Imágenes de páginas

whole mountain had been covered with pal. zeal of the first bishop collected the docuaces, temples, baths, hanging gardens, &c.; ments of Mexican history, knowledge, and yet this place has never been noticed by literature-all the Aztec paiptings, manuany writer.

scripts, and hieroglyphical writings ;-“ I am of opinion that these were antiqui- when, forming them into an immense pyra. ties prior to the discovery of America, and mid, he committed them to the flames amid erected by a people whose history was lost the unavailing prayers of the people for even before the building of the city of Mex

their preservation. ico. In our way down we collected speci

The following extract relates to anomens of the stucco which covered the terrace,still as hard and beautiful as any found

ther interesting excursion. at Portici or Herculaneum. Don T. Rosa

“ After a vain inquiry for the celebrated lia informed us that we had seen but the pyramids of the Sun and Moon, or of St. commencement of the wonders of the Juan de Teotihuacan, we set off for Otums place ; that there were traces of buildings ba, in the expectation of finding them near to the very top still discernable ;-that the that place,--a ride of two hours over a fine mountain was perforated by artificial exca- country, on which the number of handsome vations, and that a flight of steps led to one Spanish churches and haciendas exceeds near the top, which he himself had entered, that of any part of Mexico through which I but wbich no one as yet had had courage to had yet travelled. We arrived at the comexplore, although it was believed that im

mencement of the monotains, on which mense riches were buried in it.

there was not a vestige of vegetable soil “We regained our horses, and an hour or vegetation, the whole being a soft ironbrought us back to 'Tezcuco, greatly fa- coloured stone, in which the continual passtigued indeed, but more lamenting the lit- ing of horses had worn deep tracks up to tle time we had been able to give to the the animals' knees, and oot more than fourmost interesting place we had visited ; and teen inches wide, in which tracks it is very which, it is not a little extraordinary, ap- requisite to keep, in order to save the trav. pears to have been unnoticed by the Span- eller from a worse road. We had thunder ish writers at the conquest, in whom it pro all the afternoon, and towards evening it bably excite:l as little interest as it does in rained in torrents, so that the dry beds of the present inhabitants of the city of Mexi- the rivers were in an hour filled, and poured co, not one of whom could I find who had their muddy waters in floods to the Mexican ever seen, or even heard of it. What a sub- Lake, where depositing the earthy parts, it ject for contemplation does this collection must in a short time be filled up. Upon of ruins present to the reflecting mind - descending the mountain, we first caught a The seat of a powerful monarch, whose sub- view of the two pyramids on a plain in jects (if we inay judge from their works) front of us, at about five or six miles diswere probably an enlightened people, exist. tant, and another hour brought us, drenching and flourishing long before the Copti- ed with rain, just before dark, into Otum. nent of America was known to Europe,and ba, the first place reached by Cortez after yet a people whose customs, costume, reli- his defeat. At this place, after being refugion, and architecture, strongly resembled sed admittance at several houses, we with those of an enlightened nation of Africa, some difficulty procured shelter in an empwhich may be said to have ccased to exist ty carpenter's shop, where, in our twenty centuries before this continent was clothes, having no fire, upon a bare floor discovered.-Who now can solve this diffi- of mud, without food but not without appe. culty ? ..

tite, we had a prospect of passing the “ We returned to Tezcuco across some night ; but observing a fire in a cottage fine fields of corn, and baving put up our near, I ventured to enter, and finding only horses again, commenced our rambles over an old woman and soine children, I seated this very interesting city and its suburbs, myself. The old lady was not at all pleased every part of which exhibits remains of its at my intrusion, but a few medias given ancient grandeur ;-the raised mounds of to the children, and a dollar to herself,soon brick are seen on all sides, mixed with produced us bread and eggs ;-we dried aqueducts, ruins of buildings of enormous our clothes, and having procured dry strength, and many large square structures boards to repose ourselves upon, we passed nearly entire (which I believe to be of Mex- the night in the carpenter's shop better ican architecture) fragments of sculptured than we expected. stones constantly occur gear the church,the " Good bread and excellent chocolate, and palace ; a visit to which were provided for our breakfast.

After a cannot fail to awaken the most interesting stroll round the city, which is said to have recollections in the mind of a person at all once contained 50,000 inhabitants, we exversed to the history of this portion of A. amined two curious ancient columns, richly mérica. It was in this palace that Cortez, sculptured ; called upon the Padre, but he with his whole army, was lodged and en could give us no information respectiog the tertained, as described in the simple narra. pyramids, although they were in full view tive of Bernal Dias, whose accounts I had from the windows of his house. We then many opportunities of corroborating. It left this wretched and deserted place, where was in the market-place here, too, that the even the water is so bad that necessita


alone can induce any person to use it ; and rode to the several small barrows that are proceeded to the stupendous remains, from scattered in various directions round the which we were now distant about a league base of the second, and on the road to the and a half. As we approached them, the largest pyramid ;--in some places they square and perfect form of the largest be- forin regular streets running east and west. came at every step more and more visibly

“ Not far from the great pyramid, near distinct, and the terraces could now be counted. We rode first to the lesser, which

a gate, lay an enormous stone, with a few is the most dilapidated of the two,and ascen

sculptured ornaments. It is apparently of ded to the top, over masses of falling stone great antiquity. A boy who had followed and ruins of masonry, with less difficulty us, observing that we viewed it with atten than we expected. On the summit are the tion, took my son a little distance through remaios of an ancient building, forty-seven

a plantation, and showed him another of feet long and fourteen wide ; the walls are

great dimensions, covered with sculpture,

with a hole in the top-he supposed it a principally of unhewn stone, three feet

stone of sacrifice. thick and eight feet high ; the entrance at the south end, with three windows on each

“ We soon arrived at the foot of the lar. side, and on the north end it appears to gest pyramid, and began to ascend. It was have been divided at about a third of its less difficult than we expected, though the length. At the front of the building, with whole way up, lime and cement are mixed the great pyramid before us, and many

with fallen stones. The terraces are persmaller ones at our feet, we sat down to fectly visible, particularly the second,which contemplate the scene of ancient wonders: is about thirty-eight feet wide, covered -where the eye takes in the greater part with a coat of red cement eight or ten inof the vale of Mexico, its lake and city,and ches thick, composed of small pebble commands an extensive view of the plains stones and lime. In many places, as you beneath, and the mountains that bound the ascend, the nopal trees have destroyed the weat of the valley.

regularity of the steps, but no where inju.

red the general figure of the square, which It was at this place that Cortez fought is as perfect in this respect as the great py• and defeated the innumerable army of In- ramid of Egypt. We every where observed dians ; after the horrible night of desola- broken pieces of instruments like knives, tion, he expressly says, that he arrived on

arrow and spear-heads, &c. of obsidian,the the plains near Otumba ; he ascended an

same as those found on the small hills of eminence, and discovered the whole dis- Chollula ; and, on reaching the summit, trict covered with armies ; despair filled

we found a flat surface of considerable size, every breast, except the intrepid leader's. but which has been much broken and disThe innumerable hosts of lodians arrived, turbed. On it was probably a temple or and closed round the small band of Span- other building-report says, a statue cover. jards, when the dauntless Cortez, with a

ed with gold. We rested some time on the few horsemen, charged furiously that part summit, enjoying one of the finest prosof the enemy where the royal banner was pects imaginable, in which the city of Mex-' carried; the bearer was killed, the banner ico is included. Here I found fragments taken, and the whole of the immense mul- of small stalues and earthen ware, and titude fled in consternation from the field, what surprised me more, oystershells, the offering no further interruption to the re- first that I had seen in Mexico ; they are treat of Cortez through Otumba to the ter

a new species, and I have brought speci. ritory of Tlascalla.

mens home. In descending I also found " I think there can be little doubt that some ornamental pieces of earthenware, the these immense structures, which vie with pattern one of which is in relief, much the pyramids of Egypt were at the period we resembling those of Chiva, the other are speaking of, in the same state in which has a grotesque human face. On the they are now ; and that it was on ascend north-east side, at about half-way down, at ing one of them that Cortez beheld the ap some remote period, an opening has been proach of the great Indian army. There is attempted. This should have been from no other eminence near, which could have the south to tbe north, and on a level with answered the purpose ; and if these had the ground, or only a few feet above it ; been objects of veneration, as temples, or as all the remains of similar buildings have places of military strength, of the people, been found to have their entrances in that then in use, they would no doubt have direction. Dr. Oteyza, who has given us been defended, and he would not have been the measure of these pyramids, makes the permitted to have approached them On base of the largest six hundred and fortydescending we partook of some refresh. five feet in length, and one hundred and ment, and our Indian guide procured us seventy-one in perpendicular height. As some pulque, which was very acceptable. to the age of the pyramids, and the people I went to a cottage close by, in which by whom they were erected, all must be a were several children almost in a state of matter of mere conjecture ; no one whom ! nature. I tried to entice them by presents,but could meet with io Mexico knew or cared could not prevail on them to come near me : any thing about them. None of the iobabthey seemed much terrified at our white fa itants bad even been to see them, though ces and odd dresses. We mounted, and from the cathedral, both of them, as well

av Tescosiogo, containing the bath of Mon- arts among the Mexicans, are doubted by tezuma, are distinctly visible.

those who have never seen the country. I “ Yet no person in that neighbourhood firmly believe all that the intelligent and incould give me the least information respecte defatigable Abbe Clavigero has related of ing these wonderful structures : on asking his countrymen. Had Moosieur de Pauw, an old Indian woman we met near the py or our better informed countryman, Dr. ramids, if she could tell who made them, Robertson, passed one hour in Tezcuco, she replied, “ Si Signior, St. Francisco.'.-. Tezcosingo, or Huexotla, they would never

“ The result of this little excursion of have supposed for a moment that the pal. three days has thoroughly convinced me of ace of Montezuma in Mexico was a clay the veracity of the Spanish writers, whose cottage, or that the account of the immense account of the cities, their immense popu- population was a fiction.” lation, their riches, and progress in the

(Lond. Lit. Gaz.)

66 Yo

* Bat chance is not, or is not where thou reign'st :
Thy providence forbids that fickle pow'r
(If pow'r she be that works but to confound)

To mix her wild vagaries with thy laws.”
WHY as for the matter o? your sentry-mentals ! The women

that, Sir, what else have now-a-days are another guess thing to we got to do? Here we are, snug what they were when I was a youngmoored in Greenwich, riding out the ster. There was Bet Spanker, of Plygale of life till death brings our anchors mouth ; by Jupiter she was a Wenus, home, and then our sarvice being worn and that's a couple of gods! There through and the cable stranded, we was a run from stem to stern !--there slip and run for the haven of eternal was bows and head-rails, quarter and rest. Why, Sir, if it warn't for our fashion-pieces, braces and stays ! Ah! spinning a yarn now and then, we she was one of your lady-ships. Then should spit and sputter at each other to see her full rigg'd, with her colours like a parcel of cats in a gutter ; but by and pendant flying, and her tops deck'd reviving the remembrance of old times out! Well, dy'e see, we took a Spanwhen we steerd at the same wheel, ish galleon, and so one evening I was fought at the same gun, or belonged tó ashore, and got within hail. the same watch, we likewise cherish boy !" says I. “ Be off,” says she.those mutual feelings of regard which So seeing as how it was no use to stand adversity cannot capsize, nor old age backing and filling, I clapp'd her sounder. Aye, aye, you may laugh at alongside, fired a round or two of shipoor Jack, but he's got a heart for all ners, and ax'd her if she'd be spliced ? that : h2'll fight or die for his friends, Well, after two or three glasses, she and never sees his foes cowardly or ill- sweetly blush'd consent; and next treated. But many of your sin-ical morning the parson read a page out of gemmen condemn us because we are Hamilton Moore, and a better wife apt to lie our strands a little too close, never swung in the same hammock. and deal in rumbusticals and comfob- What does a sailor know about courtgistications; but, bless your heart, all ships and Q-pids, doves and darts, any ihem there sort of pollysilly-bulls comes more than what Dibdin tells us? I as natural to us as our grog, and what's hear his songs are all preserved in the use of making a fuss about a lapsis bars and crojacks by that grate lingo or two ?--howsomever it's the composer, Dr. K- his as prescribes way of the world to find fault with what for the indigestions, or gives vent to they don't understand. Give me a the bellows of an organ in strains of rum story and a store of rum (for that's harmony; invents capital spectacles the true lick-numvity) and a good Dib- for the hungry and short-sighted, and din now and then about Tom Bowline, figures away at the pie-any, hop-ticks, or Meg of Wapping-aye, them aré or fiddlesticks : nothing seems to come

54 ATITE SEL) VOL. 1. 2d scrics.

amiss. Well, it's a fine thing to be sweet ship and a good crew : stand by born a genus and have headycatian.- me, and I'll stand by you.' That was Now I never took to my larning, 'cause, just what we wanted, so we give him dy'e see, I was knock-knee'd; but the three cheers and piped to grog. «Where French made all that straight, as be- does he come from ?' says Dick Boblike you may see by my two wooden stay. I don' remember hearing any pins. Aye, aye, I lost them in Basque thing of his bearings and distances Roads that 'ere Cock-running busi- afore to-day. What ship has he contness : but what's the use of complain- manded ?'— 'Tis fifteen years since ing ? --it makes a man neither fairer he was taken by an Algerine, after lonorfatter.

Flere I am, after fisty sing his masts and throwing his guns years' quarrelling with the windy overboard in a gale of wind, (replied a storm and tempest, playing at rackets young midshipman.) He has pass’d with death, and ducks and drakes with the intervening time in slavery, for eveold Davy, after overhauling every part ry body at home thought the ship had of the globe from New Zealand to foundered, and all hands perish’d. He Greenland, from Otaheite to Tooley- has felt cruelty and will practise merstreet, fron, the United States to Basses cy.'— Nobly said, young gentleman, Straits, and a hundred other places.- (said Dick ;) give a ship's company Here I am (that is, what's left of me) good officers, and a fig for cropeaus sale moored in Greenwich, bidding de- and flying Dutchmen.' Just then the fiance to the dirty sharks of the world. word was pass’d for the coach-horses The old song says, “ Life’s like a ship and bloods (that's the barge and galin constant motion ;" and so I've found ley's crews) to get harness'd, and be it. The lighter my ballast the more I in readiness to go ashore on duty, as beeld to the gale. But mayhap you soon as the sup had gone to bathe his would like to hear a bit of yarn, Sir. I beams in the western wave after the see old Sam there, bloning like a toil and beat of the day. The hour argrampus to get his jawing-tacks aboard; rived, and headed by the third lieuand I know it's a hard matter for hini tenant, we landed to press. We were to sit dumb-foundered when his muzzle just crossing one of the streets, when lashes are once cast off. Out tomkins, we fell in with a young man and a lad. Sam, and fire away. “ Why, aye, dye • Heave too, (said the Lieutenant, seesee, (says Sam,) what's the good of ing they were about to sheer off;) what wasting your precious time boxing a ship do you belong to?'-_The Adcompass that nobody can steer by -- versity. - Adversity--Adversity,-You may just as well nail it to the that must be a hard ship ;-there's no binnacle at once ; but howsomever, I such name in the British navy. Where arn't a going to give you a long pro- do you come from ??? From the port log for a day's work, like my mess- of Tribulation, bound to the Straits of maie there. It was somewhere about Difficulty.'— Aye, aye, I see how it the beginning of last war I belonged to is, (cried an old Master's Mate)-I see the frigate, lying at Plymouth ; how it is, they're Yankees~ them there and we had a new captain appointed are American consarns, so we may as indeed it was high time, for the old un well make sail again.'— Avast, (said was one of your—but avast, he's in the Lieutenant,) we must send them t'other world, so his reck’ning's up down to the boat.'— By what right :' here; and it's cowardly to rip old inquired the man. "Right! (repeated grievances out of the grave. · Well, our one of the gang ;) here's a pretty felnew commander read his commission, low ! Talk about right among man. and a finer-looking old gemmen never of ! Halloo, young fly-bycrack'd a king's biscuit. “My lads, night! (addressing the lad,) what have (says he,) I understands you've had you got to say why you shouldn't serve some complaints among ye. Now all His Majesty'? Ile'll make a smart I've got to say is this here: Do your topman, your honour.'--'Silence, Sir, duty like men, and you shall never and do your duty with humanity,' said want for encouragement. Here's a the Lieutenant angrily, observing he

bad grasp'd the trembling boy's arm. less. I went according to your direc• Then we may proceed. - No, we tions, but could obtain no other intelliwant hands, and my orders are impera- gence than that such a person had been tive. You must with us.'-_Never! known there, but quitted the place (said the other, pulling forth a pistol without any one being able to tell where from his breast :) My liberty is as dear she had gone.:-“I feel grateful for your to me as life, and he who robs me of attention, my friend. Oh, Sims, when one must also take the other.' The I sailed from England on that fatal lad press’d close to his side, and after cruise, I left behind me a wife and two a short ineffectual struggle they were dear children. For fifteen years these both secured, but not till the man had limbs have felt the galling fetter ; for become senseless-aye, almost lifeless fitteen years I struggled with affliction in the contest. Well, we pickt up a few as the drowning wretch struggles hard more, and then returned. The frigate with death, and yet a ray of hope would was uomoored, and heaving short upon beam on my mind, and cast a gleam of the small bower when we got aboard. sunshine on the future. The thoughts An express had arrived to say, that a of freedom swelled in my breast each suspicious ship had been seen off the rising morn, and buoyed me up through Start, and we were ordered to overhaul the toil of the day. My dreams of her. The boats were hoisted in, and night were still of home, and often have the man and lad conducted to the sick I been transported to those I loved. bay,—the man still senseless, the boy I've stretch'd forth my arms in ecstabalí dead with fright. Bring to, cy, when the rattling of my chains cried the first Lieutenant. • All ready, awoke me to a sense of misery. At Sir.'— Heave round at the capstan, last, after repeated efforts, I escaped, and run the anchor up to the bows.' - and returned to my native land. I Away danced the men to the tune of flew to the sweet spot of innocence and • Off she goes. Well behaved, lads, joy, where once, but you cannot tell well behaved,' said the Captain from my feelings. The cottage was swept the quarter-deck. Heave and in away, to improve the neighboring essight,' was heard from the forecastle as state. The white stone in the yard of the ponderous iron appeared above the the village-church bore the name of her water; and in less than a minute the -yes, my Maria lay mouldering below, Boatswain's pipe gave signal to heave my children cast abandoned on the and haul. · Hook on the cat! Hoist world. Father of mercies ! from thy away !' and the anchor was instantly throne behold, protect, and restore them run up to the cat-head. • Haul taut to a longing pareni's arms !— 'Pon the fish! Walk away !' and the mas. deck there ! shouted the man at the sy fukes rose gradually up the vessel's mast-head. Ilalloo ! replied the first bows, till the pipe sounded, “ High Lieutenant. "A sail on the starboard enough! Belay! The anchor was bow, Sir.' – Port, lad, port !— Port secured, and Loose sails ! cried the it is, Sir,' says I. The Lieutenant run Boatswain,after a flourish with his call. forward with his glass. · Meet her, boy, · Bear a hand, my boys, cast off your meet her! Steady !_ Steady,' says gaskets, and shake out the reefs,' said I again. Ile appplied his glass to his the Captain.• All ready, Sir. Let eye. What is she, Mr. ? inquifall ! sheet home ! hoist away!' bellow- red the Captain. • By the length of ed the first lieutenant through his trum- her legs, Sir, I should take her to be one pet, and instantly that which had been of our own class, only heavier.'— Beat only bare poles was covered with can- to quarters, and see all clear for acvass 'low and aloft. Morning began to tion: --Aye, aye, Sir. Drummer,blow streak the east with a brighter glow as up a tone upon your sheep's-skin fidwe pass'd the Mew Stone. I was at dle, that they may hear you at the the • Well, Sims, (said the Land's End.'-_ Aye, aye, Sir.' Captain, addressing the Surgeon,) did Shall I show them the Buntin? inquiyou meet with any success ?'- *Nove, red the officer. . If you please.'--Sir; all my inquiries have been fruit Hoist the colours abaft. Main-top

« AnteriorContinuar »