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most recent monument is one to the memory of Van Speyk, who blew up himself and his ship, in the Scheldt, 1831, rather than yield to the Belgians. (Rte. 17.) The splendidly carved pulpit, with its huge sounding-board, was executed by Albert Vincken Brinck, in 1649.
The churches in Holland are perhaps more numerously and regularly attended than even in England. The sermons to be preached on Sunday are announced beforehand in placards, like play-bills with us. The congregation sit during the sermon with their hats on or off, indifferently, just as the members in our H. of Commons. In most of the churches service is performed 3 or 4 times. The minister wears the costume of the Puritans in Charles I.'s time-a short black cloak reaching a little below his knee, with a ruff round his neck.
There is an English Episcopal Church here on the Groene Burgwal; service at 10 A. M. A Scotch Presbyterian Church has long been established here.
The Jews, who form one tenth of the population of the town, and reside in a particular quarter, have 4 Synagogues: the most splendid is that of the Portuguese, in the Muiderstraat, which is worth visiting. The streets leading to it seem but a repetition of Monmouth Street, St. Giles's, the same dirt and filthy smells, the same old clothes, evidently the staple commodity, with odds and ends, heaped up, as it were, from all quarters of the world. Nevertheless, the Jews of Amsterdam are, from their wealth, a very influential body. Spinosa, the metaphysician, was a native of Amsterdam, and a Jew by birth (1632).
The Museum or Picture Gallery placed in the Trippenhuis (a name derived from its former owner), in the Kloveniersburgwal, is open to the public Thurs. and Fri., from 10 to 3: on other days it is usual to give a guilder to the keeper for admission. Many of the pictures are attached to shutters, which admit of being drawn forward upon hinges in order that they
may be seen under the most favourable lights. It is completely a National Gallery, being composed almost entirely of works of the Dutch school, of which it contains many chefs-d'œuvre.
The finest picture in the collection is that painted by Van der Helst (97. of the catalogue), "the miracle of the Dutch school," representing the City Guard of Amsterdam met to celebrate the Treaty of Munster, 1648; an event which, as it first confirmed the independence of the Dutch nation, was justly considered a subject worthy the pencil of the artist. The figures, 25 in number, are portraits; the names are inscribed above, but there are no persons in any way distinguished among them. One of them represents the lieutenant of the company, and his dress is the uniform of the Dutch schuttery (militia) of that period. "This is, perhaps, the first picture of portraits in the world, comprehending more of those qualities which make a perfect portrait than any other I have ever seen. They are correctly drawn, both head and figure, and well coloured, and have a great variety of action, characters, and countenances; and those so lively and truly expressing what they are about, that the spectator has nothing to wish for. Of this picture I had heard great commendations; but it as far exceeded my expectation, as that of Rembrand, the Night Watch, fell below it." R. (98.) Portraits of 3 members of the Archers' Guild, seated at a table, holding the prizes for the best shots, a sceptre, a goblet, and a chain; a fourth man, said to be the painter, a woman, and a dog. In the background 3 young marksmen. Sir Joshua calls it an admirable picture. (100.) Portrait of Mary, daughter of Charles I., wife of William II., P. of Orange, and mother of William III. of England. Van der Helst is a scarce master, and his works are nowhere to be found in equal perfection with those at Amsterdam.
Rembrand. (228.) The picture called the Night Watch probably represents a company of archers, with their leader, Captain Kok, going out
to shoot at the butts. It appears to have been much damaged, “but what remains seems to be painted in a poor manner. "So far am I from thinking it deserves its great reputation that it was with difficulty I could persuade myself that it was painted by Rembrand: it seemed to me to have more of the yellow manner of Boll. The name of Rembrand, however,is certainly upon it, with the date, 1642." R.-This unfavourable opinion of Sir Joshua is not confirmed by judges of art in the present day, who consider that he does injustice to one of the finest and most wonderful productions of the great painter. Another firstrate painting is (229.) the portraits of 5 Masters of the Drapers' Company, and their servant. They are seated round a table, apparently conversing on matters of business. The heads are finely painted, particularly the one nearest to the right. There are parts of this painting which, in force of execution, the painter probably never surpassed.
one of the few paintings by this master in which the figures are as large as life. A part of the original painting has peeled off the canvass.
Schalken. (250.) William III., a portrait by candlelight. H. Walpole says, that the artist made the King hold the candle until the tallow ran down and burnt his hand. —(253.) Two Boys; one eating soup, the other an egg, with his face slobbered over by the yolk; called "Every one to his fancy;" which motto is written on the picture.
Vandyk.-(73.) Portraits of the Children of Charles I.: one of them, the Princess Mary, became the wife of William II., Prince of Orange (see No. 100.).—(72.) Francis Van der Borght, a masterly portrait.
W. Vandevelde. (292.) View of Amsterdam, from the Schreyershoek Tower; dated 1686. "One of the most capital works of this artist." R.
(290, 291.) Paintings of the Sea Fight between the Dutch and English, which lasted 4 days, and in which the Dutch were victorious: one represents the battle between De Ruiter and General Monk, in which 4 English
Carl du Jardin.—(136.) Portraits of the 5 Governors of the Spinhouse at Amsterdam. "They are all dressed in black; and, being upon a light back-line-of-battle ships were taken.- (293, ground, have a wonderful relief. The heads are executed with a most careful and masterly touch, and the repose and harmony of colouring spread over the whole picture are admirable." R. The portraits of this artist are rare, as he is generally looked upon as a painter of landscapes, sheep, and small figures. There are 3 other good pictures by him, and no other collection probably possesses works of his showing equal excellence.
293*.) Calms at Sea, painted with the most exquisite clearness, and with that wonderful effect of distance over the surface of the water, which is the peculiar excellence of Vandevelde. Backhuysen: (8.) The Pensionary John de Witt embarking on board of the Fleet in 1665. (9.) A view of Amsterdam.- Ostade, A.: (210.) The Painter in his study. Ostade, J.: (211.) A laughing peasant with a jug in his hand. Berghem: Several fine Landscapes; one particularly (25.), called an Italian Landscape. Ruisdael: (244.) A magnificent_waterfall.
(245.) The castle of Bentheim. The same subject is to be found at Dresden. Wouvermans: (325.) A Stag Hunt, in this artist's best manner. -(322.) The Chasse au Vol, Hawking Party.-(321.) A picture representing officers plundered and bound by peasants. The horse is exquisitely painted. All three are very fine :
there are others of great excellence, as (324.), a Landscape, with a white Horse.-Teniers: (280.) Temptation of St. Anthony.-(278.) A Peasant drinking and smoking. - Ferdinand Bol: (33.) Portrait of Admiral de Ruiter.- Miereveld: (173, 175.) Portraits of William I. and Maurice, Princes of Orange.-A. Van der Venne: (296.) Portrait of William I., taken after his death.-Lievens: (160.) Portrait of Vondel, the Poet. - Terburg: (281.) A Lady in White Satin talking with a lady and gentleman. Her back only is seen, but the whole attitude shows that she is struggling with her feelings. (See Kugler, § LV. 5.)(282.) The Ministers at the Congress of Munster.-Hondekoeter: (112, 113. 115, 116.) Several pictures of fowls, game, rare birds, &c., unequalled in their class probably in the world. One of the most remarkable is that known as "the Floating Feather" (119.), in which a Pelican is introduced with Ducks swimming. Van Huysum : (129, 130.) Fruit and Flower pieces. Weenix: (307. 309.) Dead Game. Snyders: (262, 263.) Dead Wildfowl. All perfect specimens of these various artists.-Gaspar Crayer: (54.) The Adoration of the Shepherds. (55.) A Descent from the Cross. Cuyp (59.) and Both: (35, 36.) Some admirable landscapes. Jan Steen is perhaps nowhere seen to greater advantage. (269.) A Baker at a Window, and a Boy blowing a Horn to let the neighbours know that the Rolls are ready. (270.) A Village Quack.(266.) The Fête of St. Nicholas, an occasion when the Dutch every year make presents of bonbons to their children who behave well, while the naughty ones are left without any thing, or receive a whipping. story is admirably told in this picture, which is a chef-d'œuvre of the master.
The Museum also contains one of the most remarkable collections of prints in Europe, particularly rich in the Dutch and Flemish masters, formed by Mr. Van Leyden, and purchased by Louis Buonaparte, K. of Holland It occupies 200 portfolios.
In the Spin-house, or prison for female offenders, in the Nieuwe Prinsen Gracht, are several pictures and portraits of directors of the establishment, by Rubens and Vandyk, exceedingly fine, and well worth notice.
There are several first-rate Private Collections of pictures in Amsterdam: that belonging to M. Six (Heerengracht, bij de Vijzelstraat, No. 4005.) contains Rembrand's portrait of the Burgomaster Six, painted with great power and effect; and of Madame Six, a wonderful picture.-G. Dou, A Girl with a Birdcage, exquisitely finished. -Metzu, A Fishwife. Cuyp, Sunny Landscape, ships and water;-an a moonlight view.-V. der Neer, Moonlight. Hobbema, Landscape. dael, Ditto.- Wynants, Ditto. Potter, Cattle; good. - Jan Steen, A Jewish Marriage. Weenix, Dead Game. These were painted for the places on the walls which they occupy, and hang in their original black frames.
The cabinet of M. van der Hoop (Keizersgracht, bij het Molenpad, No. 5934.) is also first-rate; it is most tastefully arranged in his elegant mansion. He has an excellent Landscape by H. Vandevelde, with figures of the painter and his family; and one of the finest Ostades known, from the cabinet of the Duchesse de Berry. The gallery of Mr. van Loon contains first-rate pictures of the Dutch school; and that of Mr. van Brienen many fine specimens of it. These two galleries may perhaps be seen by applying, by letter, to the owners, or, in their absence, through Mr. J. de Vries, a broker in works of art.
Amsterdam is remarkable for the number and extensive bounty of the Charitable Institutions which it supports, for the most part, by voluntary contributions of its benevolent citizens. It is recorded, that when some one in conversation with Charles II. prognosticated speedy ruin to the city from the meditated attack of Louis XIV.'s armies, Charles, who quainted with the country from a long residence in it, replied, "I am of opinion that Providence will preserve Am
was well ac
sterdam, if it were only for the great charity they have for their poor." This city alone, it is said, numbers no fewer than 23 institutions of benevolence, including hospitals for the reception of the aged and infirm, the insane, orphans and widows, foundlings, &c., some of them attached to the churches of peculiar religions, others open to all sects, without distinction. At one time more than 20,000 poor people received their daily bread and board from charity.
Some of the almshouses, such, for instance, as the hospital for Protestant old men and women, on the Amstel, look more like princes' palaces than lodgings for poor people. The Burgher Orphan Asylum receives 7 or 800 children, boys and girls, until they are 20 years of age; and before they are sent out into the world they are instructed in some trade or profession. They are well taken care of, and are very healthy.
The orphan children of the different asylums are generally distinguished by a particular dress: those of the Protestant Burgher House (in which Van Speyk was brought up) wear black and red jackets; the girls of the RoCatholic Orphan House wear black, with a white band round the head the orphans educated in the Almosoniers' Orphan House are dressed in black, and wear round the left arm the colours of the town-a black, red, and white band, with a number. The intention of these costumes is to prevent their entrance into playhouses, gin-shops, or other improper places; a severe penalty being inflicted on persons who should admit children thus attired.
There is also a class of Provident Institutions here and in other Dutch towns, called Proveniers Huisen (providers' houses), for the reception and comfortable maintenance of old men and women, who pay a comparatively small sum, proportioned to their age (e. g. from 50 to 55 years, 2000 guilders; 55 to 60, 1500; 70 years and upwards, 500 guilders), for admittance, and are supported in respectability to the end of their days. They form a very suit
able retreat for domestic servants, who by timely savings may obtain an entrance; indeed, masters and mistresses sometimes reward old and faithful, domestics by paying for their admission.
The poor throughout Holland are generally supported by voluntary contributions. In all the churches collections are made every Sunday by the deacons, who go round to all present, carrying a little bag attached to the end of a stick, like a landing net, with a monitory bell fixed to it, into which every person drops something suited to his means.
There are also good institutions for the blind, and deaf and dumb.
The Prisons of Amsterdam were placed upon a good foundation before those of other countries in Europe, and originally surpassed all others. They are now, however, in many respects, inferior to similar improved establishments in England and America.
The Rasp-house was a penitentiary for the reception of impostors, petty thieves, vagrants, brawlers, &c., and was so called because its inmates were originally employed in rasping logwood. It is now converted into a temporary arrest-house. By one of the original ordinances of the Rasp-house, a refractory prisoner, who refused to execute his allotted task of rasping, was placed in a cell into which water was admitted, which, if not kept under by his own exertions at a pump, swelled over his head, and drowned him.
The Spin-house, or House of Correction for females, contains about 150 inmates condemned to hard labour for periods varying from 6 months to 12 or 14 years. One division of it was formerly devoted to the correction of offences which may rank between, a fault and a crime; such as in other countries are punished by the domestic code, but for which family authority is not always sufficiently strict in enforcing punishment; though at the same time the discipline of a prison would be too severe. Thus a disobedient child, an extravagant wife, or a drunken husband, if their offence were proved against them, and they were sent hither by their friends, were subjected to modified co
and promise of amendment, they should have atoned for their misdemeanours. "Whether these various establishments are capable of relieving the whole mass of human wretchedness which this capital, in common with all large cities, must contain, would require a long residence to determine; but we could not help making the same remark here as in Rotterdam-that in all our rambles we had not met with a drunken person in the streets; nay more, that we had not observed a man, woman, or child in rags, or met with a real object of compassion, in any part of the town; and the only beggars that accosted us, and those were in some of the lower parts of the town, were decrepit old men."— Family Tour in S. Holland.
ercion and restraint, until, by penitence,, 1. By promoting the education of the young, improving school books, establishing Sunday schools, and providing for the children after quitting schoolestablishing book societies and libraries for the poor. 2. By extending information to adults by popular writings, public lectures, and the institution of banks for saving. 3. By the distribution of public rewards to the industrious and virtuous among the poorer classes; bestowing medals on such as have risked their lives in preserving those of others, &c. The head-quarters of this admirable society are at Amsterdam, where an annual meeting of the members is held on the second Tuesday of August. A subscription of 5 or 6 guilders yearly constitutes a member. Its influence had begun to extend to Belgium before the revolution of 1830, but has since been checked and totally suppressed by the priests,
The Dutch are not altogether absorbed in commerce, so as to be able to devote no time to literature and the arts; witness the society called Felix Meritis, from the first words of a Latin inscription placed upon the building, which is founded and supported entirely by merchants and citizens. The building is situated in the Keisers Gracht. In its nature it bears some resemblance to the Royal Institution in London. It contains a library, museum, collections of casts of ancient statues, of chemical and mathematical instruments a reading-room, and a very fine concert-room and observatory. Lectures are given in various branches of art, science, and literature. Though there is little in the building, perhaps, to take up the time of a stranger merely passing through the city, any intelligent individual, about to reside here, would find it an agreeable resource.
There are many other useful societies, the most prominent being the Association for the Promotion of the Public Weal (Maatschappij tot nut van't algemeen). It was established in 1784, by a simple Baptist clergyman named Nieuwenhuizen, at Monnikendam, and it now numbers 200 offsets or branch societies, and 13,000 members, extending all over Holland. Its object is the instruction and improvement in condition of the lower classes.
The Promenades are the Plantanje, or plantation, at the end of the Heeren Gracht, surrounded by canals, and not far from the dockyards..
The high bridge over the Amstel, near the place where it enters the town, "in a fine broad sheet of water, and with scarcely perceptible current," is one of the most favourable points for obtaining a view of the town. The Amstel river is a great trunk of navigation. It is embanked, and navigable 11 miles, to the boundary of the district at Amstelmondhard, where it divides into two branches, which unite with numerous canals, both in this district and that of Rhineland. The banks of the Amstel, outside the Utrecht gate, are also much resorted to.
The want of spring-water is a great evil and inconvenience in this large city. The houses are provided with tanks, in which every drop of rain that falls is treasured up: this is used by the better classes for culinary purposes. Drinking water is brought from Utrecht in stone bottles: but the main supply comes from the river Vecht above Weesp, about 12 miles off, in very large water barges, called Leggers, which may be seen on the various canals; and the poorer classes who have no cisterns are