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heart of the Virgin, who is therefore painted with seven daggers sticking in her breast, and adored as “Nostra Signora de' sette dolori'--Our Lady of the seven Sorrows. The service of the Tre Ore is therefore divided into seven acts, between each of which there is a hymn. In every act, one of the seven set dissertatións, upon the sette parole' of Christ, is read--or begun to be read-by a priest, who goes on until his lecture is interrupted by the preacher, who breaks in upon it at whatever part he pleases with a sermon (as they call it), or rather a tirade, of his own, which seems to be extempore, but which is previously learnt by rote. These dissertations drawing to a close, and the three hours having nearly expired, * Ecco il momento cried the priest, and every body sank prostrate on the ground in tears; and sobs, and groans, and cries, and one loud burst of agony filled the church Ecco il momento! Già spira Gesù Cristo!–Già muore il nostro Redentore ! Già finisce di vivere il nostro Padre!'--(The moment is come! Now Jesus Christ expires! Now our Redeemer dies ! Now our Father ceases to live!), - this
At length the preacher cried, “Here they come the holy men—to bear the body of our Redeemer to the sepulchre;' and from the side of the scene issued forth a band of friars, clad in black, with white scarfs tied across them, and, gradually climbing Mount Calvary by a winding path among the rocks and bushes, reached the foot of the cross unmo-* lested by the paper centurions. But when they began to, unnail the body, it is utterly impossible to describe the shrieks, and cries, and clamours of grief, that burst from the people. At the unloos! ening of every nail, they were renewed with fresh vehemence, and the sobs and tears of the men were almost as copious as those of the women. - Five prayers, separately addressed to the five wounds of Christ-first, the wound in the left foot,
then that of the right foot, and so of the two hands, and, lastly, of the side, were next repeated. They were nearly the same, and all began, Vi adoro, piaga Santissima'-(I adore you, most holy wound.) The body of Christ being laid on a bier, decked with artificial flowers, and covered with a transparent veil, was brought down Mount Calvary by the holy men, as the preacher called them,—who deposited it on the front of the stage, where all the people thronged to kiss the toe through the veil, and weep over it. The congregation consisted of all ranks, from the prince to the beggar, but there was a preponderance of the higher classes.
The Illuminated Cross of St. Peter's, and the adoration of the Pope and the cardinals, form the attractions on the evening of Good Friday. “On this occasion,' says Lady Morgan, thousands of all ranks and countries pour into the church, where no tickets of admission are required; yet the mighty temple, made for the universe, still seems half empty. Many of the dim aisles afford an asylum for retiring piety; and the vastness of the whole, contemplated through a well-managed obscurity, seems to extend beyond its usual limits, and to be lost in immeasurable distance. The hundred lamps, which, in their bright brazen sockets, burn day and night round the sepulchre of St. Peter's, are this day extinguished. A cross of flame suspended from the cupola, before the baldachin of the high altar, alone lights the immediate space over which it hangs, and leaves all else in the majesty of darkness, here and there laintly dispersed by a twinkling lamp. That illu
The body was made of pasteboard, extremely well painted for effect; it had real hair on tlie, head, and it was so well executed, that even when closely viewed, it was marked with the agony of nature, and seemed to have recently expired.
See · Rome in the Nineteenth Century,' vol. iii, pp. 146-152; particularly pp. 148-149, for some specimens of the very extraordinary eloquence used by the priest on this occasion.
minated spot seemed like a magic circle. It is hermetically closed by three files of armed men, and the beams shed from the cross fall only on spears and bayonets. This place is kept clear for the pontiffs, princes, and cardinals, who now appear, accompanied by a guard, to clear a passage through the gathering multitude. The troops that await them open their files, and close again upon their charge. The Pope falls prostrate before the Cross, on cushions of down and velvet. The princes and princesses, with their attendant courtiers, take their station on his right; on his left kneel the cardinals. .
. During this singular prostration the most profound silence reigned. The Pope seemed unfeignedly absorbed in holy abstraction, and as the light fell upon his venerable head and faded face, and tinged his flowing robes, there was something mystic and ideal in his appearance; and to a faith which fancy had warmed, or fanaticism deranged, his translation from a mortal coil at that moment might have appeared possible. In the centre of the church crowded the beau monde of London, Paris, Vienna, and St. Petersburgh, laughing and chattering, through all the philological varieties which might be supposed to make a conversazione in the tower of Babel. There, too, Roman beauties, who disdained the flaunting rites of noonday ceremonial, moved in their long black veils; and there, in true sincerity of heart and faith, knelt within view of that cross, to which alone her eyes are directed, one alike the world forgetting, by the world forgot.' Whole families of the middle classes were seated on the steps of altars, or at the feet of monuments, gazing on the varied spectacle; and there bands of peasantry, breathing: aves, were seen walking about, and added much to the effect of the scene, whose grotesque groupings they aptly filled up.
As night thickens, and St. Peter's thins, the slow return of the varied multitude, and above all of the
pilgrim bands and confraternities, afford a picturesque and curious addition to the Good Friday sights. These pilgrims are wretched ragged creatures, led on by some Roman lady of condition, who gives out the penitential psalm as she moves along, and is anSwered by her followers. As their dark bands sweep along the banks of the Tiber, and their red torches flash on the walls of the castle of St. Angelo, they raise the deep-toned, and, when softened by distance, occasionally melodious psalmody, that with exquisite skill they suffer to die away along those waters over which Pagan priests have raised their Io Pæans, or chaunted the funeral obsequies for the death of Adonis.'-(Italy, vol. ii, p. 300.)-An account of a singular representation of the crucifixion, in Portugal, on this day, may be seen in our last volume, pp. 98-101.
4.-SAINT AMBROSE. ... Our saint was born about the year 340, and was educated in his father's palace, who was Prætorian Præfect of Gaul. He ruled over the see of Milan with great piety and vigilance for more than twenty years; during which time he gave all his money to pious uses, and settled the reversion of his estate upon the church. He converted the celebrated St. Augustine to the faith, and, at his baptism, composed that divine hymn, so well known in the church by the name of Te Deum. He died, aged fifty-seven, -A.D. 396. - . . ' -*"*5. A.D.. 33.--RESURRECTION OF OUR LORD. + !" ? Come hither, fool, who vainly think'st i n 1. Thine only is the art to plumb the depth in
Of truth and wisdom. 'Tis a friend who calls,
And tell me, shall we to blind chance ascribe *** wlli The scene so wonderful, so fair, and good ?
Shall we no farther search than sense will lead,
Which operates unseen, and regulates
HURDIS. ; 6.--EASTER EYE. Particular mortifications were enjoined to the earliest Christians on this day. From the third century, the fast was indispensible and rigid, being protracted always to midnight, sometimes to cock-crowing, and sometimes to the dawn of Easter day; and the whole of the day and night was employed in religious affairs.
On the day preceding Easter Sunday, it is the an
See the subject pursued in T. T. for 1820, pp. 98-99, and our last volume, p. 98.