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from Nemi, is reached by a circuitous walk along the ridges of the hills. The slopes beneath the town are occupied by the gardens of Duke Sforza-Cesarini (which an order or even "a silver key" will generally open to visitors). The scenery of this beautiful hill-side is photographed in the description of H. Christian Andersen.
"The lake of Nemi slept calmly in the great round crater, from which at one time fire spouted up to heaven. We went down the amphitheatre like, rocky slope, through the great beech wood and the thick groves of plane trees, where the vines wreathed themselves amongst the treebranches. On the opposite steep lay the city of Nemi, which mirrored itself in the blue lake. As we went along we bound garlands, entwining the dark green olive and fresh vine-leaves with the wild golden cistus. Now the deep-lying blue lake and the bright heavens above us were hidden by the thick branches and the vine-leaves, now they gleamed forth again as if they were only one united infinite blue. Everything was new and glorious to me; my soul trembled for its great joy. There are even still moments in which the remembrance of these feelings comes forth again like the beautiful mosaic fragments of a buried city.
'' The sun burned hotly, and it was not un til we were by the water-side, where the plane trees raise aloft their ancient trunks from the lake, and bend down their branches, heavy with enwreathing vines, to the watery mirror, that we found it cool enough to continue our work. Beautiful water-plants nodded here as if they dreamed under the cool shadow, and they too made part of our garlands. Presently, however, the sunbeams no longer reached the lake, but only played upon the roofs of Nemi and Genzano ; and the gloom descended upon where we sate. I went a little distance from the others, yet only a few paces, for my mother was afraid that I should fall into the lake where it was deep and the banks were steep. Not far from the small stone ruins of an old temple of Diana there lay a huge fig-tree which the ivy had already begun to bind fast to the earth; I climbed upon this, and wove a garland whilst I sang .rom a canzonet,—
Ah, rossi, rossi fiori,
The Palazzo Cesarini contains nothing of interest, but is
associated with one of those dramas of real life which are
seldom found out of Italy. A Duchess Cesarini dreamt before her confinement that she should give birth to twins, one of whom would endanger the happiness of the other. Determined to obviate this misfortune, she bribed the midwife to convey one of the children away as soon as it was born, and bring it up as a peasant. This was done, and the young Cesarini served as a shepherd, supposing himself to be a shepherd's son, till after he came of age. Then his adopted shepherd-mother happened to hear that the young Duke Cesarini and his father and mother were dead and that there was no heir to the fortunes and title, and going to the palace with the midwife, she was able to produce indisputable proofs to the astonished heirs-at-law which established the claims of the shepherd-boy, who was sent to Paris to be educated and became the late Duke Cesarini.
Genzano is now chiefly celebrated for the festival of the Infiorata, which takes place on the eighth day after Corpus Domini, and is wonderfully appropriate to this land of flowers.
"I dreamed till the sun shone in at my window, and awoke me to the beautiful feast of flowers.
"How shall I describe the first glance into the street—that bright picture as I then saw it? The entire, long, gently-ascending street was covered with flowers; the ground colour was blue; it looked as if they had robbed all the gardens, all the fields, to collect flowers enough of the same colour to cover the street; over these lay in long stripes, green, composed of leaves, alternately with rose-colour, and at some distance from this was a similar stripe, as it were a broad border to the whole carpet. The middle of this represented stars and suns, which were formed by a close mass of yellow, round, and star-like flowers; more labour still had been spent upon the formation of names—here flower was laid upon flower, leaf upon leaf. The whole was a living flowercarpet, a mosaic floor, richer in pomp of colouring than anything which Pompeii can show. Not a breath of air stirred—the flowers lay immoveable, as if they were heavy, firmly-set precious stones. From all the windows were hung upon the walls large carpets, worked in leaves and flowers, representing holy pictures. Here Joseph led the ass on which sat the Madonna and the child; roses formed the faces, the feet, and the arms, gilly-flowers and anemones their fluttering garments ; and crowns were made of white water-lilies, brought from Lake Nemi. Saint Michael fought with the dragon; the holy Rosalia showered down roses upon the dark blue globe, wherever my eye fell flowers related to me Biblical legends; and the people all round about were as joyful as myself. Rich foreigners, from beyond the mountains, clad in festal garments, stood in the balconies, and by the side of the houses moved along a vast crowd of people, all in full holiday costume, each in the fashion of his country. The sun burnt hotly, all the bells rang, and the procession moved along the beautiful flower-carpet; the most charming music and singing announced its approach, choristers swung the censer before the Host, the most beautiful girls in the country followed, with garlands of flowers in their hands, and poor children, with wings to their naked shoulders, sang hymns, as of angels, while awaiting the arrival of the procession at the high altar. Young fellows wore fluttering ribands around their pointed hats, upon which a picture of the Madonna was fastened ; silver and gold rings hung to a chain round their necks, and handsome bright-coloured scarfs looked splendidly upon their black velvet jackets. The girls of Albano and Frascati came, with their thin veils elegantly thrown over their black, plaited hair, in which was stuck the silver arrow; those of Velletri, on the contrary, wore garlands around their hair, and the smart handkerchief, fastened so low down in the dress as to leave visible the beautiful shoulde: and the round bosom. From Abruzzi, from the Marshes, from every other neighbouring district, came all in their peculiar national costume, and produced altogether the most brilliant effect. Cardinals, in their mantles woven with silver, advanced under canopies adorned with flowers, then monks of various orders, all bearing burning tapers. When the procession came out of church, an immense crowd followed."—The Improvisatore.
We were at Genzano on Good Friday, when all the boys of the place were busy, not only "grinding Judas's bones" in the ordinary fashion, i.e. by rattling them together in a box, but were banging large planks of wood and broad strips of bark up and down upon the church steps, with almost frantic fury, to show what good Christians they were.
We took a little carriage in the piazza of Genzano in which we rattled merrily down the hill-side for about two miles to CIVITA LAVINIA. 93
Civita Lavinia, occupying the site of the ancient Lanuvium,
Breaking Judas' bones. Genzano.
and remarkable as the birth-place of the Emperors Antoninus
Pius and Commodus, of T. Annius Milo the enemy of
Clodius, of Roscius the comedian, L. Muraena who was
defended by Cicero, and P. Sulpicius Quirinus who was
Cyrenius the Governor of Syria, mentioned in St. Luke's
Gospel. Lanuvium was celebrated for the worship of Juno
Sospita, and when it took part with the other Latin cities
against Rome and was defeated, its inhabitants were not only
unpunished, but admitted to the rights of Roman citizens,
on condition that the temple of their goddess should be
common to the Romans also.
"Quos Castrum, Phrygibusque gravis quondam Ardea misit,
Sil. Ital. viii. 361.
"Lanuvio generate, inquit, quem Sospita Juno
'' Inspice, quos habeat nemoralis Aricia Fastos
Ovid. Fast. vi. 59.
"Livy mentions the Juno of Lanuvium more than once. Lib. xxi. 62, he says, 'among other prodigies, it was affirmed that the spear of Lanuvian Juno vibrated spontaneously, and that a raven flew into the temple ;' and again: 'forty pounds of gold were sent to Lanuvium, as an offering to the goddess.' In another place he says (xxiii. 31), 'the statues at Lanuvium in the temple of Juno Sospita, shed blood, and a shower of stones fell round the temple ;' and in Lib. xxiv. 10: 'the uows built nests in the temple of Juno Sospita at Lanuvium.' Cicero also, in Orat. pro Mur. ad fin., speaks of the sacrifices made by the consuls to Juno Sospita, in connection with the 'municipium honestissit11 11 in ' of Lanuvium. In Propertius we read,
'Lanuvium annosi vetus est tutela draconis.'
There were great treasures in the temple, which Augustus borrowed, as well as those of the Capitol, of Antium, Nemus, and Tibur."
Sir W. Gell.
From Civita Lavinia.
Civita Lavinia is approached by a terrace commanding a grand view across the Pontine Marshes to the Circean mount. It stands on the edge of the promontory and