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299

(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 - 2. The Carnival

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PENCIL SKETCHES IN ROME. 299
den, with its beds of kitchen vegetables and flowers.
How still it was, here, and how peaceful, and at the same
time how magnificent and grand !
In the middle of the garden stood an urn, on which a
monk, skilled in the art of stone-cutting, was at work
with the chisel so zealously, that the sweat dripped from
his forehead. We exchanged a few words. " One can
thrive, up here." " Most certainly," replied the old
man. ’*
But one can find peace down there, too," I in-
timated, and pointed down towards the city. " Yes, in
the very midst of the carnival," answered the old man,
with a friendly nod, but stopped short, as if he had
uttered a heresy. And with this, I said a grateful fare-
well to the convent of St. Bonaventuraand its occupants.
Down by the forum, I found a cab, and decided to
drive through the Corso, where the masquerade must
now be at the height of its animation. At the Piazza di
Venezia the coachman stopped, turned around and
looked musingly at my hat, something that I should have
paid but little heed to—for the hat was new and bought
a few days before on the Corso—had not a crowd of
masks also collected around the carriage and cried *’
il
capello ! il capello ! " Astonished, I took off my hat,
amid peals of laughter from the masks, mustered it on all
sides, found it perfectly in order, and pressed it down
again upon my forehead. Another very serious and
musing glance from the coachman, who seemed to look
upon my head-gear with a deep philosophic considera-
tion, then a thoughtful shake of the head, and finally a
shrug of the shoulders, after which he again set his horse
in motion. Hardly had we entered the Corso with its
indescribable crowd and its quite as indescribable din,
hardly had I raised my eyes to all those balconies, tow-

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