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La place Frederic, or the Octagon, containing the palaces of the royal family, and where Lord Nelson had the audience that I have just mentioned, is composed of four small palaces all uniform, each having two wings: four very noble streets, principally inhabited by the nobility, lead to this place: the grand entrance is through a gate composed of double rows of Corinthian pillars and a rich entablature; one of the streets is terminated by the harbour, and the other by the church of Frederic, which has been long left unfinished; it has the appearance of an elegant design, and reminded me, both by its condition and style of architecture, of L'Eglise de Madelaine at Paris. In the centre of the Octagon is an equestrian statue of Frederic V. in bronze, by Saly; it was erected in 1769 by the Danish East India Company, and is said to have cost 80,0001. An Englishman cannot help remarking the slovenly appearance of the grass, which is here permitted to shoot up through the stones, and particularly within the railing of the statue : the soldiers who are always lounging about the palaces, would remove the evil in almost the time that I have taken to comment upon it.
VALOUR FACETIOUS-GALLERY OF PAINTINGS-CURIOSITIES-TYCHO
BRAHE'S GOLDEN NOSE—THE GARDEN OF FREDERICSBERG-THE CROWN PRINCE-THE PASHIONABLE SCHOOLMASTER AND LITTLE BARONRT-GRATEFUL PRASANT-RÉLIGION-EXCELLENT LAWTHE BURGOMASTER AND CANARY BIRD-THE HERMIT OF DRONNINGAARD-QUICKNESS OF VEGETATION—THE PRISONER'S SUNPALACE OF ROSENBERG-TABLE D'HOTE-DROLL MISCONCEPTION
OF THE ENGLISH LADIES-RASP HOUSE-DUTCH TOWN.
THERE is something very pleasant in contemplating the most inconsiderable actions, even the little badinage of great men. I forgot in my last chapter to mention the playful goodhumour which Lord Nelson displayed soon after the battle of Copenhagen roads. By the ship which conveyed his dispatches to England, he sent a note to some respectable winemerchants to whom he was indebted for some wine, in which he sportively said that, “ he trusted they would pardon his not "" having sooner sent a checque for his bill, on account of his “ having been lately much engaged.”
In one of the wings of the burnt palace, to which the flames did not extend, the gallery of pictures and museum of curi
osities are placed. In the former we found a few excellent pictures, and particularly noticed a Jesus betrayed, by Michael Angelo; a naked Venus, in a very singular posture, by Titian; a good Woman, by Leonardo de Vinci; the Holy Family, by Raphael ; a dead Christ on the cross, by Rubens; adjoining to this is an unaccountable picture upon a large scale, the subject, Fallen Angels : the artist, with singular whim, has substituted butterflies for fig-leaves.
In the cabinet of curiosities is a very ingenious invention for tranquillizing the fears of jealous husbands; a stuffed stag, said to have lived several centuries; a lion and bear; there is here also a celestial globe made by Tycho Brahe, who was sent to Copenhagen by his father in the sixteenth century to study rhetoric and philosophy, but the great eclipse of the sun on August the 21st, 1562, engaged him to study astronomy. He was the inventor of a new system of the world, and had some followers, but it is said that his learning made him superstitious, and his philosophy irritable, to such a degree that in a philosophical dispute the argument rose to such a pitch of personal violence that he lost his nose, which he supplied by a gold and silver one admirably constructed; he was also
fond of Automata, and the reputation which he obtained of a conjurer.
I was much pleased with the convivial cup of the celebrated Margaret of Valdemar; it had ten lips, which were marked
with the respective names of those whom she honoured with her intimacy, who were the companions of her table, and were permitted to taste of the Tuscan grape out of the same vessel. There are here also some exquisite carvings in wood, by a Norwegian farmer, with a common knife; some mummies badly preserved ; a piece of amber weighing more than twentyseven pounds, found in Jutland; lustres of amber; several models of ships in amber, ivory, shell, and mother of pearl ; beautiful works of ivory; a toilet of amber of surprizing workmanship; a great lustre of the same, with twenty-four branches, made by M. Spengler. A compleat closet filled with bits of wood, carved by the peasants of Norway, who are extremely expert in this work; a portrait of Denner; a bit of ivory, prettily worked by Queen Louise, mother of the present King; others of the same kind, by Pierre Legrand; the emperors Leopold, Rodolph II. &c.; Jesus Christ on the cross, carved in wood, of so fine a workmanship that it must be seen through a magnifying glass, it is attributed to Albert Durer; a carriage with six horses, of an inconceivable smallness; a great jug of ivory, with a triumph of Bacchus of a very fine workmanship, by Jacob Hollander, a Norwegian ; the descent from the cross, a superb piece, by Magnus Berg; several figures dressed in foreign dresses, Indian, Chinese, &c.; great vases of gold and silver; a flagon or decanter of rock chrystal, very beautifully engraved; a horn of gold, found in Jutland, in 1639, the inscription on which has puzzled the learned; a bust of
Brutus in bronze; many precious antiquities of the country: a portrait of Charles XII. ; the skull of archbishop Absalom, with his dress : the prelate's skull reminded me of the ridiculous question which a lady put to one of the librarians of the
Pray sir, have'nt you a skull of Oliver Cromwell here?” “No, madam,” replied the man of learning and antiquity; “ Dear me,” said she,
Dear me,” said she, “ I wonder at that, for they have a very fine one in the museum at Oxford." There are also some curious religious utensils, which were used by the ancient natives of the north. Such is a sketch of the Danish gallery and museum, which is worthy the notice of the traveller.
In order to have a better view of the city, upon leaving the museum, I ascended by an external spiral stair-case, the
of the church in Christian-haven, one of the quarters of Copenhagen; from this eminence the view was delightful; the city, its palaces, churches, docks, arsenals, and the little Dutch town which lay about two English miles off; the roads, the shores of Sweden, and the Sound embellished with ships, lay like a map below me. Immediately underneath us we saw a funeral procession of a principal inhabitant, proceeding to that “ dark and narrow house, whose mark is one grey stone;" the coffin, covered with a pall, was placed upon a bier, surmounted with a canopy, which moved upon
four little broad wheels, and was drawn by a pair of horses. I regretted to observe that the Danes pursue the same pernicious custom which