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of sweetmeats” in Mexico, “ exceeds furnishing him with some matter for five hundred, and yet they have few reflection. Not that we mean to like ours.” Prodigious !
disparage the author of the aforesaid Fourthly; Jalap comes from the excellent history, by putting Mr. town of Xalapa, which is also “just- Bullock in the balance against him ; ly celebrated for the excellence of we shall remember Valentine and its washing." Our author assures us Orson as long as we live, and forget that he never saw linen look so “ Mexico" (at least the greater part well.” He also takes care to acquaint of it) as fast as we can. It is the us that “the operation is performed hard task of a critic to " go through" with cold water, and soap, and the every new work that issues from the linen is rubbed with the hand as in press, chiefly in order to fish out the England.” What would our dan- two grains which may be hid in the dies give for a Jalapian laundress ? author's bundle of literary chaff; we and what an accession of knowledge have done this with much reluctance do we not derive from Mr. Bullock's in the present instance, but if we save so minute inspection of Mexican the reader a similar labour we are not laundries?
critics in vain. There are a great number of Re- The following passages throw one marks equalling these in sagacity ray upon a subject which deserves a and utility scattered over our author's pencil,- the present state of the Involuminous pages :-we ought to dian native peasantry. consider ourselves doubly indebted to him for them, inasmuch as we are
We left Tolucca in the coach, and pro
ceeded about two leagues farther, where fully aware that no other man would the road for wheel-carriages ceases. Here, have thought of furnishing us with having procured horses and mules for the this kind of information.
whole party, which had been augmented A chapter on “ Humming Birds," by the addition of several persons going to and another (extracted from Clavi- the mine (among them a Yorkshire blackgero and Bernal Diaz) on Monte- smith), we ascended about a league, and zuma's House-keeping, console the then entered an extensive wood, which reader for all that Mr. Bullock has crowned the Cordillera, on the west side of forgotten to say on “ the two-legged the Table-land of Mexico. This was by featherless animals” of Mexico, and much the most beautiful scene I had witthe present economy of its Govern- of the noblest form and loftiest height,
nessed in America ;--abounding with trees ment.
most of them entirely new to me, but There is a musty Latin proverb,-. among them oaks and pines, whose size and “ no man is wise at all hours ;” and luxuriance eclipsed any thing seen in the the reverse is perhaps equally true, Alps or in Norway! We still continued to that no man is always foolish. Few rise, and in one elevated open place caught books are to be met with in which the last view of the mountains that surround there is not something that may as
the vale of Mexico : on our left lay the well be forgotten by the reader; and volcano of Tolucca, covered with perpetual few likewise which do not contain
snow; and shortly after we reached a desomething that may be advantage- file in the mountain, and began to descend
towards the Pacific ocean. ously remembered. There is no man from whose conversation an at- grand. The ground, being broken into
was now inexpressibly tentive listener may not collect hints abrupt hills, afforded many openings, of some value; nor any writer from through which the tops of the immense whose lucubrations, however con- forests below were scen to the greatest adtemptible, a careful reader may not vantage. In many places, for a consi. gather some grains of knowledge. derable distance, our path was shaded by Even the redoubied history of “ Va- trees of an amazing height, so close as lentine and Orson
may afford us
almost to exclude the light, -on emerging some lights with respect to the man
suddenly from which the most enchanting niers of those times, and the court of prospects were spread beneath our feet; King Pepin. In the same way, a
the summits of gigantic volcanos, receding
like steps beneath us, seemed to lead the penetrating reader may discover one
eye to the waters of the Pacific, to which two things in this .volume on
the mountain-torrents we passed were hasMexico which (perhaps without the tening. The descent now became very author's intending it) are capable of steep, so that in many places we were
obliged to alight from our mules, and pro- and a variety of other pretty devices, in ceed, with cautious steps, over broken honour of their patron. masses of basalt and other volcanic sub- Opposite the door, under a venerable stances, where not a trace of the labour of cedar, of great size, was a small temple man was visible, or any circumstances that and altar, decorated in a sirnilar manner, could remind us of being in an inhabited with the addition of several human skulls, country; except occasionally meeting small quite clean, and as white as ivory. Round groups of Indians, carrying the productions the great tree some men were employed in of their little farms to the market of To- splitting pieces of candle-wood, a species of lucca, or even as far as Mexico. From pine which contains a considerable quantity these simple people the unprotected travel- of resin, and which, being lighted, burns ler has nothing to fear; they are the most with a clear flame like a candle. courteous, gentle, and unoffending crea- I rambled through the village and the tures in existence, and never pass, without surrounding plantations of the maguey or saluting a stranger. Their burthens con- aloe: many of the plants were then prosisted generally of fruit, fowls, turkeys, ducing the pulque. Night was approachmats, shingles of wood for roofs of houses, ing, and I hastened my pace, to reach our and sometimes of charcoal. They gene- lodging, when the bell suddenly tolled in a rally had their wives and daughters with quick manner, and in an instant the churchthem ;-clean, modest-looking women, car. yard was brilliantly illuminated by the rying heavy burthens exclusive of the chil. flame of eight piles of the candlewood, dren usually fastened on their backs. Af- prepared for that purpose; the effect was ter a descent of several hours through this heightened, by its being quite unexpected. ever-varying and sublime scenery, to the On my entering the churchyard four men effect of which a thunder-storm added much discharged a flight of rockets, which was majesty, we arrived at a small plain, sur- instantly answered by a similar salute rounded on all sides by pine-capped moun- from every house in the place: this was tains. In the centre of this, in the midst the commencement of the fete for the fol. of highly cultivated ground, rose the neat lowing day. In a quarter of an hour the little Indian church and village of St. bonfires were extinguished, and the church Miguel de los Ranchos, placed in one of doors closed ; and we retired to our place the most delightful situations and lovely of rest to take the homely supper provided climates in the world. On the mountain for us by our new friends, which had been we might almost have complained of cold, prepared in a house in the village. Our but the descent had brought us into a tem- meal was not finished when a message reperature resembling the finest parts of quested our speedy attendance in the Europe, and our approach to the village church : on entering, we found it illumi. just before sunset brought home strongly to nated, and crowded by numbers of persons, our recollection. Our path lay through of both sexes. Dancing, with singular corn fields, orchards, and gardens. Apples, Indian ceremonies, had commenced in front pears, and peaches, almost obstructed our of the altar, which to my astonishment I way; and fields of potatoes and beans in immediately recognised to be of the same blossom might, but for the swarthy and nature as those in use before the introducthinly clothed inhabitants, who gazed with tion of Christianity. The actors consisted surprise at our advance, and the luxuriance of five men and three women, grotesquely of the Nopal or the great American Aloe, but richly dressed, in the fashion of the in full bloom, have made us fancy ourselves time of Montezuma. One young man, in England. We rode up to the church, meant to personate that monarch, wore a and on dismounting presently found our- high crown, from which rose a plume of selves surrounded by numbers of men and red feathers. The first part of the drama boys, all eager to render us any assistance consisted of the representation of a warrior in their power. A small room adjoining taking leave of his family preparatory to this edifice, called the comunidad, provided going to battle;—a man and woman danced by Government for the reception of in front of the altar, and clearly expressed strangers, was pointed out to us as our resi- the parting scene, and knelt down and sodence for the night; where having spread lemnly prayed for the success of his underour mattresses on the floor, and given the taking. The next act commenced with Indians directions for the suppers of our- two warriors, superbly dressed; one, a selves and horses, we walked out to examine Mexican, was distinguished by the supethe church. It was the eve of the feast of rior height of his head-dress, and by a St. Mark, or, as the Indians who accom- piece of crimson silk suspended from his panied us called him, Nostras Bueno shoulders: after dancing some time, a Amigo (our good friend).
mock fight began, which, after various The church was gaudily ornamented evolutions, terminated of course in the with pictures and statues, and had that day Mexican taking his enemy prisoner, and been dressed with fruits, flowers, palm dragging him by his hair into the preblossoms, &c., disposed in arches, chaplets, sence of his sovereign ; when the dance
was resumed, and the vanquished fre- serpents, and its drapery is composed of quently implored mercy, both from his con- wreathed snakes, interwoven in the most queror and the monarch. The various disgusting manner, and the sides terminatparts were admirably performed: - No ing in the wings of a vulture. Its feet are pantomime could be better, and I almost those of the tiger, with claws extended in expected to see the captive sacrificed to the the act of seizing its prey, and between gods.
them lies the head of another rattle-snake,
which seems descending from the body of I would as soon trust myself alone in the idol. Its decorations accord with its their cottages for the night, and could re- horrid form, having a large necklace compose ia as much security, as in those of an posed of human hearts, hands, and skulls, English peasant. The respect and civility and fastened together by the entrails,with which they treat strangers border the deformed breasts of the idol only re. almost on servility. On going to and re- maining uncovered. It has evidently been turning from Themascaltepec, I have painted in natural colours, which must passed four nights in the Indian town of have added greatly to the terrible effect it Št. Miguel de los Ranchos, in which is not was intended to inspire in its votaries. a white inhabitant, and never met with During the time it was exposed, the more kindness, honesty, and hospitality in court of the University was crowded with any country. I have spent some delight- people, most of whom expressed the most ful hours in this little hamlet, which is decided anger and contempt. Not so how. about eighteen miles from Themascaltepec, ever all the Indians ;-I attentively marked and situated in one of the most enchanting their countenances ; not a smile escaped valleys in the world, and they seem the them, or even a word-all was silence and most contented of mankind. I wished attention. In reply to a joke of one of the much to have brought one of them to students, an old Indian remarked, “ It is England, but nothing could induce them true we have three very good Spanish gods, to leave the lovely spot on which they are but we might still have been allowed to placed.
keep a few of those of our ancestors !” and
I was informed that chaplets of flowers It would appear from all our au- had been placed on the figure by natives thor says upon this matter, that the who had stolen thither, unseen, in the Indian peasantry are a happy, sim- evening for that purpose ; a proof that, ple, innocent, and ignorant race of notwithstanding the extreme diligence of people. Three centuries of civiliza- the Spanish clergy for three hundred years, tion have neither injured their moral there still remains some taint of heathen feelings nor improved their moral superstition among the descendants of the faculties. They are as good-hearted original inhabitants. In a week the cast and weak-headed as
was finished, and the goddess again com
The early opinion of the Spanish settlers the profane gaze of the vulgar.
mitted to her place of interment, hid from in America would seem, therefore, no longer either unjust or illiberal. Are not these facts a complete reWe beg the reader to couple the futation of the Abbe Clavigero's pepreceding extract with this in which tulant objections to Robertson's acMr. Bullock speaks of the disinter- count of the state of religion amongst ment of a Mexican ido), 'Teoyamiqui, the Indians, and their incapacity to the goddess of war:
understand and relish the sublime Some writers have accused the Spanish bitant of the city of Mexico talking
doctrines of Christianity ? An inhaauthors of exaggeration in their accounts of the religious ceremonies of this, in other of “three very good Spanish gods respects, enlightened people ; but a view and wishing for “ a few of those of of the idol under consideration will of it- his ancestors” to keep the former self be sufficient to dispel any doubt on company! Chaplets of flowers being the subject. It is scarcely possible for the secretly wreathed round the temples most ingenious artist to have conceived a of the goddess Teoyamiqui, and antistatue better adapted to the intended pur- Christian ceremonies openly performpose; and the united talents and imagina- ed in a Christian church! Truly tion of Breughel and Fuseli would in vain these people must have made adhave attempted to improve it. This colossal and horrible monster is
rectors, canons, and dochewn out of one solid block of basalt, nine tors,” as M. Clavigero will have it, feet high, its outlines giving an idea of a
and no doubt may have produced deformed human figure, uniting all that is amongst them "as report goes, even horrible in the tiger and rattle-snake: in- a very learned bishop”! We should stead of arms it is supplied with two large be glad to have the opinion of any
Bullock's Mexico. learned Indian bishop now existing minutes perceived the object of our search. on the character of Leo the Iconoclast, It was cut in the solid rock, and standing or to have his grace explain to us the
out like a martin's nest from the side of a precise degree of inspiration derived house. It is not only an extraordinary by the hermits of Mount Athos from bath, but still more extraordinarily placed. an incessant contemplation of their It is a beautiful basin about twelve feet navels.
long by eight wide, having a well about Robertson is however not always rounded by a parapet or rim two feet six
five feet by four deep in the centre, surright, nor Clavigero always wrong inches high, with a throne or chair, such when he opposes him. The dea
as is represented in ancient pictures to have scription of the ruins denominated been used by the kings. There are steps “ Montezuma's Bath,” clearly proves to descend into the basin or bath ; the that our countryman very consider whole cut out of the living porphyry rock able underrated the degree of civili- with the most mathematical precision, and zation to which ancient Mexico had polished in the most beautiful manner. arrived before the Spanish invasion :
This bath commands one of the finest pros.
pects in the Mexican valley, including the Whilst at our dinner, we were informed greater part of the lake of Tezcuco, and the that at a distance of only two leagues was a
city of Mexico, from which it is distant place called Baño de Montezuma, and that about thirty miles. it had formerly been used as a bath by that Night was fast approaching, and the sky monarch. A gentleman of the town, Don portending a thunder-storm, we Trinidad Rosalia, offered to escort us, and obliged to depart ; and now I had occasion in a few minutes we were on horseback : to regret the hours I had unprofitably lost after a smart çanter through cultivated at the cock-fight. I had just time to make grounds, and over a fine plain, bounded by
a hurried sketch for a model, and my son the mountains of the Cordilleras, we ap- to take a slight drawing, when we were reproached an hacienda and church,* and luctantly forced to quit a spot which had here I expected to find the bath of which been the site of a most singular and ancient we were in search, in some subterraneous residence of the former monarchs of the place, but learnt to my surprise that we had country. As we descended, our guide to mount a conical mountain called Tesco- showed us in the rock a large reservoir for singo. We employed our horses as far as supplying with water the palace, whose they could take us, but the unevenness of walls still remained eight feet high ; and the ground at last obliged us to dismount, as we examined farther, we found that the and having fastened them to a nopal tree,
whole mountain had been covered with we scrambled with great difficulty through palaces, temples, baths, hanging gardens, bushes and over loose stones, which were &c. yet this place has never been noticed in great quantities on all sides, and at last by any writer. perceived that we were on the ruins of a I am of opinion that these were antiqui. very large building—the cemented stones ties prior to the discovery of America, and remaining in some places covered with erected by a people whose history was lost stucco, and forming walks and terraces, even before the building of the city of but much encumbered with earth fallen Mexico. In our way down we collected from above, and overgrown with a wood of specimens of the stucco which covered the nopal, which made it difficult to ascend. terrace, still as hard and beautiful as any In some places the terraces were carried
found at Portici or Herculaneum. Don T. over chasms by solid pieces of masonry ;
Rosalia informed us that we had seen but in others cut through the living rock : but, the commencement of the wonders of the as we endeavoured to proceed in a straight place;—that there were traces of buildings line, our labour was very great, being to the very top still discernible :—that the sometimes obliged to climb on our hands mountain was perforated by artificial excaand knees. By the assistance of under vations, and that a flight of steps led to one wood, however, at length, after passing near the top, which he himself had entered, several buildings and terraces, the stucco
but which no one as yet had courage to of which appeared fresh and of a fine explore, although it was believed that impeach colour, we arrived at about two merse riches were buried in it. thirds of the height of the hill, almost exhausted with our exertions ; and great in
The carving of the Sacrificial deed was our disappointment when we
Altar and several other relics of antifound that our guide had mistaken the quity, casts of which we saw in Mr. situation, and did not know exactly where Bullock's collection, betray in our
Greatly chagrined, we began to opinion a much higher state of the retrace our steps; and luckily in a few art which produced them than Ro
• Every person who builds an hacienda is by law compelled to erect a church also.
bertson is willing to acknowledge. of his imported curiosities is to be In the plate at the end of his own had for a few shillings at the Egypvolumes containing certain engrav, tian Hall, and is much fuller than any ings of Mexican sculpture, there are given in this expensive
volume. to our eye many indications of cul. To conclude: Mr. Bullock thinks tivated taste and great dexterity in that the publication of “ Ackermann's the use of the chisel. Many of the Fashions" would do more to forward figures are grotesque, but we cannot the interests of English haberdashery agree that they are either “ awk, with the people of New Spain, than ward" or
“ destitute of propriety." any other method which could be They possess, on the contrary, a great devised, -especially if assisted by an deal of ease and just expression in exportation of " milliners,” to that their outlines and features respec- country at the same time. We think tively.
he is right, and would advise the We will trouble our reader with worshipful Company of Haberdashers no more extracts from Mr. Bullock’s to hold a deliberation upon the best book, nor remarks of our own. It means of putting this theory into is enough to add, that a description practice.
THE REVELATION OF BEAUTY.
Theocrit. Idyll. 17.
Whence then the inward energy which lists
Virtue alone can clear the internal sight
Strike then the chords, ye followers of the Muse,
Vid. Plotin. in Nat, Mal.
# Vid. Plat. in Phaedr. &c.