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place as hostess of some osteria beyond a reign without limits. Therefore they the Tiber. Walking with the spindle represented him free on his horse. under her arm, poor and busy, she Where it would go to the right or the meets the imperator and coldly wishes left, the emperor would always remain him: “A thousand years of life.” Nero on his own territory. Do you not see, paused-and wondered at the strange that he indicates the same idea with expression. He asked the woman, why the noble movements of his outthis compliment? She was prepared. stretched arms.” In the same way the Her short speech was only meant as Romans of the middle-ages interpreted to awaken his curiosity, as to place the gestures of the Dioscuri—the two better her bitter criticism. “So your young men on the Quirinal hill, Prassicrimes can long continue !" Over tele and Fibia (sic) counting on their powered by her daring, he commands fingers the years of the destiny of her to come the following day to the Rome. palace, bringing with her all the thread Their counting was as mere guessshe had spun. Berta, considering this a work compared to the security given dead verdict, goes on her errand—to by "cose fatali,” the things of fate, like find herself rewarded with as much the gilding of the statue of Marcus land as her spun thread could sur Aurelius and the stability of the Coround. All poor women followed her losseum, which merits to be called a example, going to the palace and ask- safe standard, from a chronological ing for a present; hoping to make standpoint. profit of Nero's instantaneous gener The old Roman rhyme is still known: : osity-but they got the only answer: "It is no more the time, that Berta "Fino ch'er Coliseo durera" spins!"
(As long as the Colosseum stands) Another emperor, Marcus Aurelius, "Puro Roma su stara" had, besides others, this advantage: (Will also Rome endure) that his statue has been exposed in “Quanno er Coliseo caschera” public perhaps ever since the time of When the Colosseum will fall) its erection in the Forum. Probably "Puro Roma ha da casca" this favor of the middle-ages has been (Also Rome must fall) bestowed on the statue as it went "Quanno Roma finira" under the erroneous name of the (When Rome will be ended) Christian emperor, Constantine. I do “Tutto er mondo s'ha da scapicolla” not speak here of its wanderings from (The whole world will turn upside the Forum to Saint John in Lateran down) and the legends of the middle-ages preserved in the marvellous little book Something about the Colosseum has " Mirabilia urbis Romae," and how the puzzled the Roman-how to explain great tribune, Cola di Rienzo, made the numberless holes in that mass of abuse of the bronze, just to have wine stone.
stone. The inemory has lost sight of spouting through the nostrils of the the times, when the ancestors were powerful animal-before Michelangelo digging in those nitches for the bronze placed it safely on the Capitol. At clasps, which once fastened the marble present two stories are told. The mantle to the stone-work. The extraces of gold on the statue will spread, planation now given contains, perhaps, so the Roman tells you; and when the more ancient remembrances. The rider and his horse will be completely incisions are explained as the start of covered-the golden age will return. a conspiracy to destroy the Colosseum. The other story is more ingenuous. Every Roman is familiar with the Somebody demands: "Do you know mining of quarries. From excursions why that man sits on his horse without along the Via Flaminia, where hunters its bridle?" The same person will re search the lonesome hare, or in the solve the solution. "That emperor had mountains of Tivoli, they remember ac
curately the preparation of this kind with those which are more completely of work. The Colosseum presents this of a religious origin, we are not sure same pigeon-hole surface. Musing up whether to arrange them in the folklore on history in the real folkloristic way, or to exclude them. The story of they suppose that the plot was made “Domine quo vadis” (whither goest by the Barbarians to blow up the Co- thou?), told by ecclesiastical teachers losseum. Never mind if gunpowder to the young generation, is certainly was known or not known in those days. more a subject of catechism than of The Barbarians were the only ones folklore. It is easy to make mistakes who could conceive the vandalistic in the division of what appertains to plan to such an extent. For us it is im
im- the popular mind and soul, and of portant to observe how tenacious the what is brought by more cultured perrecord of the Barbarians destroying sons. I know quite an instructive exRome keeps its place in the vague his- ample from my own observation. Passtorical notions of the populous. ing through a popular quarter of Rome,
The older legends, which I found not I remarked in the street a circle of known to the Romans of the reign of young boys and girls in very expresVictor Emanuel III., concerned in sive attitudes—all with different gesmore precise form the invasion. At- tures, ecstatically tila, ready to invade Rome, was hin- heaven. One acted as judge, pointing dered at Porta San Paolo by the ap to the onlooker the most esthetic figpearance of the apostles, Peter and ure, according to his capable judgPaul, with the drawn sword. As this ment.
ment. I saw in those youngsters the is not specially a matter of faith, the Raphaels, Michelangelos and Lavinia Romans are not taught about it. With Fontanas of the future. I carried the those kinds of legends, half political example along with me—how adhistory, half religious, and especially vanced the youthful play in Italy is
in point of esthetics, compared to our popular favor, and the same factories rough boy-plays and to our doll-house of cleographical art, which immortalgirl play! But I soon was disillusioned ized la Cenci in the prison, prepare by
-for Italian educators told me that the hundreds : last acts of the opera la nuns teach the children how to repre- Tosca. The Romans observed, with sent in tableaux vivant the celestial pleasure, that the terrific story was orirapture of different saints of the cal- ginally played on the wide and tested endar. My play of free art proved to stage of their own city. There is no be a continuation of the convent- doubt, that la Tosca belongs now to school, of the Christian Doctrine. the folklore of Rome—but she only
We have to include in the medium- entered since Puccini began to reign culture of the Italians also a respect- over every Italian, who can hum and able portion of fine arts, exposed to whistle. the public in the churches. To certain Real and genuine is Sixtus V. people the Saint Theresa of Bernini Never forgotten, he steps on the and the Moses of Michelangelo are, by boards of the stage or is quoted as the reason of their being parishioners of very instant of a severe ruler in orthe churches containing these master- dinary conversation. A “Sisto quinto" pieces, daily or weekly acquaintances. is the antithesis of a "Nerone.” Also certain iconographical and hagio- The play with his name on the graphical details are known by the boards has always a crowded house whole populous, from statues and and an insured success. From the long paintings, as to give lessons to art- list of popes, Rome remembers before historians from countries where the Pius the ninth only the sixteenth cenatmosphere is less pervaded with re- tury: Sixtus the fifth (1585-1590). A ligious art. This goes much farther Roman expression, on the style of than Saint Sebastian with the arrows, "Non e piu er tempo, etc.,” holds the and Saint Catherine with the wheel. quintessence of the reign of Sisto Perhaps, we have to make a concession Quinto. for the popular stage in the folklore. “Non annera sempre accusi” At least we will not be at a loss, if we (It will not always go that way) consider the ordinary representations This is the pope who revealed himas proof in our experiments—and, by a self the very day of his election a great peculiar conglomeration of facts, we reformer. The story is really worth will have to extend our investigations telling. also to the popular image. The old, One of the chapters of the short known, beloved, told-over story is al- pontificate of Sixtus V. shows him as ways in the centre. If we take for ex- the pope. who made for the time of ample the misfortunes of Beatrice his reign an end to the daring deeds of Cenci, we will find them many times the brigands, who infested the whole announced for some cheap theatre and papal territory. In the pleasant book presented in the oleographs at the of Hubner-Sixte Quint-you will find walls of the homes of small citizens. a full description of his dealings with Here the popular theatre and the popu- this enemy. Now, it is very remarkable lar art prove the existence of a great that our short story introduces Sixtus predilection in folklore for the drastic V., disguised as a monk, going to the and dramatic story of the beautiful Colosseum to discover a crowd of Cenci. The effect can also go in the brigands. We know that the former opposite direction.
circus of Flavius has been, in older The story of Tosca, a real Roman times, a hiding place for highway-robhappening, long forgotten by the Ro bers. This tradition haunts still the mans, and taken up by Sardou, comes traveller, when he comes to admire the back to Rome in the form of a libretto immense circus on moonlight nights. of the opera by Puccini. Now the As to sixteenth century quaint tales opera has conquered absolutely the about the place, I recommend the description Benvenuto Cellini gives in his changed by a man, very busy in Sixautobiography of spiritualistic experi- tus' days—the executioner of Rome! ments in the ring.
The Romans remember in a greater The pope knew how to wear the light their pope, who planned the bethabit to perfection. The brigands had terment of their city. His great buildsurely met often in their plundering ing-impulse is symbolized in the ereclife, hermits living in the caverns of tion of the obelisk of Nero. The imthe mountain-wall behind the Cam- mense monolyth had been neglected pagna. Yet in present times they ever since the fall from its pedestal. avoid to disturb the harmless sentries Sixtus risked to place it, dedicated to of solitude and devotion. No wonder Christianity, before Saint Peter's. The that the disguised pope got his en- man for the occasion was easily found. trance. He even was at once charged to An acquaintance of the days when turn the grill before dinnertime. Turn- Sixtus was not yet pope, and still in ing it in one direction he changed it disgrace before his predecessor, a poor sometimes, with the laconic observa- mason-boy, Domenico Fontana, had attion: “Non annera sempre accusi.” tracted his attention and favor. When After the meal, one by one, the rob- the former monk rose to the zenith of bers went to sleep. The monk then his power, he appointed Fontana his called the guards—the "sbirri”—and architect. In no other architectural the next day the expression was used feat had the fortuned Fontana dared in another sense: the brigand—“life so much as when ordered by his loving goes not always like this," as it was master to fulfil this task.
T is a grand picture, a grand Law personified in the High Sheriff scheme, and the heart of the pa of the County.
triot swells as he contemplates Therein he enters and pauses, frownit-these simple men, carrying the
carrying the ing upon some, smiling a smile of sunimmutable credentials of their fel shine of patronage on others. Are lows, dignified by their invested the preliminaries ready? Have his powers, assembling laboriously from orders been carried out? Have certain every corner of the State to devise bills been prepared and are certain together, in the sight of God and under schemes incubating as has been arthe power of a free electorate, what ranged and directed? Very well. The is best for the whole, and then, by Legislator seats himself in a. cusha simple “aye” or “nay” making or un ioned chair prepared for the mighty. making the laws of a sovereign people. Another black cigar; a light; the cus
It is, as we say, an edifying picture, pidor—the Legislature, de facto, is in and with some regret we turn from its session. contemplation to view the real as Opposite, across the corridor, little sembling of one, at least, modern men are fitting hurriedly to and fro Legislature.
in the confines of two magnificent Men, as of yore, are converging on chambers. Normally they are the the capital, some few with high re Legislators. Some of them think that solves and purposes single to be true they really are; others try to think to their trusts, free from all unholy al so; the most of them take their orders liances. But they are not many.
and think not at all. The real Legislature and here shall A man dedicated to spread God's be set down only that concerning which word and do His work, stands up bewe have knowledge-arrives under a fore them and asks divine guidance black slouch hat, a black cigar between upon “this honorable assembly. Be his lips, his bulky form close attended Thou present,” he implores, "and by his secretary and two smirking directs their councils. Give them wislieutenants.
dom for truth and justice. Before Thee Grandly, as becomes the sovereign they stand as supplicants, looking to power, he makes his way into the cita- Thee alone,” and every del of law-giving, which the people, in great chamber is strained to its utterthe name of a free government have most to learn if the Great One across erected, the nominal legislators skurry- the corridor has arrived yet. ing to make way for him, cringing at The good man knows the part he his approach, fawning to do his slight- plays in the great hypocrisy: he, like est or weightiest bidding.
all normal men, knows that these nomOn, down the tile-lined corridors he inal legislators' look no higher for goes, corridors so lately echoing to guidance than to the chamber across vows of constancy to truth and justice, the way; that therefrom the laws of until he comes to a little chamber set the people emanate and that no recomaside ordinarily to the majesty of the mendation may become operative and 880 Copyright, 1908, by Wins!
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ear in the