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above which rises on one side Monte Barbaro, the ancient Mons Gaurus, celebrated for its wines, though it is now desolate and barren. Its fertility was probably destroyed by the eruption of Monte Nuovo, though the vine is again making its appearance on its slopes. It was a strong and heady wine, and this is said to be the character of the wines made in this neighbourhood in the present day. However picturesque all this coast may be, and interesting from its connexion with world-known recollections, there is a feeling of loneliness and desolation from a want of human beings. It must have been in later Roman times a healthy climate, as the aristocracy had their summer residences along the coast; and yet, at the present moment, to live here during the hot season is considered fatal. Why it should be so it is difficult to say, unless the numerous volcanic eruptions have changed the character of the climate. I reached the site of the ancient Cumae, and found a few hovels, where a large city once stood. You approach through a gateway formed of massive and lofty brickwork, called Arco Felice, supposed to have been one of the gates of the city, though there may be doubts if this were really the case. Near this are the remains of a small temple called Tempio dei Giganti, “Temple of the Giants,” because a gigantic statue was found in it; and at a little distance is an amphitheatre, whose form can be distinctly traced, though it is now in a ruinous state. In wandering over the hill you discover ruins of houses and pillars of temples, of which you are able to make nothing. Of course the Sibyl's grotto is the most interesting to a stranger, from which she was said to deliver her prophetic lore. It was a large subterranean chamber, hewn out of the eastern side of the rock on which the citadel stood:
Excisum Euboicæ latus ingens rupis in antrum,
Justin Martyr (Paraen. 37) found it here in the second century, and describes it as a great hall, artificially excavated, containing three reservoirs of water, and with an inner recess. The cave was in a great measure destroyed by Narses, when he besieged Cumae, A.D. 552. You still find some remnants of the cave, hewn out of the solid rock, entering it by a dark passage, which it is difficult to traverse. The plain extending to the north along the coast is now a royal forest. The country, on which you now enter after passing Cumae, is flat and uninteresting; on the left side you see the Lago di Licola, considered to be the remains of a foolish undertaking of the Emperor Nero to join the Lake Avernus by canal with Ostia, at the mouth of the river Tiber, a distance of one hundred and sixty miles. Both Suetonius (Ner. 31) and Tacitus (Ann. xv. 42) assure us that the attempt was made, though only a small portion was accomplished; and the historian adds, manent vestigia irritae spei—“the traces of his disappointed hopes are still visible.” The lake looks to the eye not to be artificial, as it is much broader than would be at all likely, if it had been intended merely for a canal. I was now proceeding along the Via Domitiana, leading from Capua to Cumae. In some places you can perceive the remains of the enormous blocks of lava with which it had been paved. In the fields around are ruins of houses and arches, probably of the aqueduct bringing water to Cumae. The ground is well cultivated, and the verdure of the fields is pleasing to the eye, in no way betraying the noxious nature of its atmosphere. The cattle are plump and healthy; to man alone nature seems to have forbidden this spot.
The whole tract of country along the coast, from Cumae to the mouth of the river Clanius, is flat, marshy, and covered with low brushwood, much resembling what I found near Paestum. I saw no forest in this vicinity which could represent the “Gallinaria Pinus,” where Juvenal (iii. 305) tells us that brigands were as ready to attack the unprotected traveller as I found them in the southern parts of Italy. In one of his epistles (Fam. ix. 23) Cicero mentions it as being the spot where he met a friend, when he was on his way to his villa at Cumae. It is still, however, called Pineta di Castel Volturno, though I saw no pines. Strabo (v. p. 243) speaks of it as a mass of brushwood, which it is at the present moment.
The Torre di Patria—the ancient Liternum, situated on the river Clanius, now Lagno—consists of a few straggling huts, where hunters leave their horses when they come down from Naples to shoot quails. At a place called Le Rotte, you are shown what is called the tomb of the celebrated Scipio Africanus, who took up his abode here when he retired in disgust from Rome, and where he ended his days in a kind of voluntary exile. It seems a strange place for a residence, having a confined view; and at all times it must have been unhealthy, as the character of the surrounding country must have caused the waters to overflow in all directions. The Clanius runs sluggishly, and forms a lake towards the sea, which was the Palus Literna. That Scipio resided there, there can be no doubt, as the villa was still in existence in the time of Seneca (Ep. 86), who gives a graphic description of its appearance, contrasting the simplicity of its arrangements with the luxurious splendour of the age in which he lived. We are also told by Pliny (xvi. 85, 1) that some of the olive-trees and myrtles planted by the hand of Scipio were still visible, though an interval of about two hundred and fifty years existed between them. There is a doubt whether he was buried here, or in the family sepulchre at Rome. According to Valerius Maximus (v. 3, 2), he caused to be engraved on his tomb:
Ingrata patria, ne Ossa quidem mea habes—
“Ungrateful country, you do not contain even my bones"—and there seems every reason to suppose that the modern name of Patria must have been derived from some tradition of this epitaph of Scipio; the name is traced back as far as the eighth century. The building shown as the tomb has no appearance of a sepulchral monument. It is a vaulted chamber, fifteen feet by twelve, plastered with pozzolana, the cement found at Pozzuoli, mixed with pieces of brick, and is more than half filled with earth. There are no columbaria in the walls, and nothing indeed to show that it was ever a tomb. There has been a large building connected with it, without anything to fix the epoch when it was erected. At a short distance from Le Rotte there are six large mounds rising like towers, which are called Torrioni. It is impossible to say from their appearance what they were originally, and there have been no excavations. The only other remains of ancient times is the Ponte a Selice, the bridge over the Clanius, along which the Via Domitiana ran. The buttresses on both sides are nearly entire, and chiefly built of brick and rubble-work. Several pieces of columns, formed of breccia, are scattered up and down. I made every inquiry respecting the inscription “Ingrata Patria” giving name to the spot; but this has long since disappeared, if it ever existed. When I heard in what way the tomb was employed at the present moment, I was strongly reminded of the base uses to which Shakspeare imagines the dust of Caesar might be turned to:
Imperial Caesar, dead and turn'd to clay,
So the tomb of Scipio is now used by the wretched inhabitants as a trap in which they catch porcupines. The following is the method they pursue. They dig holes, and cover them slightly with straw and earth, when the porcupines passing over drop in and are thus caught. There is a place about two miles distant called Pitafio—i.e. Epitaphio—where sepulchral inscriptions have been found; and a little farther on is Vico di Pantano, where the villa of Scipio is placed by some. If it be so, its situation was in no respect preferable to Patria. It is a miserable village at present, though it no doubt dates its origin to distant times, as various objects of antiquity have been found in its neighbourhood, and among others the following inscription:
D. M. S.
As I entered Wico, I met the funeral of a child, attended by a number of priests saying masses for its soul; and when they entered the church, the body was placed in the centre, and plentifully exorcised with holy water. There seemed to be none of the relations present, and, as might be expected, the service was a mere matter of form. Finding some difficulty to get a stable for my mule, I asked a peasant if he could find me a place where it could rest for an hour. He took me to his own stable, and kindly invited me to dine with his family. The dinner consisted of a minestra—a kind of soup made of turnip-tops and meat, which we ate with a fork, dipping our bread into the soup—a broiled piece of kid, two artichokes, and Bologna sausage. It was home-baked bread, and was excellent. The red wine was of the unadulterated juice of the grape, and particularly good. I was in the direction where the famous Falernian wine of old was made, and the vines do not seem to have degenerated.
I proceeded onwards to the village of S. Elpidio, near which the ancient Atella was situated, and where there is still an old church called Sta. Maria di Atella. There are some remains of its walls, and the foundations of ruined houses amidst vineyards. ... I saw no inscriptions, though some have been found, which I was told had been removed to Naples. The spot where the ruins are found is called Castellone. The city of Atella is best known in connexion with the peculiar class of dramatic representations called “Fabulae Atellanae”—a broad farce, which became so licentious in its character, that in the reign of Tiberius they were altogether prohibited, and the actors banished from Italy. The plays in the Neapolitan dialect, now acted in some of the theatres for the lower classes at Naples, are of a character that we may not improperly believe them to be handed down from those dramatic pieces of Atella. I am now in the midst of the great Campanian plain, celebrated in ancient as in modern times for its inexhaustible fertility. Strabo calls it the richest plain in the world, and it still strikes the eye as worthy of being so called. The farms are from two to fifty acres in size, and they are let for a period of from four to twelve years. The ground is planted with rows of elms or poplars, and the vines are trained in graceful festoons from tree to tree. Grain and other crops are raised under the shade of these trees; and though the crops are not so large as they might be if there were no trees, yet deficiency in quantity is more than made up by the variety of produce raised on the same soil. Early in the spring the ground is ploughed, and maize is sown in furrows, with beans, potatoes, melons, &c., in the open space between the furrows, and when these summer crops are gathered in, the ground is ploughed again and wheat sown. I saw to-day several large farms entirely laid out in orchards, containing a great variety of fruit, such as apples, pears, apricots, peaches, figs, plums, walnuts, with stone pines towering over all. Proceeding across the country for about six miles, I came to a wood, which had a greater resemblance to an English park than is usually found here. It was thickly planted with oaks, which had reached a great age, and clumps of brushwood added to the beauty of the landscape. The young buffaloes started as I passed, and tossed their deformed heads at the sight of a stranger. This spot is called Castellone del Bosco, and here the ancient Suessola stood. The ruins of buildings are seen, built of Travertine stone, which is produced by a small stream called Gorgone, rising in the wood at the foot of a hill. This stream, like that of which I spoke at Paestum, has the quality of petrifying reeds, branches, or pieces of wood, so that they become stone in weight and hardness, and may be employed in building, as is proved by the walls of Suessola. I was shown a curious phenomenon in a reed bent into the water, which had the point turned into stone, while the rest of the reed, even to its root, was a living vegetable. All the waters in the neighbourhood are sulphureous, and called by the natives Acque del Montone, or Sto. Giuseppe, and were once as famed as those of Ischia are now. The peasant said, that cattle suffering from disease in the feet, and mangy dogs, recover if they are dipped several times in these waters. Its melons are famed, and its mozzarelle, a kind of curd, is carried into Naples for sale. The pasture under the trees seemed particularly rich. There was There were originally six other sepulchral inscriptions, but they were carried off to be foundation-stones for a cross at the Wescovato d'Acerra. There is an ancient tower at one side of the modern edifice, used as a farm-house, covered with ivy to the height of forty feet. I returned to Naples through Acerra, which is about four miles from the ruins of Suessola. There is nothing ancient about it except the stones, which it stole from Suessola, and which now form the foundation of the cross. It is supposed to be the birthplace of Polchinello, the favourite of the nation. The country is no longer exposed to the overflowing of the river Clanius as it was in the time of Virgil (Georg. ii. 225):
Vacuis Clanius non aequus Acerris,
as the country is drained by a large canal called Il Regio Lagno, which prevents the recurrence of such inundations. I do not know, however, whether the air be not rendered more noxious by its waters being used for steeping flax.
At Casale Nuovo, a small village on the way to Naples, I was amused . by an inscription over an apothecary’s shop:
“Altissimus creavit medicamentade terrá et vir prudens non abhorrebit illa.”—“The Almighty created medicines from the earth, and a wise man will not despise them.”
BEFORE leaving Naples, a few days ago, I found that two Oxonian friends had determined to visit the Caudine Forks and the Lacus Ampsanctus. They were resolved to travel with as great comfort as circumstances would allow, and it was arranged that we should hire four horses and proceed at our ease, with a servant to look after our horses. I warned them of the difficulty we should have in finding accommodation for such a cavalcade; still, as it would enable us to get over the ground rapidly, and I felt that I had no time to lose, I thought we might try if the journey could be thus accomplished.
The royal palace of Caserta—one of the most magnificent in Europe, rivalling the Escurial and Versailles—was the first point towards which we directed our course. Hurrying over the plain past Aversa, and along the road, which I had often traversed, we reached Caserta at an early hour. The approach to the palace is through a narrow avenue of poplars, which appear paltry in presence of such a mass of building. It is certainly a magnificent palace, if massiveness of structure constitutes magnificence, yet I could not but feel that it was deficient in chasteness of design, and in that classic beauty which we might expect in a land distinguished in former times by its noble buildings. It was designed by Luigi Vanvitelli, and begun by Charles III., in 1752. Its form is rectangular, being 746 feet long, 546 broad, and 113 high. The material of which it is built is white limestone, brought from quarries near Capua. It consists of eight stories, two underground and six above. If you place yourself in the centre of the octangular vestibule, at the foot of the main staircase, you have under your eye the great cascade to the north, the