Imágenes de páginas

we find

it you.

by the author to add poignancy to her own chain of the Cordilleras, and the three gigan. remarks. We are disposed, however, to tic volcanoes of Arequipa spread before our make some allowance for the circumstances eyes. At sight of this magnificent scene I under which the above was written when lost all sense of suffering: *** high moun

tains united earth with heaven and extended beyond the ocean of undulating sand whose

wandered along “ Alas! I was scarcely in bed before I dis- course they stayed. My eye covered that it was a perfect nest of fleas; till these silver waves till they were confounded this moment I had not been inconvenienced : with the azure vault, and ihen turned towards but now their stings inflamed my blood to those traversers (marchepieds) of the skies, fever. * * * Madame Justo said to me with those mighty, mountains whose range is embarrassment, Mademoiselle, I did not dare boundless, whose thousand snow.covered tell you of what was requisite to diminish the tops sparkle with the solar refraction, and inconvenience; but this evening I will teach trace upon the Heavens the western limit of

the desert in all the colours of the prism. In. “She placed four or five chairs in succes- finitude whelmed my senses in stupor; my sion so that the last reached the bed. She soul was penetrated, and as once to the shepmade me undress on the first chair, I then herd of Horeb, the Deity manifested himself passed to the second without my chemise, before me in all his might, in all his splenand Madame Justo carried all my clothes out dour. My view next turned to the three vol. of the room,-advising me to rub myself with canoes of Arequipa, united at their base, and a towel to get rid of the feas sticking to me. presenting there chaos in all its confusion; I passed from chair to chair to the bed, where raising to the clouds their three snow.cover. I took a clean chemise lavishly sprinkled ed summits, reflecting the sun-beams and at with Eau de Cologne, and thus obtained two times the earthly (volcanic) flames; an im. hours' rest; after which I was again assailed mense flambcau of three branches lighted for by thousands."

mystic solemnities, the symbol of a Trinity

surpassing our powers of comprehension. 'I A little more cleanliness, she observes, was in ecstasy, and sought not to discover would much diminish the inconvenience the mysteries of creation. * * * Never had which infests Peru to such a degree: at sight so moved me; neither the waves of the Islay these insects are seen on the sands; vast ocean in their fearful rage, or when agienjoying the breeze and each doubtless, tated and sparkling in light on tropical nights; like Chryses,

oor the glorious sunset of the equinoctial

line; nor the majesty of Heaven glowing Pacing alone by the border of the far-echoing with innumerable stars."

She is witness to the effects of the mirage From hence for Arequipa Madame Tris. (a word, it is remarkable, familiar to Scantan set off on one of the worst of miserable dinavia as to the East;) and feels relief after mules, seated on a carpet covering a cush. sunset, when the breeze from the snowy ion stuffed with straw, called a torche, and mountains is as cold as the day was hot. in defiance of her friends' entreaties; for it They reach at length a miserable shed, seems she reposed on her moral strength built of bamboo, and divided into three and a resolution which has never forsaken chambers-one for the muleteers and their her;" both of which, however, turned out beasts; the second for travellers; and the but indifferent substitutes for a saddle. third the dormitory, kitchen, and storehouse

She had very sensibly equipped herself, of the proprietor's family. Her male fellow despite the example of her companions, “as travellers gave up the second chamber to if for a journey from Paris to Orleans." her sole use and retired to the kitchen; but She soon felt

though everywhere attentive and regardful “excessive head-ache; the heat was becom- of her convenience, to their own delay and ing extreme; the thick white dust raised by discomfort, the incessant censoriousness of the feet of the beasts increased my sufferings; the lady seems never to spare their slightit required all my courage to sit the mule * est peculiarities. She lay awake and heard **: I felt a devouring thirst; I drank eve them discussing with the host the little ry moment water mixed with the wine of the chance of her surviving another day's jour. country : this mixture, so salutary, in gene. Iney, and their intevtion of pushing forward, ral, increased my head-ache, the wine being strong and intoxicating. At length we issued and sending back a litter for her: The host out of these suffocating passes, where I found declaring however that his supply of water not the slightest breath of air, and where the was exhausted, and that as he was not cerburning sun hcated the sand like a furnace.” tain of another the next day she might per

The following passage has merit, but ish of thirst, if she determined to proceed. coupled with too much striving after effect. They resumed their journey at sour in the • We ascended the last mountain : arrived

morning at its summit, the immensity of the desert, the “The aspect of the country was entirely


[ocr errors]

changed; the pampa (which they had reach. “If on the previous evening the sight of the ed the preceding evening) ended there, and bodies of animals that had died in these arid we entered a mountainous country destitute solitudes produced on me so strong an imof the slightest trace of vegetation. It was pression, it may be imagined how, on the fol. nature lying dead amidst all of deepest sad- lowing day, my sensitiveness, increased by ness. Not a bird flew in the air; not the the irritability of the nervous system, must smallest animal tracked the earth-nothing have been shocked by the spectacle of vicbut black and stony sand. Man by his jour-tims actually struggling wiih death in the nies has heightened the horrors of the spot. desert. We fell in with two wretched ani. This land of desolation is strewn with the mals, a mule and an ass, that, sinking under skeletons of animals that have died of bun- hunger and thirst, were dying in all the ago. ger and thirst; mules, horses, asses, and cat. nies of this horrible dissolution. No–I canile. The Llama is never exposed to these not tell the effect they produced on me! The scenes, which are far too severe for his or- sight of these two beings expiring in such ganization. He requires plenty of water and fearful torments; their low and feeble groans a cold temperature.

wrung from me such sobs as if I witnessed The sun had risen ; the heat became more the death of two fellow-men. The doctor and more burning-the sand under our feet himself, despite his cold selfishness, was was hot and clouds of dust as fine as ashes moved; for in these desperate spots the same rose, scorching our faces and drying up our dangers threaten all. I could not stir from palates."

the place, my feelings so chained me to that They reached the passes of the Quebra- have seen the Death of the Deserts to recog.

heart-rending spectacle. * * One must das, famed for their difficulties, where nize the most fearful of his shapes.” chasms on the side, and clefts crossing their narrow path, which lay often up enormous

They passed a tomb on the last mountain rocks from which the sand gave way under and descended to the smiling plains of Conthe feet of the mules, increased the danger gata, where we are favoured with a long and fatigue of travelling. Two cavaliers dream, inserted, doubtless, for the sake of preceded the lady; the third, who had ac;fine porcelain, cut glass, damask table

the reader's repose. At the hotel they find coutred himself with bottles, clothing, and cloaks, and armed himself after the fashion linen, wrought silver, and, what is rare in of Don Quixote but without any intention this country, English cutlery.". The at. of rivalling the valiant Manchegan, for it tendance, too, equals that in the best hotels seems his warlike array was meant simply

of Europe. to inspire fear at first sight, came behind

She received here a letter of invitation her; gallantly bringing up the rear in order from her cousin Doña Carmen Pierola de to steer clear of those who might slip, and Florez, who represented her uncle Don fall against them himself, should such mis- Pio, and invited her in his name to his hap occur to him. Her courage too re

house: and she perceived at once by this ceived little material support from his he letter that her cousin was clever and å maroism under sufferings: " he cried out at

The latter sent her at the same

neuvrer! every false siep of his mule, recommended time " a beautiful horse with a superb Eng. himself to God, cursed the road, the sun, lish saddle, two Amazonian dresses, (riding the dust, and deplored his miserable lot." habits ?) shoes, gloves, and a variety of othYet he had traversed Mexico!

er things," as her boxes might have been

left behind; four cavaliers also, relatives or “For myself I felt ihe same tortures as on friends, came to attend her. One of them the preceding evening-a spasmodic oppression of the chest and swelling of the veins of apprises her of the owners of all the estates the neck and forehead ;-my tears flowed they pass; and as these belonged to her reinvoluntarily, my head sunk, and my limbs lations, it naturally recalls to the grateful were powerless ; thirst, devouring thirst was demoiselle " the steward of the Marquis of the sole want that I was conscious of. D. Calabas." But her kinsman, “the good José, of a delicate temperament and sensitive Emmanuel," addressed her more to her to excess, was so affected by my condition taste, if he really said, that his face turned suddenly pale as death, and he fainted outright. The doctor was

“ Dear cousin, our relations are the kings confounded; he was in despair, wept, and of the country~no family in France, neither could afford po assistance; Don Balthazar the Rohan nor Montmorency, posesses by alone preserved his recollection, and even

name or fortune so much influence, and yet gaiety."

we are republicans ! Alas! their titles and

immense riches may obtain them power in. Having been restored by this young deed, but not affection. Hard and narrow. man's attentions, he and his relative sup- minded bar crs, they are incapable of doing ported Mad. Tristan between them, and the one act corresponding to the name they whole party descended the nountain on

bear.” foot, the doctor taking charge of the beasts. Upon this the young lady who was reliev.

[ocr errors]

ed, accoutred, mounted, about to be received, and feeling. “Being tired," as she says, and meant 10 live by their hospitality, and "and not choosing to be looked at,” (every beg their money, pathetically but cordially where she declares herself the point de mire exclaims

du monde,) she declines the supper got up

expressly for her and waiting her signal to “ Poor boy ! what generous sentiments! be served, though she saw that her conduct At this nobleness of soul my heart freely disappointed the whole party (contrarioit fort recognized him as a kinsman."

l'honorable société, as she chooses 10 term They reached Arequipa, a distance of five them); she was shown to her chamber and leagues of fertile land from Congata ; though attended even into it by a great number of it was nigh:fall the numerous cavalcade at guests, the monks amongst them, who, laugh. tracted the curious to their doors. In the ing, offered to assist her in disrobing. She street St. Domingo they saw a mansion the sent word to her cousin that she wished to be front of which was lighted up in welcome. alone, and all the crowd retired. It was her uncle's,

Left alone, or with only a negress to at:

tend her, who soon fell asleep, the fatigued " A crowd of slaves stood at the door ; at lady walked about examining the two chamour approach they rushed into the interior, bers assigned her; and as, notwithstanding scene of pomp, such as is seen at the theatre. an English carpet covering the whole floor, The whole court was lighted up with torches the apartments were furnished in the old of resin fixed to the walls. The grand saloon Spanish style, “the avarice of her uncle" of reception was at the bottom of this court: very naturally "offered itself to her in its centre was a large door.way beneath thoughts.” She rejected the usual form of rea portico, which forms a vestibule, and is ceiving visits the two next days, because her reached by an outside flight of four or five skin was tanned by the journey; and with a steps. The vestibule was illuminated with lamps, and the saloon resplendent with tact as delicate as seems to be her nature, lights from a handsome lustre and a multi. hearing that Peruvian ladies of quality com. tude of candelabra, holding tapers of various ing to a strange place first receive visits at colours. My cousin, in full dress to do me home, she insisted on going out. honour, advanced to the outside stair and re. As she exhibits Doña Carmen on all oc. ceived me with all the ceremonials prescrib-casion attentive, affectionate, frank, and ami. ed by propriety and etiquette. I was touch. able, it was necessary that Madame Tristan ed; I took her hand, and thanked her in the

should commence a description of her per. fulness of my heart for her kindness to me. She led me to a sofa and sat down by my

in a work written designedly to be read side.

in Peru, in these words :" I was hardly seated when a deputation of five or six monks of the order of St. Do- to truth, to declare that my poor cousin, Car

" It is with regret I am forced, by regard mingo advanced towards me: the Grand men Pierola de Florez, is of an ugliness apPrior made a long speech in which he told proaching even to deformity.” me of the virtues of my grandmother and the magnificent gifts she had made to the con This burst of amiability and sudden affecvent.

of the assembly the men, tion for truth is succeeded by an avowal that rather than the women, belonged apparently Doña Carmen nevertheless has “the small. to the highest class of society. Each paid est loot in Peru; a miniature, a love of a me a compliment in pompous terms, accom-foot.” Which foot and her leg are sufficiently panied with offers of service, so exaggerated, fat and plump “notwithstanding the extra ihat they could not have been the expres. sions of a real feeling. It was evident that ordinary meagreness of Doña Carmen.” in case of need I must not rely upon them it is always exhibited too in a silk stocking, for the least assistance, and that iheir lan- for she is “très coquette," and her petticoat guage was merely a servile homage to D. is too short ; her dress is unbecoming." Pio de Tristan through his niece."

She had married a man who treated her To those acquainted with the style of com- brutally, but towards whom her conduct had pliment in southern countries, it will seem been most unchangeably exemplary and af. hard that the highest society did not at once fectionate ; though it appears "she had lost change their habits of speech and force their all regard for him," and "felt an abhor. services on the fair guest the moment she rence for the whole human race. entered her uncle's house. What assist- cousin (says her charitable biographer) had a ance was she looking for then? But if they spark of religious feeling, instead of seeking were not sufficiently smitten wiih" the black out the vices of mankind to nourish her has eyes and long dark hair” of this "indepen. tred, she would have tried to discover their dent and very pretty personage,” her first act propensity to good, and undertaken the task of was a satisfactory, proof of equal good serse rendering them beiter. But God was never

[ocr errors]



Had my

[merged small][ocr errors]

in her thoughts. She flattered others that providence in the accident that left her at she might be flattered."

home to receive this alien, to country, to After ten years of dissipation, heartless- blood, to friendship, to feeling, and to faith ; ness, open insult, and unbroken neglect to. to all that is not wantonness, infamy, and wards a woman who, with one single abomination in woman. exception at the beginning, "put forth no com. The earthquake which destroyed Tacna plaint, nor uttered a murmur," the ruined following, is made the immediate precursor gambler and profligate, in debt and disease, of a conversation which doubtless it was abandoned, cureless, penniless, and unsheit- alone sent to produce; and in which Doña ered, returned 10 his injured wife to beg an Carmen is, with disgusting vanity, made to asylum in his last moments. She received express her “ admiration" of the superb him :-"not with affection, that feeling could " Florita," who, “elevated by the feeling not return to her heart, but with that secret that inspired her, had, by the tone of her pleasure which persons of her characier voice and the expression of her eye, excited feel in exercising a noble vengeance which the surprise of” her cousin : the "superb exalls their own superiority." He lingered sentiment” which had done all this being sixteen months in deepest agonies; “ during simply the sage advice of the superb Flo. all this time she never quitted bis bedside for rita." That Doña Carmen should imitate her an instant; she was his nurse, his physician, example, by throwing herself penniless upon his priest."* “ What a sight for her ! a foreign land resolving to be free of all re

How she nourished her aversion and scorn straints !--and to all which sublimity Doña for the whole human race !'' “With a Carmen had just given the most effective an. strength of character that never failed for an swer by pointing out the dependent position instant, she patiently bore the caprices, re- and personal weakness of the sex, and Flo. buffs, and despairing frenzies of the dying ra's own ignorance of what she was talking man. This long illness" exhausting her about. last resources, she went with her child to live There is, we regret to say, but too much at her aunt's.';

truth in the following. We trust the eye

of No one can mistake the insicuations we the really great and good Protector has been have here marked in italics, and it is remark- upon such mockery of religion as these able that not one of the assertions made in scenes of 1834. disparagement of this lady is contradicted by

“On the 24th September, the festival of all the subsequent details.

Our Lady, the city was traversed by a grand Her aunt “was hard and avaricious ; and procession, one of those on which the clergy the helpless widow “from that time led a lavishes the most ostentation, these being life of incessant torments.” For twelve years the sole amusements of the people. The she had vegetated, for twelve years conccal. festivals of the Peruvian Church give an idea ed her real misery under the appearance of of what the Pagan Bacchanalia and Saturna.

lia must have been.

At the head of opulence. In the woman she has thus, by her own and musicians, all disguised.

the procession marched bands of dancers

Negroes and showing, unfeelingly and atrociously libelled, Sambos (mixed race) are hired for a real Madame Tristan professes to have discover. a-day to perform in this religious farce. The ed a kind of nobleness and superiority which Church dresses them up in a most burlesque attracted her own sympathy soon as she had attire, as clowns, harlequins, &c. and covers surmounted "the disagreeable effect produced their faces with bad masks of all her dry manners and ugliness." 'We will The forty or fifty dancers made antics and

grimaces of cynical impudence, courted the not insult the reader's feelings by one word

negresses and women of colour who looked of comparison between the woman so nobly, on, and addressed them with every indelicaso too severely tried, and her heartless These, mingling with the party, endeaderer, who insinuates her very virtues as voured to discover the masks. The whole faults. The cant of the Pharisee was but was a grotesque confusion, attended with the utterance of a moment ; but here five screams and convulsive laughter from which years have elapsed between the writing and I turned disgusted. After the dancers came

the Virgin magnificently dressed, in a velvet publication of this revolting calumny: Re: robe adorned with pearls. She had diamonds volting beyond common credence, and in ab- on her head, neck, and hands. Twenty or solute de fiance of her own words and of the thirty negroes carried the Virgin, behind very facts she relates, both here and subse. whom came the bishop followed by the quently, of this lonely and desolate mourner; whole of the clergy, and then the monks of who fancied, with Flora herself, the finger of all the convents. The authorities brought

up the official display, which followed the * His priest (ihus emphatized in the original) crowd, that laughed, screamed, and was at " without a sparks of religion !” and “God never any thing but prayers. These festivals and in her thoughts !"

their magnificence form the happiness of the


Peruvians. I doubt the possibility of spiritual- part. Upon his next call she says to izing their worship.”

him-“You know my certificate of baptism There is however nothing in all this that does not suffice to legitimize me. I require did not occur in Europe in the middle ages

another certificate, to prove my mother's and amongst a people far more civilized than marriage; if I do not produce it, my uncle we generally conceive of the negroes at the will give me nothing. You can bestow a present day, and yet European worship is million upon me. Get this marriage-certifi. spiritualized; though certainly not to the de. cate drawn up by some old missionary in grees desired by some,of rendering it power- California ;” (he was going there) " let it be less over the doings of the body. The same antedated ; and for one hundred piastres we may be said of the Mystery which followed; shall have a million. Such, Chabrié, is the but it is remarkable that while Mad. Tristan condition on which depends my love and my seems to have fully comprehended the inde. hand.” cencies of the dancers, she could gather the

"He remained confounded; his elbow tendency of the Mystery itself only from resting on the table, he gazed at me without words caught at random, and some explana. speaking. tions from the initiated.” Her Spanish stu.

After some further attempts, on his part, dies seem to have been limited.

during which he satisfied himself that Here follow some sage remarks upon the Madame Tristan was not mad, he quitted her necessity, in forming a republic, of cherish in expressed abhorrence for ever. She did ing the civic virtues even in the lowest class. this to try him, she


and we believe

her. es;" leaving, we presume, religion entirely out of the question, as the fair author un

It is well and touchingly observed by one questionably does.

of the profoundest masters of human nature In the highest classes, it appears, exists living, that a single fault committed in the only a “haughty presumption joined to pro ignorance and thoughtlessness of youth, is bitfound ignorance and boastfulness which terly visited by the world, and destroys a cha. would excite the pity of the lowest European racter for life. But here is a woman deliberate. sailor.” The ladies in society come to show ly proposing forgery to her lover, on the eve, their dresses, and the gentlemen to kill time. and as the condition of, marriage. A forge. “ The conversation is cold, trifling, and mo. ry too, to an enormous amount, upon an unnotonous : turning on scandal, the state of cle she hated because he preferred his own health, or of the weather." We rejoice to senses and the silence of a brother whom he find our own countrymen are not alone in knew, to the every-way suspicious assertions the series of meteorological observatious that of an unknown and interested stranger. She form the staple of English entertainment. As did it, she pretends, to get rid of her lover, for evil-speaking, it being unknown in any

whose contempt she feared if she had con• other land, and in her volumes, we can im fessed all her tissue of falsehoods. To preagine how it must have shocked a lady so

serve her character and his good opinion spiritual and sensitive as to tell us in the very


proposes to make him an accomplice in next page that M. Chabrié came to visit her, forgery! If this miserable pretext be not a and that she would rather a mournful death proof of her utter ignorance of common de. had permited her to mourn him with deli- cency, common sense, and common shame, cious tears !"-Well might the bard inquire

then we freely retract all censure of her in "Oh love! what is it in this world of ours

pages. What an inimitable subject for " That makes it fatal to be loved ?"

the writer to whom we have alluded above, And so tenderly, too; "for notwithstand the loathsome windings, hypocritical selfish.

accustomed to trace with a pen of steel all ing the enormous faults of his character 1 was sincerely attached to him, as he pres. dened, heartless effrontery in its Sayings and

ness, the meanness of base vanity and harsed my hands, placed his head on my knees, Doings.' How would he hold up, writhing and fingered my bair-declaring he should in the bitter sting of abhorrent and withering choke.

How she must have symphatized scorn, the moral and religious pretensions of with this declaration !- but she talked to him this brazen serpent of St. Šimonianism to cure of their marriage, nevertheless.

all the evils of some modern misled Israel. The disgusting farce of sentimental vice in this part closes appropriately with its atro. “ The people of Arequipa are fond of the cious climax, which we shall condense; re.

pleasures of the table yet unskilled to procure minding the reader that she tells her own sto the aliments are indifferent, and the culinary

its enjoyments. Their cookery is detestable, ry, and with the skill of long.practised decep. art in its infancy. rion, arranging it so as to meet any future at 9; the repast consists of rice with onions

* They breakfast possible statement of facts on M. Chabrié's dressed or raw, onions are in every thing) of


« AnteriorContinuar »