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masses of foliage between, have something majestic in their appearance; while the absence of statues, hermitages, marble temples, bronze sarcophagi, and spouting monsters, relieve the scene from that constrained and artificial appearance that attends the vast majority of parks laid out in this style.

Our continental brethren carry this adornment of their public walks to a ridiculous excess. One would imagine that such places were intended as retreats from the bustle of cities; but a stranger entering the gardens of the Tuileries, for example, so far from being solaced with the agreeable delusion of retirement, finds himself introduced into the society of marble gentlemen and ladies, dying gladiators, gold and silver fish, orange-trees stuck in green gallipots, and tritons spewing water in his face at every angle; so that he begins to feel himself altogether out of his element, and half inclined to resign the privilege of the promenade to the courtly creations of the magic pencil of Watteau, with their laced pocket-holes, clouded canes, velvet embroidery, and ruffles of Point d'Espagne. In Kensington Gardens, on the contrary, the lounger is not obliged to be so much upon his good behaviour; he can enjoy a stroll suffi ciently retired for all reasonable purposes; and, if he does not object to good company, the broad walk affords good company in abundance,-literary ladies with the last new novel-cooing turtles, squeezing the last drops of ambrosia out of the expiring honeymoon-and faded old gentlemen, in sky-blue coats, virgin waistcoats, Isabella-coloured "smalls," and black gaiters, who emerge from their neat suburban villas of Kensington, Gore, and Bayswater, to take the air, and sigh for the brocaded petticoats, highheeled shoes, hoops, and powdered toupees of half-a-century ago.

The view from the centre of this broad walk, exactly in front of the Palace, is one of the finest afforded any where in the vicinity of the metropolis. The trees, drawn up in close column like a rifle brigade of his Majesty the Emperor of Brobdignag the vistas between, extending far away into the shady distance the verdure of the sward, which is here more luxuriant and unbroken than in the Parks-the air of quiet and seclusion


that is breathed over the scene, make it altogether superior to any thing the vicinity of towns can afford to the eye wearied with an universe of brick and mortar.

In the fashionable season, when the military bands assemble here for practice, which they usually do on every Tuesday and Friday, from four to six in the afternoon, near the bridge of the Serpentine, the concourse of fashionable people is immense—and the scene altogether of great animation. But it is time to proceed to the only remaining lobe of the Lungs of London: therefore, leaving Kensington Gardens by the Bayswater Gate, we make our way through a neighbourhood that has sprung up, like a mushroom, in one night-by the way, where or when, does any body think, will London stop?-we skirt the Great Western Railway station, enter Paddington, so to St John's Wood, and find ourselves passing through Hanover Gate to the outer circle of


This estate of the Crown was formerly the outer park attached to the royal mansion of Henry VIII. at Marylebone, which was taken down in the year 1790. It consists of 543 acres, and was granted by three Crown leases, the family of Hinds being possessed of 9-24 parts of the property for a term of years, which expired January 24th, 1806, the other 15-24ths being possessed by the Duke of Portland for a term of years, expiring January 24th, 1811.

Soon after this, the then Commissioners of Woods and Forests contemplated improvements of a more extensive kind than had originally been thought of the long-cherished design of the Crown being to convert the Marylebone estate into a military farm, of which we find the following notice in an early number of the Gentleman's Magazine :

"The intended Military Park at Welling's farm, Marylebone, is nearly laid out. Two grand barracks are to be erected, one on each wing, spacious enough for the reception of 3000 men; the whole is to be inclosed with a belt of forest-trees, a considerable part of which is already planted, and on the outside of which will be a circular drive, open to the public, to an extent of four miles."


This barbarous notion of covering a lovely tract of land with barracks, and converting it into a grand parade ground, was long after altogether abandoned; and in 1811, when the Duke of Portland's lease had expired, several eminent architects were invited by the Commissioners of Woods and Forests to survey the Crown lands of Marylebone Park, and, after considering the several documents communicated to them, to report upon the most advantageous and eligible method of letting the property," always having in view the beauty of the metropolis, and the health and convenience of the public."

In pursuance of these instructions, surveys were made, and plans submitted by Mr White, Messrs Leverton and Chawner, and of that architectural nuisance, Mr John Nash, whose plans had the sole merit of being the plans of the surveyor to the Office of Woods and Forests, and for that sole reason were, of course, preferred, and the plan carried into execution, with slight alterations as it now appears. Space will not permit us to give a detailed description of the beauties of the Regent's Park; we must, therefore, be content with a slight sketch, or general survey, leaving the tasteful perambulator to detect the minuter excellences for himself. Although the newest of the Parks, this, even in its present immature state, is the most beautiful of any, and will become more and more so every succeeding year. It might with propriety be called the Park of Reunion, combining, as it does, all the excellences of all the public walks of the Metropolis,-extent-variety of prospect and of scenery-noble walks, of imposing breadth and longitudinal extent a surface gently and pleasingly undulated- ornamental water. villas, encircled each by its little paradise of pleasure-ground-and, for its years, a very considerable quantity of shade.

The most beautiful portion of the Park is, as might be expected, that portion to the north, which is hardly interfered with by the hand of art, and where the natural disposition of the ground has scope to show itself; whereas, wherever the hand of Mr John Nash is manifest, beauty is at once exchanged for artificial littleness, as in his greater and his lesser cir

cuses, his ornamental bridges over puddles four feet wide, his Swiss cottages, and his terraces crowned with cupolas, that convey to the mind of the spectator the idea of a grotesque giant in his dressing-gown and nightcap. By far the most extensive and varied view within the limits of this delightful retreat, is that from the rising ground immediately above the master's lodge of St Catharine's Hospital, embracing to the northward the gentle rise of Primrose Hill, behind it, the thickly wooded Hampstead, and its sister hill-close to your feet, the Babel of inarticulate sounds that greets your ears, indicates that modern Ark of Noah-the Zoological Gardens.


We have thus enumerated a very few of the leading features, to borrow a phrase of the prince of auctioneers, of the Lungs of London-the great vehicles of exercise, fresh air, health, and life to the myriads that congregate in the great metropolis. We have been sufficiently minute, we hope, without departing from our original plan of non-interference with the province of the guide-books, and yet not sufficiently discursive to disgust the reader with a subject in a moral, economical, national, and salutary point of view, so deeply interesting. are surprised, we repeat, that this subject has not been taken up by abler pens-by Mr Jesse, for example, one of the most natural, easy, and graceful writers who ever put pen to paper on the subject of our parks and royal palaces-a worthy brother of the angle, too-one of Father Isaak's quiet decent men, who fear God, honour their king, love their neighbour, and peacefully go their ways a-fishing. We cannot help thinking the metropolitan parks would furnish a theme not unworthy the pen of this gentle


"The apt historian of our royal plains."

But we must not conclude without adverting once again to the moral, if we may so call it, of our descriptionto the great object, towards the realization whereof we were incited to put pen to paper on this subject. The total destitution of the people of the east end of the metropolis in the means of taking exercise, or gulping a mouthful of "caller" air, must have pain. fully obtruded itself on every body who is familiar with that terra incog

nita eastward of Leadenhall; the very class of the population, too, which is the most helpless in its own behalf, and which most of all requires the extension of those blessings which for themselves they have neither the ad dress, skill, or energy to obtain. It would be found, we do not in the least doubt, that the mortality of the metropolis is exactly in the inverse ratio of proximity and access to public parks and open spaces; and this, for all we know to the contrary, may have already been demonstrated by Mr Farr, or some other equally high authority in vital statistics.

Whether or not, however, the necessity of public walks-when we say public, we mean public, not gentility mongering places, but spaces thrown open freely and altogether to the lowest class of our labouring and manufacturing population, who need all the rational recreation we can afford themis but too apparent. Genteel people are abundantly provided for already: they can afford to go down the Thames and up the Thames-to the suburbs, the parks, the country. Money, and their legs, will carry them whither they will; but with the poor artisan or labouring man it is not so. He

cannot afford time or means to set out with his wife and children on a Sunday voyage of discovery-and to find the shades of night, perhaps, falling around him just as he has succeeded in

refreshing his eyes with a bit of any thing green.

Does any body suppose that the love of nature is not an instinct with the imprisoned poor of our great cities, and of our great city of cities in par. ticular? Go through a crowded neighbourhood, crammed from the cellar to the attic with the children of toil, and look up at their windows; see the attempt the poor people make to cherish the belief in a world of verdure and freshness-of trees, and hills, and vales, and flowers, and birds-the little green box of cherished mignionette, the broken tea-pot with a bunch of primrose or of cowslip in it, the geranium in an old cracked jug; and the poor artisan himself, debarred as he is

"The common air, and common use Of his own limbs," nurturing, with almost paternal affection, his two or three little shrubs or flowers-who will have the impudence to deny the capacity of this man for enjoying that of which his condition in life almost precludes the possibility of enjoyment?

Let us hope that the Commissioners of Metropolitan Improvements will bestir themselves, and that in the east end of London-in Southwark and in Lambeth-something may be done in behalf of the creditable, industrious, and well-conducted manufacturing and labouring population of the vast metropolis of this vast empire.




CHAP. I. 1

THE red rays of the setting sun were streaming upon the towers and houses of Padua, when a young foreigner, who had just entered that city, found his attention attracted, and himself hurried forward, by a bustling concourse of people who were pushing eagerly along. He asked a young maiden, who was rapidly passing by him, what it was that had stirred up such an unwonted commotion. "Are you not aware," answered she, "that the funeral of the fair Crescentia, the young daughter of the house of Podesta, takes place this evening? Every one is anxious to look for the last time upon the face of her who was accounted the loveliest damsel in all Padua. Her parents are inconsolable."

The maiden could say no more, for by this time the pressure of the crowd had carried her to a considerable dis


The foreigner, having turned the corner of a gloomy palace, and entered the main street, now heard the funeral dirge, and encountered the glare of the pale red torches; and, approaching nearer, he beheld a scaffold covered with black cloth. On this lofty black chairs had been placed, and on these were seated the disconsolate parents and relations of the dead maiden, all in profound sorrow, and some of them bearing in their countenances the expression of despair. Dark figures were now observed to issue from the doorway of the palace; and the priests, with their black attendants, bore forwards an open coffin, from which green wreaths of flowers were hanging. Pale, amid these blooming garlands, lay a female form in the raiment of the grave, her gentle hands, which held a crucifix, placidly folded on her bosom, her eyes closed, and her dark tresses, which fell in heavy masses around her head, enwreathed with a chaplet of roses, cypresses, and myrtles. The priests, having placed the coffin with its fair dead on the scaffold, prostrated themselves in prayer-the la

mentations of the parents flowed forth afresh-the dirge of death broke out into more uncontrollable strains-and all seemed to share the burden of an almost insupportable sorrow. The foreigner thought he had never beheld any thing so beautiful as the corpse before him, which so wofully reminded him of the transitoriness of human life, with all its charms.

By this time the funeral bells were pealing, and the bearers were about to lift the coffin, in order to convey it to its vaulted tomb in the great church, when suddenly the mourners were disturbed and shocked by a loud noise of riotous rejoicing, and shouts of the most obstreperous mirth. All looked around them with indignation, to discover the cause of this ill-timed merriment, when there came thronging forth, out of another street, a procession of young people, singing and huzzaing almost without intermission. They turned out to be the students of the University, who were carrying on their shoulders an elderly man, who sate on his chair like a king on his throne, clothed in a purple mantle, his head covered with a doctor's cap, from under which his silver locks streamed forth, in unison with a long snowy beard which flowed majestically down his black doublet: and it was in honour of him, their renowned and venerable teacher, that all this shouting took place. A fool with bells, and in a party-coloured vest, went skipping along with the procession, and, by his pokings and jokings, was in the act of forcing a way through the funeral crowd; when, upon a sign from the venerable old man, the students lowered their burden, their teacher stepped down from his seat, and, with a sad and sympathetic aspect, approached the weeping parents. "Forgive us," said he earnestly, and with tears in his eyes; forgive us for having disturbed this sad solemnity by our wild uproar. I am profoundly distressed and shocked. I have just returned

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from my travels: my scholars insisted on celebrating my arrival by an outburst of rejoicing. I yielded to their entreaties and preparations; and now, amid our festivity, I find-alas, what do I find? your Crescentia dead that pattern of all grace and virtue dead, and lying before you here in her coffin. Around me I behold but the ghastly paraphernalia of the grave, and you mourning forms who are about to accompany her with tears and breaking hearts to her place of rest." Here he made a sign to his attendants, and addressed a few words to them. They had already all become silent, but now most of them withdrew, in order to allow the funeral to proceed without any interruption. Then came forward the bereaved and trembling mother, and sank down at the feet of the old man, and embraced his knees in a paroxysm of grief. "Alas! wherefore were you not present when my daughter died," cried she, in despair; "your art-your skill-would have saved her. Oh, Pietro! Pietro! you the friend of our family! How can you permit your darling-the apple of your eye, as you used to call her— to be torn from us for ever? Awaken her yet out of her sleep of death. Administer to her some of those miraculous essences which you know how to prepare. Oh, make her but once more to move among us, and to speak to us, and take, as thanks, every thing that we possess !"

"Do not thus give way to despair," answered Pietro d' Abano; "the Lord gave her, and the Lord hath taken her away: let us not be desirous of thwart. ing his wise determinations.


are we that we should murmur against him? Shall the son of dust, who flutters in the wind, lift up his weak voice

to challenge the eternal decrees? No! my friends, bear your affliction as pious parents ought to bear it. Sorrow ought to be the domesticated guest of our souls, as much as joy and pleasure: it also is sent down upon us from above: and He who counts all tears, who tries our hearts and our reins, He knows well what we weak mortals are fitted to endure." More to the same effect was uttered by the wise man of Abano, and he concluded thus :— "Carry her," my friends; "carry her whom you have lost to her place of rest, and follow her thither in resigned and God-given humility, so that no impious repinings on your part may disturb her spirit in its mansion of eternal peace.

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All present were moved by these words. The father stretched forth his hand to the speaker, with a mute expression that he had given comfort to his soul. The funeral now proceeded on its way; and guided by the masks and other attendants, whose business it was to accompany the corpse, the procession had almost reached the church, when it was suddenly met by a young horseman, who came galloping forwards on a steed covered with foam. "What is the matter?" cried the young man. He threw a glance upon the coffin; and then, with a cry of despair, wheeling round his horse, darted off from the crowd; while his cap, falling from his head in the hurry of the movement, left his long locks floating behind him in the evening breeze. This was the bridegroom who had come to wed the fair Crescentia.

The shades of night now settled down on the mourners, and ended the ceremony: and the maiden's corpse was left to repose in the vault of her



As soon as the crowd had dispersed, Alphonso (for that was the name of the young foreigner who had followed the procession and taken part in the mourning) turned to an old priest who tarried alone in prayer over the grave. He longed to know who that majestic old man was, who appeared to him as if endowed with godlike power and supernatural wisdom. Accordingly, he respectfully interrogated the priest concerning him; upon which the latter, standing still, keenly scrutinized

his countenance by the light of a lamp which shone upon them from a window hard by. The old priest was a little emaciated figure, whose small pale visage enhanced the fire that burned in his penetrating eyes. His tightdrawn lips trembled as he replied, in a tone of displeasure,—

"What! know you not our worldrenowned Pietro d'Abano, a name which is in the mouths of all Paris, London, the Germanic empire, and the whole of Italy? Know you not the

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