图书图片
PDF
ePub
[blocks in formation]

campaigns, surrounded by an elegant railing: the figure of the general, in his hussar regimentals, is as large as life; his hand is raised to his chin, which was his usual attitude of meditation: it is said to be a strong resemblance, and is a fine piece of statuary. In this little square there are several other statues of Prussian generals, who distinguished themselves in the seven years' war, without any inscription. Upon my Gerinan friend enquiring of some of the soldiers, who were standing near us, their names, they told us they knew nothing about them. It is well known, that no living creature is more ignorant than a Prussian soldier.

As we passed to the Royal Opera-house, the cavalry were drilling; the wretchedness of their horses not a little surprised me: the same remark applied to those of every other regiment of cavalry which I saw. The opera-house, which is never open but during the carnival, is a superb and elegant building, raised by Frederick the Great. The audience are admitted gratis, by tickets issued by the King's authority: the pit is allotted to the regiments in garrison, each of which is permitted to send so many men.

In the time of Frederick the Great, it was no unusual spectacle to see the wives of the soldiers sitting upon their husbands' shoulders: the internal decorations are, I was informed, very magnificent.

Berlin is justly celebrated for the excellence of its hotels:

[blocks in formation]

in my sitting room, looking upon the Linden-walk, I had every article of useful and elegant furniture, my bed-room and sopha-bed and linen were remarkably neat and clean, and both rooms, although the frost was set in with intense severity, were, by means of stoves which are supplied from the passage, as warm as a summer day. It is a received opinion, that Englishmen are so accustomed to sit by their fire-sides, that they cannot grow warm unless they see the fire: to this remark I have only to observe, that I partook so insensibly of the atmosphere which pervaded my room, that I neither thought of heat, cold, or fire-places. At breakfast, the rolls, butter, and coffee, were delicious, and the china beautiful. The porcelain of Berlin is very fine, and nearly equal to that of Saxony. In the infancy of this manufactory, Frederick the Great granted permission to the Jews within his dominions to marry, only upon condition that they should purchase a certain quantity of this china; by this despotic policy he soon brought it into repute. At our table d'hote in the hotel, the dinner, with little variation, was in the following order: cold herrings and salted cucumbers, soup, bouilli, ham with sliced carrots, honey and rice pudding, venison and stewed pease. In the streets were groups of female fruiterers, sitting before tubs filled with the finest grapes, and bergamot pears, walnuts, &c. From those stands a respectable dessert may be furnished for the value of three-pence English. Upon the Spree

[blocks in formation]

were a great number of boats, completely laden with the finest apples and pears. Living in Berlin is moderate, in the country remarkably cheap. A bachelor in Hesse Darmstadt, and in many

other parts of Germany, can enjoy elegant society, have every day a bottle of excellent wine, and keep his horse, for one hundred and twenty pounds per annum.

In the audience-room of the great palace, we were shewn à chandelier of chrystal which cost 4,2001. ; amongst the paintings, which are few, we noticed a portrait of the Duke of Ferrara, by Corregio, for which ten thousand ducats were given : there is also a beautiful statue of Marcus Aurelius, drawn up from the Tiber about fifty years since; several curious and costly clocks and secretaires of exquisite workmanship and mechanism, one of which, should any one improperly attempt to open it, would betray the robber by a tune similar to that in the Academy of Sciences in Petersburg: we were also shewn a circular closet in a turret, from whence Frederick, in his latter days, used to contemplate the people in the streets.

is a noble establishment, much resembling those in Petersburg : we attended a parade of about four hundred boys, who, as they were not sized, nor ranked according to age, presented a striking instance of the progress of merit, by displaying mere apple-munching urchins”

The Cadet

corps

[blocks in formation]

commanding companies of boys bigger than themselves. From the Cadet corps we visited an exhibition of the Prussian arts and manufactures, displayed in a suite of rooms : the busts, models, and carpets were beautiful: some of the drawings were pretty, but the paintings were below criticism. English manufactures are severely prohibited in Prussia.

[merged small][ocr errors][merged small]

POTSDAM DILIGENCE-POTSDAM--SANS SOUCI-VOLTAIRE, AND

DOGS OF FREDERICK THE GREAT-NOBLE FIRMNESS OF AN ARCHI

TECT-KING AND LOVELY QUEEN OF PRUSSIA-ANECDOTES-FEMALE TRAVELLING HABIT-THE DUCHY OF MECKLEBURG SWERIN

-RETURN TO ENGLAND,

On the Sunday after my arrival, namely, the third of November, I seated myself, at seven o'clock in the morning, with an intelligent companion, in the Potsdam diligence, a vehicle considerably less commodious than that of Paris: it was without springs, and so villainously put togther, that the biting air pierced through a hundred crevices; sliding wooden pannels supplied the place of glasses, and in the back part were two seats, the occupiers of which were separated from each other by a stout iron bar. Our companions, male and female, were clad in their winter dress of muffs and fur shoes. After passing through a country of corn-fields and fir forests, and some small pieces of ice, at eleven we reached the barrier of Potsdam, which is situated on the river Havel, and is formed into an isle by the adjoining lakes and canals, about sixteen English miles from Berlin.

« 上一页继续 »