« AnteriorContinuar »
he arose at midnight to contemplate the effect. It was flattering to tread in impć: rial footsteps. We also got up an hour of two before day-light, and ran half dress: ed to a little summer house which over. looks the raging torrent: but here we were impatient to be nearer, and, half running, half tumbling, down the rough descent, we mounted with all the eagerness of curiosity a wooden station that has been erected in the very spray of the cataract, directly over the boiling foam, that rises, perpetually, in swelling surges, from the roaring gulph. Here the sweeping torrent seems continually advancing, without ever drawing nearer, and its monotonous roar grows louder and louder to the listening ear. But fair and softly—The fall of Lauffen, with all its terrors, is no more than a water-spout to
the Cataract of Niagara, by which are precipitated, in one deafening torrent, the overflow of congregated seas, of which (Lake Superior) could drown Switzerland, or absorb all the lakes in Europe.
Pedestrian Tour among the Lesser Cantons.
'HERE is a constant succession of
agreeable Company, from all parts of Europe, at the genteel table d'hotes in Switzerland; and they are frequented, without scruple, by Ladies, as well as Gentlemen.—Even English Travellers here overcome their National aversion to a public table, and condescend to partake the pleasures of general intercourse, and receive the benefit of mutual information. Where all are Strangers no one is strange, and a New-Comer readily familiarises himself with Persons in the same predicament though he has never seen them before, and may never see them again. Where F
all are supposed equally ignorant of each other, Nobody inquires who Such a One is of Any Body else; and Every Body is too much absorbed in his own whence and whither to trouble himself about other People's.
In such a situation my B-had no inclination to expose her wavering health to the fatigues of a desultory ramble from mountain to mountain, and from valley to valley; and, preferring the tranquil amusements of Zurich, to all the scenery of the Alps, she permitted her Husband and a French Gentleman, actuated by the same restless curiosity, to fatigue themselyes at their leisure, in a pedestrian tour through the Lesser Cantons, so singularly isolated from the rest of the world by adamantine ridges.
The cultivated tracts of the heart of Switzerland exhibit little distinctive character, beyond the peculiarly sheltered look of broad thatched roofs, projecting over low walls, and parsimoniously including, under one inclosure, house, barn and stable. We therefore took Coach for Berne, and must have been half asleep in our stupifying conveyance (which was admirably calculated for the exclusion of extensive prospects) as we traversed the vallies watered by the Reuss, the Limmat, and the Aar, without noticing amidst surrounding woods, the mingled ruins of the ancient Vindonissa, and the modern Hapsburg—the modest patrimony of Rhodolph, a Swiss Baron, who, in an Age less fertile of political revolutions than the present, became Emperor of Germany, and Founder of the House of Austria.