« НазадПродовжити »
ANECDOTE OF DESCARTES.
rooms, which formerly were parts of the convent, are also filled with the monuments of the different centuries, the windows being also ornamented with painted glass of the same period! In the principal hall, among other remarkable objects, there is to be seen a MARBLE VASE, said to be the identical one in which water was converted into wine at the Marriage in Cana !! After a long examination of these curiosities, we returned to dine at the Palais Royal. That ceremony finished, we visited the Café des Mille Colonnes. The brilliant effect produced by the numerous mirrors was astonishing: we had some glaces au citron, and saw the celebrated beauty
reader. Whilst Descartes lay in garrison at Breda, during the truce between the Spaniards and the Dutch, an unknown person caused a problem iu MATHEMATICS, in the Dutch language, to, be fixed up in the streets, when Descartes seeing a concourse of people stop to read it, desired one who stood near him to explain it to him in Latin or French. The man promised to satisfy him, upon condition that he would engage to solve the problem, and Descartes agreed to the condition with such an air, that the man, though he little expected such a thing from a young cadet in the army, gave him his address, and desired him to bring the solution. Descartes returned to his lodging, and next day visited Beckman, Principal of the College of Dort, who was the person who had translated the problem to him. Beckman seemed surprised at his having solved it in so short a time, but his wonder was much increased to find, upon talking to the young gentleman, that his knowledge was much superior to his own in those sciences wherein he had employed his whole time for several years!
sitting like a Queen in the centre of the splendid apartment ! In the antichamber presides a younger beauty, who promises to be no ways inferior to the other. After visiting Les Ombres Chinoises of M. Seraphin, in another part of the Palais, (fifteen sous each,) we ascended to the gaming rooms ! They consisted of a suite of three or four rooms, each containing a large table, at which the principal agents in the game were stationed, furnished with instrumients like a hoe, for collecting the five franc pieces which were successively lost or won. After satisfying our curiosity without trying our fortune, we left the place and returned to our hotel.
Friday, 27.-Set out on our rambles with our guide. One of the objects which is sure to arrest the attention of a stranger walking the streets of PARIS is the class of people called Limonadiers. These men carry large tin vessels at their backs, covered with paper or green baize, connected with which are two cocks (from one issues water, from the other lemonade)--the polished tin cups are strapped on to their shoulders. Of the price of their liquor, and its quality, I am equally ignorant--the elegance of the apparatus never having tempted me to taste the beverage. The use of the water is to rince the cups previous to serving the lemonade to the various customers.
The first remarkable building that we met with was the Morgue, on the bank of the Seine, near the Pont au Change. The building is a receptacle for bodies
found drowned or murdered, and here they are exposed till recognised by their friends. You enter into a hall, where you preceive on each side a chamber separated from the hall merely by a large glazed window, through which may be seen the bodies, lying on low biers prepared for the purpose! At the time when we entered the place, there was only one body of a drowned man.
NOTRE DAME, the Cathedral Church, we' next viewed The seats of the choir are finely carved. It is also adorned with eight pictures, by painters of the French school. One of them is by a M. Jousenet, who, becoming paralytic before the picture was completed, finished it with his left hand! The altar is enriched by a piece of sculpture in marble, hy Costu, representing the Descent from the Cross. To the left is a marble statue of Louis the Thirteenth; to the right, one of Louis the Fourteenth. We then ascended into the upper story of a modern building attached to the south side of the church, and were there shewn the paraphernalia used at the coronation of NAPOLEON, including the Pope's chair, the robes of the priests, the canopies, &c. We also saw a sacramental cup, made in the year 1100; and some superb pieces of plate, containing a part of the REAL CROSS! On ascending the tower of the Church, we first came to the belfry, which contained AN IMMENSE Bell, bearing date 1682, weighing 32,000 lbs., and the clapper 976 lbs. ! On a small board fixed over it, is the fol. lowing inscription :
Laudo Deum verum,
Pestem fugo, Festa decoro. The following is a rough translation
I praise the Deity,
Collect the laity,
I toll a knell,
The plague expel,
On reaching the summit of the Tower, which is 204 feet, or 380 steps high, we were gratified with an extremely five view of Paris.* We then descended, and left the church.
We now entered the Hotel Dieu or Hospital ; but as it contained nothing particularly worthy of attention, we did not stop to inspect it, but proceeded to the Halle aux Vins, wliich consists of immense warehouses on the river side, and serves as a repository for wine.t A little farther on, we came to THE
* A Frenchman, who ascended the Tower at the same time, wished to persuade me that Paris was as large as LONDON, saying that he knew it, because he had viewed London from the summit of St. Paul's! This cogent argument was, however, insufficient to convince me that Paris was much more than half the size of LONDON.
+ Our friend Mr. G., who was well qualified to judge, was of opinion that the London Docks contained at least three times the quantity of wine that we saw here.
JARDIN DE PLANTES.
some LARGE BEARS.
JARDIN DE PLANTES, directly opposite the iron bridge of the same name, formerly known as the Pont d'Austerlitz. * In one of the Lodges, at the entrance to the Garden, which is fitted up as a small Café, we took some slight refreshment previous to walking round the garden. The first department that we visited was the fine collection of ANIMALS, to which one side of the garden is appropriated, the wild being confined in cages, while the more tame are permitted to roam in little inclosures, adapted to their particular mode of ļife! In three deep fosses, of a square form, there are
One of these animals, some time ago, stifled a soldier, who descended by means of a ladder into his den; early in the morning, to possess himself of something which he had seen in it, and mistaken for a five-franc piece! In one part of the grounds a huge Elephant attracts the notice of the stranger.
At the further extremity of the garden were the buildings devoted to lectures on different subjects. A very
fine range of rooms is fitted up as a Museum, and presents a very extensive and beautiful collection of stuffed animals and natural curiosities. In one of the lower rooms there is a large Library, one end of which is graced with a statue of BUFFON, with this inscription below, “ Majestati naturæ par inge
* The more loyal appellation of the garden is Jardin du Roi; and of the bridge, Pont du Jardin du Roi.