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moment both my country and my grief. The charm was new to me. I had no conception that it was possible, upon so small a plot of ground, to introduce at once the enchanting variety and the noble fimplicity of Nature. But I was then convinced that her aspect alone is sufficient, at first view, to heal the wounded feelings of the heart, to fill the bosom with the highest luxury, and to create those sentiments in the mind which can, of all others, render life desirable.
This new re-union of Art and Nature, which was not invented in China, * but in England, is founded upon a rational and refined taste for the beauties of Nature, confirmed by experience, and by the sentiments which a chaste fancy reflects on a feeling heart.
Great Nåture scorns controul ; se will not bear
But in the gardens I have before mentioned, every point of view raises the soul to heaven, and affords the mind sublime delight; every bank pre
* See Sir William Chambers's celebrated Treatise on Oriental
sents a new and varied scene, which fills the heart with joy : nor, while I feel the sensation which such scenes inspire, will I suffer my delight to be diminished, by discussing whether the arrangement might have been made in a better way, or permit the dull rules of cold and senseless masters to destroy my pleasure. Scenes of serenity, whether created by tasteful Art, or by the cunning hand of Nature, always bestow, as a gift from the imagination, tranquillity to the heart. While a soft silence breathes around me, every object is pleasant to my view ; rural scenery fixes my attention, and diffipates the grief that lies heavy at my heart; the loveliness of Solitude enchants me, and, subduing every vexation, inspires my soul with benevolence, gratitude, and content. I return thanks to my Creator for endowing me with an imagination which, though it has frequently caused the trouble of my life, occasionally leads me, in the hour of my retirement, to some friendly rock, on which I can climb and contemplate with greater composure the tempests I have escaped.
There are, indeed, many Anglicised gardens in Germany, laid out so whimsically absurd, as to excite no other emotions than those of laughter or disgust. How extremely ridiculous is it to see a forest of poplars scarcely fulficient to supply a chamber ftove with fuel for a week; mere molehills dignified with the name of mountains; caves and aviaries, in which tame and savage animals, birds and amphibious creatures, are attempted to be represented in their native grandeur; bridges of various kinds thrown across rivers which a couple of ducks would drink dry; and wooden fishes swimming in canals which the pump every morning supplies with water! These unnatural beauties are incapable of affording any pleasure to the imagination.
A CELEBRATED English writer has said, that “ Solitude, on the first view of it, inspires the « mind with terror, because every thing that « brings with it the idea of privation is terrific, (6 and therefore sublime, like space, darkness, and « silence.”
The species of greatness which results from the idea of infinity, can only be rendered delightful by being viewed at a proper distance. The Alps, in. Swisserland, and particularly near the Canton of Berne, appear inconceivably majestic; but on a near approach, they excite ideas certainly sublime, yet mingled with a degree of terror. on beholding these immense and enormous masses piled one upon the other, forming one vast and uninterrupted chain of mountains, and rearing their lofty summits to the skies, conveys to the
heart the most rapturous delight! while the succeffion of soft and lively shades, which they throw around the scene, tempers the impression, and renders the view as agreeable as it is fublime. On the contrary, no feeling heart can, on a close view, behold this prodigious wall of rocks without experiencing involuntary trembling. The mind contemplates with affright their eternal fnows, their steep ascents, their dark caverns, the torrents which precipitate themselves with deafening clamours from their summits, the black forests of firs that overhang their fides, and the enormous fragments of rocks which time and tempests have torn away. How my heart thrilled when I first climbed through a steep and narrow track upon these sublime deserts, discovering every step I made new mountains rising over my head, while upon the least stumble death menaced me in a thousand shapes below! But the imagination immediately kindles when you perceive yourself alone in the midst of this grand scene of Nature, and reflect from these heights on the weakness of human power, and the imbecility of the greatest monarchs !
The history of Swifferland evinces, that the natives of these mountains are not a degenerate
and that their sentiments are as generous as their feelings are warm. Bold and spirited
by nature, the liberty they enjoy gives wings to their fouls, and they trample tyrants and tyranny under their feet. Some of the inhabitants of Swift ferland, indeed, are not perfectly free; though they
len all possess notions of liberty, love their country, 'der and return thanks to the Almighty for that happy tranquillity which permits each individual to live quietly under his vine, and enjoy the shade of his fig-tree ; but the most pure and genuine liberty is always to be found among the inhabitants of these stupendous mountains.
The Alps in Swisserland are inhabited by a .race of men sometimes unsocial, but always good and generous. The hardy and robust characters given to them by the severity of their climate, is softened by their pastoral life.
It is said by an English writer, that he who has never heard a storm in the Alps, can form no idea of the continuity of the lightning, the rolling and the burst of the thunder which roars round the horizon of these immense mountains ; and the people, never enjoying better habitations than their own cabins, nor seeing any other country than their own rocks, believe the universe to be an unfinished work, and a scene of unceasing tempefts. But the skies do not always lour; the thunder does not ilicessantly roll, nor the lightnings continually flash; immediately after the most dreadful tempests, the hemi