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Many have the air of comfort, and are well-dressed, courteous people, but the common labourers and a large part of those you meet, especially such as are from the country, are attired in such collections of rags as are a wonder to see. One old man I noticed marching briskly over the bridge into the town. He had a rag round his head for a cap, a coloured shirt, a scarlet sash round his waist, and coloured breeches, all very worn. One leg had a stocking on, the other entirely without, and his sandals were in the last state of rags. He was but a specimen of great numbers. The country farmers and their wives ride very much on asses, which they stimulate by crying burro, burra, the name of the ass, as it may be male or female. In the suburbs there are many good houses, mansions indeed, of well-to-do people. As I entered the station I saw it bedecked with flags, and on inquiring the reason I was told the King was on a visit to the town. Later in the day I passed the archbishop's Palace, near the old cathedral,
Ι and was told by the people of a moderate crowd that his Majesty was expected to appear soon and inspect the cathedral. I entered the fine old edifice first and made my own inspection, and in about half an hour the young King and his cortége came in, and I saw him close at hand several times as he went round and surveyed the objects of interest. The procession was very poorly protected, a few generals, and twenty or thirty old priests, archbishops and bishops probably, clothed in scarlet, accompanied the King. The people pressed about and almost hustled the party. The King struck me as a good-natured moderate young man, rather below the middle height, with a pleasant countenance. He did his best to observe, but looked as he was bustled along as if he were thinking, “ It's all very fine, good people, but I should be so glad if you would not make such a fuss.” He cast his eyes about in a hurried way, but could scarcely notice anything. He went to a particular altar which had been lighted up, and knelt for a few minutes, then there seemed something going on, which I was not near enough to distinguish, possibly confirming the privileges of the cathedral. The interior is loaded with sculpture, painting, and gilding, with which it has been enriched for ages; but, like Spanish churches in general, the light is so dim, and the recesses and chapels so gloomy, that you can only half make them out.
Zaragoza is the centre of Mariolatry. There is a second cathedral devoted to the service of Mary. It is called the Cathedral of the Virgen del Pilar. It is very large, plain as a barrack outside, but highly decorated within. It contains an inner chapel, very costly, which contains the pillar on which the Virgin is said to have stood in the year 40, when she visited Zaragoza. It has been kissed by the devout until it was feared it would be kissed away, so it was covered in, and you can only see a little of it through an opening. The figure of the Virgin is a little black image, not very artistic; many of the most famous of the Virgin images are black. Spanish writers on Church history, including those who have written particularly of Christianity in Zaragoza, up to the seventh century, never mention this image or its pillar.
The legend as now rendered is that Santiago (St. James), soon after the crucifixion, applied to the Virgin for her permission to preach the Gospel in Spain, having kissed her hand. He came to Zaragoza, converted eight pagans, and fell asleep. On the 2nd of January A.D. 40 the angels of heaven brought the Virgin to him on a jasper pillar, and carried her back again after she had desired him to build a chapel to her on this spot. This he did, and she came often from heaven to hear mass there. The anniversary of her descent is October 12th, when great crowds of pilgrims come to the town, as many sometimes it is said as 50,000. The celebration having been a fortnight before my visit, I saw the great papers announcing the programme of the festival in large letters, the chief feature, the most attractive of all, being those disgusting brutalities BULL-FIGHTS, in which the most renowned combatants would appear in honour of the Virgin. So many popes have confirmed the veracity of the legend of the Virgen del Pilar that the Primate of Spain, Diego de Astorga, in 1720 excommunicated all who questioned it. Pope Innocent III. declared “ that God alone can count the miracles that have been performed here.”
The oil of her lamps leaves Macassar far behind, since Cardinal Retz in his Mémoires, vol. iii. 409, assures his readers that he saw here in 1649 a man's leg which had been cut off, but on being rubbed with the oil of one of the lamps, grew on again tight and fast, and the owner was as nimble as ever! A special holiday, he says, was appointed to celebrate this wonder, and very proper too. The worst of it is that we fear no one would vouch for Cardinal Retz any more than for the late Cardinal Antonelli.
What Zaragoza has been truly famous for in modern times is the sturdy resistance made by it to the French in 1808 and 1809. It stood two desperate sieges against large armies. The first lasted from June to August, when the Buonapartist general Lefebvre retreated. The second lasted sixty-two days against an army commanded by four French marshals, Lannes, Mortier, Moncey, and Junot. The people were really led by one of themselves, Tio Jorge (Uncle George), assisted by two peasant helpers, Mariano Cerezo and Tio Marin ; they displayed undaunted courage and perseverance to the end. Palafox, a
nominal leader, got the chief credit. He was, however, but a vain empty-headed man, seldom to be found when he was wanted. Sixty thousand human beings fell in this mad crime of ambition on behalf of the French, and of traitorous imbecility on behalf of the Spanish Government, which had corrupted and ruined their own country and then betrayed it.
The town I next visited was Pampeluna, or, as the Spaniards call it, Pamplona. It is the old capital of Navarre, the chief city of the plains. It is a clean, well-built town of 15,000 inhabitants. It is walled, and has a strong citadel. Near this place Wellington inflicted the last defeat on Marshal Soult before entering France. On the parapet of the bridge of Sorauren, a village in sight almost from the city, the Duke wrote a few orders in pencil as he came aniongst the troops in the nick of time from a distance. The soldiers saw their commander and set up a triumphant cheer, which startled Marshal Soult and led him to defer the attack to the next day. This gave time for another portion of the army to reach the field, and the French were driven headlong into their own country, which they ought never on the business of invasion to have left. Pamplona has a large square, many good streets, and is a very fair town. Excursions into France, and to picturesque parts of the Pyrenees, are easy from Pamplona. It was at the siege of this city that Ignatius Loyola, who was a soldier, had his leg broken, and in the pains and sorrows of sickness determined to devote himself ad majorem gloriam Dei—the greater glory of God—which led to the founding of the order of the Jesuits. There is a small murky chapel, said to be built on the spot where he was wounded. After this he began to see visions and to project a society modelled on the pattern of an army.
I have said before, and further reflection has strengthened the conclusion, that the Roman Catholic religion as it now is can only be considered an outbirth of Spanish thought, not of the New Testament. Jesuitism has overspread the Romish Church, and Loyola, the founder of the Jesuits, was a Spaniard. Dominic Gusman, the founder of the Inquisition and of the Dominican order, was a Spaniard. Mariolatry, or Mary-worship, was a Spanish superstition intense and universal in Spain long before it was much thought of elsewhere. Many of the most bigoted, vile, and sensual of the popes, including the worst of them all, Alexander VI., was a Spaniard, a Borgia. The Romish religion is not the Church of the Lord Jesus Christ, but the superstition of Spain.
There are three rivers which join near Pamplona and then flow
into the Ebro. There is a distich in the country which struck me as worthy of notice in two or three respects.
It is— · Arga, Ega, y Arragon
Hacen al Ebro un baron ;”
Arga, Ega, and Arragon
Baron is in old Spanish A MAN. Barons therefore were originally those who were considered true men, special noble men; as our name of Queen is from the Norwegian Quenna, woman, the woman par excellence.
When I left Pamplona for Alsasua, on my return to Biarritz in France, I had to pass through the country where the Carlists had broken into and burnt many stations. Four years after, the people were making a beginning to put them up again. Such, with a thousand excellences, is poor, slow, old Spain.
TESTIMONY TO ANOTHER WORLD TRUTH.
BY THE LATE J. W. BARNES, SOME years since I was called in my vocation as a surgeon to see a poor boy just taken out of the water, and whose life, even when resuscitated, seemed in great danger. I went in obedience to the call and found the lad stretched on a bed. He was very pale, and his nervous system had received a severe shock, but I at once saw that the probability of his recovery was greater than that of his death. The mother was very anxious, and to her question, “Do you think my dear boy will recover?” I replied, "There is every probability." She said he was her only child living, and that she should die if he did. I used the best means to soothe her, and told her that if it should please the Lord that he should die as to time, he would be sure to become an angel in heaven, for that all who died in infancy or childhood entered there. Her answer was, “I am certain of that, sir." There was such a force and emphasis on the word certain that I was induced to ask her what made her so confident of this fact. “I will tell you, sir, if you please, but perhaps you will laugh at me.” I said, “No, my good woman, I never laugh at any recorded and serious fact, come from where it may. Speak on and tell me all without reservation.” Then said she, “I buried some three months since a daughter, to my
mind as pretty a girl as I ever beheld. This boy and she were the only children I ever had. My grief was at the time, and continued to be for
many weeks after her death, severe indeed. I could find no rest or peace till what I am going to tell you took place, which was this. A week or two ago, as I sat on that bed in a perfectly wakeful state in the middle of the day, thinking deeply of my dear child, my eyes were directed to that door you see, when it suddenly opened, and in walked three children most beautifully dressed in the purest white, decorated with sashes, and sandals on their feet; the centre one was tallest and seemed led in by the other two. They stood before me about a yard off, but neither of them spoke. I looked at them hard, and as my eyes fell on the one in the centre I at once found that it was my daughter, my own dear child, in the face much improved in beauty, but on looking at her dress I felt sadly shocked.” “ And why?” I asked. “Because, sir, though her frock had a white ground, it was daubed all over as though with ink. I was induced to speak to them, and directing my eyes to one of the leaders of my child, said, 'How is this that you and the other little girl are so beautifully dressed, your frocks so white without a stain, and my dear daughter's is so spotted with ink?' Immediately one of them answered, “Don't fret, good woman, the stains you now see on her frock will shortly all be taken away.' In an instant,” she continued, "they all disappeared from my sight."
After hearing all she had to say, on the impulse of the moment I exclaimed, “I would not have missed hearing what you have related for £500.” She seemed quite astonished at this remark. I then asked her if she had ever heard of the New Church, or had had any conversation with people called Swedenborgians, or had ever in her life read a book called “Heaven and Hell.” She assured me she never had, and that she only went once in a way to the Church of England. Why do I then relate this fact? I will answer. In a little monthly volume published then by the Rev. Thomas Goyder, now I believe to be procured, will be found an extract from, I think, Emanuel Sweden. borg's Diary, in which he speaking of hereditary evil) remarks that on a time, as he was walking in the company of an angel in the heavens, a number of young girls came in view dressed in the exact way of the daughter of the poor woman above named, their garments being white but covered with spots of black. Emanuel Swedenborg asked his guide what these spots meant, when he replied, “They are the outbirths of hereditary evil as existing for a long time in the disposition of most children coming first into the spiritual world. But," said the angel, “they will all in time and from angelic instruction totally disappear.” The narration of the poor uneducated woman