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other competitors, for accuracy, neatness, and ngenuity. A design of his, which gained the prize-medal, represents a gallery for a palace, with all its proper architectural ornaments and furniture: ftatues in niches, pedestals, fountains, pictures, &c. many of which he had made choice of to ornament his gallery, from drawings now at Rome, from whence this design was sent. He has disposed of these neat sketches with great judgment, in an excellent taste.
Against the wall in the same room is fixed a piece of coarse painting in fresco, its shape irregular, having been defaced in recovering it from amongst the ruins of Velleia. It is curious, and seems to represent a garden ornamented in the Chinese taste; terrasses surmounted with ballustrades, and flower-pots upon them, with gravelwalks, are plainly to be distinguifhed. There is also a plan of Velleia, that is, what it appears to have been, as near as they could judge, after the late excavations, which have been discontinued ever since the year 1764; the present Infant and Monsieur Tillot, his minifter, not choosing the farther expence of carrying on that work.
They shew strangers two tables of bronze found at Velleia; not unworthy the inspection of the curious. One contains, in a small character, but extremely legible, the names of the principal places belonging to the country of the Vellei. There are several villages in the neighbourhood that have scarcely, if at all, changed their appel..
lations since that time, making allowance for the different accenting and pronunciation.
The other table contains the Roman laws, as commanded by the Emperor Trajan to be enforced throughout the Cifalpine Gaul. Here is also a piece of antique mosaic of Velleia. It is composed of black and white marble in small square bits, and cemented strongly together : it seems a rude representation of the Sun. I think I have omitted nothing worth mentioning in the virtu style.
We have heard a piece of news to day which gave us great pleasure. The Inquisition is totally put an end to here : the grand Inquisitor being lately dead, their prisons are fhut up, and no Monks are in future to be received into the Do. minican order; therefore when those that still remain extinguish, that wicked society will exist
no more in this country. Royal Fa. The prefent Royal Family of Parma are much fanta.
the beloved : the Infanta is esteemed one of the most Charac- amiable Princesses in the world; she is lively, ters,
active, and of great courage; is very fond of the chace, as well as an admirable marks.woman, and will pursue the game frequently on foot, when the frozen snow lies on the ground: there are few of her ladies who are sufficiently keen to accompany her. She is extremely humane and gene. rous: for her menu plaisirs her allowance is a thousand fequins a month, and I was credibly informed that the gives the greater part of it
away. She encourages, and frequently excuses the foldiery from punishment, where it is possible to extenuate their faults; and as she is not difficult of access, petitions reach her incessantly, wich which she endeavours to comply. As she is a German (being lifter to the present Emperor), you may suppose she has many applications from the distressed of her own country, though Monfieur Tillot does all he can to prevent their penetrating the palace; yet they frequently succeed, and scarce ever fail of getting at the speech of the Infanta, who rarely disappoints their expectations. This tendency towards her country-people does not charm Monsieur Tillot, who doats upon the French, and who governs this little court with unlimited sway. The Infanta is a perfect mistress of music, has a charming voice, embroiders much in the tambour, and reads a good deal. She is
fair; never wears rouge or fard. The Infant is of a mild, indolent, unambitious dif. position, totally devoted to his minifter Tillot : all favours are obtained through him. His strong prejudices are to the French, their manners, politeness, c.; he difikes the Parmesans, and detests the Germans. He has lately laid a new tax upon his Principality, which the people receive with great disgust; it is to the amount of an English shilling, to be paid half-yearly, for every hearth, or place upon which a fire is kindled; not excepting those temporary machines in the streets for the roasting of chesnuts. T 4
The Infant and Infanta give strongly into de: votion; they hear mass twice every day, and are
rigid observers of the tenets of the church. The
al court is brilliant and gay. The principal families families.
are those of Rossi, Pallavicini, San Vitale, Mel. lilupi, &C. The two ladies of the court particu. larly distinguished for their beauty are the Countess of Garimberti and the Marchioness
The Countess of San Vitale is said to receive and entertain the most company, particularly strangers; by whom she is much esteemed for her politeness and address. What I have said above, I give you as from good authority, not from experience, for our very short stay in this town does not permit the availing ourselves of the amusement and diffipation our letters of recommendation might have procured us, from the society they would have opened to us. We have not presented one of them, being determined to keep our word with you, in regard to the time allotted to our tour through Italy. We hall haften on to Bologna, Florence, &c. that what time we can spare may
be divided between Rome and Naples. Remark. I believe I forgot to mention a singular picture able pic. in the church of St. Micheli. It represents St. ture.
Michael and the Virgin weighing fouls in a pair of scales. There is an old one weighed against a young; · the old soul sinks down so low, that it falls into hell, whilst the young is fo light that it kicks the beam (one would think the late
Mrs. B. held the balance). This airy soul has wings, somewhat like a bat, with a very thin body, a bald head, and long weak arms and legs. I suppose the painter's idea must have been that fouls have no hair, by his giving this one a bald pate; and no bones, as one of his arms bends like that of a rag-doll; by which an angel seizing him, pulls him away into Paradise. The fashion of Cicesbeios is not banished' the Cicef
beios, police focieties of Parma; for the sole object of contracting marriage here, as in France, is that of interest. Young ladies at Parma are educated in convents, and brought out to be married when their parents have provided them a husband. The choosing for themselves is unheard-of, and would be esteemed the most enormous licentiousness. Wherefore the state deemed here the most happy, is that of a young rich widow. We ihall find upon reflection, that these and many other matters, however shocking or unnatural they may appear to us, must ever be the unavoidable consequences of all arbitrary and despotic governments, whether in Italy or elsewhere. Adieu, I shall write next from Modena, I believe.