I found more pleasure in contemplating the Old Masters this time than I did when I was in Europe in former years, but still it was a calm pleasure; there was nothing overheated about it. When I was in Venice before, I think I found no picture which stirred me much, but this time there were two which enticed me to the Doge's palace day after day, and kept me there hours at a time.
No money is coined in the land of the Tawny Moors, or Azenhaji; nor is any money used by them, or in any of the neighbouring countries; but all their trade is carried on by bartering one commodity against another. In some of their inland towns, the Arabs and Azanbaji use small white porcelain shells, or cowries; which are brought from the Levant to Venice, and sent from thence into Africa.
Was it last week, or sixteen years ago, that you were standing in this room with the chequered sunlight shining through the Venetian blind upon you, as you discoursed about Heaven and Grace and an attorney in the City who was not one of the elect? "I never knew you were in Venice this autumn, and, as it happened, it was fortunate I did not go to Trieste to see you, since you were away.
De la Haye depended on me in every way; he saw my fanaticism, and he was well aware that it is a disease which rages as long as the causes from which it has sprung are in existence. As he was going with me to Venice, he flattered himself that he could easily feed the fire he had lighted.
The spirit of the new and short-lived Republic wrought that change in Venice. 'Oh, if they're republican as well as utterly decayed, said Roland, 'I give them up; let them die virtuous. Nevil told Roland that he had spoken to Renee. He won sympathy, but Roland could not give him encouragement.
His pictures are principally of scenes from Venice, and are miracles of color, being as bright as if the light were transmitted through rubies and sapphires.
"Can such an angel as you have any?" "Ah, my friend! who is without them?" "When shall I have the happiness of convincing you of my devotion with complete freedom and in all the joy of my heart?" "We will take supper together at my casino whenever you please, provided you give me notice two days beforehand; or I will go and sup with you in Venice, if it will not disturb your arrangements."
It was my custom every morning, after my friends had left me, to spend a few moments at the window before retiring to rest, to see the sun rise over the Adriatic, and then to bid him goodnight. If you, my dear prince, have not yet enjoyed this pleasure, I recommend exactly this station, the only eligible one perhaps in all Venice to enjoy so splendid a prospect in perfection.
The country abounds in level and beautiful valleys all tilled and sown, without any part lying unimproved. In its constitution of government that has existed until the present time, it resembles the states of Venice, Genoa and Pisa; since the supreme authority is not reposed in one person.
In this hour of adversity the men of Venice rose to their greatest, forgetting their rivalries and standing breast to breast in phalanx around their vacant throne, that Venice might meet trouble with increased strength when the eyes of the world were curiously turned upon her.
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