurs near Agnetendorf, which is
six hundred feet deep. And close by it is the Wandering Stone, a huge
granite block of thirty tons' weight, which has moved three times
within memory, to the wonder of the neighbourhood. In 1810 it
travelled three hundred feet, in 1822 two hundred, and in 1848,
between the 18th and 19th of June, about twenty-five paces.

Another characteristic of these mountains, as I discovered, is that
when you have climbed up one of their great steps or terraces, you
have to make a deep descent on the farther side before coming to the
next, whereby the labour of the ascent is increased. On leaving the
_Schneegruben_, you traverse a level so thickly strewn with boulders
and rocky fragments that you fancy more would not lie, till, coming
presently to the descent, you find nothing but stone. In and out, rise
and fall; now a long stride that shakes you rudely; now a cheating
short step--such is the manner of your going down. Nothing but stone!
the track in many places scarcely visible though trodden for years.
You will think it a terrible stair before you have finished. Near the
foot we met a party going up, one a lady seated in a _Tragsessel_--a
sedan-chair without its case--carried by two men. Talk of
palanquin-bearers in Hindoostan! their work must be play compared
with that of these Silesian chair-carriers. I pitied them as they
toiled up the stony steep, hard to climb with free limbs, much more so
with such a burden; and yet they looked contented enough, though very
damp. We met three more chairs, each with its lady, in the course of
the next two hours.

Nothing has ever realized my idea of utter desolation so entirely as
the sight of that stony steep when I looked back on it from below. A
great rounded hill of stone, blocks on blocks up-piled to the summit,
sullen as despair, notwithstanding the greenish tinge of clinging
lichen. I wondered whether the accursed hills by the Dead Sea could
look more desolate.

Rough walking now, through straggling _Knieholz_; across stony ridges,
and past more of the uncouth piles of rock that look weird-like in the
slanting sunbeams. All at once you hear the noise of a hurdy-gurdy: a
surprise in so deserted a region, and you may fancy _Rübezahl_ at his
pranks again; but presently you see a beggar squatted in the bush,
whose practised ear having caught the sound of footsteps before you
came in sight, the squeak is set a-going to inspire charity. And now
these musical surprises will beset you every half-mile--flageolet,
tambourine, clarionet, or fiddle. Where do the musicians live? No
signs of a house are visible near their lurking-places.

We came to a _Baude_, a lonely farmstead, with a few fields around:
the dwelling roughly built of wood, without upper story. Many similar
buildings are scattered among the mountains--cause of thankfulness to
weary travellers, for the inmates are always ready with rustic fare
and lodging. Here the guide had to ask the way, having already come
farther than he knew. The path led us across swampy ground, where you
walk for a mile or two on stepping-stones through open fir woods,
always meeting some group of rocks. Another half-hour, and we emerged
into a little green vale, shut in by high steep hills and forest, the
_Spindlerbaude_ standing at the upper end. My guide being afraid to
venture farther, I released him, and engaged another; one in full
professional costume--tall boots, peaked hat, and embroidered
jacket--who undertook to go the remaining distance with me for twenty
kreutzers. While I drank a glass of beer, a man and woman made the
room ring again with harp and clarionet.

It was past six when we started, and betook ourselves at once to the
steep ridge behind the _Baude_. Once up, we saw _Schneekoppe_ rising
as a dark cone in the distance, and away to the right the
_Mädelstein_, so named from a shepherdess having been frozen to death
while sheltering under the rock from a snow-storm. On the Bohemian
side, towards the south, the view is confined; but northwards, over
Silesia, it spreads far as eye can reach, the nearer region in deep
shade, for the sun is dropping low. By-and-by we leave the broken
stony ground for the grassy ridge of the _Lahnberg_, where the path
skirts a cliff, which, curving round to the right and left, encloses
the _Grosser Teich_, a black lake, on which you look down from a
height of six hundred feet. The inky waters fill an oval basin about
twenty-four acres in extent and seventy-five feet deep, and remain
quite barren of fish, although attempts have been made to stock it
with trout. The superflux forms a stream named the Great Lomnitz.

From hence more rock-masses are in sight: the _Mittagstein_, so named
because the sun stands directly over it at mid-day, a sign to the
haymakers and turf-diggers; the _Dreisteine_, fifty feet high,
resembling the ruin of a castle, split into three by a lightning
stroke a hundred years ago; the _Katzenschloss_ (Cat's Castle) and
others, which the guide will tell you owe their names to _Rübezahl_.

We cross the _Teichfelder_ and look down on the Little Pond: a lively
sheet of water, for the surface is rippled by a waterfall that leaps
down the precipice, and beneath trout are numerous as angler can
desire. You will notice something crater-like in the form of the
cliffs of both ponds: no traces of lava are, however, to be

We passed the Devil's Gulf, through which flows the Silver Water, and
came to more rough ground, and scrub, and lurking bagpipers. The veil
of twilight was drawn over Silesia, and the peaks and ridges on the
right loomed large and hazy against the darkening sky. We came to the
_Riesenbaude_ on the edge of the _Riesengrund_ (Giant's Gulf), from
which uprears a steeper slope than any we had yet encountered.

It is incredibly steep, the path making short zigzags, as on the
Gemmi, fenced by a low wall. On either side you see nothing but loose
slabs of stone, which must have made the ascent well-nigh impossible
to unpractised feet, before Count Schaffgotsch constructed the new
path at his own cost. A hard pull to finish with. However, in about
twenty minutes we come to a level, where the wind blows strong and
cold, and something that looks like a house and a circular tower
looms through the dusk. The guide steps forward and opens a door,
which admits us to a dim passage. He opens another door, and I am
dazzled by the lights of a large room, where some forty or fifty
guests are sitting at rows of tables eating, drinking, and smoking,
while three women with harps sing and play in a corner.

To step from the chill gloom outside into such a scene was a surprise;
and after my long day's walk to find a comfortable sofa five thousand
feet above the sea, was a solace which I knew how to appreciate.


[G] _Krkonoski Hory_ is the Czechish name for the whole range of the


     Comforts on the Koppe -- Samples of Germany -- Provincial
     Peculiarities -- Hilarity -- A Couplet worth remembering --
     Four-bedded Rooms -- View from the Summit -- Contrast of
     Scenery -- The Summit itself -- Guides in Costume --
     Moderate Charges -- Unlucky Farmer -- The Descent --
     Schwarzkoppe -- Grenzbäuden -- Hungarian Wine -- The Way to
     Adersbach -- Forty Years' Experience.

Here, on the top of _Schneekoppe_, you find the appliances of luxury
and elegance as well as of comfort. Many kinds of provisions, good
wine, and beer of the best. A bazaar of crystals, carvings,
_Rübezahl's_ heads, and mountain-staves. Beds for fifty guests, and
_Strohlager_ (straw-lairs) for fifty more, besides music and other
amusements, make up a total which satisfies most visitors. Do not,
however, expect a room to yourself, for each chamber contains four
beds, in one of which you will have to sleep or accept the alternative
of straw. I heard no demur to these arrangements: in fact, most of the
guests seemed to like throwing off conventionalities of the nether
world while up among the clouds. For water--that is, to drink--you pay
the price of beer, and with a disadvantage; seeing that, from being
kept in beer-casks, its flavour is beery.

The company, though German, is very mixed: specimens of the men and
women-kind from many parts of Germany. Here are Breslauers, who will
say _cha_ for _ja_: Berliners, who--cockneys of another sort, give to
all their _g_'s the sound of _y_--converting _green_ into _yreen_,
_goose_ into _yoose_: _gobble_ into _yobble_: Bremeners, whose Low
Dutch has a twang of the Northumbrian burr; besides Saxons,
Hanoverians, Mecklenburgers, and a happy couple, who told me they came
from Gera--a principality about the size of Rutlandshire. Flat faces
and round faces are the most numerous. The Silesians betray themselves
by an angular visage and prominent chin. "Every province in Prussia,"
says Schulze to Müller, "has its peculiarity, or property, as they
call it. Thus, for example, Pomerania is renowned for stubbornness;
East Prussia for wit; the Rhineland for uprightness; Posen for mixed
humour; the Saxon for softness; the Westphalian for hams and
_Pumpernickel_; and Silesia--for good-nature." And here, on the
highest ground in all North Germany, you may any day between Midsummer
and Michaelmas bring the humourous philosopher's observations to the

Hilarity prevailed: the songstresses sang their best and twanged their
strings with nimble fingers, and--came round with a sheet of music.
Then a few of the guests migrated into the little chambers which on
two sides open from the principal room; then a few more; and I noticed
that some stopped to read a label affixed to the wall. I did the same.
It bore a couplet:

     _Wisse nur des Narren Hand
     Malt und schreibt auf Tisch und Wand._[H]

Three hairy faces lay fast asleep on their pillows in the room to
which I was shown. The bodies to which they belonged were covered with
coats and wrappers, as well as blanket, for the night was very cold,
and the wind blew around the house with an intermittent snarl.

I did not rise with the next morning's sun, but two hours later. By
that time the mists had cleared off, or become so thin as not to
conceal the landscape, and, on going out among the shivering groups, I
saw an open view all round the horizon. The Silesian portion is by far
the most attractive. To the south-west the _Jeschken_ catches your
eye, and, far beyond, the swelling outline of the _Erzgebirge_; to the
south you see towns and villages in the valley of the Elbe, and in a
favourable atmosphere the White Hill of Prague: in like circumstances
Breslau can be seen, though forty-five miles distant to the
north-east, and Görlitz with its hill--_Landskrone_--almost as far to
the north-west, and on rare occasions, it is said, you can see the
foremost of the Carpathians.

Not one of the remotest points was visible. I took pleasure in tracing
my yesterday's route, in which the _Schneegruben_ is all but hidden by
an intervening ridge, and in surveying that which I had now to follow.
There, in the direction towards Breslau, lay Schatzlar, and the lonely
peak of the _Zobten_--the navel of Silesia, as old writers call it;
and miles away easterly the _Heuscheuer_, a big hill on the Moravian
frontier, which looks down on Adersbach, where we shall sleep
to-night, if all go well. You can see a long stretch of the
_Isergebirge_--mountains of the Iser which form part of the range--and
deep gulfs, and grim rocky slopes, and pleasant valleys. But it is not
the mountain scenery of Switzerland or Tyrol: you miss the awful
precipices, the gloomy gorges thundering ever with the roar of
waterfalls, the leagues on leagues of crowding hills, cliffs and
forests, rushing higher and higher, till they front the storm zone
with great white slopes and towering peaks that dazzle your eye when
the sun looks at them. Here no snow remains save one "lazy streak" in
a hollow of the crags on the heights above the _Riesengrund_. Imagine
Dartmoor heaved up to twice its present elevation, and your idea of
the view from _Schneekoppe_ will come but little short of the reality.

The summit itself is a stony level, half covered by the inn, with its
appurtenances and the chapel, leaving free space all round for
visitors. Its height is 4965 Prussian feet above the sea. The boundary
line between Bohemia and Silesia, which follows an irregular course
along the range, crosses it. A chapel, dedicated to St. Lawrence, was
first erected here by Count Leopold von Schaffgotsch, in 1668-81; but
only since 1824 have Koppe-climbers found a house on the top to yield
them shelter and entertainment. While walking about to get the view
from every side you will not fail to be struck by the numerous guides
in peaked hats, with broad band and feather, velveteen jackets heavy
with buttons and braid; and not less by their coarse rustic dialect
than by their costume. Extremes meet, and you will notice much in
common, in sound at least, between this very High Dutch and the Low
Dutch from Bremen and Hamburg.

The afternoon is the best time for the view. The shadows then fall to
the east, as when I saw it yesterday from the _Schneegruben_; the sun
is behind you, looking aslant into the Silesian vales, searching out
whatever they possess of beautiful, and bringing out the lights on
towns and villages for leagues around.

I had been told more than once while on the way that the charges on
_Schneekoppe_ were "monstrous;" but my supper, bed, and early cup of
coffee with rusks, cost not more than one florin fifty kreutzers,
service included; a sum by no means unreasonable, especially when you
remember that all the provant has to be carried up on men's shoulders.

I have always been favoured with fine weather when among mountains,
and here was no exception. The _Riesengebirge_, are, however, as much
visited by fog, rain, and mist, as the mountains of Wales. Tourists
come at times even from the shores of the Baltic, and go back
disappointed, through prevalence of clouds and stormy weather. I heard
of a farmer living not farther off than Schmiedeberg, who had climbed
the _Koppe_ thirteen times to look down on his native land, and every
time he saw nothing but rain. There came one summer a few weeks of
drought; the ground was parched, and fears were entertained for the
crops. Thereupon the neighbouring farmers assembled, waited on the
persevering mountain-climber, and besought him to go once more up

"Up _Schneekoppe_! for what?"

"If you do but go, look ye, it will be sure to rain, and we shall be
so thankful."

Soon after six I started for the descent into Silesia, in company with
two young wool-merchants from Breslau. On this side the slope is easy;
but, as on the other side, after falling for awhile, the path makes a
rise to pass over _Schwarzkoppe_ (Black Head), a hill rough with
heather. To this succeeded pleasant fir-woods, then birch and beech,
and before eight we came to _Grenzbäuden_ (frontier-buildings), a
place renowned for its hospitality wherever lives a German who has
seen the mountains. Three houses offer entertainment; but Hübner's is
the most resorted to. There you find spacious rooms, a billiard-table,
a piano, maps on the walls, and a colonnade for those who prefer the
open air; and sundry appliances by which weather-bound guests may kill
time. But, by common consent, Hübner's chief claim to consideration
is, that Hungarian wine never fails in his cellar.

"Did you taste the Hungarian wine?" is the question asked of all who
wander to the Giant Mountains.

The two Breslauers were not less ready for breakfast than myself. We
each had a half-bottle of the famous wine, and truly its reputation is
not unmerited. If you can imagine liquid amber suffused with sunshine,
you will know what its colour is. It looks syrupy, and has the flavour
of a sweet Madeira, not, as it appeared to me, provocative of a desire
for more. Neither of the Breslauers inclined to try a second
half-bottle, notwithstanding their exuberant praises; but one of them,
sitting down to the piano, broke out with a

     "Vivat vinum Hungaricum"

that made the room echo again. Its price is about twenty pence a
bottle; but once across the boundary line, and you must pay three
shillings. In winter, when snow lies deep, sledge-parties glide hither
from Schmideberg to drink Hungarian, have a frolic, and then skim
homewards down-hill swift as the wind.

I had a talk with _Meinherr_ Hübner about the shortest way to
Schatzlar. To think of going to Adersbach through Schatzlar was, he
assured me, a grand mistake. The road was very hilly, hard to find,
and, under the most favourable circumstances, I need not look to walk
the distance in less than eighteen hours. My Frankfort map, with all
its imperfections, had not yet misled me: it showed the route by
Schatzlar to be the shortest, and on that I insisted.

"Take my advice," rejoined Hübner; "it has forty years' experience to
back it. Go down to Hermsdorf, and from thence through Liebau and
Schömberg. That is the only way possible for you. The other will take
you eighteen hours."

The route suggested was that I hoped to follow on leaving Adersbach,
and to travel twice over the same ground did not suit my inclination,
and it was the longest. Moreover, I wished to keep within the
_Schmiedeberger Kamm_; and forty years' experience to the contrary
notwithstanding, I refused to be advised.

I may as well mention at once that by five in the afternoon of the
same day I was in Adersbach.


[H] Which, changing one word, may rhyme in English--

     Know ye, only hand of fool
     Paints and writes on wall and stool.


     The Frontier Guard-house -- A Volunteer Guide -- A Knave --
     Schatzlar -- Bernsdorf -- A Barefoot Philosopher -- A
     Weaver's Happiness -- Altendorf -- Queer Beer -- A Short
     Cut -- Blunt Manners -- Adersbach -- Singular Rocks --
     Gasthaus zur Felsenstadt -- The Rock City -- The Grand
     Entrance -- The Sugarloaf -- The Pulpit -- The Giant's
     Glove -- The Gallows -- The Burgomaster -- Lord Brougham's
     Profile -- The Breslau Wool-market -- The Shameless Maiden
     -- The Silver Spring -- The Waterfall -- A Waterspout --
     The Lightning Stroke.

About a musket-shot below the _Bäuden_ stands the frontier
guard-house. The two wool-merchants who had left Warmbrunn for the
ordinary three days' excursion in the mountains, having no passports
to show, were detained, while I, accredited by seven visas, had free
passage and wishes for a pleasant journey. I took a road running
immediately to the right, and had not gone far when one of Hübner's
men came running after, and offered to show me the way to Schatzlar
for twenty kreutzers.

"If you mean the road," I answered, "I don't want you. But if you mean
the shortest way, across fields, through bush, anywhere to save
distance, come along."

He hesitated a moment, and came. We scrambled anywhere; up and down
toilsome slopes of ploughed fields, through scrub and brake. We saw
the hamlet of Klein Aupa and the Golden Valley on the right. When,
after awhile, _Schneekoppe_ came in sight, it appeared from this side
to be the crest of a long, gradually-rising earth-wave. After about an
hour and a half of brisk walking, we came to a brow, from which the
ground fell steeply to a homely, straggling village, embosomed in
trees, beneath. "There, that's Schatzlar," said Hübner's man, and,
pointing to a lane that twisted down the slope, "that's the way to

Hübner's man plays knavish tricks. On descending into the village I
found it to be Kunzendorf: however, it was on the right way, and
another two miles brought me to Schatzlar, a village of one street,
the houses irregular; high, dark, wooden gables, resting on a low,
whitewashed ground story, lit by shabby little windows. Here I took a
road on the left, leading to Bernsdorf, from which, as it rises, you
can presently look back upon the striped hill behind Schatzlar, the
castle, now tenanted by the _Bezirksrichter_, and the beechen woods
where the Bober takes its rise: a stream that flows northwards and
falls into the Oder.

Beech woods adorn this part of the country, and relieve the dark
slopes of firs which here and there border the landscape; and
everywhere you see signs of careful cultivation. After passing
Bernsdorf--a village on the high road to Trautenau--I fell in with a
weaver, and we walked together to Altendorf. A right talkative fellow
did he prove himself; a barefoot philosopher, clad in a loose garment
of coarse baize. He lived at Kunzendorf, where he kept his loom going
while work was to be had, and, when it wasn't, did the best he could
without. Thought a dollar a week tidy wages; a dollar and a half,
jolly; and two dollars, wonderfully happy. Never ate meat; never
expected it, and so didn't fret about it. Bread, soup, and a glass of
beer at the _Wirthshaus_ in the evening, was all he could get, and a
weaver who got that had not much to complain of. All this was said in
a free, hearty tone, that left me no reason to doubt its sincerity.

The country was no longer what it had been. Twelve years ago the land
to the right and left, all the way from Schatzlar, was covered with
forest; now it was all fields, and every year the fields spread wider,
and up the hills; and though firewood was dearer, potatoes, beetroot,
and rye were more plentiful; and that seemed only fair, because every
year more mouths opened and wanted food.

For every cottage we passed my philosopher had a joke; something about
the bees' humming-tops, or frogs' hams, that sent the inmates into
roars of laughter. I invited him to eat bread and cheese with me at
Altendorf: he stared, gave a whoop of surprise, and accepted. Of all
the large rooms I had yet seen in a public-house the one in the
_Wirthshaus_ here was the largest; spacious enough for a town-hall.
The groined and vaulted ceiling rests on tall, massive pillars; four
chandeliers hang by long strings; in one corner stands a two-wheeled
truck; an enormous bread-trough; platter-shaped baskets filled with
flour, and a mountain of washing utensils. Trencher-cap brought us two
glasses of beer--tall glasses, to match the room, vase-like in form,
and fifteen inches high at least. The beer was of the colour of
porter, and, as I thought, of a very disagreeable flavour; but the
weaver took a hearty pull, smacked his lips, and pronounced it better
than Bavarian, or _Stohnsdorfer_, or any other kind. That was the sort
they always drank at Kunzendorf, and wholesome stuff it was; meat and
drink too. He emptied my glass after his own--for one taste was enough
for me--and then, as he bade me good-bye, and went his way, he
expressed a hope that he might meet with an Englishman every time he
took the same walk.

From Altendorf a short cut by intricate paths over a wooded hill saves
nearly two miles in the distance to Adersbach. It is a pretty walk, up
and down slopes gay with loosestrife--_Steinrosen_, as the country
folk call it--and among rocks, of which one of the largest is known as
the _Gott und Vater Stein_. You emerge in a shallow valley, at Upper
Adersbach, and follow the road downwards, past low-shingled cottages,
the fronts coloured yellow with white stripes, the shutters blue, and
all the rearward portion showing white stripes along the joints of the
old dark wood, and crossing on the ends of the beams. The eaves are
not more than six feet from the ground, so that where the house stands
back in a garden, it is half buried by apple-trees and scarlet-runners,
and the cabbages and flowers look in at the windows. The people are as
rustic as their dwellings. Ask a question, and a blunt "_Was?_" is the
first word in answer; no "_Wie meinen sie?_" as in other places. Good
Papists, nevertheless, for they stop and recite a prayer before one of
the gaudy crucifixes, which, surrounded by angels bearing inscribed
tablets, or ornamented by pictures of the Virgin and St. Anne, stand
within a wooden fence at the roadside here and there along the

The valley narrows, and presently you see strange masses of stone
peering from the fir-wood on the right, more and more numerous, till
at length the rock prevails, and the trees grow only in gaps and
clefts. The masses present astonishing varieties of the columnar form,
some tall and upright, others broken and leaning; and looking across
the intervening breadth of meadow, you can imagine doorways, porticos,
colonnades, and grotesque sculptures. Here and there, fronting the
rest, stands a semicircular mass, as it were a huge grindstone, one
half buried in the earth, or a pile that looks like a weatherbeaten,
buttressed wall; and, raised by the slope of the ground, you see the
tops of other masses, continuing away to the rear.

The spectacle grows yet more striking, for the height and dimensions
of the rocks increase as you advance. About a mile onwards and a short
range of similar rocks appears isolated in a wood on the left. Here a
whitewashed gateway bestrides the road--the entrance to the _Gasthaus
zur Felsenstadt_ (Rock-City Inn), resorted to every year by hundreds
of visitors.

Old Hübner was clearly mistaken. In seven hours of easy walking I had
accomplished the distance from Grenzbäuden, and was ready, after half
an hour's rest, to explore the wonders of Adersbach.

The custom of the place is, that you shall take a guide whether or no,
pay him a fee for his trouble, and another for admission besides; and
to carry it out, a staff of guides are always at the service of
visitors. Their costume is the same as that of the mountain
guides--boots, buttons, hat and feather, and velveteen. You may wait
and join a party if you like: I preferred going alone.

The meadow behind the house is planted with trees forming shady walks.
Here the guide calls your attention to two outlying masses, one of
which he names _Rubezahl_, the other the Sleeping Woman. He talks
naturally when he talks, but when he describes or names anything he
does it in the showman's style--"Look to the left and there you see
Admiral Lyons a-bombardin' of Sebastopol," &c.; and so frequent and
sudden were these changes of voice and manner, that at last I could
not help laughing at them, even in places where laughter was by no
means appropriate. We crossed the brook--_Adersbach_--to an opening
about forty feet broad, which forms an approach to the Rock City that
makes a deep impression on you, and excites your expectations. It is
an avenue bordered on either side by the remains of such buildings and
monuments as we saw specimens of in the mountains on our way hither,
only here the Cyclopean architects worked on a greater scale, and
crowded their edifices together. Here, indeed, was their metropolis;
and this the grand entrance, where now vegetation clothes the ruin
with beauty.

The road is soft and sandy: everywhere nothing but sand underfoot. The
objects increase in magnitude as we proceed. Great masses of cliff
look down on us, their sides and summit clothed with young
trees--beech, birch, fir, growing from every crevice. The sand
accumulated round their base forms a broad, sloping plinth, overgrown
with long grass, creeping weeds, and bushes, through which run little
paths leading to caverns, vaults, and passages in the rock. Some of
the caverns are formed by great fragments fallen one against the
other; some in the solid rock have the smooth and worn appearance
produced by the action of the water, as in cliffs on the sea-shore;
the galleries and passages are similarly formed; but here and there
you see that the mighty rock has been split from head to foot by some
shock which separated the halves but a few inches, leaving evidence of
their former union in the corresponding inequalities of the broken

Presently we step forth into a meadow from which a stripe of open
country undulates away between the bordering forest. Here, where the
path turns to the left, you see the Sugarloaf, a huge detached rock
some eighty feet high, rising out of a pond. Either it is an inverted
sugarloaf, or you may believe that the base is being gradually
dissolved by the water. Here, contrasted with the smooth green
surface, you can note the abrupt outline of the rocks and its
similarity to that of a line of sea-cliffs. Here are capes, headlands,
spits, bays, coves, basins, and outlying rocks, reefs, and islets; but
with the difference that here every crevice is full of trees and
foliage, and branches overtop the crests of the loftiest.

As yet we have seen but a suburb; now, having crossed the meadow, we
enter the main city of the rocky labyrinth, and the guide, ever with
theatrical tone and attitude, sets to work in earnest. He points out
the Pulpit, the Twins, the Giant's Glove, the Chimney, the Gallows,
the Burgomaster's Head; and bids you note that the latter wears a
periwig, and has a snub nose. Some of these are close to the path,
others distant, and only to be seen through the openings, or over the
top of the nearer masses. The resemblance to a human head is
remarkably frequent, always at the top of a column. I discovered Lord
Brougham's profile, and advised the guide to remember it for the
benefit of future visitors.

Now the rocks are higher; they crowd close on the path, and presently
we come to a narrow passage through a tremendous cliff, where further
progress is barred by a door. And here you discover the use of the
guide. Before unlocking, he holds out his hand for the twenty-kreutzer
fee, which every one must pay for admittance; his own fee will be an
after consideration. He then shows you the figure of a Whale in the
face of the cliff on the left, then you cross the wooden bridge, and
are locked in, as before you were locked out. There is, however, a
free way through the water. The little brook that flows so prettily by
the side of the path out to the entrance, comes through a vault in the
cliff, about thirty yards, and by stooping you can see the glimmer of
light from the far end. Three women came that way with bundles of
firewood on their backs, and they wade it every time they go in quest
of fuel. The water is less than a foot in depth.

The passage is narrow and gloomy between the cliffs. As we emerge, the
guide, pointing to a tall rock two hundred and fifty feet in height,
names it the Elizabeth Tower of Breslau. Then comes the Breslau
Wool-market, from a fancied resemblance in the surrounding rocks to
woolsacks. Not far off are the Tables of Moses, the Shameless Maiden,
St. John the Baptist, the Tiger's Snout, the Backbone, a long broken
column, which forms a disjointed vertebræ. A long list of names might
be given were it desirable. For the most part the resemblances are
not at all fanciful; in some instances so complete, that you can
scarcely believe the handiwork to be Nature's own. She was, however,
sole artificer.

We come to a small grassy oasis, where a damsel offers you a goblet of
water from the Silver Spring, and invites you to buy crystals or cakes
at her stall. The guide shows you the Little Waterfall, a feeder of
the brook struggling in a crevice, and conducts you by a steep, rocky
path to a cavern into which the Great Waterfall tumbles from a height
of about sixty feet. The rocky sides converge as they rise, and leave
an opening of a few feet at the apex through which the water falls
into a shallow pool beneath. The margin of this pool, a narrow ledge,
is the standing-place.

The quantity of water is not great, but it makes a pretty cascade down
the rugged side of the darksome cavern. After you have looked at it
for a minute or two, the guide blows a shrill whistle, and before you
have time to ask what it means, the gloom is suddenly deepened. You
look up in surprise. The mouth of the cavern is entirely filled by a
torrent which in another second will be down upon your head. You
cannot start back if you would; the rock prevents, and in an instant
you see that the water makes its plunge with scarcely a splash on the
brim of the pool.

Artificial improvement of waterfalls affords me but little pleasure.
Here, however, the effect was so surprising that, as the water gleamed
and danced in the dusky cavern, and the rushing roar and rapid gurgle
at the outlet filled the place with loud reverberations, and the light
spray imparted a sense of coolness, I was made to feel there might be
an exception.

In our further wanderings we met sundry parties of visitors all led by
guides who had the same theatrical trick as mine. You return by the
same way to the locked door; but explorations are being made to
discover a new route among objects sufficiently striking. Outside the
door all is free, and you may roam and make discoveries at pleasure.
There are steep gullies which lead into very wild places, where for
want of bridges, galleries, and beaten paths, the labour and fatigue
of exploration are sensibly multiplied.

In June, 1844, as inscribed on one of the stones, a waterspout burst
over Adersbach, and flooded all the tortuous ways among the rocks to a
depth of nine feet. Another inscription records the escape of two
Englishmen in 1709. They were sheltering from a thunderstorm, when the
rock under which they stood was struck by lightning, and the summit
shattered without their receiving harm from the falling lumps.
Inscriptions of another sort abound--the initials, or entire name and
address, of hundreds of visitors, who with chisel or black paint have
thought it worth while to let posterity know of their visit to
Adersbach. Some ambitious beyond the ordinary, have climbed up thirty
or forty feet to carve the capital letters.


     The Echo -- Wonderful Orchestra -- Magical Music -- A _Feu
     de joie_ -- The Oration -- The Voices -- Echo and the
     Humourist -- Satisfying the Guide -- Exploring the
     Labyrinth -- Curious Discoveries -- Speculations of
     Geologists -- Bohemia an Inland Sea -- Marble Labyrinth in
     Spain -- A Twilight View -- After a'.

"Will it please you to walk to the echo?" asks the guide, when we come
back to the meadow. And if you assent--as every one does--he turns to
the left and leads you up the open ground above-mentioned to a small
temple--the Echo House. You see a man standing near the house playing
a clarionet, pausing now and then to recite; but no answering note or
word do you hear. But take your seat on the bench against that
perpendicular rock on his right, and immediately you hear a whole
orchestra of wind instruments among the rocks. Such delicious music!
Soft, wild, warbling, rising and falling, melting one into the other
in a way that you fancy could only be accomplished by a band of
Kobolds with _Rübezahl_ for a leader. And when the player blows short
phrases with pauses between, what mocking sprite is that who imitates
the sound, flitting from crevice to crevice repeating the tones over
and over again, fainter and fainter, till they seem not to die away,
but to float out of hearing?

Then his companion comes forward and fires a gun, a signal, so you
might believe, for a great discharge of musketry among the rocks,
platoon after platoon firing a _feu de joie_. One--two--three--four!
The two men hold up their hands to signify--Listen yet! then comes the
rattle of the fifth round from the short range of rocks which we saw
on the left while coming down the valley; and the firing commenced by
the troops in camp is ended by the outposts.

Then one of the men makes a short oration about the wonders here
grouped by which Nature attracts man from afar and fills him with joy
and astonishment; voices repeat the oration among the rocks, and
then--he comes to you for his fee. For the gunshot the tax is eight
kreutzers; and if you give eight more for the music and oration, the
two echo-keepers will not look unhappy.

And now, if still incredulous, you may talk to the echo yourself. My
test was perfectly convincing, for it woke up a dozen cuckoos among
the rocks. When Schulze, the humourist already mentioned, was here, he
questioned the mysterious voice concerning political matters, and got
unhesitating answers. For example:

     _Philosopher._ "Wie steht's um Hellas?
     _Echo._ Helas! Helas! Helas!
     Wat hältst du von Russels Worte?
       Worte! Worte! Worte!
     Wat fehlt in Hessen?
       Essen! Essen! Essen!
     Was möchten gern die Wallachen?
       Lachen! lachen! lachen!
     Fließt dort (in Russia) nicht Milch und Honig?
       Jo nich! jo nich! jo nich!
     Wann kommt Deutschland zur Harmonie?
       O nie! O nie! O nie!
     Es fehlt ja man eene Kleinigkeit?
       Einigkeit! Einigkeit! Einigkeit!"

Unluckily, the points would all become blunt if translated; I am
constrained, therefore, to leave them in the original.

My guide waited to be "satisfied." I asked him what amount of fee he
usually received?

"Sometimes," he answered, "I get a dollar."

"But commonly not more than ten kreutzers?"

"_M--m--ja_, that is true."

"Then what would you say to fifteen kreutzers?"

"Sir, I would say that I wish such as you would come every day to

He left me fully "satisfied." And so, reader, you see that the
picturesque is burdened with a tariff in Bohemia as it is in certain
parts of England, Scotland, and Wales.

I went back to the rocks. The locked door does not shut in all the
wonders, and there are miles which you may explore freely. But unless
you stick a branch here and there into the sand, or "blaze" the trees,
you will never find your way out again. The great height of the rocks
surprises you not less than their amazing number. They are intersected
by blind alleys, open alleys, and lanes innumerable, intertwisting and
crossing in all directions. Many a cavern, den, and grotto will you
see, and many a delightful sylvan retreat, where the solitude is
perfect; many a bower which is presently lost. Now you are overcome by
wonder, now by awe, for thoughts will come to you of great rock cities
and temples smitten by judgments; of the giant race that warred with
the gods and were slain by thunder-bolts; of those who worshipped
stones and burnt sacrifice on the loftiest rocks.

A few paces farther, and seeing how tall trees grow everywhere among
the stony masses, how smaller trees and shrubs shoot from the
crevices, and moss enwraps pillar and buttress, and fringes the
cliffs, you will think of Nature's silent revolutions; of the ages
that rolled away while the labyrinth of Adersbach was formed. Here, so
say the geologists, currents of water running for innumerable years,
have worn out channels in the softer parts of a wide stratum of
sandstone, and produced the effects we now witness. The stratum must
have been great, for the rocks extend, more or less crowded, away to
the _Heuscheuer_, a distance of three or four leagues. The mountain
itself presents similar phenomena even on its summit.

A supposition prevails, based on much observation, that the whole of
Bohemia was once covered by a vast lake, or inland sea. The
conformation of the country, its ring-fence of mountains--whence the
term _Kessel Land_ (Kettle Land) among the Germans--broken only where
the Elbe flows out, while almost every stream within the territory
finds its way into that river, besides the fossil deposits so
abundantly met with, are facts urged by the learned in favour of their
views. It may have been during the existence of this great sea that
the rocks were formed.

It might be interesting to inquire whether the rocky labyrinth at
Torcal, not far from Antequera, in Spain, presents phenomena similar
to those of Adersbach. The rocks, as I have read, are of marble,
covering a great extent of ground in groupings singularly picturesque.

It was dusk when I had finished my prowl, for such it was, accompanied
by much scrambling. Then I climbed to the top of one of the outlying
crags for a view across the maze, and when I saw the numerous gray
heads peering out from the feathery fir-tops, here and there a
bastion, a broken pillar, and weather-stained tower, the fancy once
more possessed me that here was a city of the giants--its walls thrown
down, its buildings destroyed, and its rebellious inhabitants turned
to stone.

Gradually the hoary rocks looked spectral-like, for the dusk
increased, the clouds gathered heavily, and rain began to fall. I
walked back to the inn, feeling deeply the force of the Ettrick
Shepherd's words, "After a', what is any description by us puir
creturs o' the works o' the great God?"


     Baked Chickens -- A Discussion -- Weckelsdorf -- More Rocks
     -- The Stone of Tears -- Death's Alley -- Diana's Bath --
     The Minster -- Gang of Coiners -- The Bohdanetskis -- Going
     to Church -- Another Silesian View -- Good-bye to Bohemia
     -- Schömberg -- Silesian Faces and Costume -- Picturesque
     Market-place -- Ueberschar Hills -- Ullersdorf -- An amazed
     Weaver -- Liebau -- Cheap Cherries -- The Prussian Simplon
     -- Ornamented Houses -- Buchwald -- The Bober --
     Dittersbach -- Schmiedeberg -- Rübezahl's Trick upon
     Travellers -- Tourists' Rendezvous -- The Duellists'
     Successors -- Erdmannsdorf -- Tyrolese Colony.

As _Grenzbäuden_ is renowned for Hungarian wine, so is Adersbach for
baked chickens, and every guest, unless he be a greenhorn, eats two
for supper. They are very relishing, and quite small enough to prevent
any breach of your moderate habit.

Visitors were numerous: some reading their guide-books, some beginning
supper, some finishing, some rounding up the evening with another
bottle--for Hungarian is to be had in Adersbach. A party near me sat
discussing with much animation the demerits of the taxes which
impoverish, and of the beggars who importune, travellers around the
City of the Rocks, and they drew an inference that the landlord's
charges would not be parsimonious. Then they wandered off into the
question of temperature--the temperature of _Schneekoppe_. Not one of
them had yet trodden old Snowhead, so they went on guessing at the
question, till I mentioned that it had been very cold up there in the

"In the morning! This morning? _Heut_, mean you?"

"Yes, this very morning; for I was up there."

"_Heut! Heut! Heut! Heut!_" ejaculated one after another, the last
apparently more surprised than the first.

"Yes, this very day."

They would not believe it. I took up a sprig of heather from the side
of my plate, which I had gathered on _Schwarzkoppe_, and showed them
that as a token; and explained that the distance was, after all, not
so very great, and might have been shortened had I descended directly
from the _Koppe_ into the _Riesengrund_, and laid my course through
the village of Dorngrund.

They believed then; but having travelled the road prescribed to me by
Father Hübner, could not imagine the distance from the mountain to be
but about twenty miles.

By rising early the next morning, when all was bright and fresh and
the dust laid by the night's rain, I got time for another stroll among
the rocks, and to walk two miles farther down the valley to
Weckelsdorf, where another part of the rocky labyrinth is explorable.
The rocks here are on a greater scale than at Adersbach, and rising on
the slope of a hill, their romantic effect is increased, as also the
difficulty of wandering among them. The proprietor, Count von
Nummerskirch, has, however, taken pains to render them accessible by
bridges, galleries, and stairs. A sitting figure, whose head-dress
resembles that of the maidens of Braunau, is named the Bride of
Braunau; near her is the Stone of Tears; the _Todtengasse_ (Death's
Alley) is never illumined by a ray of sunshine; there is the
Cathedral, and near it Diana's Bath; and at last the Minster, a
natural temple, the roof a lofty pointed arch, where, while you walk
up and down in the dim light, an organ fills the place with a burst of
sound. It is sometimes called the Mint, or Money Church, because of a
gang of coiners having once made it their head-quarters. The rocks
have been a hiding-place for others as well as rogues. During the
Hussite wars, many families found a refuge within their intricate
recesses, little liable to a surprise, at a time when entrance was
hardly possible owing to the numerous obstructions.

As at Adersbach, there is a fee to pay for unlocking a door; there is
an echo which answers the guide's voice, his pistol and horn, and has
to be paid for. Nevertheless, you will neither regret the outlay of
time and kreutzers in your visit to Weckelsdorf. If able to prolong
your stay, you may take an excursion of a few hours to the
_Heuscheuer_, and see a smaller Adersbach on its very summit--the
highest of these extraordinary rock-formations. Or there is the ruin
of Bischoffstein, within an easy walk, once the stronghold of the
Bohdanetski family, who held half a score of castles around the
neighbourhood, and made themselves obnoxious by their Protestantism
and robberies, and envied for their wealth. They suffered at times by
siege and onslaught from their neighbours, and at length their castles
were demolished, and forty-seven Bohdanetskis and adherents were
hanged by the emperor's command. The rest of the family, it is said,
took flight, and settled in England. Is Baddenskey, who sits wearily
at his loom down there in joyless Spitalfields, a descendant?

I returned to the _Felsenstadt_ for my knapsack. For supper, bed, and
breakfast the charge was equal to three and threepence, in which was
included an extra fifteen kreutzers for the bedroom, which I had
insisted on having all to myself. When guests are very numerous they
have to sleep four in a room. Take your change in Prussian money, for
"_Kaiserliches geld_," as the folk here call it--that is, imperial
money--will not be current where you stop to dine.

I retraced my steps for about a mile along the road by which I came
yesterday, and at the church took a road branching off to the right.
It leads through Ober Adersbach. The villagers were going to church:
the men wearing tall polished boots and jackets, the women with their
heads ungracefully muffled in red, blue, green, or yellow kerchiefs,
and displaying broad, showy skirts and aprons, and clean white
stockings. Now and then came an exception: a man in a light-blue
jacket, and loose, baggy breeches; a woman with a stiff-starched
head-dress, not unlike those worn in Normandy.

The road continually rises, and by-and-by you cannot tell the main
track from the byeways among the cottages. Still ascending, however,
you come out a short distance farther on the brow of a precipitous
hill, where you are agreeably surprised by another Silesian
view--broad, rolling fields of good red land, bearing vetches, clover,
flax, and barley, the little town of Schömberg in their midst, and
always hills on the horizon. From the brow, a deep lane and a path
through the fir-wood on the cliffy hill-side, lead you down to the
road where finger-posts, painted black and white, indicate that we
have exchanged the Austrian eagle for the Prussian. I must have
crossed the frontier two or three times yesterday and to-day, but I
saw no custom-house anywhere, and no guards, except at _Grenzbäuden_.

Other signs showed me on nearing Schömberg that I had left Bohemia.
The men are tall, of sallow complexion, and angular face. They wear
long dark-blue coats and boots up to their knees, and stiff blue caps
with a broad crown, and they carry pink or blue umbrellas. The women
wear the same colour, and do not look attractive; and there is an
_Evangelische Kirche_, in which the preaching is of Protestant faith
and doctrine.

The town has two thousand inhabitants, some of whom dwell in houses
that are a pleasure to look upon, around the market-place. The
gables--no two alike--are painted pale green, white, gray, or yellow,
and what with the ornaments, the broken outlines, and arcades of wood
and brick, the great square makes up a better picture than is to be
seen in many a famous city. Although Sunday, the mill turned by the
Kratzbach clacks briskly; there are stalls of fruit, bread, and toys
under the arcades, and by the side of two or three wagons in the
centre a group of blue-coated men. They look sedate, and talk very
quietly, as if they felt the day were not for work.

From hence the road, planted with beeches, limes, and mountain-ash,
leads across well-cultivated fields, and between wooded slopes of the
Ueberschar hills to Ullersdorf, where _Schneekoppe_ is seen peeping
over a dark ridge on the left. I asked one of the weavers who inhabit
here if he earned two dollars a week.

"_Gott bewahr!_" he exclaimed, opening his eyes and holding up his
hands apparently in utter amazement, "that would be too gladsome
(_frolich_). No; I can be thankful for one dollar."

Content with one dollar a week, which means a perpetual diet of rye
bread and potatoes.

Liebau and Schömberg, about five miles apart, are in many respects
twin towns. If Liebau has not a strikingly picturesque market-place,
nor a reputation for _Knackwürsten_ (smoked sausage), it has a new
Protestant church, some good paintings in the Romish church, and a
_Kreuzberg_, once the resort of thousands of pilgrims. The
neighbouring _Tartarnberg_ was, according to tradition, the site of a
Tartar camp in 1241. Rusty, half-decayed horseshoes and arrow-heads
are still found at times upon it.

After dining at the _Sonne_, I bought a dessert at a stall under the
arcade: the woman gave me nearly a gallon of cherries for
three-halfpence, with which I started for Schmiedeberg, ten miles
farther. Numbers of villagers were walking on the road, all the women
bedecked with pink aprons, and looking healthy and happy. Perhaps out
of twenty or more chubby-faced children, who manifested a lively
appetite for fruit, two or three will remember that they met a strange
man who gave them a handful of cherries, and how that their mothers
became all of a sudden eloquent with thanks, and bade them kiss their
hands, and do something pretty. Unluckily, by the time I had gone two
miles there was an end of the cherries.

The road runs between the _Schmiedeberger Kamm_ and the _Landeshuter
Kamm_. The main road, which crosses the latter from Schmiedeberg to
Landeshut, is called the Prussian or Silesian Simplon, for it is the
highest macadamized road in Prussia, its summit being at an elevation
of more than 2200 feet. Extra horses are required to pass it; and the
saying goes that millions of dollars have been paid on a stone at the
top, known as the _Vorspannsteine_.

Among rural objects you see huge barns; a tiled roof resting on tall,
square pillars of brick, the intervals between which are boarded. And
here and there a farm, with all the homestead enclosed by a high
whitewashed wall, which has two arched entrances. The cottages are
low, their roofs a combination of thatch and shingle, their shutters
an exhibition of rustic art, bright red, with an ornamental wreath in
the centre of the panels; and the wooden column, on which a saint
stands by the wayside, displays a flowery spiral on a ground of lively
green. To a man who was leaning over his gate, I said that it was very
stupid to mar the effect of such artistic decorations by a slushy
midden at the front door.

"We don't think so: we are used to it," was his answer.

Now and then you meet a little low wagon, the tilt-hoops painted blue,
and the harness glittering with numerous rings and small round plates
of brass. In the village of Buchwald the mill was at work, and the men
were busy at the grindstone grinding their scythe-blades in readiness
for the morrow. Here we come upon the Bober, grown to a lively stream,
running along the edge of the far-spreading meadows on the left.
About half a mile farther a wagon-track slants off to the right,
making a short cut over the _Kamm_ to Schmiedeberg. It leads you by
pleasant ways along hill-sides, across fields and meadows, into lonely
vales and solitary lanes, that end on shaggy heather slopes. To me the
walk was delightful, for uninterrupted sunshine, a merry breeze, and
rural peace, favourable to the luxury of idle thought, lent a charm to
pretty scenery.

From Dittersbach the road ascends the _Passberg_, which, on the
farther side, sends down a steep descent to Schmiedeberg. The town
lies in a deep valley, and is so long from one extremity of its
scattered outskirts to the other that you will be nearly an hour in
walking through it, while, for the most part, it is little more than
one street in width. It has an ancient look, and, owing to the many
gardens and bleaching-grounds among the houses, combines country with
town. The _Rathhaus_ is a fine specimen of tasteful architecture.

From working in iron, the Schmiedebergers have turned to the making of
shawls and plush, and the entertainment of holiday travellers. The
iron trade began in an adventure on the _Riesengebirge_. Two men were
crossing the mountains, when one, whose shoes were thickly nailed,
found himself suddenly held fast on the stony path, unable to advance
or return. He shook with terror. What else could it be than a spell
thrown over him by _Rübezahl_? At length, by the other's assistance,
he broke the spell; and the two having brought away with them the
stone of detention, it was recognised as magnetic iron stone; and
already, in the twelfth century, iron works were established, around
which Schmiedeberg grew into a town. It now numbers four thousand

Hither come tourists from far to see the mountains; and during your
half hour's rest at the _Schwarzes Ross_, you will be amused by
witnessing the eager manifestations of the newly-arrived, their
exuberant gestures while bargaining with a guide, and the liberal
way--the bargain once made--in which they load him with rugs, cloaks,
coats, caps, bonnets, bags, bundles, umbrellas, parasols, and other
travelling gear, until he carries a mountain on his own shoulders.
Besides the trip to _Schneekoppe_, some mount to the great beech-tree
and the _Friesenstein_, on the _Landeshuter Kamm_; or visit the
laboratories at Krummhübel, where liqueurs, oils, and essences, are
distilled and prepared from native plants: chemical operations first
set on foot in 1700 by a few students of medicine who fled from Prague
to escape the consequences of a duel. And some go beyond Krummhübel to
look at Wolfshau, a place in the entrance of the _Melzergrund_, so
shut in by wooded hills that it never sees the sun during December.
And some to the village of Steinseifen, where, among iron-workers and
herbalists, dwell skilful wood-carvers; one of whom for a small fee
exhibits a large model of the _Riesengebirge_--a specimen of his own

On the left, as you leave Schmiedeberg, is the Ruheberg, a small
castle standing in a bosky park belonging to a Polish prince, where
the townsfolk find pleasant walks. Two miles farther, and the leafy
slopes of Buchwald appear on the right, embowering another castle, and
a park laid out in the English style, and with such advantages of
position, among which are fifty-four ponds, that it has become an
elysium for the neighbourhood.

Once clear of the town, and the mountain-range opens on the
left--rounded heights, ridges, scars, and peaks stretching away for
miles on either side of the _Koppe_. Another hour, and turning from
the main road which runs on to Hirschberg, you see houses scattered
about the plain, built in the Alpine style, with outside stair and
galleries, and broad eaves. We are in the village of Erdmannsdorf--the
asylum granted by the King of Prussia to about a hundred Tyrolese
families, who, in 1838, had to quit their native country for
conscience' sake. They were Protestants hated by their bigoted
neighbours, and disliked by the priests; and so became exiles. Nowhere
else in Prussia could they have seen mountains at all approaching in
grandeur those which look down on their native valley, and yet they
must at first have deeply mourned the difference.

Remembering my former year's experiences, I wished to find myself once
more among the Tyrolese. True enough, there they were in their
picturesque costume, in striking contrast with the Silesians; but
there was a degenerate look about the _Wirthshaus_, as if they had
forgotten their original cleanliness, which repelled me, and I went on
to the _Schweizerhaus_, a large inn near the royal _Schloss_. As
usual, it was overfull, so great is the throng of visitors, and I had
to try in another direction, which brought me to the _Gasthof und
Gerichtskretscham_, where the landlord promised me a bed if I would
not mind sleeping in the billiard-room.


     Schnaps and Sausage -- Dresdener upon Berliners -- The
     Prince's Castle at Fischbach -- A Home for the Princess
     Royal -- Is the Marriage Popular? -- View from the Tower --
     Tradition of the Golden Donkey -- Royal Palace at
     Erdmannsdorf -- A Miniature Chatsworth -- The Zillerthal --
     Käse and Brod -- Stohnsdorf -- Famous Beer -- Rischmann's
     Cave -- Prophecies -- Warmbrunn.

At Fischbach, in a pleasant valley, about an hour's walk from
Erdmannsdorf, stands a castle belonging to Prince Wilhelm of Prussia,
which is shown to curious tourists. A Dresdener, who thought it worth
the trouble of the walk, asked me to accompany him next morning, and
we started after an early breakfast. Early as it was a party of
Silesian peasants were breaking their fast with _Schnaps_, sausage,
and rye bread. Think of _Schnaps_ and sausage at seven in the morning!

The Dresdener beguiled the way by laughing at the peculiarities of
three Berliners, whom we had left behind at the _Gasthof_. A Prussian
cockney, he said, was sure to betray himself as soon as he began to
talk, for nothing would satisfy him but the most exalted superlatives.
"When you hear," he continued, "a man talk of a thing as gigantic--
incomprehensibly beautiful--ravishingly excellent--insignificantly
scarcely visible--set him down at once as a Berliner. You heard those
three last night, how they went on; as we say in our country, hanging
their hats on the topmost pegs. Yracious yoodness! what yiyantic
yabble!" And the Saxon cockney laughed as heartily at his own wit as
if it had been good enough for _Punch_.

The castle is an old possession of the Knights Templars, repaired and
beautified. It has towers and turrets, and windows of quaint device; a
small inner court, and a surrounding moat spanned by a bridge at the
entrance. Outside the moat are shady walks and avenues of limes, and
the gardens, which did not come up to my notion of what is royal
either in fruits or flowers. With plantations on the hills around, and
in the park, the whole place has a pleasant bowery aspect.

As we crossed the bridge, there seemed something inhospitable in the
sight of two large cannon guarding the entrance; but the portress told
us they were trophies from Afghanistan, captured at the battle in
which Prince Waldemar was wounded--a present from the British
government. The fittings of the room are mostly of varnished pine, to
which the furniture and hangings do no violence. There are a few good
paintings, among them a portrait of the Queen of Bavaria, which you
will remember for beauty above all the rest; nor will you easily
forget the marble head copied from the statue of Queen Louisa in the
mausoleum at Charlottenburg. From looking at the rarities, the
portress called us to hear the singing of an artificial bird, and
seemed somewhat disappointed that we did not regard it as the greatest
curiosity of all.

"A snug little place," said the Dresdener, as we walked from room to
room. "Not quite what your Princess Royal has been used to, perhaps;
but she will be able to pass summer holidays here agreeably enough."

And quickly the question followed: "But what do you think of the
marriage in England. Is it very popular?"

"Not very," I answered; "your Prussian Prince would have stood no
chance had the King of Sardinia only been a Protestant. Nothing but
her wholesome ingredient of Protestantism saves Prussia from becoming
an offence to English nostrils."

"_So-o-o-o-o!_" ejaculated the Dresdener, while he made pointed arches
of his eyebrows. "That sounds pretty in the Prince's own castle."

We went to the top of the tower, and looked out on the domain, the
mountain chain, and the encircling hills--among which the rocky
Falkenstein--the climbing test of adventurous tourists--rises
conspicuous. According to tradition, great things are in store for the
quiet little village of Fischbach; it is destined to grow into a city.
In the _Kittnerberg_, a neighbouring hill, a golden donkey is some day
to be found, and when found the city is forthwith to start up, and the
finder to be chosen first burgomaster.

Erdmannsdorf, once the estate of brave old Gneisenau, was bought by
the former King Frederick William III., who built in a style combining
Moorish and Gothic the _Schloss_, or palace, which, with its charming
grounds and bronze statues of men-at-arms at the entrance keeping
perpetual guard with battle-axes, rivals the Tyrolese and their
houses in attracting visitors. No barriers separate the grounds from
the public road, and you may walk where you please along the broad
sandy paths, under tall groves, through luxuriant shrubberies, round
rippling lakes, and by streams which here and there tumble over rocky
dams. The place is a miniature Chatsworth, with its model village.
Within the limits of the smooth green turf and well-kept walks stands
the church, an edifice with a tall square tower in the Byzantine
style. The palace, too, has a tall tower, from the top of which, on
our return to Erdmannsdorf--that is the Dresdener and I--we got a view
of the royal domain, and the scattered houses of the Tyrolese, and
always in the background the _Riesengebirge_.

Remembering their native valley, the Tyrolese named their settlement
Zillerthal, and many a one comes here expecting to see a romantic
valley. But all immediately beneath your eye is a great plain watered
by the Lomnitz--the stream which flows out of the Big Pond up in the
mountains--cut up by fields and meadows, crowded with trees around the
palace, and in the deer-park adjoining. Only in Ober-Zillerthal, which
lies nearer to the mountains, do the colonists have the pleasure of
ascending or descending in their walks.

The Tyrolese themselves built their first house entirely of wood,
after the old manner; and this served as model for all the rest,
which, with stone walls for the lower story, have been erected at the
king's expense. The colonists find occupation in cattle-breeding and
field-work, or in the great linen factory, the tall chimney of which
is seen from far across the plain; and are well cared for in means of
education and religious worship. In their _Friedhof_ you may see the
first Tyrolese grave, the resting-place of Jacob Egger, a blind old
man of eighty-three, who died soon after the immigration.

Not far from the palace is a singular group of rocks named _Käse und
Brod_ (_Cheese and Bread_), on the way to which you pass a stone
quarry, where you can pick up fine crystals of quartz, and see men
digging feldspar for the china-manufacturers at Berlin.

Here I parted from the Dresdener and took the road to Warmbrunn--about
six miles distant. Half way, at the foot of the rocky _Prudelberg_,
lies the village of Stohnsdorf, famed for its beer; and not without
reason. But while you drink a glass, the landlord will tell you that
clever folk in distant places--Berlin or Dresden--damage the fame by
selling bottled _Stohnsdorfer_ brewed from the waters of the Spree or

If inclined for a scramble up the _Prudelberg_, take a peep into
Rischmann's Cave among the rocks, for from thence, in 1630, the
prophet Rischmann delivered his predictions with loud voice and wild
gestures. He was a poor weaver, who fancied himself inspired, and,
although struck dumb in 1613, could always find speech when he had
anything to foretel. Woe to Hirschberg was the burden of his prophecy:
war, pestilence, and famine! The tower of the council-house should
fall, and the stream of the Zacken stand still. Honour and reverence
awaited the weaver, for everything came to pass as he had foretold.
The Thirty Years' War brought pestilence and famine; the tower did
fall down; and the Zacken being one of those rivers with an
intermittent flow, its stream was subject to periodical repose.

After frequent ups and downs, you come to the brow of a hill which
overlooks a broad sweep of the Hirschbergerthal, and the little town
of Warmbrunn, chief among Silesian spas--lying cheerfully where the
valley spreads itself out widest towards the mountains. You will feel
tempted to sit down for awhile and gaze on the view--for it has many
pleasing features--touches of the romantic with the pastoral, and the
town itself wearing an unsophisticated look. Seume said of the
Hirschberg Valley--"Seldom finds one a more delightful corner of the
earth; seldom better people."


     The Three Berliners -- Strong Beer -- Origin of Warmbrunn
     -- St. John the Baptist's Day -- Count Schaffgotsch -- A
     Benefactor -- A Library -- Something about Warmbrunn -- The
     Baths -- Healing Waters -- The Allée -- Visitors -- Russian
     Popes -- The Museum -- Trophies -- View of the Mountains --
     The Kynast -- Cunigunda and her Lovers -- Served her right
     -- The Two Breslauers -- Oblatt -- The Baths in the

I had gone a little way along the street when I heard voices crying,
"_Eng-lischmann! Eng-lischmann! Eng-lischmann!_" and, looking about, I
saw the three Berliners at the window of an hotel. "You must come up!"
"You must come up!" "You must come up!" cried one after the other; so
up I went. We had half an hour of yood-natured yossip about our
morning's adventures, not forgetting the merits of Stohnsdorf; and one
of them said something about the famous beer that justified the
Dresdener's criticism. "Isn't it yood? Isn't it strong? Why it is so
strong that if you pour some into your hand, and hold it shut for ten
minutes, you can never open it ayain!"

The old story. Some time in the twelfth century, Duke Boleslaw IV.,
while out hunting, struck the trail of a deer, and following it, was
led to a _Warmbrunn_ (Warm Spring), in which, as by signs appeared,
the animals used to bathe. The duke bathed too, and perhaps with
benefit; for near by he built a chapel, and dedicated it to the patron
saint of Silesia--John the Baptist. The news spread, even in those
days; and with it a belief that on St. John's Day the healing
properties of the spring were miraculously multiplied. Hence, on the
24th of June, sick folk came from far and near to bathe in the blessed
water, and some, thanks to the energy of their belief, went away
cured. And this practice was continued down to the year 1810.

Such was the origin of the present _Marktfleck_ (Market Village)
Warmbrunn. In 1387 King Wenzel sold it to Gotsche Schoff--Stemfather,
as the Germans say, of Count von Schaffgotsch, who now rules with
generous sway over the spa and estates that stretch for miles around.
It was he who built the _Schneegrubenhaus_; who made the path up the
Bohemian side of _Schneekoppe_; who opens his gardens and walks to
visitors, and a library of forty thousand volumes with a museum for
their amusement and edification; who established a bathing-house with
twenty-four beds for poor folk who cannot pay, and who spares no
outlay of money or influence to improve the place and attract

Warmbrunn now numbers about 2300 inhabitants, who live upon the guests
during the season, and the rest of the year by weaving, bleaching,
stone-polishing, and wood-carving. Of hotels and houses of
entertainment there is no lack; the _Schwarzer Adler_ and _Hôtel de
Prusse_ among the best. But as at Carlsbad, nearly every house has its
sign, and lets lodgings, dearest close to the baths, and cheaper as
the distance increases, till in the outskirts, and they are not far
off, you can get a room with attendance for two dollars a week, or
less. Of refectioners there is no lack in the place itself, or about
the neighbourhood.

There are six baths. The Count's and Provost's--or Great and Little
Baths--are near the middle of the village, separated by the street.
These are the oldest. The water bursts up clear and sparkling from
openings in coarse-grained, flesh-red granite, at a temperature of 94
degrees Fahrenheit in the great basin, and 101 degrees in the little
basin. It is soft on the palate, with a taste and odour of sulphur,
and in saline and alkaline constituents resembles the waters of
Aix-la-Chapelle and Töplitz. It is efficacious in cases of gout,
contractions, skin diseases, and functional complaints; in some
instances with extraordinary results. I heard of patients who come to
Warmbrunn so crooked and crippled that they can neither sit nor stand,
nor lie in a natural posture, who have to be lifted in and out of the
bath, and yet, after two months' bathing, have been able to walk

Although patients bathe a number together, the throng is so great in
the hot months that many have to study a lesson in patience till their
turn comes. Some, to whom drinking the water is prescribed, resort to
the _Trinkquelle_; and in the other bathing-houses there are all the
appliances for douche, showers, vapour, and friction. One room is
fitted up with electrical and galvanic apparatus, to be used in
particular cases.

With so many visitors Warmbrunn has an appearance of life and gaiety;
the somewhat rustic shops put on an upstart look, or a timid show of
gentility. The _Allée_, a broad tree-planted avenue opening from the
main street, by the side of the Count's _Schloss_, is the favourite
promenade. Here, among troops of Germans, you meet Poles and
Muscovites, some betraying their nationality by outward signs. I saw
three men of very dingy complexion and sluggish movement, clad in
shabby black coats, with skirts reaching to their heels, who seemed
out of place among well-dressed promenaders. They were Russian popes.
Great personages have come here at times in search of health, and on
such occasions the little spa has grown vain-glorious. In 1687 the
queen of John Sobieski III. came with one thousand attendants. In 1702
came Prince Jacob, their son, and stayed a year; and since then
dignitaries without number, among the latest of whom was Field-Marshal
Count von Ziethen, who took up his abode here in 1839.

There are a few paintings worth looking at in the Romish church: one
of them represents the rescue of a Count Schaffgotsch from drowning;
and in the Evangelical church hang two portraits, one of the present
king, the other of Blucher. But the museum established in the same
building with the library, by the liberality of the Count, is the
great attraction. Among the weapons you may see the scimitar which
Sobieski snatched with his own hand from the grand vizier's tent when
he raised the siege of Vienna; and near it a horsetail standard, a
trophy of the same event, brought home by Johann Leopold von
Schaffgotsch, one of the Count's ancestry. In other rooms are a
collection of coins, of maps and charts--among them a few old globes,
interesting to geographers--the Lord's Prayer in one hundred different
languages, a model of the _Riesengebirge_, and other curiosities,
which, with the library, afford abundant means for instruction and
amusement. Then there is music twice a day in the _Schloss_ garden,
and the theatre is open in the evening, besides the numerous
excursions to the hills and mountains around.

The _Allée_, about six hundred paces long, commands a striking view of
the mountain chain from its farther end, where the ground falls away
with gentle slope. I could see the prominent points which I had walked
over a few days before; and nearer--about half an hour's walk--the
Kynast, that much-talked-of ruin, crowning a dark-wooded hill. It
attracts visitors as much by its story as by its lofty and picturesque
situation. There once lived the beautiful but stony-hearted Cunigunda,
who doomed many a wooer to destruction; for none could win her hand
who had not first ridden his horse round the castle on the top of the
wall. One after another perished; but she had vowed a vow, and would
not relent. At last came one whose handsome face and noble form
captivated at once the lady's heart. She would have spared him the
adventure, but her vow could not be broken, and she watched with
trembling heart while the stranger knight rode along the giddy height.
He accomplished the task in safety; she would have thrown herself into
his arms; but with a slap on her face, and a reproach for her cruelty,
the Landgrave Albert of Thuringia--for he it was, who had a wife at
home--turned his horse and galloped away.

While sauntering, I met the two Breslauers--my companions on the
descent to the _Grenzbäuden_--and under their guidance explored yet
more of the neighbourhood. The guard at the frontier had treated them
mercifully, and after half an hour's detention in a little room
up-stairs, let them go. Since then they had been making the usual
round of excursions: to the fall of the Zacken, to the Norwegian
church at Wang, to the Annakapelle, to Hirschberg, and other
places--all within two or three hours' walk. Two days more and they
would have to return to the counting-house at Breslau. Near the
refreshment-houses in the fields young girls followed us offering
packets of _Oblatt_ for sale. This is a crisp cake, of agreeable
flavour, thinner and lighter than the unleavened bread of the Jews,
friendly to the enjoyment of a glass of beer on a hot afternoon; as we
proved by eating a few packets while emptying our tankards in full
view of the mountains, under an airy colonnade.

On our return to the village we met the _Wirth_ from _Schneekoppe_,
who had come down from his cloudy dwelling to bury a relative. I took
the opportunity to send my compliments to Father Hübner, with a hint
that his topographical information had not appeared to me of much more
value than his man's morality.

Mineral springs are frequent in the mountains. Flinsberg, a quiet
village on the Queiss, about four hours from Warmbrunn, in the
_Isergebirge_, is resorted to by women, to whom the saline water
impregnated with iron is peculiarly beneficial. One of the springs is
so highly charged with carbonic acid gas that the villagers call it
the _Bierbrunnen_ (Beer Spring). And a short distance beyond
Flinsberg, on the Bohemian side of the mountains, is Liebwerda, a
romantic village, where springs of health bubble up, and Wallenstein's
castle is within a walk. Quietest of all is Johannisbad, on the
southern slope below _Schneekoppe_, not far from Marschendorf. There
the fountains are lukewarm, and their influence is promoted by
complete seclusion and repose.


     Hirschberg -- The Officers' Tomb -- A Night Journey --
     Spiller -- Greifenberg -- Changing Horses -- A Royal Reply
     -- A Griffin's Nest -- Lauban -- The Potato Jubilee --
     Görlitz -- Peter and Paul Church -- View from the Tower --
     The Landskrone -- Jacob Böhme -- The Hidden Gold -- A
     Theosophist's Writings -- The Tombs -- The Underground
     Chapel -- A Church copied from Jerusalem -- The Public
     Library -- Loebau -- Herrnhut.

It was so dark when the omnibus from Warmbrunn arrived at
Hirschberg--about five miles--that I lost the sight of its pretty
environment, watered by the Bober and Zacken, and of its old
picturesque houses, the gables of which were dimly visible against the
sky. The town has more than seven thousand inhabitants, and for trade
ranks next to Breslau. Its history is that of most towns along this
side of Silesia: so much suffering by war, that you wonder how they
ever survived. A memorial of the latest scourge is to be seen in the
Hospital churchyard--a cast-iron monument in memory of three
Prussians, who, wounded at Lützen in 1813, died here on the same day.
Under their names runs the inscription: _They died in an Iron time for
a Golden_.

Not being able to see anything, I booked a place by _Stellwagen_ for
Görlitz, and supped in preparation for a night of travel. We started
at eleven, a company numerous enough to fill three vehicles, those
lowest on the list taking their seats in the hindmost. As these
hindmost carriages are changed at every stopping-place with the
horses, I and other unfortunates had to turn out at unseasonable
hours, and to find, in two instances, that we had not changed for the
better--soft seats and cleanliness for hard seats and fustiness. So at
Spiller: so at Greifenberg.

It adds somewhat to one's experiences to be roused from uneasy slumber
at midnight with notice to alight. You feel for umbrella and knapsack,
and step down into the chill gloom of a summer night; and while the
leisurely work of changing goes on, stroll a little way up or down the
roughly-paved street, looking at the strange old houses, all so still
and lifeless, as if they were fast asleep as well as their inmates.
Why should you be awake and shivering when honest folk are a-bed? and
you feel an inclination to envy the sleepers. If you turn a corner and
get out of sight of the Posthouse, the houses look still more lonely
and unprotected: not a glimmer to be seen, and it seems unfair that
every one should be comfortable but you. Or from the outside of a
house you picture to yourself those who inhabit it; or, perhaps, you
get a peep into the churchyard, or venture through a dark arch to what
looks like an ancient cloister, and your drowsy thought gives way to
strange imaginings.

But the night is chilly. Let us go into the Posthouse. There is
comfort by the stove in the inner room, and the woman who has sat up
to await our arrival brings an acceptable refreshment of coffee and
cakes. Steaming coffee, with the true flavour; and not sixpence a cup,
but six kreutzers. Then the driver blows his horn, and each one takes
his allotted seat, to slumber if he can through another jolting stage.

Greifenberg, a town of three thousand inhabitants, on the Queiss, is
proud of four things: manufacture of fine linen and damask, a griffin
in its coat-of-arms, and a right royal word of the Great Frederick.
Certain deputies having appeared before the monarch to thank him for
his prompt and generous aid in restoring the town after a great fire
in 1783--"For that am I here!" was his kingly reply.

About two miles distant is the Greifenstein, a basaltic hill, so named
from a nest of young griffins found on the top of it at a date which
no one can remember. It is now crowned by the ruins of a castle which
was given by the Emperor Charles IV., in the fourteenth century, as a
reward for service to the brave Silesian knight Schaffgotsch. Were it
daylight we might see in the Romish church a vault which has been the
burial-place of the Schaffgotsch family since 1546.

It was early morning when we came to Lauban, and changed carriages by
the side of the grass-grown moat at a break in the old round-towered
wall. The view from the adjacent _Steinberg_ is described as equal in
beauty to any other scene in Prussia. Unfortunately I had not time to
judge for myself; but hope to go and see some future day. Perhaps,
while waiting here, you will be reminded that Lauban was one of the
Silesian towns which, on the 19th of August, 1836, held a jubilee to
celebrate the three hundredth anniversary of the introduction of the
potato into Europe by the famous circumnavigator Drake--as the
promoters said. Of course potatoes cooked in many ways appeared
plentifully at every table over half the province.

We reached Görlitz at eight, and for some reason, perhaps known to the
driver, went through the streets in and out, up and down, across the
Neisse to the _Postamt_ in the new quarter, at a slow walking pace. I
had three hours to wait for a train, and to improve the time, after
comforting myself at the _Goldenen Strauss_, mounted to the top of the
Peter and Paul church tower. Erected on a rocky eminence, rising
steeply from the river, it commands a wide prospect. The town itself,
a busy place of more than 18,000 inhabitants, closely packed, as in
the olden time, around the church; spreading out beyond into broad,
straight streets and squares, well-planted avenues, and pretty
pleasure-grounds; and in this roomy border you see bleaching-greens,
the barracks, the gymnasium, and observatory. From thence your eye
wanders over the hills of Lusatia to the distant mountains--a fair
region, showing a thousand slopes to the sun. About two miles distant
the _Landskrone_ rises from the valley of the Neisse--a conspicuous
rocky hill bristling with trees. We got a glimpse of it from
_Schneekoppe_; and now you will perhaps fancy it a watch-tower, midway
between the Giant Mountains and the romantic highlands of Saxony.

The sight of that hill recalls the name of the "Teutonic
philosopher"--Jacob Böhme. He was born at Alt-Seidenberg, about a mile
from Görlitz, in 1575; and he relates that one day when employing
himself as herdboy, to relieve the monotony of shoemaking, he
discovered a cool bosky crevice on the _Landskrone_, and crept in for
shelter from the heat of the sun. Inside, to his great surprise, he
saw a wooden bowl, or vase, full of money, which he feared to touch,
and went presently and told certain of his playmates of the discovery.
With them he returned to the hill; but though they searched and
searched again, they could never find the cleft, nor the wonderful
hoard. A few years later, however, there came a cunning diviner, who,
exploring with his rod, discovered the money and carried it off; and
soon after perished miserably, for a curse had been declared on
whomsoever should touch the gold.

Fate had other things in store for Jacob, and allured him from his
last to write voluminous works on theosophy, wherein he discusses the
most mysterious questions about the soul, its relations to God and the
universe, and such like; and great became the poor shoemaker's repute
among the learned. Some travelled from far to confer with him; some
translated his books into French and English; some studied German that
they might read them in the original; and even Isaac Newton used at
times to divert his mind from laborious search after the laws of
gravitation by perusal of Böhme's speculations. That Jacob was not a
dreamer on all points is clear from what he used to pen for those who
begged a scrap of his writing:

     "_Wem Zeit ist wie Ewigkeit,
     Und Ewigkeit wie die Zeit,
     Der ist befreit von allem Streit._"[I]

There is something to be seen in the church itself as well as from
the top of the tower. It is a singularly beautiful specimen of Gothic
architecture of the fifteenth century. The great height of the nave,
with the light and graceful form of the columns and arches, produce an
admirable effect, to which the high altar, the carved stone pulpit,
and the large organ do no violence. It is one of those buildings you
could linger in for hours, contemplating now its fair proportions, now
the old tombs and monuments, and quaint devices of the sculptor's art.
Below the floor at the eastern end is an underground chapel, a century
older than the church itself, hewn out of the solid rock. Preaching is
held in it once a year. The attendant will make you aware in the dim
light of a spring that simmers gently up and fills a basin scooped in
the solid stone of the floor.

The church of the Holy Cross in the Nicolai suburb is remarkable as
having been built, and with a sepulchre, after the original at
Jerusalem by a burgomaster of Görlitz, who travelled twice to
Jerusalem, in 1465 and in 1476, to procure the necessary plans and
measurements for the work. There is a singularity about the sepulchre:
it is always either too long or too short for any corpse that may be
brought to it, and yet appears large enough for a Hercules.

The town possesses two good libraries, each containing about twenty
thousand volumes. In the _Rathsbibliothek_ you may see rare
manuscripts, among them the _Sachsenspiegel_; and a book which
purports to have been printed before the invention of printing,
bearing date 1400! The other library belongs to the Society for the
Promotion of Science, who have besides a good collection of maps,
fossils, minerals, and philosophical instruments. Perhaps here in
England writers and scholars in provincial towns will some day be able
to resort to libraries and museums as easily as in the small towns of
Germany. Many an English student would be thankful to find in his
native town even one such library as those at Görlitz.

The train from Breslau kept good time. It dropped me at Loebau, where
there is a church in which service is performed in the Wendish tongue.
From hence a branch line runs to Zittau. I stopped half way at
Herrnhut, the head-quarters of the Moravians: a place I had long
wished to see.


[I]  To whom time is as eternity,
     And eternity as time,
     He is freed from all strife.


     Head-Quarters of the Moravians -- Good Buildings -- Quiet,
     Cleanliness, and Order -- A Gottesdienst -- The Church --
     Simplicity -- The Ribbons -- A Requiem -- The Service --
     God's-Field -- The Tombs -- Suggestive Inscriptions --
     Tombs of the Zinzendorfs -- The Pavilion -- The Panorama --
     The Herrnhuters' Work -- An Informing Guide -- No Merry
     Voices -- The Heinrichsberg -- Pretty Grounds -- The First
     Tree -- An Old Wife's Gossip -- Evening Service -- A
     Contrast -- The Sisters' House -- A Stroll at Sunset -- The
     Night Watch.

I had seen the Moravian colony at Zeist near Utrecht, and was prepared
for a similar order of things at Herrnhut. A short distance from the
station along the high road to Zittau, and you come to a well-built,
quiet street, rising up a gentle ascent, where, strange sight in
Saxony, the footways are paved with broad stone slabs. Farther on you
come to a broad opening, where two other main streets run off, and
here the inn, _Gemeinlogis_, and the principal buildings are situate,
all substantially built of brick. Everywhere the same quietness,
neatness, and cleanliness, the same good paving, set off in places by
rows and groups of trees, and hornbeam hedges.

The innkeeper--or steward as he may be called, for he is a paid
servant of the brotherhood--told me there would be a _Gottesdienst_
(God's service) at three o'clock, and suggested my occupying the
interval with the newspapers that lay on the table. There was the
_Görlitzer Anzeiger_, published three times a week, Sunday, Tuesday,
and Thursday, four good quarto pages, for fifteen pence a quarter; and
equally cheap the _Zittauische Wochentliche Nachrichten_. But I
preferred a stroll through the village and into the spacious gardens,
which, teeming with fruit, flowers, and vegetables, stretch away to
the south, and unite with the pleasure-walks in the bordering wood.

At three I went to the church. Outside no pains have been taken to
give it an ecclesiastical look; inside it contains a spacious hall,
large enough to contain the whole community, with a gallery at each
end, and on the floor two divisions of open seats made of unpainted
fir placed opposite a dais along the wall. Whatever is painted is
white--white walls, white panelling, white curtains to the windows,
and a white organ. Something Quaker-like in appearance and
arrangement. But when a number of women came in together wearing
coloured cap-ribbons, passing broad and full under the chin, a lively
contrast was opposed to the prevailing sobriety of aspect. The colours
denote age and condition. The unmarried sisters put on cherry-red at
sixteen, and change it after eighteen for pink. The married wear dark
blue, and the widows white. Many a pretty, beaming face was there
among them, yet sedate withal.

The choir assembled on each side of a piano placed in the opening
between the benches, for the organ was undergoing a course of repair.
No practical jokes among them, as in the cathedral on the Hradschin;
but all sedate too. Presently came in from the door on the left five
dignified-looking sisters, and took their seats on one half of the
dais; then seven brethren, among whom a bishop or two, from the door
on the right, to the other half; and their leader, a tall man of
handsome, intelligent countenance, to the central seat at the desk.

The service was in commemoration of a sister whom in the morning the
congregation had followed to her resting-place in the _Gottesacker_
(God's acre). The choir stood up, all besides remaining seated, and
sang a requiem, and sang it well; for the Moravians, wiser than the
Quakers, do not cheat their hearts and souls of music. A hymn
followed, in which the whole assembly joined, the several voices
according to their part, till one great solemn harmony filled the
building. Then the preacher at the desk, still sitting, began an
exhortation, in which a testimony concerning the deceased was
interwoven with simple Gospel truth. His word and manner were alike
impressive; no passion, no whining. Rarely have I heard such ready,
graceful eloquence, combined with a clear and ringing voice. He ended
suddenly: a hymn was sung, at the last two lines of which every one
stood up, and with a few words of prayer the service was closed. It
had lasted an hour. The congregation, which numbered about three
hundred, dispersed quietly, the children walking as sedately as their

All the roads leading out of Herrnhut are pleasant avenues of
trees--limes, oaks, beech, and birch. A short distance along the one
leading to Berthelsdorf you come to a wooden arch bearing the
inscription, "Christ is risen from the dead." It is the entrance to
_God's field_; and if you turn on entering, you will see written on
the inside of the arch, "And become the firstling of them that
slept." The ground slopes gently upwards to the brow of the _Hutberg_,
divided into square compartments by broad paths and clipped limes.
Within these compartments are the graves; no mounds; nothing but rows
of thick stone slabs, each about two feet in length, by one and a half
in width, lying on the grass. All alike; no one honoured above the
rest, except in some instances by a brief phrase in addition to the
name, age, and birthplace. The first at the corner has been renewed,
that a record of an interesting incident in the history of the place
may not be lost. The inscription reads: _Christian David, the Lord's
servant, born the 31st December, 1690, at Senftleben in Moravia. Went
home the 3rd February, 1751_.

_A carpenter: he felled the first tree for the building of Herrnhut,
the 17th June, 1722._

_Went home_ and _fell asleep_ are favourite expressions occurring on
many of the stones. _A member of the Conference of Elders_ is a
frequent memorial on the oldest slabs, numbers of which are blackened,
and spotted with moss by age. There are two counts and not a few
bishops among the departed, but the same plain slab suffices for all.
The separation of the sexes is preserved even after death, some of the
compartments being reserved exclusively for women. As you read the
names of birthplaces, in lands remote, from all parts of Europe and
oversea, the West Indies and Labrador, you will perhaps think that
weary pilgrims have journeyed from far to find rest for their souls in
peaceful Herrnhut.

There is, however, one marked exception to the rule of uniformity as
regards the slabs. It is in favour of Count Zinzendorf and his wife
and immediate relatives--a family deservedly held in high respect by
the Brethren. Eight monumental tombs, placed side by side across the
central path, perpetuate the names of the noble benefactors. Of the
count himself it is recorded: _He was appointed to bear fruit, and a
fruit that yet remains_.

On the summit of the hill, beyond the hedge of the burial-ground, a
wooden pavilion is built with a circular gallery, from whence you get
a fine panoramic view of the surrounding country. The innkeeper had
given me the key, and I loitered away an hour looking out on the
prospect. Now you see the _Gottesacker_, with its fifteen formal
clipped squares, some yet untenanted, and room for enlargement; the
red roofs and white walls of the village; and beyond, the fir-topped
_Heinrichsberg_, and planted slopes which beautify the farther end of
the place. Berthelsdorf, the seat of the _Unität_, stands pleasantly
embowered at the foot of the eastern slope. You see miles of road, two
or three windmills, and umbrageous green lines thinning off in the
distance, the trees all planted by the Herrnhuters; and the fields,
orchards, and plantations that fill all the space between, testify to
the diligent husbandry of the Brethren.

Every place and prominent object within sight is indicated by a red
line notched into the top rail of the balustrade, so that, while
sauntering slowly round, you can read the name of any spire or distant
peak that catches your eye. The summits are numerous, for hills rise
on every side; among them you discover the Landskrone by Görlitz, and
the crown of the _Tafelfichte_ in the _Isergebirge_, the only one of
the mountains within sight. It is a view that will give you a
cheerful impression of Saxony.

The doorkeeper of the church had noticed a stranger, and came up for a
talk. I asked him how much of what lay beneath our eyes belonged to
the Brethren. "About two hundred acres," he answered, pointing all
round, and to an isolated estate away in the direction of Zittau;
"enough for comfort and prosperity." Once started, he proved himself
no niggard of information. To give the substance of his words: "I like
the place very well," he said, "and don't know of any discontent;
though we have at times to lament that a brother falls away from us
back into the worldly ways. Each fulfils his duty. We are none of us
idle. We have weavers, shoemakers, harness-makers, coppersmiths,
goldsmiths, workers in iron, lithographers, and artists; indeed, all
useful trades; and our workmanship and manufactures are held in good
repute. I am a cabinet-maker, and keep eight journeymen always at
work. Each one from the age of eighteen to sixty takes his turn in the
night-watch; and, night and day, the place is always as quiet as you
see it now. You don't hear the voices of children at play, because
children are never left to themselves. Whether playing or walking,
they are always under the eye of an adult, as when in school. We do
not think it right to leave them unwatched. We have service three
times every Sunday, and at seven o'clock every evening; besides
certain festivals, and a memorial service like that of this afternoon.
The preacher you heard is considered a good one: his salary is four
hundred dollars a year."

He interrupted his talk by an invitation to go and see the grounds of
the _Heinrichsberg_. As we walked along the street, I could not fail
again to remark the absence of sounds which generally inspire
pleasure. No merry laughter, accompanied by hearty shouts and quick
foot-tramp of boys at play. No running hither and thither at
hide-and-seek; no trundling of hoops; no laughing girls with
battledore and shuttlecock. I saw but two children, apparently brother
and sister, and they were walking as soberly as bishops. I should like
to know whether such a repressive system does really answer the
purpose intended; for I could not help questioning, in Goldsmith's
words, whether the virtue that requires so constant a guard be worth
the expense of the sentinel.

The _Heinrichsberg_ is behind the _Bruderhaus_ and the street leading
to Zittau. Here the fir forest, which once covered the whole hill, has
been cut down, and replaced by plantations of beech, birch, hazel, and
other leafy trees, and paths are led in many directions along the
precipitous slopes, by which you approach a pavilion erected on the
commanding point, as at the _Gottesacker_. The situation is romantic,
overhanging the brown cliffs of a stone quarry, with a view into a
deep wooded valley, spanned by the lofty railway viaduct. Here the
Brethren have shown themselves wise in their generation, and, working
with skilful hand, and eye of taste, have made the most of natural
resources, and fashioned a resort especially delightful in the sultry
days of summer.

When my communicative guide left me to attend to his duties, I
strolled up the Zittau road to the place where, in a small opening by
the wayside, stands a square stone monument, on which an inscription
records an interesting historical incident:

     _On the 17th June, 1772, was
     on this place for the building
     of Herrnhut the first tree felled._

     Ps. lxxxiv. 4.

It was cool there in the shade; and sitting down on a seat overhung by
the trees, I fell into a reverie about things that had befallen since
Christian David's axe wrought here to such good purpose. At that time
all was dreary forest; no house nearer than Berthelsdorf, and little
could the poverty-stricken refugees have foreseen such a result of
their struggle as Herrnhut in its present condition. All at once I was
interrupted by an elderly woman, who, returning to her village, sought
a rest on the plinth of the monument, and proved herself singularly
talkative. Perhaps she owed the Brethren a grudge, for she wound up
with: "Nice people, them, sir, in Herrnhut; but they know how to get
the money, sir."

About two hundred persons, mostly youthful, were present at the
evening service. The dais was occupied as before, but by a lesser
number. The preacher, the same eloquent man, gave an exposition of a
portion of the _Epistle to the Romans_, elucidating the Apostle's
meaning in obscure passages, which lasted half an hour. He then
pronounced a brief benediction, and delivered the first line of a
hymn, which was sung by all present, and, as in the afternoon, only at
the last two lines did any one stand up.

I was deeply impressed by the contrast between the two services here
in the unadorned edifice, and what I witnessed at Prague. Here no
ancient prejudice, or ancient dirt, or slovenly ritual, as in the
synagogue; but the outpouring of hope and faith from devout and
cheerful hearts. Here no showy ceremonial; no swinging of censers, or
kissing of pictures, or endless bowings and kneelings, or any of those
mechanical observances in which the worshipper too often forgets that
it has been given to him to be his own priest, and with full and
solemn responsibility for neglect of duty.

The service over, I went and asked permission to look over the
Sisters' House: I had seen the Brothers' House at Zeist. It was past
the hour for the admission of strangers; but the stewardess, as a
special favour, conducted me from floor to floor, where long passages
give access on either side to small sitting-rooms, workrooms, and one
great bedroom; all scrupulously clean and comfortably furnished. The
walls are white; but any sister is at liberty to have her own room
papered at her own cost. I saw the chapel in which the inmates
assemble for morning and evening thanksgiving;--the refectory where
they all eat together;--the kitchen, pervaded by a savoury smell of
supper;--and the ware-room in which are kept the gloves, caps, cuffs,
and all sorts of devices in needlework produced by the diligent
fingers of the sisters. There were some neither too bulky nor too
heavy for my knapsack, and of these I bought a few for sedate friends
in England.

The unmarried sisters, as the unmarried brothers, dwell in a house
apart; and as they eat together, and purchase all articles of
consumption in gross, the cost to each is but small. Two persons are
placed in authority over each house; one to care for the spiritual,
the other for the economical welfare of the inmates. There are,
besides, separate houses for widowers and widows.

As the sun went down I strolled once more to the _Gottesacker_ and
dreamt away a twilight hour on the gallery of the pavilion. As the
golden radiance vanished from off the face of the landscape, and the
stillness became yet more profound, I thought that many a heart weary
of battling with the world might find in the _Work and Worship_ of
Herrnhut a relief from despair, and a new ground for hopefulness.

When I went back to the inn I found half a dozen grave-looking
Brethren smoking a quiet pipe over a tankard of beer. We had some
genial talk together while I ate my supper; but as ten o'clock
approached they all withdrew. The doors were then fastened; and not a
sound disturbed the stillness of the night. The watchers began their
nightly duty; but they utter no cry as they go their rounds, leading a
fierce dog by a thong, while three or four other dogs run at liberty.
Should their aid be required in any house from sickness or other
causes, a signal is given by candles placed in the window.


     About Herrnhut -- Persecutions in Moravia -- A Wandering
     Carpenter -- Good Tidings -- Fugitives -- Squatters on the
     Hutberg -- Count Zinzendorf's Steward -- The First Tree --
     The First House -- Scoffers -- Origin of the Name -- More
     Fugitives -- Foundation of the Union -- Struggles and
     Encouragements -- Buildings -- Social Regulations -- Growth
     of Trade -- War and Visitors -- Dürninger's Enterprise --
     Population -- Schools -- Settlements -- Missions -- Life at
     Herrnhut -- Recreations -- Festivals -- Incidents of War --
     March of Troops -- Praise and Thank-Feasts.

While I sat by the monument of the first tree, and lingered in the
glow of sunset at the pavilion, a desire came upon me to know
something more of the history of Herrnhut. I partly gratify it in the
present chapter.

When the sanguinary Hussite wars ended in the triumph of the Jesuits,
there remained in Bohemia and Moravia numbers of godly-minded
Protestants, who, as the oppressor grew in strength, were forbidden
the free exercise of their religion. They worshipped by stealth,
hiding in caves and thickets, and suffered frightful persecution; but
remained steadfast, and formed a union among themselves for mutual
succour, and became the United Brethren. Their chief settlements were
at Fulnek, in Moravia, and Lititz, in Bohemia. Though professing the
principles of the earliest Christian church, many of them embraced the
doctrines of Luther and Calvin, whereby they subjected themselves to
aggravated persecutions; and cruelly were they smitten by the
calamities of the Thirty Years' War.

About 1710 a Roman Catholic carpenter set out from the little Moravian
village, Senftleben, to fulfil his three "wander-years," and gain
experience in his trade. While working at Berlin, he frequented the
Evangelical Lutheran church; and afterwards at Görlitz the impression
made on his mind by a Lutheran preacher was such that he went back to
his home a Protestant. He was a bringer of good tidings to some of his
relatives who were among the persecuted. He could tell them of a
kingdom beyond the frontier where they might worship unmolested; of a
youthful Count Zinzendorf, who had large estates in the hill-country
of Saxony, and was already known as a benefactor to such as suffered
for conscience' sake.

It was on Whit-Monday, 1722, that Christian David--so the carpenter
was named--brought the news. Three days later, two families, numbering
ten persons, abandoned their homes, and under David's guidance came
safely to Görlitz, after a nine days' journey. On the 8th of June the
four men travelled to Hennersdorf, the residence of Zinzendorf's
grandmother, who placed them under charge of the land-steward, with
instructions that houses should be built for them. But as the steward
wrote to his master, "the good people seek for the present a place
only under which they may creep with wife and children, until houses
be set up." After much consideration, it was resolved to build on the
_Hutberg_, a hill traversed by the road from Loebau to Zittau--then a
miserable track, in which vehicles sank to their axles. "God will
help," replied the steward to one of his friends, who doubted the
finding of water on the spot; and on the two following mornings he
rose before the sun and went upon the hill to observe the mists. What
he saw led him to believe in the existence of a spring; whereupon he
took courage, and, as he tells the Count, "I laid the miseries and
desires of these people before the Lord with hot tears, and besought
Him that His hand might be with me, and prevent wherein my intentions
were unpleasing to Him. Further I said, On this place will I build the
first house for them in thy name."

A temporary residence was found for the fugitives; the benevolent
grandmother gave a cow that the children might have milk; and on June
17th, as already mentioned, the first tree was felled by Christian
David. On the 11th of August the house was erected; the preacher at
Berthelsdorf took occasion to refer to it as "a light set on the hill
to enlighten the whole land;" and in October it was taken possession
of with prayer and thanksgiving, the exiles singing from their

     "Jerusalem! God's city thou."

The steward, writing about this time to inform the Count of his
proceedings, says: "May God bless the work according to His goodness,
and procure that your excellency may build on the hill called the
_Hutberg_ a city which not only may stand under the _Herrn Hut_
(Lord's protection), but all dwellers upon the _Lord's watch_, so that
day and night there be no silence among them." Here we have the origin
of the name of the place.

Meanwhile, the neighbourhood laughed and joked about the building of
a house in so lonely a spot, where it must soon perish; and still more
when the digging for the spring was commenced. The land-steward had
much ado to keep the labourers to their work. Fourteen days did they
dig in vain; but in the third week they came to moist gravel, and soon
water streamed forth in superabundance.

On December 21st the Count arrived with his newly-married wife, and
was surprised at sight of a house in a place which he had left a
forest. He went in; spoke words of comfort to the inmates, and falling
on his knees, prayed earnestly for protection.

In the next year, Christian David journeyed twice into Moravia. The
priests, angered at the departure of the first party, had worried
their relatives, and forbade them to emigrate under penalty of
imprisonment. Would not let them live in peace at home, nor let them
go. Aided, however, by the messenger, twenty-six persons forsook their
little possessions, their all, and stole away by night. "Goods left
behind," says the historian, "but faith in their Father in the heart."
They reached the asylum, where, by the spring of 1724, five new houses
were ready to receive them.

In this year came other fugitives, experienced in the church
discipline of the old Moravian Brethren; and as the number yet
increased, they besought the Count to institute the same constitution
and discipline in Herrnhut. But differences of opinion arose, and for
three years the harmony and permanence of the colony were seriously
endangered. The Count, however, was not a man to shrink from a good
work; he was remarkable for his power of influencing minds; and on the
12th of May, 1727, after a three hours' discourse, he succeeded in
reconciling all differences, and the Reformed Evangelical United
Brotherhood of the Augsburg Confession was established. This day, as
well as the 13th of August of the same year, when the whole community
renewed and confirmed their union in the church at Berthelsdorf, are
days never to be forgotten by the Brethren.

The success of Herrnhut was now secure. The number of residents had
increased to three hundred, of whom one half were fugitives from
Moravia. But they had still to endure privation; for they had
abandoned all their worldly substance, and trade and tillage advanced
but slowly: in the first six months, all that the two cutlers took
from the passers-by was but two groschen: a lean twopence. Friedrich
von Watteville, however, a much-beloved friend of the Count's, took a
room in one of the houses that he might live among the struggling
people, and help them in their endeavours.

Of the thirty-four small wooden houses which then stood on both sides
of the Zittau road not one now remains. In their place large and
handsome houses of brick have risen, which, though the place be but a
village, give it the appearance of a city. Besides those which have
been mentioned, there are the _Herrschaftshaus_, the _Vogtshof_--a
somewhat palatial edifice--the _Gemeinhaus_, the _Apotheke_, the
_Pilgerhaus_, and others. An ample supply of water is brought in by
wooden pipes, and two engines and eight cisterns in different quarters
are always ready against fire. There are covered stalls for the sale
of meat and vegetables; a common wash-house and wood-yard, and a
dead-house, all under the charge and inspection of a _Platzaufseher_--an
overseer who most undoubtedly does his duty. If ædiles in other
places would only take a lesson from him, their constituents would
have reason to be proud and grateful. An almoner is appointed to
succour indigent strangers. In 1852 he relieved 3668 tramping

Year by year the Herrnhuters improved in circumstances, though often
at hard strife with penury. However, they preferred hunger, with
freedom of conscience, to the tender mercies of the Jesuits at Olmutz.
The weavers of Bernstadt sent them wool to spin. In 1742 an order for
shoes for the army was regarded as a special favour of Providence. The
Seven Years' War, that brought misery to so many places, worked
favourably for Herrnhut. In one day a hundred officers visited the
place. Prince Henry of Prussia came and made large purchases, for the
work of the shoemakers and tailors, not being made merely to sell, was
much prized; and it sometimes happened that from 1500 to 2000 dollars
were taken in one day. Austrians and Prussians--fierce foes--rode in
alternately to buy; and while Herrnhut flourished, many erroneous
notions which had prevailed concerning it were removed by what the
visitors saw of the simple life and manners of the Brethren.

To Abraham Dürninger, who established a manufacture of linen cloths,
and whose skill and enterprise as a merchant were only matched by his
ceaseless activity, the colony owed the mainstay of its commercial
prosperity. Brother Dürninger's linen and woven goods were largely
exported, particularly to Spain, South America, and the West Indies,
and esteemed above all others in the market for the excellence of
their quality. The trade has since fallen off, but not the
reputation, as gold and silver medals awarded to the Herrnhuters by
the governments of Prussia and Saxony for honest workmanship amply

In 1760, notwithstanding that many colonies and missions had been sent
out, the population numbered 1200. This was the highest. The number
remained stationary until the end of the century; since then it has
slowly decreased, owing, as is said, to the decline of trade. In 1852
it was 925. No new buildings have been erected since 1805, so that
Herrnhut has the appearance of a place completely finished. The
streets were paved, and flagged footways laid down, eighty years ago;
and since 1810 all the roads leading from the village have been
planted and kept in good condition.

Well-managed elementary schools supply all that is needful for
ordinary education. Pupils who exhibit capabilities for higher
training are sent to the _Pedagogium_ at Nisky, a village built by
Bohemian refugees near Görlitz. Theological students are trained at
the seminary in Gnadenfeld, in the principality of Oppeln; and those
for the missions at Klein Welke, a village near Budissin, established
as a dwelling-place for converts from among the Wends.

Fifty-seven Moravian settlements and societies in different parts of
the continent of Europe--Russia, Sweden, Holland, Germany, some
founded by emigrants from Herrnhut, and all taking it for their
pattern, mark the growth of the principles advocated by the Brethren.
In England they have eleven settlements, among which Fulneck, in
Yorkshire, renews the name of the old Moravian village; and Ockbrook,
in Derbyshire, is the seat of the conference which directs the affairs
of the British settlements, but always with responsibility to the
Conference of Elders at Berthelsdorf. Scotland has one community--at
Ayr; and Ireland seven. At the last reckoning, in 1848, the number of
real members, exclusive of the societies, was 16,000.

Besides these, there are seventy foreign mission-stations, the duties
of which are fulfilled by 297 Brethren. The number of persons
belonging to the several missions is 70,000. That in North America was
commenced in 1734; Greenland, 1733; Labrador, 1770. The others are in
the West Indies, Musquito territory, Surinam, South Africa, and
Australia. At the instance of Dr. Gutzlaff, who visited Herrnhut in
1850, two missionaries have been sent to Mongolia.[J]

Although life at Herrnhut may appear tame and joyless to an ordinary
observer, it is not so to the Herrnhuters. A lasting source of
pleasure to them are the cheerful situation of the place itself, and
the delightful walks fashioned and planted by their own hands.
Lectures, the study of foreign languages, and of natural history, and
music, are among their permanent recreations. They excel in harmony,
and find, as their celebrations partake more or less of a religious
character, in the singing of oratorios, choruses, and hymns, an
animating and elevating resource. They observe the anniversary of the
foundation of Herrnhut, and of all other important incidents of its
history, and thus have numerous festival days. In some instances,
instrumental music, decorations of fir-branches, and an illumination,
heighten the effect.

Betrothals are times of gladness; baptism and marriage of solemn joy.
Weddings always take place in the evening; and in the evening also are
held, once in four weeks, the celebrations of the Lord's Supper. On
these occasions the whole community are present. Three or four
brothers who have received ordination, wearing white gowns, break the
thin cakes of unleavened bread and distribute to the assembly, and
when the last is served all eat together. The cup is then blessed and
passed in order from seat to seat.

On certain festive occasions love-feasts are held, after the manner of
the _Agapæ_ of the earliest Christian churches. At these gatherings,
which are intended to show the family ties which unite the members of
the community with the spiritual head of the church, suitable
discourse is held, hymns are sung; and cakes and tea--with at times
wine and coffee--are partaken of.

The Easter-morning celebration is especially remarkable. On that
morning the whole brotherhood assemble before sunrise in the church,
should the weather prove unfavourable; if fine, in the open air. Then
they walk two by two, the trumpets sounding before them, to the hill
of the _Gottesacker_, to watch from thence the rising of the sun.
Arrived on the height, they form into a great square: the prayers and
praises of the Easter-morning liturgy are then prayed and sung;
meanwhile the sun appears above the dim and distant horizon; a
spectacle in which the beholders see a foretoken of that glorious
resurrection where, in the words of a brother, "the grave is not, nor
death." Then the names of those who died during the past year are
read, and with affectionate remembrances of them the celebration

The service on New Year's Eve is so numerously attended from all the
neighbourhood round, that the church will hardly contain the throng.
At half-past eleven a discourse is begun, in which the events of the
year about to close are passed in review, with other subjects
appropriate to the time, until, as the clock strikes twelve, the
trumpet choir sound hail! to the new year. Then the verse

     "Now all give thanks to God"

is sung, and with a prayer the service ends.

Burials are characterized by a simplicity worthy of all imitation; in
striking contrast to the vain and oft-times ludicrous proceedings, by
which folk in some other places think they do honour to the dead. The
Brethren assemble--wearing no kind of mourning except in their
hearts--in the church, where a short discourse is delivered, and a
narrative of the deceased's life is read. The procession is then
formed, preceded by the trumpet-band, who blow sacred melodies; and
the corpse is carried on a bright-coloured bier, covered with a
striped pall, by four brothers, dressed in their usual clothes. The
nearest relatives follow, and behind them the community, according to
kin. They form a circle round the grave and sing a hymn, accompanied
by the trumpets, during which the coffin is lowered. The burial
service is then read, and the simple rite concludes with a

Not least interesting among the annals of Herrnhut are incidents
arising out of the wars which have afflicted Germany since the place
was founded. All day the Brethren heard the roar of cannon when
Frederick won his great victory at Lowositz; and a few days later,
forty-eight of them had to keep watch against an apprehended foray of
Trenck's wild Pandours. In 1757, General Zastrow quartered suddenly
four thousand men upon them spitefully, and in defiance of a royal
order to the contrary, keeping the peaceful folk in alarm all night;
but the troops were withdrawn in the morning, and an indemnity was
paid for the mischief they had committed. At times, long trains of
men, horses, and artillery would pass through without intermission for
a whole day--now Prussians, now Austrians, now heathen Croats. In the
same year three thousand officers visited the place, among whom,
during three weeks of the summer, were thirty-four princes,
seventy-eight counts, and one hundred and forty-six nobles of other
degree. Numbers of them attended the religious services of the
Brethren. The Abbé Victor was one of the visitors, and on his return
to Russia he said so much in praise of the Herrnhuters, that the
emperor gave him permission to establish the colony of Sarepta in
Southern Russia, which still exists.

In 1766 came the Emperor Joseph II., and by his pleasing manners and
friendly inquiries made a "lasting impression" on the minds of the
Brethren. In October, 1804, Francis I.--the Franzl of the
Tyrolese--with his wife. In 1810, Gustaf Adolf IV. of Sweden, who
expressed a wish to become a member. In 1813 the Emperor Alexander
came as a visitor, and examined all things carefully; and it is
recorded of him that while the children sang he stood among them
bareheaded. He was followed by three of the famous marshals--Kellermann,
Victor, and Macdonald.

This was a terrible year. With the retreat from Moscow came train on
train of wounded Saxons on the way to Dresden. Requisition on
requisition was made for linen and provisions; and one day, when no
more wagons were left, the Brethren had to supply two hundred
wheelbarrow-loads of rations. Night after night they saw the lurid
glow of fires, for seventy-one places were burnt in the circles of
Bautzen and Görlitz. Then came Cossacks, Calmucks, and squadrons of
savage Bashkirs, armed with bows and arrows. Then Poniatowsky with his
Poles, and Saxon Uhlans; and a review was held in a meadow behind the
_Schwesternhaus_, and the sisters made hundreds of little pennons for
the Polish lances.

In August, Napoleon was at Zittau. Daily skirmishes took place among
Prussians, Poles, and Russians, for possession of the _Hutberg_--the
best look-out for miles around. In September, Blucher came with
Gneisenau and Prince Wilhelm, and had the Prussian head-quarters here
for five days.

On the whole, Herrnhut suffered but little in comparison with other
places; yet the Brethren were not slow to rejoice for the evacuation
of Germany by the enemy, and the restoration of peace. "Praise and
Thank-feasts" were held, with illuminations and fireworks; some of the
fires being green and white, to represent the national colours of


[J] According to the Report for 1851, the latest I have been able to
get, the contributions received for missions in that year amounted to
86,221 dollars; the expenditure to 83,419 dollars.


     A Word with the Reader -- From Herrnhut to Dresden -- A
     Gloomy City -- The Summer Theatre -- Trip to the Saxon
     Switzerland -- Wehlen -- Uttewalde Grund -- The Bastei --
     Hochstein -- The Devil's Kettle -- The Wolfschlucht -- The
     Polenzthal -- Schandau -- The Kuhstall -- Great Winterberg
     -- The Prebischthor -- Herniskretschen -- Return to Dresden
     -- To Berlin -- English and German Railways -- The Royal
     Marriage Question -- Speaking English -- A Dreary City --
     Sunday in Berlin -- Kroll's Garden -- Magdeburg --
     Wittenberg -- Hamburg -- A-top of St. Michael's -- A Walk
     to Altona -- A Ride to Horn -- A North Sea Voyage -- Narrow
     Escape -- Harness and Holidays.

I fear, good-natured reader, that you will find this chapter too much
like a catalogue. I am, however, admonished by the number of my pages
that a swift conclusion is desirable. Moreover, my publisher--an
amiable man in most respects--is apt to be dogmatic on questions of
paper and print, fancying that he knows best, so I have no alternative
but to humour him; and, after all, you will perhaps say that it is
well to get over the ground as fast as possible when one comes again
upon much-beaten tracks.

From Herrnhut I travelled by rail to Dresden--Pianopolis as some
residents call it. Taken as a whole, it is a singularly heavy-looking
and gloomy city: some of the principal streets reminded me of
back-streets in Oxford. I saw the picture-gallery and the great
library; and desirous to see what our forefathers used to see at the
Globe--a play acted by daylight in a roofless play-house--I went to
the summer theatre in the _Grossen Garten_. It is an agreeable pastime
in fine weather, for you can see green tree-tops all round above the
walls, and feel the breeze, and enjoy your tankard of _Waldschloess_--
that excellent Dresden beer--while looking at the performance. A
clever actress from Berlin made her first appearance; she played in
the two pieces, and by her vivacity made amends for the miserable
music, which was unworthy of Pianopolis, and of the leader's intense
laboriousness in beating time.

I should like to take you with me in my walk through the Saxon
Switzerland; but can only glance thereat for reasons already shown. If
you have read Sir John Forbes's picturesque description of that
romantic country published last year in his _Sight-Seeing in Germany_,
you will not want another. I may, however, tell you, that you may
visit all the most remarkable places in two days. Leave Dresden by
steamer at six in the morning; disembark at Wehlen, walk from thence
through the _Uttewalde Grund_ to the _Bastei_, where, from the summit
of a bastion rock springing from the Elbe, you have a magnificent
view, with enough of water in it. You will see numerous specimens of
those flat-topped hills, resembling the bases of mighty columns, such
as we saw from the _Milleschauer_, and crag on crag, ridge on ridge,
the gray stone shaded by forest for miles around. You will perceive
Adersbach on a great scale; the same sort of sandstone split up in all
directions, but the precipitous masses wide apart, isolated, and with
glens and vales between all, glad with foliage and running water,
instead of crevices and alleys.

From the _Bastei_ you plunge down the zigzags among the crags to the
_Amselgrund_, past the waterfall, and by wild ways to the
_Teufelsbruch_ and the _Hochstein_, an isolated crag, from which you
look down into the Devil's Kettle, 350 feet deep. Then down through
the _Wolfschlucht_, a crevice in the cliff, which, where you descend
by ladders, looks very much like a wolf's-gully. It brings you into
the _Polenzthal_, where on the grassy margin of a trout stream,
beneath the shade of birches, precipitous cliffs towering high aloft,
something grand and beautiful at every bend, you will believe it the
loveliest scene of all. Then up the _Brand_--another out-look, and
from thence down to Schandau, where you pass the night.

On the second day, walk up the _Kirnitschthal_ to the _Kuhstall_, a
broad arch in a honeycombed rock on the top of a hill; from thence to
the Little Winterberg and Great Winterberg, the latter more than 1700
feet high--the highest point of the district, commanding a grand
prospect over hill and hollow, crag and forest. While gazing around in
admiration, you will perhaps wish that the old name--Meissner
Highlands--had not been changed, for there is but little of the real
Switzerland in the view.

Then on to the _Prebischthor_, crossing the frontier on the way into
Bohemia at a lonely spot, uninfested as yet by guards or barrier. The
_Prebischthor_ is a huge arch, more than a hundred feet high, also on
a hill-top, 1300 feet above the sea. Two mighty columns support a
massive block, a hundred feet in length, forming a marvellous specimen
of natural architecture. You can walk under and around its base, and
look at the landscape through the opening, or mount to the summit and
look down sheer eight hundred feet into the _Prebischgrund_. Here, as
everywhere else, you find an inn, good beer, and musicians, a throng
of tourists, and an album filled with names, and rhyming attempts at
wit and sentiment.

From the _Prebischthor_ you descend by the valley of the Kamnitz to
Herniskretschen, a village built on a narrow level between tall
frowning cliffs and the Elbe. I arrived here in time for the steamer
at two o'clock, by which I returned to Dresden. I had seen the Saxon
Switzerland from all the best points of view, and saw all the romantic
course of the river, except the eight miles from Tetschen to
Herniskretschen. A pleasanter two days' trip could not well be
imagined. Once at Wehlen, the places to be visited are but from three
to four miles apart; the way from one to the other is easy to find,
and there is constant diversity of scenery, to say nothing of the
talkative groups of Germans with whom you may join fellowship. But, in
truth, it is a region to loiter in, and you will wish that weeks were
yours instead of scanty days.

Soon after noon of the next day I was in Berlin. Travel the same
route, and you will no longer wonder at the rapturous excitement of
the Germans in the _Riesengebirge_. The country is one great
plain--little fields, marshes, sluggish streams, ponds covered with
water-lilies, windmills and sandy wastes sprinkled with a few trees
that look miserable at having to grow in such a dreary land. Here and
there a winding road--a mere deep-rutted track--winds across the
landscape, making it look, if possible, still more melancholy. Look
out when you will, you see the same monotonous features.

In our own happy country you would have the additional sorrow of an
uncomfortable carriage. To know what outrageous inflictions can be
perpetrated by railway monopoly, and endured by your long-suffering
countrymen, just ride for once from London to Lowestofft in an Eastern
Counties third-class carriage--you will have more than enough of North
German scenery and of English discomfort, but without the compensations
of German beer and German coffee. Or vary your experiences by a journey
to Winchester in a second-class on the South-Western line, and try to
enjoy the landscape through the wooden shutter which the Company give
you for a window. Go to Euston-square--anywhere in fact--and you find
that the passenger with most money in his pocket is the one most cared
for. Even the Great Western and South-Eastern Companies, who have
outgrown the short-sighted habit of building dungeons and calling them
carriages--even these mighty monopolists condemn their second-class
passengers to a wooden seat.

But on the line from Dresden to Berlin the third-class carriages are
far more commodious than any second-class I have ever seen in
England--except two or three at the Great Exhibition, which, perhaps,
were meant only for show. The seats are broad, hollowed, and not flat,
and with space enough between for the comfortable placing of your
legs. The roof is lofty. You can stand upright with your hat on. At
either end a broad shelf is fixed for small packages and light
luggage; and more than all, the same civility and attention are
extended by all the functionaries to third-class passengers as to the
first. We brag of our liberty, and not without reason; but let us
remember that the foreigner, though afflicted with passports, travels
at less cost and with more comfort than we do.

Here, too, my fellow-passengers made merry over the "_Palmerston
gehänget_" story; and many questions had I to answer concerning the
coming marriage of the Prussian Prince and English Princess. I gave
the same reply as to the Dresdener in the palace at Fischbach. One of
the company, who told us he was a professor of literature at Berlin,
inclined to be saucy. It was all a mistake to suppose that there was
one jot more liberty in England than in Prussia. He could speak
English, and knew all about it. Unluckily, by way of proving how well
he could speak English, he said we should arrive at "Twelve past
half;" whereupon I set the others laughing to take the conceit out of
him. He relapsed into German, and looked so unhappy, that, by way of
consolation, I told him of a countryman of his in England who went to
keep an appointment at "clock five."

Berlin is a dreary, malodorous city, or rather an enormous village
beginning to try to be a city; and fortunate in being the residence of
men of taste and real artists who know what architecture and sculpture
ought to be, as demonstrated by the improvements and embellishments
around the palace and in the approach to that fine street _Unter den
Linden_. You can hire a droschky to take you anywhere within the walls
for fivepence; but be patient, for whether droschky or omnibus, the
pace is as slow as if the drivers had to work for nothing. _Pour le
roi de Prusse_, as the French say.

Many a portrait of the English Princess Royal, along with that of her
future consort, did I see in the print-sellers' windows; and on the
morrow I saw how the Berliners pass their Sunday: not with shops open
all the day as in Paris, but with much beer, music, and tobacco in the
environs. I was simple enough to walk out to the Zoological Garden--a
few pens very widely scattered in a neglected forest plantation,
containing specimens of swine, poultry, goats, and kine, all made as
much of as if they were in Little Pedlington. From thence I walked out
to Charlottenburg, notwithstanding the offensive drains which border
the road the whole distance, and saw the tasteful mausoleum in the
palace grounds, and the lazy carp in the big pond. The Opera House was
open in the evening with _Satanella_, a "fantastic ballet," in three
acts; and crowds made their way out to Kroll's Garden--the Cremorne of
Berlin--where a play was acted in the theatre, and two orchestras
outside kept up a constant succession of lively music: one striking up
as the other ended. The number of tall people among the throng was
remarkable, and not less so the rapidity with which beer and coffee,
cakes and cutlets, were consumed. The numerous troop of waiters had
not an idle moment.

I wished to see the place where the most terrible tragedy of the
Thirty Years' War had been acted--where Tilly and Pappenheim--
Bloodthirsty and Ferocious--sacked a flourishing city just as the
foremost of the Swedish horse, commanded by Gustavus the Avenger, came
within sight of its walls. So I journeyed to Magdeburg: always the
same great plain on either side; but hereabouts fertile, and among the
best of the corn-land of Europe. The early train travels quickly: it
accomplished the distance in a little more than three hours.

I went directly to the cathedral, and, after a view of its noble
interior, mounted to the gallery, which runs all round the top without
a break. I stayed up there two hours pacing slowly round, surveying
the busy town, the bustle of boats and barges on the Elbe, the
citadel, the long line of fortification, and thinking over the history
of the terrible siege. Besides the cathedral, the town contains but
little to repay an exploration, and the people generally have a shabby
look, as I proved by experiment, so I walked up the river bank to one
of the suburban pleasure-gardens till the hour of departure
approached. At five in the afternoon--away by train for Hamburg.
Always the same great plain, heaved here and there into gentle swells.
We slept at Wittenberg, and were off again the next morning long
before the dew was dry. The plain abates somewhat of its monotony in
Mecklenburg, and breaks into low hills with green valleys and pleasant
woods between; and here, instead of groschen and dollars, we found
schillings and marks--schillings worth a penny apiece. Shortly before
eleven our long journey ended.

I went to the steam-boat office; took a place for London; asked one of
the clerks which was the tallest church in Hamburg; left my knapsack
under his desk, and made my way through the maze of picturesque old
streets to St. Michael's. The tower is 460 feet in height, and you
have to mount hundreds of stairs, the last flight, quite open to the
sky, running in a spiral round the pillars of the belfry. Some weak
heads turn back here; but if you continue, the view from the little
chamber at the top will reward you. A vast panorama meets the eye.
Miles away into Hanover and Holstein, all the territory of Hamburg,
across Mecklenburg, and down the broad river well-nigh to the sea,
sixty miles distant. The city itself is an interesting sight: the
contrast between the old and new so great; the bustle on the Elbe and
in the streets; the numerous canals, basins, dams, and havens; the
planted walks, all enclosed by green and undulating environs, make up
a picture that you will be reluctant to leave. Some of the windows of
the little chamber are fitted with glass of different colours, so that
at pleasure you may look out on a fairy scene below. The charge for
the ascent is one mark.

Afterwards, when perambulating the streets, you will discover that
Hamburg is a city not less interesting when viewed from the ground.
The narrow streets, the old architecture, the variety of costumes, the
curious ways of the traders, will arrest your attention at every step.
And you will find much to commend in the building of the new quarter,
and in the well-kept grounds and walks by the Exchange and around the

Seeing all this, I regretted that my stay would be but for a few
hours: however, I improved those hours as diligently as possible. I
walked out to Altona, and lived for an hour under the sovereignty of
Denmark while looking at the old council-house and some other quaint
specimens of architecture. Then turning in the opposite direction I
rode out to Horn by omnibus; walked from thence across the heath and
through the groves to Wansbeck, and rode back by a different road--a
little trip in which I saw much to admire in the pretty wayside
residences of the Hamburgers, situate so pleasantly among gardens and
trees, and the inmates taking their evening meal on the grass-plot in

I kept up my explorations till the approach of midnight warned me that
it was time to embark. The watch at the city-gate let me out on
payment of the accustomed toll--twopence at ten o'clock, a shilling at
eleven--and I groped my way along the quay to the steamer _Countess of
Lonsdale_. When I woke the next morning the pilot was being landed at
Glückstadt; and we steamed across the North Sea with no other incident
than that of nearly running down a Flemish fishing-boat in broad
daylight; and yet we had a man on the look-out. But for the quick eye
of the captain--who was telling amusing stories about the German fleet
to a party of us lounging around him on the quarter-deck--and his
sudden "hard a-port!" the little vessel would have been cut in two. As
it was, she escaped but by a few inches.

During the lazy leisure of a day at sea, I reckoned the sum of my
journeyings and outlay. I had walked three hundred and fifty miles,
and expended--up to Hamburg--fourteen pounds. The passage to London,
with etceteras, including an unconscionable steward's-fee, amounted to
nearly three pounds more.

A voyage of forty-eight hours brought us to London; and at four in
the morning of the 1st of August we stepped on shore at St.
Katherine's Wharf. It was a lovely morning: even London looked
picturesque in the clear rosy light. The opportunity was favourable,
and I took it for an hour's study of the busiest phenomena of
Billingsgate. Then I walked awhile, and sat on a certain doorstep
reading Goldsmith's _Traveller_ till the maid came down, very early,
at a quarter-past seven. Then I exchanged thick boots and a
comfortable coat for the garb of Cockneydom. And then--sensations of
liberty tingling yet in every limb, and swarming with happy
recollections through my brain--I went and crept once more into the
old official harness.

Harness in which I earn glorious holidays.


[K] There is something suggestive concerning the resources of
different populations in the following table of depositors in savings
banks: In Bohemia there is 1 depositor for every 64 of the population;
in Berlin, 1 in 12; in Frankfort, 1 in 10; in Hamburg, 1 in 6; in
Leipsic, 1 in 5; in Altona, 1 in 3.



     Adersbach, 228

     Agnetendorf, 213

     Alt, 59

     Altenburg, 16, 25

     Altendorf, 23, 227

     Altona, 299

     Amselgrund, the, 293

     Aschaffenburg, 3

     Auersberg, the, 50

     Aussig, 167


     Bamberg, 14

     Bastei, the, 292

     Beer, 49

     Berlin, 296

     Bernsdorf, 226

     Berthelsdorf, 273

     Bober, the, 226

     Bohemia, Geology of, 147, 238

     Bohemian Frontier, 55

     Böhme, Jacob, 265

     Bread and Semmel, 73

     Breslau, 220

     Buchau, 81

     Buchwald, 246, 248


     Carlsbad, 59

     Carpathians, the, 220

     Costumes, 20, 41, 44

     Czechs, the, 57, 98, 102, 120, 204


     Dittersbach, 247

     Dreikreuzberg, 70

     Dresden, 291


     Ebersdorf, 31

     Eckersbach, 33

     Elbe, the, 166

     Elbe, Source of, 208;
       fall of, 209

     Elterlein, 30

     Engelhaus, 76

     Erdmannsdorf, 249

     Erzgebirge, 17, 43, 50, 55

     Eybenstock, 48


     Fischbach, 250

     Flinsberg, 261

     Frankfort, 1


     Gabel, 192

     Geese, 86

     Gersdorf, 172

     Glass-workers, 179, 192

     Glückstadt, 300

     Görlitz, 265

     Greifenberg, 264

     Grenzbäuden, 223

     Grünheid, 196


     Hamburg, 298

     Hanau, 3

     Hartenstein, ruin, 88

     Hayda, 192

     Herniskretschen, 294

     Herrnhut, 269

     Heuscheuer, the, 220

     Hildburghausens, 25

     Hirschberg, 262

     Hirschenstand, 56

     Hirschsprung, the, 73

     Hohenstaufens, 25

     Hohensteiner Bad, 41

     Holstein, 299

     Horn, 299

     Horosedl, 99

     Hradschin, the, 126, 130


     Iser, the, 203

     Isergebirge, the, 220, 261


     Jeschken, the, 196

     Jews, 107, 131

     Johannisbad, 261

     Judenstadt, 132


     Kirnitschthal, the, 293

     Knieholz, 208

     Krkonosch Berg, 208

     Kruschowitz, 102

     Kunzendorf, 226

     Kunz von Kauffungen, 28, 37

     Kynast, the, 260


     Landskrone, the, 265

     Lauban, 264

     Liebau, 245

     Liebkowitz, 89

     Liebwerda, 261

     Lobositz, 158

     Loebau, 268

     Lohr, 4

     Lubenz, 89

     Luther, 24, 27, 39


     Mädelstein, 215

     Magdeburg, 297

     Markersdorf, 171

     Mecklenburg, 298

     Meistersdorf, 172

     Milleschauer, the, 158

     Mineral Springs, 40, 41, 62, 258, 261

     Mittagstein, 216

     Mittelgebirge, the, 158

     Morchenstern, 196

     Mulde, the, 33

     Music, 47, 153, 155, 167, 235


     Neudeck, 58

     Neudorf, 196

     Neustädl, 47

     Neu Straschitz, 102

     Newspapers, 51

     Niederkainsdorf, 40


     Oberhaselau, 42

     Oberkainsdorf, 40


     Planitz, 40

     Polenzthal, the, 293

     Prague, 114

     Prebischthor, the, 293

     Princes' Oaks, 17

     Prinzenhöhle, 23

     Prinzenraub, 18, 28, 35

     Przichowitz, 198


     Railways, 295

     Raudnitz, 158

     Reichenberg, 194

     Reinowitz, 196

     Rentsch, 102

     Riesengebirge, 213

     Rochlitz, 205

     Rock-labyrinth, 229

     Rübezahl, 207


     Saal, the, 4

     Saxon Switzerland, 292

     Schandau, 293

     Schatzlar, 226

     Schlag, 196

     Schmiedeberg, 247

     Schneeberg, 45

     Schneegruben, 211

     Schneekoppe, 215

     Schömberg, 243

     Schools, 53, 170, 172

     Schreckenstein, the, 167

     Schwanhildis, Princess, 39

     Schwarzkoppe, 223

     Simplon, the, of Prussia, 246

     Spessart, Forest of, 4

     Spiller, 263

     Spindlerbaude, 215

     Sprudel, the, 66

     Spürlingstein, the, 168

     Steinschönau, 191

     Stein Wine, 5

     Stephanshöh, 201

     St. Killian, 13

     Stohnsdorf, 254

     Synagogue, the, 136


     Tandelmarkt, the, 131

     Tannwald, 197

     Taunus Mountains, 3

     Tetschen, 169

     Theresienstadt, 158

     Triller, the, 32, 34, 37


     Ueberschar Hills, 244

     Ullersdorf, 244

     Ulrichsthal, 173

     Uttewalde Grund, 292


     Wansbeck, 299

     Warmbrunn, 256

     Weckelsdorf, 241

     Wehlen, 292

     Weisskirchen, 193

     Wends, the, 19, 22, 39

     White Hill, the, 111

     Wildenthal, 49

     Wilhelmsbad, 3

     Willenz, 90

     Winterberg, Great and Little, 293

     Wittenberg, 298

     Würzburg, 4


     Zillerthal, 253

     Zwickau, 33



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