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" And the shrill matin song nable castle, the scene of many an act Of birds from every bough,”
of feudal tyranny and oppression. This make the soul feel all the intoxication island is connected with the town, on of delight. These are intellectual plea- either side, by two bridges the one sures of a high and noble order ; but of stone, and uncovered the other of there are others of a less dignified, wood, and ornamented with a roof and though equally essential nature. I walls of the same material. The river mean the delight of finding one's-self runs here with frightful rapidity--the in a comfortable inn, after a long walk, wooden-bridge vibrates and trembles the fatigue of which, though by no for ever--and the first step a passenmeans painfully perceptible at the time, ger takes on it, he feels as it were a is generally quite sufficient to render slight electric shock. How the foundbodily repose most grateful—and the ations of such an affair could have increased relish which is bestowed on been laid I do not at all conceive, in every thing which reminds one of the the present state of my architectural immortal Beauvilliers, and the peerless knowledge. It must have been a perilRobert.
ous undertaking; for man or beast Proceeding along the banks of the falling into the water, at this spot, Rhine, the first place I stopped at was would never be seen or heard of till the well known colony of the Ro- he or it reached Rotterdam. In the mans, called Augusta Raurącorum, or course of half an hour I proceeded on Augst, (pronounced by the natives my journey, and about eight in the Owst.) The ruins are extensive, evening I arrived at Lauffenburg, my though much dilapidated. There still resting place for the night. It was remains a fine marble pillar, which now too dark to see any thing out of formed part of the temple of Jupiter. doors, so I contented myself with a The scite of the temple is evident from very elegant supper, the description of other relics besides the pillar; and which would occupy me a much longer there is a bath and aqueduct, neither time now than I then took to discuss of which, however, are at all interest- it; and having written some of the ing in their appearance, resembling preceding pages, I retired to rest, and more one of the sunk fences where the
was soon lulled asleep by the ceaseless bears are kept in the garden of plants flow of the mighty river. in Paris, than any
thing else I at pre 15th.-Of Lauffenburg, where I now sent remember. The situation of the am, what shall I say? That it is by colony is well chosen. It is built on far the most delightful little spot I a small eminence, in the centre of a
When I entered it, I green valley, surrounded with lofty thought, have I lived so long and never hills well wooded, and topped with heard of this Paradise? During those loose crags and overhanging precipices, dreams of the soul, which our hopes with here and there a solitary pine, and wishes create, and our reason is contrasting its sombre top with the unable destroy—when we wish to reblue heavens. At present, however, tire from the loud and stirring world, instead of the solemn tone of the and among the loveliness of some farpriest,.proclaiming the auspicious sacri- removed valley to pass the days that fice, you may hear the glad notes of the fate may have assigned us when the children of the valley, or the untutored mind endeavours to combine, in one voice of the mountain þard chanting scene, every beauteous image that me to the surrounding shepherds the fa- mory can supply, or imagination picmous song of the wild Tyrolese. ture, it would be impossible to con
Towards noon, I stopped at Rhin- ceive the existence of a more lovely felden, a singular village, where I took landscape. So sweet is this spot, that some refreshment, the day being ex the very winds of heaven seem slowly ceedingly hot. This place is situated and fondly to float over it, and the on both sides of the Rhine ;-the bed little summer birds sing more cheerily of the river is very rocky, and assumes amid its holy solitude. Since I have quite the aspect of a mountain-stream seen it, I have not been conscious of in every thing but in size and colour. feeling any emotion allied to evil. InHalf-way across, and in the centre of deed, what could make the heart evil. the town, there rises a rocky island, disposed among such general peace and and on this stand the remains of a happiness ? No mind can withstand once powerful, and no doubt impreg- the influence of fair and lovely scenery,
and the calmness of a fine summer I am informed that towards Schaffe evening, when there is nothing to pre- hausen they are so; but from Brissac vent it sinking into the farthest re to Basle, and somewhat farther up, cesses of the heart. For myself at they are of a clay colour, with a shade least I can say, that I never walked of green. Here, however, they begin with my face towards a fine setting to brighten ; the clay colour is less visun, without feeling it to be, as our sible, and the green is like that of a own most majestic poet has expressed shallow sea. Such, however, is the it, a heavenly destiny.". Nothing opposition the waters meet with in tends so powerfully to extinguish all this rapid, that the whole is one sheet bad passions as the contemplation of of foam of the most snowy whiteness. the still majesty of Nature. Perhaps When first I beheld this glorious pass, time so spent might ere long fill up the rays of the sun had just fallen on the void even of a desolate heart, and the river, while the steep bank on the cause it to wonder why it should ever eastern side was dark and obscure. have been wretched. Peace has visited The river shone like liquid silver, and the cell where the hermit retired to the waving tops of the birches and die in sorrow.
weeping willows constantly bending But what relation do such specula their long drooping branches into the tions bear to Lauffenburg ? I rose stream, “ stooping as if to drink," with the lark, and descended to the gave a character of life and beauty to river side, having heard a good deal of the scene, which passeth speech. Aa fall of the Rhine here. I was not bove that part of the river which has disappointed with the scene, but there the appearance of a little lake, the is no fall. . The river for some hun- mountains are lofty, and ranged like dred yards passes along a rocky bed, an immense amphitheatre, adorned and is confined within one half of its with vineyards and cottages, and ternatural channel ; there is also a great minated by precipitous crags and old declivity for nearly a quarter of a mile, romantic pine-trees. so that it has here exactly the appear
18th._I found the last-mentioned ance of an American rapid. The village so delightful, that I was almost rushing of the water is prodigious, rivetted to the spot, and wished that and the surrounding scenery is quite I had so arranged my plans as to alin unison with the voice of the de- low me to pass a couple of months stroyer. Every thing seems rent, up- there. This, however, could not well rooted, and overthrown, and placed be; so I left it this forenoon, and proexactly in a situation the most differ- ceeded onwards by the left side of the ent from that which nature must have Rhine. The greater part of my jouroriginally intended it should occupy. ney this day lay in Germany. The If you glance your eye over a sheet of road proceeds for many miles close to water, or a chain of rocks, you have the river, and a little elevated above not proceeded a few yards before you it. The banks on either side are green find the water and the rocks in oppo- and sloping—the river is smooth and sition to each other, and turning, rapid, and seems in some parts almost “ with aspect malign," in a direction to overflow its banks. It would be quite contrary to that which you at difficult to fancy any thing more beaufirst expected them to take. The tiful than many parts of my walk at banks are steep, and shaggy, and ro this time. Passing through Albrugg mantic in the extreme ; indeed, upon and Waldshut, towards evening I arthe whole, this little town of Lauffen- rived at Little Coblentz, below which burg possesses the most picturesque is the junction of the Rhine, with its situation I have ever beheld. It has great branch the Aâr, which river has the merit, also, of originality-at least a long and continuous course through I never saw any other to which it Switzerland, and is fed by streams bore the slightest resemblance. Im- from Neufchatel, the country to the mediately above the rapid, and at the north-east of the lake of Geneva, and head of the town, the river is very from the cantons of Berne and Zurich. broad and spacious, like a little lake It is nearly as large as the other it appears, in fact, as if collecting its branch; but, running at an angle with utmost strength to effect the passage the united waters, it loses its own through the rocks. The waters of the name, and assumes that of the Rhine. Rhine hitherto have not been clear. My favourite river, therefore, though VOL. IV.
still magnificent, is now much dimia man peasant.
We descended upon nished, but it is beautifully clear, of the town from an elevated ridge of a fine bluish green colour, and the land, from which I had a noble view surrounding country is as delightful of the old Rhine and the surrounding
country. About a quarter of a mile After passing the village of Co- from Schaffhausen, I passed close by blentz, we lose sight of the Rhine, a small mount surrounded by a stone though, in the stillness of a fine au wall, which altogether reminded me tumnal evening, its sonorous flow was of the druidical temple I had erected distinctly audible for some time af. near Basle. My attention was more ter it became invisible to the eye. particularly attracted to it by a group About nightfall I found myself in of children on the top, who seemed the town of Thungen; but not lik- intently examining something on its ing its appearance, I determined to surface. I accordingly ascended, and proceed another league to Luchingen, found, to my surprise, the verdant -having previously ascertained that sod covered with blood. On inquiry, there were no walls, or other hostile I found that this place was what the barriers, around the last-mentioned natives call the Rappen-stein, which city. There I arrived, accordingly, is the place of public execution. The in good time, and regaled myself with blood I saw was possibly still warm, an excellent bottle of hock.
as an unhappy malefactor had been treated with great civility, though it executed that afternoon. Their heads is rather an ill-regulated place, and are chopped off with a two-handed not to compare with Lauffenburg— sword, and this, by a dextrous execubut indeed what other spot deserves tioner, is accomplished by a single to be so?
blow. 19th.-On Wednesday I departed, During this day, I had not much before the mists of the morning had enjoyment. The scenery, no doubt, risen from the valley, and pursued my was fine, but the weather was oppresroute to Schaffhausen. An old ruined sively hot, the sky being without a castle was seen on the brow of a steep cloud, and the greater part of my
walk hill, with white clouds breaking a without a tree and the refreshing flow round it in a very picturesque style. of the river, which had so long deI crossed one or two small streams, lighted both eye and ear, with its with antique mossy bridges, but the mighty melody, was far distant. majestic river was inaudible. During 19th.-Schaffhausen is a considerable my walk this day, I recollected that I town, but dirty and ill paved. Withwas within a few days' journey of the in a mile or two of this place, is the source of the Danube; and being sud- famous fall of the Rhine, by many denly inspired with the desire of be thought the finest cataract in Europe. holding the parent of that famous It is certainly a glorious sight. The river, I struck off to the leftward, and river, owing to a rapid immediately entered the Black Forest, with the in above the fall, rushes with prodigious tention of crossing the Suabian moun- velocity--the body of water is very tains next day. After walking, how great, the breadth being nearly 200
for several hours, without meet- feet, and it falls from the height of ing a single being, and seeing no 80 feet. There are two or three high thing but bare hills before me, I be- castellated rocks in the centre, finely gan to think it might be as well to wooded. These divide the fall, but sleep beneath a human roof, particu- the spray rising from below, conceals larly as I felt both fatigued and fe- their bases entirely, and produces an verish ; so turning to the right, I a- appearance towards the lower part, of gain directed my steps towards the one continued mass of water. But the Rhine, the course of which could easi- scenery is really so superb, and the ly be traced by the fine woods and weather so delightful, that all descripcultivated fields on either side and tion is set at defiance; and I sit down thus ingloriously terminated my ex more from a praiseworthy habit which
rsion to the Danube. I arrived at I have got into of writing for a few Schaffhausen in the evening, having minutes every evening, than from any taken a near cut through a small forest hope, or even intention, of recording in the neighbourhood, at the instiga either my own feelings, or the general tion of, and in company with, a Ger- features of this heavenly country.
Many times since I entered Switzer one room of which is fitted up with an land, I have found, that those things excellent camera obscura. This gives which delight us most, are those con a beautiful picture of the foaming cacerning which not a single intelligible taract, with its gray rocks and rich sentence could be written, even by underwood, as well as of the vineyards those who command thecopious and ap- which encompass it, and their white propriate imagery suggested by poetic cottages. The continual descent of the genius, far less by one who is so little enormous river, the waving of the adversed “ in the set phrase of peace.” joining woods, and the dark shadows Besides, in the present case, my mind of the clouds floating over the vineis so pervaded by a noble passage of clad hills, produce the most complete “ the grand infernal peer," that any deception I ever witnessed. Indeed, I attempt at original description would could scarcely believe that it was only be alike vain and presumptuous. The a reflection of nature, and not nature's quotation is longer than those with self, and when the light was admitted, which I usually indulge myself, but the whole appeared to vanish rather by after writing the first line, it would the hand of enchantment than from be almost as impossible to refrain from natural causes. I would certainly adthe remainder, as it would be to arrest vise any one visiting this neighbourthe progress of the vast torrent which hood, to make a point of seeing the it so well describes.
camera, for I really think I derived as The roar of waters! from the headlong scene itself. The roaring voice of the
much pleasure from it as from the height; Velino cleaves the wave worn precipice ;
river renders the delusion perfect. The fall of waters ! rapid as the light,
I saw this fall from many different The flashing mass foams, shaking the abyss; points of view, each successively apThe hellof waters! where they howl and hiss, pearing finer than the other
and And boil in endless torture ; while the sweat though I arrived at the foot of it about Of their great agony, rung out from this eleven in the forenoon, it was halfTheir phlethegon, curls round the rocks of past eight in the evening before I rejet
turned to the Auberge. One view from That gird the gulph profound, in pitiless a pine wood opposite, is particularly
fine, and it was at this time adorned And mounts in spray the skies, and thence by a bright and magnificent rainbow. again
About eight o'clock, when every thing Returns in an unceasing shower, which round, was obscure except the foaming cataWith its unemptied cloud of gentle rain, ract, I was still seated by the river Is an eternal April to the ground,
side, enjoying its tremendous melody, Making it all one emerald
; how profound
Suddenly a stream of fire shot up from The gulf! and how the giant element From rock to rock leaps with delirious bound,
the rock close by, and threw a flood of Crushing the cliffs which downward worn
stars among the silvery waters. For and rent
a few seconds I was a good deal astonWith his fierce footsteps, yield in chasms a
ished at this apparent phenomenon, fearful vent,
and the unceasing voice of the river
deadening all other sounds, it was To the broad column which rolls on, and
some little time before I discovered shews More like the fountain of an infant sea,
that a smith's forge was built near the Torn from the womb of mountains by the foot of the fall
. It produced a singuthroes
larly beautiful effect, as this stream of Of a new world, than only thus to be light“ sprung upward like a pyramid Parent of rivers which flow gushingly of fire,” or gently bending across the With many windings, thro’ the vale : Look
water, rose and fell like a magnificent back !
plume of gold; and sometimes, when Lo! where it comes like an eternity,
it was about to expire, the bright As if to sweep down all things in its track, Charming the eye with dread, a matchless flickering flames gave a meteoric ap
pearance to the columns of
lar to that so frequently observed in a Immediately below this fall, the ship’s wake at sea. Salmon, and other circling waters of the river form a migratory fish, advance no higher up broad expanse, in which there is a the Rhine than the large pool below little island. On this there is a house, the fall.
ON THE DECLINE OF A TASTE FOR METAPHYSICS.
Nothing is more remarkable in the repeatedly admonished, through the literature of the day, than the substi- organs of popular criticism, that the tution, which has been accomplished, nature of his undertaking accords not of its ligliter branches, for the more with the taste or fashion of these severe studies by which the precede times; and has had the unmerited ing century was distinguished. This mortification, we are afraid, to find, important revolution is more palpable that the fruits of his profound and in the departments of metaphysics elevated toil have not been appreci and moral science, than in any other ated with that ardent fondness which branch of learning.
There is reason is the best stimulus and the most to believe, that notwithstanding the grateful reward of high and liberal outward deference still paid to the exertion. presciptive celebrity of Locke, Berke This is indeed a striking revolution ley, and Hume, these illustrious men in the literary taste of a country which are secretly rated in public opinion, has been distinguished above all far beneath even the popular favour- others for depth of thought and graites of the day. Their works are not vity of philosophical speculation. It now perused with that intense admir was in England that the national ation which they commanded half a foundations of moral and metaphysical century ago, and which the decided philosophy were first laid-the trambias of literary taste, towards the toils mels of scholastic form and fruitless and delights of abstract speculations, subtlety first vigorously burst-and can alone explain. If an occasional the true objects and just boundaries effort be made to recal attention to of science first delineated, with a sathis deserted region, where, in former gacity and precision to which the times, no small share of the glory learned of all nations have offered which belongs to our national literas their tribute of reverence and admirature was achieved, the attempt is in tion. It was in England that the so feeble and faulty a style, as to dis- genius of Bacon was nursed, in whose gust every ingenuous student of the immortal works may be traced the old masters, and to convince him, that outlines of all that science and philothe depth of thought and compre- sophy have since achieved, splendid hensiveness of views for which the as their triumphs have been in almost philosophers of England stood unri, every country of Europe. It was unvalled, have almost wholly abandoned der the same cloudy sky, that Locke, those who now attempt å vain com- exploring by the chart which his wonpetition with the strength and origi- derful precursor had left him, the yet nality of their genius.
untravelled region of metaphysics, We are aware, that there exist il- constructed a firm and massive fabric, lustrious exceptions to the absolute from the very fragments of which truth of these remarks ; but we speak new systems have been reared, and at present not so much with reference. new honours gained, for the seconto the merits of individuals as to the dary genius which has advanced in general state of public thought and the magnificent track of his invention. feeling. If it be true that we have For him the consenting admiration of yet among us a metaphysician of great every learned people conceded the talents and accomplishments, it is no high honour of having fixed an æra less certain, that even the lustre of his in the most abstruse, but yet the genius has been unable to win the most interesting and sublime of the public regard to that course of study sciences--of having cleared the founin which he has himself embarked dations, marked the laws, and dewith enthusiastic and boundless de- fined the limits of human thoughtvotion. Mr Stewart is almost a soli- of having laid deep in the rational tary example of high talent and fine and experimental philosophy of the accomplishment, wasted (as many human mind, the basis of moral and even of his admirers may imagine) on political obligation-of having exthe thorny and barren track of meta- plored the remotest principles of abphysical speculation. He has been stract speculation and of having given