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The inscription put upon Poussin's monument by his friend M. Nicaise begins thus, and well describes the successful diligence of this great Artist:
D. 0. M.
Nic. Poussino Gallico
Pictori sue ætatis Primario
Dum pertinaci studio prosequitur,
We understand that this collection of Anecdotes is now brought to an absolute termination.*
ART. IX. Dr. Townson's Travels in Hungary.
THE 'HE vith chapter of this work is calculated for the gratification of the mineralogist. The traveller treads some of the ground which was claimed by M. Fichtel for the scene of the antient operations of Vulcan: but Dr. T. is more inclined to the Neptunists. He makes himself merry with the opinions of his predecessor; and perhaps those opinions were hasty. The wit of our author however,-but we will speak of his wit at the close of this article.
Chap. vII. Dr. T. gets the colic and the spleen from wine vended at the inn on account of the Bishop of Erlau:
The inns in Hungary, as in some other countries, are on a quite different system from ours. They belong either to the corporations of towns, or to the proprietors of the towns and villages, who draw from them a great revenue by letting them out on the condition of the innkeeper taking their wine and beer; or they give him a fixed salary for his trouble, and receive all the profits. In either of these cases the innkeeper has little merit or demerit arising from the quality of his wine: indeed, where there are two sorts, he may give his customers the inferior kind, and charge the price of the best, and he may lower the quality. This indeed may make bad wine still worse, but can never make bad wine good. From these monopolies it arises, that in Hungary, a country famous for its wine, the traveller can never get a glass of good wine but in private houses; and for the vile stuff he drinks in the inns he is charged nearly as high as he is at Vienna for a good wholesome wine, though there it pays a tax. I was always against monopolies, but now more than ever: I had here a striking proof of their bad tendency.'
* One deviation only from the general plan of the work occurs, the introduction of a living character. In this, perhaps, the COMPILER but anticipates the wishes of the reader, who may think that a man like Dr. TUCKER omni major eulogio should be also omni exceptione major.' Preface.
REY, OCT. 1797.
This bishop, who levies contributions for his bad wine on travellers, has erected an university at the expence of not less than 200,000l. He did not, however, amass this vast sum by the practice of a petty fraud: for he had a family estate of 10,000l. sterling per annum, and his see is one of the richest in the kingdom.
How bizarre is the human character! Will it be credited that the man who exacts his rights with so much severity, as to make himself considered by his flock, not as a father and protector, but as a hard, severe and unjust master, and to alienate the friendship and esteem of every one, except of a few churchmen raised by himself, whom he selects from the lower ranks, not out of charity, but that they may be more dependant upon him—that he should have erected a public
edifice which would be an honour to a crowned head!'
The vanity of this griping dignitary prevailed on his avarice to perform an act, during his life, which other men of similar character have caused to be done after their death. There was in his character a little more ostentation, with a degree less of It gave tenacity. This appears to us to be the whole secret. us no concern when we read that this hard, severe, and un. just master, who alienates the affections of every one, except of a few churchmen raised by himself,' applied to Rome to know whether he ought to buy instruments of English heretics. He procures proselytes by bribery!
Chap. VIII. Saltpetre works-Bishop's stud and dairy—salt magazine-town of Fured-great puszta or waste, which feeds Their hardy keepers stay out immense quantities of cattle. with them, covered with their rough sheep-skin clothing, weeks together. It is chiefly amongst these herdsmen that the custom of besmearing their shirts with hog's lard, and the fat of bacon, with a view to cleanliness, prevails. Thus anointed they can wear them a whole summer without washing, and it is said by this means they are kept free from those creatures" whose hourly food is human gore."-The common people of Hungary make little use of inns. I have often seen them at night halt in great parties like caravans, in the neighbourhood of a Some watch the town, and pass the night in the open air. horses which are turned out to pasture, whilst the others rest; and I have frequently, when I have been a guest at a nobleman's seat, observed, however roomy his house might be, if I walked out very early in the morning, the men-servants of the family sleeping in their clothes in the court, on benches, tables, &c. Our independence-hunters will pay due regard to this last passage.
Chap. ix. contains an important article on the Debretzin art of making delicate bread without yeast.
The ferment is thus made: Two good handfulls of hops are boiled in four quarts of water; this is poured upon as much wheaten bran as can be well moistened by it; to this are added four or five pounds of leaven when this is only warm, the mass is well worked together to mix the different parts. This mass is then put in a warm place for twenty-four hours, and after that it is divided into small pieces about the size of a hen's egg or a small orange, which are dried by being placed upon a board and exposed to a dry air, but not to the sun: when dry they are laid by for use, and may be kept half a year. This is the ferment, and it is to be used in the following manner: For a baking of six large loaves, six good handfulls of these balls are taken and dissolved in seven or eight quarts of warm water. This is poured through a sieve into one end of the bread-trough, and three quarts more of warm water are poured through the sieve after it, and what remains in the sieve is well pressed out: this liquor is mixed up with so much flour as to form a mass of the size of a large loaf: this is strewed over with flour, the sieve with its contents is put upon it, and then the whole is covered up warm, and left till it has risen enough, and its surface has begun to crack: this forms the leaven. Then fifteen quarts of warm water, in which six handfulls of salt have been dissolved, are poured through the sieve upon it, and the necessary quantity of flour is added, and mixed and kneaded with the leaven; this is covered up warm, and left for about an hour. It is then formed into loaves, which are kept in a warm room half an hour; and after that they are put in the oven, where they remain two or three hours according to the size. The great advantage of this ferment is, that it may be made in great quantities at a time, and kept for use."
Another curious article is the weaving of guba, which the common people employ for great coats.
The xth chapter furnishes nothing remarkable, besides a morsel of lasciviousness for young readers.
Chap. XI. brings us to Tokay and its far-famed vineyards, of which the economy is here delivered. The peculiar richness of the wine depends on the admixture of half dried luscious grapes. After all, Tokay is no doubt a fine wine, but by no means adequate to its price;' and there are few Englishmen who, except for its scarceness, would not prefer good claret or burgundy.'-In our review of Dr. Hacquet's Travels *, we quoted an anecdote which exemplified the overweening conceit of the Hungarians respecting Hungary. Dr. Townson quotes from one of their best geographers, who wrote in 1780, an assertion that rye, through the excellency of the Hungarian soil, is converted into wheat.
Chap. XII. More mineralogy. The subject is particularly interesting, being principally the Volcanic Zeolite of M. Fichtel,
See Appendix to Vol. xxi.
whom our author contradicts on some points. The dispute is of importance to the theory of the earth: but we must leave it to those who possess adequate specimens; or more properly to some enlightened naturalist, who shall be more at leisure' than our author was to examine the very singular fossil bodies in their native bed.
We were disappointed at not finding M. Fichtel's account of an extraordinary Zeolite, which occurs between Tokay, Santo, and Toltschwa, either checked or confirmed. This Zeolite is said to consist of shining, grey, pearly grains, "which on close inspection prove to be a melted glass. They are made up of a number of extremely thin skins, of which one envelopes the other. The grains are universally hollow, and the cavity is proportional to the size of each, so that you may squeeze the larger (which are scarce) to pieces, like glass beads" "Fichtel on the Carpathians, p. 365.
Chap. XIII. Caschau, the capital of Upper Hungary - baths of rank - the guarded opal mines—caverns.
Chap. XIV. Rosenau-Schmölnitz mines-Iglo-Leutchau, (where our traveller meets with a party of Hungarian Dogberrys, as mentioned in our review of Hacquet already cited, and is liberated by the nobility assembled at a county meeting) remonstrances against infringements of the liberty of the press by the court at Vienna. In one of these remonstrances, after having mentioned that dissertations on the boundary of the royal power and on the diet had been interdicted, we read with pleasure a paragraph, concluding with this expression of just indignation; "quasi de his objectis scribere periculosum et piaculum esset, quum tamen adnitendum potius eo fore censeamus, ut, per libros pro et contra scribendos, Regnicolæ jus publicum et constitutionem regni adequate elucubratam habeant." Again; "Calumniatores nationis nostræ nos barbaros esse publicarunt, et hodiedum clamant. Si arbitraria modernorum Censorum activitas ultra quoque admittetur; veremur ne horum culpa merito pro talibus reputemur." Here is spirit joined with sense.
Chap. xv. XVI. conduct us to a mountainous district, and supply adventures which authors remember and readers peruse. with pleasure. We shall copy the history of a Carpathian Koschar and its inhabitants:
In the evening I reached the Koscher, and there I found my retinue. This is a small wooden hut in the midst of a wood, built in the Swedish manner; that is, with balks whose ends are let into one another, something in the manner of, what carpenters call, dovetail work it was only about six yards long, and three broad, and divided into two apartments, but by no means weather tight. In the first apartment the head shepherd, who is only a poor common
peasant, lives, and makes the cheese; the other is the magazine where it is kept till it is sent to Kesmark, which is every week. The business of the dairy is very simple; the sheep are driven home thrice a-day to be milked, and each milking is immediately made into cheese, for no butter is made. The runnet is poured upon the milk whilst it is warm, which is presently after beaten together, and soon after this the head shepherd gropes together with both his hands all the curds. This appeared to be a difficult business, and lasted near half an hour; the curds then form one great mass, and are taken out together and put into a cloth, and hung up, but no pressure is used. The whey which remains is boiled, and acquires some consistence, and this forms the food of the shepherds, and their only food for the whole season; they have not even bread. After the shepherd and his men had eaten their supper, the men, of whom there were four or five, left the hut, and went and slept under sheds round the fold. We likewise laid ourselves upon the floor and slept. In the night the head shepherd got up two or three times and hollowed to his men, to see whether they were upon the watch; who always answered, to shew that they were upon their duty. Great vigilance is requisite against the wolves, and with all these precautions these animals had carried off three sheep this summer.'
The author now crosses the Carpathians, and visits the famous Polish salt mines and the city of Cracow. We do not perceive much in the present description of these celebrated excavations which should detain us; and we hasten to devote one page to Baron Born, the wit, the philosopher, and the philanthropist. This illustrious scholar, descended of a noble Transylvanian family, entered into the society of the Jesuits in early life, but continued a member only a year and half. At Prague, he studied the law: but, after an extensive tour on the continent, he devoted himself to natural history and mining. Those who have read his travels know that he lost his life nearly, and his health altogether, by going into a mine full of arsenical vapours. He was afterward appointed counsellor of mines, and in 1772 published the catalogue of that collection of fossils which is well known to be in the hands of our Mr. Greville. In the years immediately succeeding, he engaged in different literary enterprises, and was called to Vienna to arrange the Imperial collection, and to instruct the archduchess Anna Maria in natural history. The consequences of his mishap, however, became continually more severe. He was a martyr to the most excruciating colics, and in one of his attacks swallowed so much opium as threw him into a lethargic state for 24 hours. The disorder now attacked his lower extremities: his feet by degrees withered, and he was obliged to be almost constantly on a sopha. His genius, however, unsubdued by pain and infirmity, prompted him to take an active part in all the institutions and plans for enlightening and informing mankind.' He founded a N 3 freemasons'