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281

(1887) [MARC] Author: Viktor Rydberg Translator: Alfred Corning Clark With: Hans Anton Westesson Lindehn
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Full resolution (JPEG) - On this page / på denna sida - Pencil Sketches in Rome - 1. Ecclesiastical Rome, and Italian

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PENCIL SKETCHES IN ROME.
I.
ECCLESIASTICAL ROME, AND ITALIAN.
ALL who have had a chance to compare papal and
ecclesiastical Rome with that of Italy, have but one
opinion on the point—that the city during the last four
years,* has altered much to its advantage. I except of
course the Catholic priests, to whom Rome ceased to be
Paradise when it ceased to be the capital of ignorance
and dirt. I do not mean by this to say that dirt is as
necessary a condition as ignorance, to an abstract Eden ;
but the former, like the latter, had prescriptive right in
its favor, and a priestly government loves no novelties.
Even cleanliness, when it is something hitherto untried,
may to such a government seem perilous to society.
Moreover, clerical noses are tuned to a different and
higher pitch of smell, than those of other mortals. The
French Jesuit Louis Veuillot, has written two thick vol-
umes about " Les Odeurs de Paris " and " Les Parfums
de Rome." To his thinking, the censers around the
king of high priests gave even to the exhalations of the
Ghetto a scent of newly blossomed roses.
It is now probably :about ten years, since the author
of Pictures from Italy, my friend Carlino, drank from
the Fontana Trevi the desire to see the holy city again
* These sketches were written, I believe, in 1874. —C.

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