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October 4th.

At eight o’clock in the evening I embarked on board the Sicilian steamer Hercules, of 260-horse power, the largest and finest vessel I had yet seen. The officers here were not nearly so haughty and disobliging as those on board the Eurotas. Even now I cannot think without a smile of the airs the captain of the latter vessel gave himself. He appeared to consider that he had as good a right to be an admiral as Bruys.

At ten o’clock we steamed out of the harbour of Lavalette. As it was already dark night, I went below and retired to rest.

October 5th.

When I hurried on deck this morning I found we were already in sight of the Sicilian coast, and oh happiness! I could distinguish green hills, wooded mountains, glorious dells, and smiling meadows, a spectacle I had enjoyed neither in Syria, in Egypt, nor even at Malta. Now I thought at length to behold Europe, for Malta resembles the Syrian regions too closely to favour the idea that we are really in Europe. Towards eleven o’clock we reached


Unfortunately we could only get four hours’ leave of absence. As several gentlemen among the passengers wished to devote these few hours to seeing all the lions of this once rich and famous town, I joined their party and went ashore with them. Scarcely had we landed before we were surrounded by a number of servants and a mob of curious people, so that we were almost obliged to make our way forcibly through the crowd. The gentlemen hired a guide, and desired to be at once conducted to a restaurateur, who promised to prepare them a modest luncheon within half an hour. The prospect of a good meal seemed of more importance in the eyes of my fellow-passengers than any thing else. They resolved to have luncheon first, and afterwards to take a little walk through the city.

On hearing this I immediately made a bargain with a cicerone to shew me what he could in four hours, and went with him, leaving the company seated at table. Though I got nothing to eat to-day but a piece of bread and a few figs, which I despatched on the road, I saw some sights which I would not have missed for the most sumptuous entertainment.

Of the once spacious town nothing remains but a very small portion, inhabited by 10,000 persons at most. The dirty streets were every where crowded with people, as though they dwelt out of doors, while the houses stood empty.

Accompanied by my guide, I passed hastily through the new town, and over three or four wooden bridges to Neapolis, the part of ancient Syracuse in which monuments of the past are seen in the best state of preservation. First we came to the theatre. This building is tolerably well preserved, and several of the stone seats are still seen rising in terrace form one above the other. From this place we betook ourselves into the amphitheatre, which is finer by far, and where we find passages leading to the wild beasts’ dens, and above them rows of seats for spectators; all is in such good condition that it might, at a trifling expense, be so far repaired as to be made again available for its original purpose. Now we proceeded to the “Ear of Dionysius,” with which I was particularly struck. It consists of a number of chambers, partly hewn out of the rock by art, partly formed by nature, and all opening into an immensely lofty hall, which becomes narrower and narrower towards the top, until it at length terminates in an aperture so minute as to be invisible from below. To this aperture Dionysius is said to have applied his ear, in order to overhear what the captives spoke. (This place is stated to have been used as a prison for slaves and malefactors.) It is usual to fire a pistol here, that the stranger may hear the reverberating echoes. A lofty opening, resembling a great gate, forms the entrance to these rocky passages. Overgrown with ivy, it has rather the appearance of a bower than of a place of terror and anguish. Several of these side halls are now used as workshops by rope-makers, while in others the manufacture of saltpetre is carried on. The region around is rocky, but without displaying any high mountains. I saw numerous grottoes, some of them with magnificent entrances, which looked as though they had been cut in the rocks by art. In one of these grottoes water fell from above, forming a very pretty cataract.

During this excursion the time had passed so rapidly that I was soon compelled to think, not of a visit to the catacombs, but of my return on board.

I proceeded to the sea-shore, where the Syracusans have built a very pretty promenade, and was rowed back to the steamer.

Of all the passengers I was the only one who had seen any thing of Syracuse; all the rest had spent the greater part of the time allowed them in the inn, and at most had been for a short walk in the town. But they had obtained an exceedingly good dinner; and thus we had each enjoyed ourselves in our own way.

At three o’clock we quitted the beautiful harbour of Syracuse, and three hours brought us to


This voyage was one of the most beautiful and interesting that can be imagined. The traveller continually sees the most charming landscapes of blooming Sicily; and at Syracuse we can already descry on a clear day the giant Etna rearing its head 10,000 feet above the level of the sea.

At six in the evening we disembarked; but those going farther had to be on board again by midnight. I had intended to remain at Catanea and ascend Mount Etna; but on making inquiries I was assured that the season was too far advanced for such an undertaking, and therefore resolved to set sail again at midnight. I went on shore in company with a Neapolitan and his wife, for the purpose of visiting some of the churches, a few public buildings, and the town itself. The buildings, however, were already closed, though the exteriors promised much. We could only deplore that we had arrived an hour too late, and take a walk round the town. I could scarcely wonder enough at the bustle in the crowded squares and chief streets, and at the shouting and screaming of the people. The number of inhabitants is about 50,000. The two chief streets, leading in different directions from the great square, are long, broad, and particularly well paved with large stone slabs: they contain many magnificent houses. The only circumstance which displeased me was, that every where, even in the chief streets, the people dry clothes on large poles at balconies and windows. This makes the town look as though it were inhabited by a race of washerwomen. I should not even mind so much if they were clean clothes; but I frequently saw the most disgusting rags fluttering in front of splendid houses. Unfortunately this barbarous custom prevails throughout the whole of Sicily; and even in Naples the hanging out of clothes is only forbidden in the principal street, the Toledo: all the other streets are full of linen.

Among the équipages, which were rolling to and fro in great numbers, I noticed some very handsome ones. Some were standing still in the great square, while their occupants amused themselves by looking at the bustle around them, and chatted with friends and acquaintances who crowded round the carriages. I found a greater appearance of life here than either at Naples or Palermo.

The convent of St. Nicholas was unfortunately closed, so that we could only view its exterior. It is a spacious magnificent building, the largest, in fact, in the whole town. We also looked at the walks on the sea-shore, which at our first arrival we had traversed in haste in order to reach the town quickly. Beautiful avenues extend along each side of the harbour; they are, however, less frequented than the streets and squares. We had a beautiful moonlight night; the promontory of Etna, with its luxurious vegetation, as well as the giant mountain itself, were distinctly visible in all their glory. The summit rose cloudless and free; no smoke came from the crater, nor could we discover a trace of snow as we returned to our ship. We noticed several heaps of lava piled upon the sea-shore, of a perfectly black colour.

Late in the evening we adjourned to an inn to refresh ourselves with some good dishes, and afterwards returned to the steamer, which weighed anchor at midnight.

October 6th.

We awoke in the harbour of Messina. The situation of this town is lovely beyond description. I was so charmed with it that I stood for a long time on deck without thinking of landing.

A chain of beautiful hills and huge masses of rock in the background surround the harbour and town. Every where the greatest fertility reigns, and all things are in the most thriving and flourishing condition. In the direction of Palermo the boundless ocean is visible.

I now bade farewell to the splendid steamer Hercules, because I did not intend to proceed direct to Naples, but to make a detour by way of Palermo.

As soon as I had landed, I proceeded to the office of the merchant M., to whom I had a letter of recommendation. I requested Herr M. to procure me a cicerone as soon as possible, as I wished to see the sights of Messina, and afterwards to continue my journey to Palermo. Herr M. was kind enough to send one of his clerks with me. I rested for half an hour, and then commenced my peregrination.

From the steamer Messina had appeared to me a very narrow place, but on entering the town I found that I had made quite a false estimate of its dimensions. Messina is certainly built in a very straggling oblong form, but still its breadth is not inconsiderable.

I saw many very beautiful squares; for instance, the chief square, with its splendid fountain ornamented with figures, and a bas-relief of carved work in bronze. Every square contains a fountain, but we seldom find any thing particularly tasteful. The churches are not remarkable for the beauty of their façades, nor do they present any thing in the way of marble statues or finely executed pictures.

The houses are generally well built, with flat roofs; the streets, with few exceptions, are narrow, small, and very dirty. An uncommonly broad street runs parallel with the harbour, and contains, on one side at least, some very handsome houses. This is a favourite place for a walk, for we can here see all the bustle and activity of the port. Several of the palaces also are pretty; that appropriated to the senate is the only one which can be called fine, the staircase being constructed entirely of white marble, in a splendid style of architecture: the halls and apartments are lofty, and generally arched. The regal palace is also a handsome pile.

In the midst of the town I found an agreeable public garden. The Italians appear, however, to choose the streets as places of rendezvous, in preference to enclosures of this kind; for every where I noticed that the garden-walks were empty, and the streets full. But on the whole there is not nearly so much life here as at Catanea. In order to obtain a view of the whole of Messina and its environs I ascended a hill near the town, surmounted by a Capuchin convent; here I enjoyed a prospect which I have seldom seen equalled. As I gazed upon it I could easily imagine that an inhabitant of Messina can find no place in the world so beautiful as his native town.

The promontory against which the town leans is clothed with a carpet of the brightest green, planted with fruit-trees of all kinds, and enlivened with scattered towns, villages, and country seats. Beautiful roads, appearing like white bands, intersect the mountains on every side in the direction of the town. The background is closed by high mountains, sometimes wooded, sometimes bare, now rising in the form of alps, now in the shape of rocky masses. At the foot of the hills we see the long-drawn town, the harbour with its numerous ships, and beyond it groups of alps and rocks. The boundless sea flows on the spectator’s right and left towards Palermo and Naples, while in the direction of Catanea the eye is caught by mountains, with Etna towering among them.

The same evening I embarked on board the Duke of Calabria, for the short trip of twelve or fourteen hours to Palermo. This steamer has only engines of 80 horse-power, and every thing connected with it is small and confined. The first-class accommodation is indeed pretty good, but the second-class places are only calculated to contain very few passengers. Though completely exhausted by my long and fatiguing walk through Messina, I remained on deck, for I could not be happy without seeing Stromboli. Unfortunately I could distinguish very little of it. We had started from Messina at about six o’clock in the evening, and did not come in sight of the mountain until two hours later, when the shades of night were already descending; we were, besides, at such a distance from it that I could descry nothing but a colossal mass rising from the sea and towering towards heaven. I stayed on deck until past ten o’clock in the hope of obtaining a nearer view of Stromboli; but we had soon left it behind us in the far distance, with other islands which lay on the surface like misty clouds.

October 7th.

To-day I hastened on deck before sunrise, to see as much as possible of the Sicilian coast, and to obtain an early view of Palermo. At ten o’clock we ran into the harbour of this town.

I had been so charmed with the situation of Messina that I did not expect ever to behold any thing more lovely; and yet the remembrance of this town faded from my mind when


rose before me, surrounded by magnificent mountains, among which the colossal rock of St. Rosalia, a huge slab of porphyry and granite, towered high in the blue air. The combination of various colours unites with its immense height and its peculiar construction to render this mountain one of the most remarkable in existence. Its summit is crowned by a temple; and a good road, partly cut out of the rock, partly supported on lofty pillars of masonry, which we can see from on board our vessel, leads to the convent of St. Rosalia, and to a chapel hidden among the hills and dedicated to the same saint.

At the foot of this mountain lies a gorgeous castle, inhabited, as my captain told me, by an English family, who pay a yearly rent of 30,000 florins for the use of it. To the left of Palermo the mountains open and shew the entrance into a broad and transcendently beautiful valley, in which the town of Monreal lies with magical effect. Several of these gaps occur along the coast, affording glimpses of the most lovely vales, with scattered villages and pretty country-seats.

The harbour of Palermo is picturesque and eminently safe. The town numbers about 130,000 inhabitants. Here, too, our deck was crowded with Fachini, innkeepers, and guides, before the anchor was fairly lowered. I inquired of the captain respecting the price of board and lodging, and afterwards made a bargain with a host before leaving the ship. By following this plan I generally escaped overcharge and inconvenience.

Arrived at the inn, I sent to Herr Schmidt, to whom I had been recommended, with the request that he would despatch a trustworthy cicerone to me, and make me a kind of daily scheme of what I was to see. This was soon done, and after hurrying over my dinner I commenced my wanderings.

I entered almost every church I passed on my way, and found them all neat and pretty. Every where I came upon picturesque villas and handsome houses, with glass doors instead of windows, their lower portion guarded by iron railings and forming little balconies. Here the women and girls sit of an evening working and talking to their heart’s content.

The streets of Palermo are far handsomer and cleaner than those of Messina. The principal among them, Toledo and Casaro, divide the town into four parts, and join in the chief square. The streets, as we pass from one into another, present a peculiar appearance, filled with bustling crowds of people moving noisily to and fro. In the Toledo Street all the tailors seem congregated together, for the shops on each side of the way are uniformly occupied by the votaries of this trade, who sit at work half in their houses and half in the street. The coffee-houses and shops are all open, so that the passers-by can obtain a full view of the wares and of the buyers and sellers.

The regal palace is the handsomest in the town. It contains a gothic chapel, richly decorated; the walls are entirely covered with paintings in mosaic, of which the drawings do not display remarkable taste, and the ceiling is over-crowded with decorations and arabesques. An ancient chandelier, in the form of a pillar, made of beautiful marble and also covered with arabesques, stands beside the pulpit. On holydays an immense candle is put in this candlestick and lighted.

I wished to enter this chapel, but was refused admittance until I had taken off my hat, like the men, and carried it in my hand. This custom prevails in several churches of Palermo. The space in front of the palace resembles a garden, from the number of avenues and beds of flowers with which it is ornamented. Second in beauty is the palace of the senate, but it cannot be compared with that at Messina.

The town contains several very handsome squares, in all of which we find several statues and fountains.

Foremost among the churches the Cathedral must be mentioned; its gothic façade occupies one entire side of a square. A spacious entrance-hall, with two monuments, not executed in a very fine style of art, leads into the interior of the church, which is of considerable extent, but built in a very simple style. The pillars, two of which always stand together, and the four royal monuments at the entrance, are all of Egyptian granite. The finest part of the church is the chapel of St. Rosalia on the right, not far from the high altar; both its walls are decorated with large bas-reliefs in marble, beautifully executed: one of these represents the banishment of the plague, and the finding of St. Rosalia’s bones. A splendid pillar of lapis-lazuli, said to be the largest and finest specimen of this stone in existence, stands beside the high altar. The two basins with raised figures at the entrance of the church also deserve notice. The left side of the square is occupied by the episcopal palace, a building of no pretensions.

Santa Theresia is a small church, containing nothing remarkable except a splendid bas-relief in marble, representing the Holy Family, which an Englishman once offered to purchase for an immense sum. The neighbouring church of St. Pieta, on the contrary, can be called large and grand. The façades are ornamented with pillars of marble, the altar is richly gilt, and handsome frescoes deck the ceiling. St. Domenigo, another fine church, possesses, my cicerone assured me, the largest organ in the world. If he had said the greatest he had seen, I could readily have believed him.

In St. Ignazio, or Olivazo, near a minor altar at one side, we find a painting representing the Virgin and the infant Jesus. The sacristan persisted that this was a work of Raphael’s. The colouring appeared to me not quite to resemble that of the great master, but I understand too little of these things to be able to judge on such a subject. At any rate it is a fine piece. A few steps below the church lies the oratory, which nearly equals it in size, and also contains a handsome painting over the altar. “St. Augustine” also repays the trouble of a visit; it displays great wealth in marble, sculptures, frescoes, and arabesques. “St. Joseph” is also rich in various kinds of marble. Several of its large columns have been made from a single block. A clear cold stream issues from this church.

I have still to notice the lovely public gardens, which I visited after dining with the consul-general, Herr Wallenburg. I cannot omit this opportunity of gratefully mentioning the friendly sympathy and kindness I experienced on the part of this gentleman and his lady. To return to the gardens, the most interesting to me was the botanical, where a number of rare trees and plants flourish famously in the open air.

The catacombs of the Augustine convent are most peculiar; they are situate immediately outside the town. From the church, which offers nothing of remarkable interest, a broad flight of stairs leads downwards into long and lofty passages cut in the rock, and receiving light from above. The skeletons of the dead line the walls, in little niches close beside each other; they are clothed in a kind of monkish robe, and each man’s hands are crossed on his chest, with a ticket bearing his name, age, and the date of his death depending therefrom. A more horrible sight can scarcely be imagined than these dressed-up skeletons and death’s-heads. Many have still hair on the scalp, and some even beard. The niches in which they stand are surmounted by planks displaying skulls and bones, and the corridors are crowded with whole rows of coffins, their inmates waiting for a vacant place. If the relations of one of the favoured skeletons neglect to supply a certain number of wax-tapers on All-Saints’ day, the poor man is banished from his position, and one of the candidates steps in and occupies his niche.

The corpses of women and girls are deposited in another compartment, and look as though they were lying in state in their glass coffins, dressed in handsome silks, with ornamental coifs on their heads, ruffs and lace collars round their necks, and silk shoes and stockings, which however soon burst, on their feet. A wreath of flowers decks the brow of each girl, and beneath all this ornament the skull appears with its hollow eyes a parody upon life and death.

Whenever any one wishes to be immortalised in this way, his friends and relations must pay a certain sum for a place on the day of his burial, and afterwards bring wax-tapers every year. The body is then laid in a chamber of lime, which remains for eight months hermetically closed, until the flesh has been entirely eaten away; then the bones are fastened together, dressed, and placed in a niche.

On All-Saints’ day these corridors of death are crowded with gazers; friends and relations of the deceased resort thither to light candles and perform their devotions. I was glad to have had an opportunity of seeing these audience-halls of the dead, but still I rejoiced when I hastened upwards to sojourn once more among the living.

From here I drove to Olivuzza, to view the Moorish castle of Ziza, celebrated for the beauty of its situation and of the region around. Not far from the old castle stands a new one, with a garden of much beauty, containing also a number of fantastic toys, such as little grottoes and huts, hollow trees in which secret doors fly suddenly open, disclosing to view a nun, a monk, or some figure of the kind, etc. Here I still found a species of date-tree growing in the open air; but the fruit it bears is very small, and never becomes completely ripe: this was the last date-tree I saw.

The royal villa “Favourite,” about a mile from the town, is situated in a lovely spot. It is built in the Chinese style, with a quantity of points, gables, and little bells; its interior is, however, arranged according to European design, in a rich, tasteful, and artistic manner. We linger with pleasure in the rooms, each of which offers some attractive feature. Thus, for instance, one apartment contains beautiful fresco paintings; another, life-size portraits of the royal family in Chinese costume; in a third, the effects of damp on walls and ceiling are so accurately portrayed that at first I was deceived by the resemblance, and regretted to find a room in such a condition among all the pomp and splendour around. One small cabinet is entirely inlaid with little pieces of all the various kinds of marble that are to be found in Sicily. The large tables are made of petrified and polished woods, etc. Besides these minor attractions, a much greater one exists in the splendid view which we obtain from the terraces and from the summit of the Chinese tower. I found it difficult to tear myself from contemplating this charming prospect; a painter would become embarrassed by the very richness of the materials around him. Every thing I had seen from on board here appeared before my eyes with increased loveliness, because I here saw it from a higher position, and obtained a more extended view.

An ornamental garden lies close to the palace. It is flagged with large blocks of stone, between which spaces are left for earth. These beds are parcelled out according to plans, bordered with box a foot in height, and arranged so as to form immense leaves, flowers, and arabesques; while in the midst stand vases of natural flowers. The park fills up the background; it consists merely of a few avenues and meadows, extending to the foot of Mount Rosalia.

This mountain I also ascended. The finest paved street, which is sufficiently broad for three carriages to pass each other, winds in a serpentine manner round the rocky heights, so that we can mount upwards without the slightest difficulty.

The convent is small and very simply constructed; the courtyard behind it, on the contrary, is exceedingly imposing. It is shut in on all sides by steep walls of rock, covered with clinging ivy in a most picturesque manner. On the left we find a little grotto containing an altar. In the foreground, on the right, a lofty gate, formed by nature and beautified by art, leads into a chapel wonderfully formed of pieces of rock and stalactites. A feeling of astonishment and admiration almost amounting to awe came upon me as I entered. The walls near the chief altar are overgrown with a kind of delicate moss of an emerald-green colour, with the white rock shining through here and there; and in the midst rises a natural cupola, terminating in a point. The extreme summit of this dome cannot be distinguished; it is lost in obscurity. Here and there natural niches occur, in which statues of saints have been placed. To the left of the high altar I saw the monument of St. Rosalia, beautifully executed in white marble. She is represented in a recumbent posture, the size of life; the statue rests on a pedestal two feet in height. In the most highly-decorated or the most gorgeous church I could not have felt myself more irresistibly impelled to devotion than in this grand temple of nature.

From the 15th to the 18th of July in every year a great feast is held in honour of St. Rosalia, the patron saint of the city, in the town and on the mountain. On these days a number of people make a pilgrimage to the grotto above described, where the bones of the saint were found at a time when the plague was raging at Palermo. They were carried with great pomp into the town, and from that moment the plague ceased.

The road from the convent to the temple, built on the summit of a rock, and visible to the sailors from a great distance, leads us for about half a mile over loose stones. Its construction is extremely simple, and not remarkable in any way. In former times its summit was decked by a colossal statue of the saint. This fell down, and the head alone remained unmutilated. Like the statue, the fane is now in ruins, and its site is only visited for the sake of the beautiful view.

On our way back to the convent, my guide drew my attention to a spot where a large tree had stood. Some years before, a family was sitting quietly beneath its shade, partaking of a frugal meal, when the tree suddenly came crashing down, and caused the death of four persons.

The excursion to St. Rosalia’s Hill can easily be made in four or five hours. It is usual to ride up the mountain on donkeys; these animals are, however, so sluggish, compared with those of Egypt, that I often preferred dismounting and proceeding on foot. The Neapolitan donkeys are just as lazy.

I wished still to visit Bagaria, the summer residence of many of the townspeople. One morning I drove to this lovely spot in the company of an amiable Swiss family. The distance from Palermo is about two miles and a half, and the road frequently winding close to the sea, presents a rich variety of beautiful pictures.

We went to view the palace of Prince Fascello: the proprietor appears, however, seldom to reside here, for every thing wears an air of neglect. Two halls in this building are worthy of notice; the walls of the smaller one are covered with figures and ornaments, beautifully carved in wood, with pieces of mirror glass placed between them. The vaulted ceiling is also decorated with mirrors, some of which are unfortunately already broken.

The walls of the larger hall are completely lined with the finest Sicilian marble. Above the cornices the marble has been covered with thin glass, which gives it a peculiar appearance of polish. The immense ceiling of the great hall is vaulted like that of the smaller one, and completely covered with mirrors, all of them in good preservation. Both apartments, but particularly the large one, are said to have a magical effect when lighted up with tapers.

I spent a Sunday in Palermo, and was much pleased at seeing the peasants in their festive garb, in which, however, I could discover nothing handsome; nor, indeed, any thing peculiar, save the long pendent nightcaps. The men wear jackets and breeches, and have the before-mentioned caps on their heads; the dress of the women is a spencer, a petticoat, and a kerchief of white or coloured linen round the head and neck.

The common people appeared to be neither cleanly nor wealthy. The rich are dressed according to the fashions of London, Paris, and Vienna.

In all the Sicilian towns I found the mob more boisterous and impudent than in the East, and frequently it was my lot to witness most diabolical quarrels and fights. It is necessary to be much more on one’s guard against theft and roguery among these people than among the Arabs and Bedouins. Now I acknowledge how falsely I had judged the poor denizens of the East when I took them for the most thievish of tribes. The people here and at Naples were far worse than they. I was doubly pained on making this discovery, from the fact that I saw more fasting and praying, and more clergymen in these countries than any where else. To judge from appearances, I should have taken the Sicilians and Neapolitans for the most pious people in the world. But their behaviour towards strangers is rude in the extreme. Never had I been so impudently stared out of countenance as in these Sicilian towns: fingers were pointed at me amidst roars of laughter; the boys even ran after me and jeered at me and all because I wore a round straw hat. In Messina I threw this article away, and dressed according to the fashion which prevails here and in my own country; but still the gaping did not cease. In Palermo it was not only the street boys who stood still to gaze at me, the grandees also did me the same honour, whether I drove or walked. I once asked a lady the reason of this, and requested to know if my appearance was calculated either to give offence or to excite ridicule; she replied that neither was the case, but that the only thing the citizens remarked in me was that I went about alone with a servant. In Sicily this was quite an uncommon circumstance, for there I always saw two ladies walking together, or a lady and gentleman. Now the grand mystery was solved; but notwithstanding this, I did not alter my mode of action, but continued to walk quietly about the town with my servant, for I preferred being laughed at a little to giving any one the trouble of accompanying me about every where. At first this staring made me very uncomfortable; but man can adapt himself to every thing, and I am no exception to the rule.

The vegetation in Sicily is eminent for its luxuriant loveliness. Flowers, plants, and shrubs attain a greater height and magnitude than we find elsewhere. I saw here numerous species of aloes, which we cultivate laboriously in hot-houses, growing wild, or planted as hedges around gardens. The stems, from which blossoms burst forth, often attain a height of from twenty to thirty feet. Their flowering season was already past.

October 10th.

After a sojourn of five days I bade farewell to Palermo, and took my departure in wet weather. This was the first rain I had seen fall since the 20th of April. The temperature remained very warm; on fine days the thermometer still stood at 20 or 22 degrees Reaumur in the sun at noon.

The vessel on which I now embarked was a royal mail-steamer. We left Palermo at noon; towards evening the sea became rather rough, so that the spray dashed over me once or twice, although I continually kept near the steersman.

At the commencement of our journey nothing was to be seen but sky and water. But the next day, as we approached the Neapolitan coast, island after island rose from the sea, and at length the mainland itself could be discerned. Capri was the first island we approached closely. Soon afterwards my attention was drawn to a great cloud rising towards the sky; it was a smoky column from the glowing hearth of Vesuvius. At length a white line glittered on the verge of the horizon, like a band through the clear air. There was a joyful cry of “Napoli! Napoli!” and Naples lay spread before me.