On the other side of them I knew that I was now fated to find only the poor fragments of the great cities and stately pleasure-houses that I had known in all their strength and beauty only the silent and deserted ruins of the mighty fortresses which had guarded the confines of our lost empire, and were the portals through which the Children of the Sun had marched to unvarying conquest.

Some pleasure-houses of the last century were to be met with there, to be sure, which were recognizable by their grand air, their balconies in twisted iron, and their long windows, whose tiny panes cast all sorts of varying shades of green on the white of the closed shutters; but Montfermeil was none the less a village.

Nineteen-twentieths of the Chinese women in San Francisco are depraved! Not far from one of the pleasure-houses we intruded upon a domestic hearth smelling of punk and pestilence. A child fled with a shrill scream at our approach. This was the hospital of the quarter. Nine cases of small-pox were once found within its narrow walls, and with no one to care for them.

And later in the summer he says, "My wife has become so clever at hawking that she quite outdoes me at this her favourite sport." Beatrice herself gives a lively account of her country life during the spring of 1491, in a charming letter which she addressed to her sister from Villa Nova, another of Lodovico's delightful pleasure-houses in the valley of the Ticino between Milan and Pavia.

He has always the resource, no doubt, of declining the society of emperors, and even fixing his domestic budget more in accord with present exigencies than with the sumptuous traditions, the palaces and pleasure-houses, of his millionaire predecessors.

Horses were ridden and driven in the Hippodrome, and feasts were held in the pleasure-houses of Canopus, with music and noisy mirth; in the public gardens round the Paneum cock-fighting and quail-fighting were as popular as ever, and eager was the betting in new gold or humble copper.

As soon as we pass these extreme precincts of Mekka, the Desert presents itself; for neither gardens, trees, nor pleasure-houses, line the avenues to the town, which is surrounded on every side by barren sandy valleys, and equally barren hills.

This island, hardly ten minutes by gondola from the Piazza of San Marco, was the summer resort of the Doges, you will remember, and there they built their pleasure-houses, with charming gardens at the back gardens the confines of which stretched to the Laguna Viva. Our Casa Rosa is one of the few old palazzi left, for many of them have been turned into granaries.

They went farther afield; and it was given them to walk together down green vistas cut for kings, to linger on terraces with the river far below them, and the roofs of Paris in the hazy distance; that Paris, sullen so long, the mutterings of which the kings who had sat there must have heard with dread; that Paris which had finally risen in its wrath and taken the pleasure-houses and the parks for itself.

The courtyard of the ancient Este palace was adorned with wide marble staircases, the villa of Belfiore was enlarged and beautified, while that of Belriguardo, twelve miles from the city, on the banks of the Po, became celebrated as the most sumptuous of all the stately pleasure-houses in which Renaissance princes took delight.