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and with this the Prince was forced to comply in order to preserve the lives of his attendants. The brigands escaped scot free I The Prince sold the Villa to the Duchess de Chablais in 1820.
Cicero was accustomed to borrow books and fetch them personally from the library of his friend Lucullus. The scholiast on Horace describes the Villa of Cicero as being ' ad latera superiora' of the hill, and it is locally believed that its site was that now occupied by the Villa Rufinella, and that the Casino stands on the site of his Academica, which had shady walks like those of Plato's Garden—precursors of the walks which we still see.
The Tusculan Disputations of Cicero take their name from this favourite villa of his, concerning which (after its spoliation by the mob) he bitterly complained of the Roman consuls valuing it at only ' quingentis millibus'—between £4000 and £5000. A complete picture of the villa may be derived from the many allusions to it in the works of Cicero. Thus :—
'We learn that it contained two gymnasia (Div. i. 5), an upper one called the Lyceum, in which, like Aristotle, he was accustomed to walk and debate in the morning (Tusc. Disp. ii. 3), and to which a library was attached (Div. ii. 3); and a lower one called the Academy (Tusc. Disp. ii. 4). Both were adorned with beautiful statnes in marble and bronze (Bp. ad Att. i. 8, 9,10). The villa likewise contained a little atrium (" atriolum," ib. i. 10; ad Quint. Fr. iii. 1), a small portico with exedria (ad Fam. vii. 23), a bath (ib. xiv. 20), a covered promenade (" tecta ambulatiuncula," ad Att. xiii. 29), and a horologium (ad Fam. xvi. 18). The villa, like the town and neighbourhood, was supplied by the Aqua Crabra (De Leg. Agr. iii. 31).'—Smith, 'Diet, of Greek and Roman Geography.'
In his Essay on Old Age, Cicero describes the delights of country life as enjoyed in a villa of this kind. He had four other such retreats.
'Where the master of the house is a good and careful manager, his winecellar, his oil-stores, his larder, are always well-stocked; there is a fulness throughout the whole establishment; pigs, kids, lambs, poultry, milk, cheese, honey—all are in abundance. The produce of the garden is always equal, as our country-folk say, to a second course. And all these good things acquire a double relish from the voluntary labours of fowling and the chase. What need to dwell upon the charm of the green fields, the well-ordered plantations, the beauty of the vineyards and olive-groves? In short, nothing can be more luxuriant in produce, or more delightful to the eye, than a wellcultivated estate.'—Trans, by Lucas Collins.
Leaving the Villa Rufinella by shady avenues of laurel and laurustinus, the path to Tusculum emerges on the hillside, where, between banks perfectly carpeted with blue anemones and violets in spring, the ancient road paved with polygonal blocks of lava has been laid bare. On the left, in a hollow, are remains of the small (70 m. x 58) Amphitheatre (opus reticulatum); all the seats of the cavea have perished, and it is only recognisable by its form. Beyond, also on the left, are the ruins of a reticulated villa, called, without authority, Scuola di Cicerone. On the left are remains of baths.
The path leads directly up to the most important of the ruins, the Theatre, which was excavated in 1839 by Maria Cristina, Queendowager of Sardinia. With the exception of the walls of the scena, the lower walls are almost perfect, and the fifteen rows of seats of the lower circle (cavea) remain intact, though the upper rows have perished. The spectators, facing the west, had a magnificent view over the plains of Latium, with Rome in the distance. Close below the Theatre are the remains of a very ancient piscina with a pointed roof, and the fountain supplied from it by a leaden pipe.
Behind the theatre (J hour) rises the steep hill which was once crowned by the Arx of Tusculum—of great strength (artificially helped) in early times (2360 feet). It was besieged by the Aequians in B.C. 457, and only taken when the garrison were starved out. It had two entrances. In B.C. 374 it was successfully defended against the Latins. Dionysius mentions the advantage it received from its lofty position, which enabled its defenders to see a Roman army as it issued from the Porta Latina and approached. The view is indeed most beautiful, over plain and mountains, the foreground formed by the remains of—
'the white streets of Tusculum, The proudest town of all,'1
scattered sparsely amongst the furze and thorn-bushes, but the ruins which now exist belong chiefly, not to early times, but to the mediaeval fortress of the Counts of Tusculum.
We may, however, see a fine fragment of the ancient North wall restored in opus reticulatum, to the left of the ascent. The western town gate may also be seen behind the theatre, or rather the two rocks which formed the gate-posts.
Including the Arx, the town of Tusculum was about 1J mile in circuit. The Roman poets ascribe the foundation of the city to Telegonus, the son of Circe and Ulysses.
'Inter Aricinos Albanaque tempora constat,
—Ovid, 'Fast: iii. 91.
'Et jam Telegoni, jam moenia Tiburis ndi
—Ovid, 'Fast: iv. 51.
* At Cato, tum prima sparsus lanngine malas,
Cunctantem impellebat equum.'
—Sil. Ital. vii. 691.
'Linquens Telegoni pnlsatos ariete muros,
—Sil. Ital. xii. 535.«
Tusculum was remarkable for the steadiness of its friendship for Rome, which was only interrupted in B.C. 379, when in consequence of a number of Tusculans having been found amongst the prisoners
1 Macaulay, Lays of Ancient Rome.
made in the Volscian campaign, war was declared, and Camillus was sent against the city.
'But the Tusculans would not accept this declaration of hostilities, and opposed the Roman arms in a manner that has scarcely been paralleled before or since. When Camillus entered their territory he found the peasants engaged in their usual avocations; provisions of all sorts were offered to his army, the gates of the town were standing open; and as the legions defiled through the streets in all the panoply of war, the citizens within, like the countrymen without, were seen intent upon their daily business, the schools resounded with the hum of pupils, and not the slightest token of hostile preparation could be discerned. Then Camillus invited the Tusculan dictator to Rome. When he appeared before the senate in the Curia Hostilia, not only were the existing treaties with Tusculum confirmed, but the Roman franchise was shortly afterwards bestowed upon it, a privilege at that time rarely conferred.'—Smith, 'Dictionary of Greek and Roman Geography'
'In the times of the Latin League, from the fall of Alba to the battle of the Lake Regillus, Tusculum was the most prominent town in Latium. It suffered, like the other towns in Latium, a complete eclipse during the later Republic and the Imperial times; but in the ninth, tenth, eleventh, and twelfth centuries, under the Counts of Tusculum, it became again a place of great importance and power, no less than seven popes of the house of Tusculum having sat in the chair of S. Peter. The final destruction of the city is placed by Nibby, following the account given in the records of the Podest& of Reggio, in 1191, on the 1st of April, in which year the city was given up to the Romans by the Emperor Henry VI., and, after the withdrawal of the German garrison, was sacked and razed to the ground. Those of the inhabitants who escaped collected round the Church of S. Sebastian, at the foot of the hill, in the district called Frascati, whence the town of Frascati took its origin and name.'—Burn, 'Rome and the Campagna.'
Descending from the Arx, a path to the right leads through woods full of flowers to the Eremo di Camaldoli (1611). Formerly nobody could pass the cross at the foot of the hill on which the convent stands, upon pain of excommunication. Here Cardinal Passionei lived in retirement, and occupied himself by collecting eight hundred inscriptions found amongst the ruins of Tusculum.
Eight of the Camaldoli monks were carried off during an audacious outbreak of brigandage, under Gasperoni, in the reign of Pius VII. (1821). That famous King of the Wood hoped to have caught the celebrated Cardinal Pacca at the Convent, but he had left it the previous day. Two monks were sent back to demand 7000 scudi, the other six escaped during a skirmish between the brigands and the Papal troops sent to their rescue. Since then the buildings have been surrounded with defensive walls with loopholes for the discharge of firearms. The aspect of the place is beautifully described by Cardinal Wiseman.
'The English College possesses a country house, deliciously situated in the village of Monte Porzio. Like most villages in the Tusculan territory, this crowns a knoll, which in this instance looks as if it had been kneaded up from the valleys beneath it, so round, so shapely, so richly bosoming does it swell upwards; and so luxuriously clothed is it with the three gifts whereby "men are multiplied" (Ps. iv. 8), that the village and its church seem not to sit upon a rocky summit, but to be half sunk into the lap of the olive, the vine, und the waving corn, that reach the very houses. While the entrance and front of this villa are upon the regular streets of the little town, the garden side stands upon the very verge of the hill-top; and the view, after plunging at once to the depths of the valley, along which runs a shady road, rises np a gentle acclivity, vine and olive clad, above which is clasped a belt of stately chestnuts, the bread-tree of the Italian peasant, and thence springs a round craggy mound, looking stern and defiant, like what it was—the citadel of Tusculum. Upon its rocky front the English students have planted a hnge cross.'
Below Camaldoli we reach the gates of the Villa Mondragone (called so on account of a fountain adorned with four dragons), the Queen of Frascati villas. It occupies the site of an ancient villa. It belonged to the family of Borghese; but is now a Jesuit College. The casino, built, from designs of Vasanzio, by Cardinal Altemps in the reign of Gregory XIII., is exceedingly magnificent, but still more so is the view from the vast and stately terrace in front, adorned with a grand fountain (by Girolamo Fontana) and tall columns. The Loggia is by Vignola. The Villa is said to have originally had 3(15 windows in memory of the reform of the Calendar by Gregory.
'Imaginez-vous un chateau qui a trois cent soixante quatorze fenêtres, un château compliqué comme ceux d'Anne Radcliffe, un monde d'énigmes à débrouiller, un enchaînement de surprises, un rêve de Piranèse.
'Ce palais fut bâti au seizième siècle. On y entre par un vaste corps de logis, sorte de caserne destinée à la suite armée. Lorsque, plus tard, le pape Paul V. en fit une simple villégiature, il relia un des côtes de ce corps de garde au palais par une longue galerie, de plainpied avec la cour intérieure, dont les arcades élégantes s'ouvraient, au couchant, sur un escarpement assez considérable, et laissent aujourd'hui passer le vent et la pluie. Les voûtes suintent, la fresque est devenue une croûte des stalactites hizarrées; des ronces et des orties poussent dans le pavé disjoint ; les deux étages superposés au-dessus de cette galerie s'écroulent tranquillement. Il n'y a plus de toiture; les entablements du dernier étage se penchent et s'affaissent aux risques et périls des passants, quand passants il y a, autour de cette thébaîde. .
'Cependant, la villa Mondragone, resté dans la famille Borghèse, à laquelle appartenait Paul V., était encore nue demeure splendide, il y a une cinquantaine d'anuées, et elle revêt aujourd'hui un caractère de désolation riante, tout à fait particulier à ces ruines prématurées. C'est durant nos guerres d'Italie, au commencement du siècle, que les Autrichiens l'ont ravagée, bombardée, et pillée. Il en est résulté ce qui arrive toujours en ce pays-ci après une secousse politique; le dégoût et l'abaudou. Pourtant la majeure partie du corps de logis principal, la parte media, est assez saiue pour qu'en supprimant les dépendances inutiles, on puisse encore trouver de quoi restaurer une délicieuse villégiature.'—George Sand, ' La DanieUa.'
Joining the grounds of the Mondragone are those of the Villa Taverna built for Cardinal Taverna in the sixteenth century, from designs of Girolamo Rainaldi. It was much used, until the change of Government, as a summer residence by the Borghese. It is now a convent.
A beautiful road along the ridge of the hillside leads back to Frascati, or we may go on to the right towards Colonna, about four miles distant.
Not far below the Villa Mondragone, in the plain, is the volcanic Lake of Cornu/elle. There is no longer any water here, but its bed is a crater having a considerable diameter, and is perhaps the place described by Pliny, where there was a grove of beeches (probably hornbeams—earpini) dedicated to Diana, one of which was so much