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Rollo in Rome
by Jacob Abbott
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Copley found Thomas waiting for him at the hotel door.

"Mr. Copley," said Thomas, as Copley advanced towards the door, "your brother has gone out of town, and will not be back to-night, and I was to wait here for you, and tell you that you were to go and spend the night at your uncle's apartment at the Hotel d'Amerique."

"Good!" said Copley. He felt quite relieved to find that his brother had gone away, as he thus escaped the danger of being called to account for his misdemeanor.

"Where has he gone?" asked Copley.

"I can't say," said Thomas; "but perhaps your uncle can tell you."

By the phrase "I can't say," Thomas secretly meant that he was not at liberty to say, though Copley understood him to mean that he did not know.

"Very well," said Copley; "I don't care where he has gone. It makes no difference to me."

Copley found that it did make some difference to him, when he learned, the next morning, that his brother had set out on his journey to the north of Italy, and to Switzerland, and had left him behind to return home at once with his uncle by sea. His uncle did not tell him that night where his brother had gone, for fear that Copley might make some difficulty, by insisting on going on after him in the diligence with Thomas. Accordingly, when Copley asked the question, his uncle only answered vaguely, that his brother had gone out somewhere into the environs of Rome. The next morning, however, he handed Copley a note which his brother had left for him, which note Copley, on opening it, found to be as follows:—

"WEDNESDAY MORNING.

"DEAR COPLEY: I have concluded to set out this afternoon on my journey north. I am sorry that you are not here to bid me good by. I did not know that you were going down the river.

"It must be hard for a boy as old as you to be under the command of one who is, after all, only his brother,—and not a great many years older than he is himself,—for I am not quite ten years older than you. I know you have found this hard, and so I have concluded that you had better return home with uncle. One of these days, when you grow up to manhood, you can make a journey into Italy again, and then you will be your own master, and can do as you please, without any danger. Wishing you a very pleasant voyage,

"I am your affectionate brother,

"WILLIAM GRANT."

Copley's indignation and rage at reading this letter seemed at first to know no bounds. He was, however, entirely helpless. His brother had gone, and he did not even know what road he had taken. Thomas had gone, too, so that there was no help for him whatever.

In two days after that, he went with his uncle to Civita Vecchia, the port of Rome, on the Mediterranean, and there embarked on board the steamer "for Marseilles direct," and so returned to England.



CHAPTER X.

THE VATICAN.

On the day when Rollo went with Charles and Allie to see the Tarpeian Rock, the reader will perhaps recollect that Mr. George was engaged at the reading room in reading the American papers which had that morning arrived. When Rollo returned from his excursion, he found that Mr. George had not got home, and he accordingly concluded to go to the reading room and see if he could find him.

This reading room is attached to an English bookstore and library, and is a great place of resort for visitors at Rome. It is situated at the end of the Piazza di Spagna, which is one of the principal and most frequented public squares in Rome. This square contains several of the chief hotels, and a great many shops. The bookstore of Piale is the general centre of news and intelligence for all English and American visitors. Here people come to make inquiries for their friends, for there is a register kept at the library with the names of all the English and American visitors in Rome recorded in it, and the addresses of the hotels or private houses where they are lodging. Here all sorts of notices are posted up, such as advertisements of things lost or found, of parties forming for excursions, of couriers wanting places or families wanting couriers, of paintings for sale, carriages for sale or for hire,—and all such things.

Piale's establishment contains a number of different rooms. The first that Rollo entered on arriving at the place was the bookstore. This was a small room. There was a desk at one end, where a clerk was sitting. There were shelves filled with books all around the room, and a large table in the centre, which was also covered with books arranged in tiers one above the other in a sloping direction. There were several doors leading off from this apartment, one of which led to a room where a circulating library was kept, and another to the reading room.

When Rollo entered the bookstore, he saw several groups of visitors there. There were two or three ladies looking over the books on the shelves. There was a group of gentlemen standing near the desk, talking together, with a paper in their hands which seemed to contain a list of names. Just as Rollo entered, a carriage drove up to the door, and two ladies dismounted from it and came in. Rollo's attention was first attracted to these two ladies. One of them, on entering, accosted the clerk, and asked to look at the register. The clerk immediately gave the two ladies seats at a side table, where there was a large book full of names and addresses. The ladies sat down, and began to look over the book. They had just arrived from Naples, and they wished to know what friends and acquaintances of theirs there were in town.

Rollo began to examine the books on the table, or counter, in the middle of the room, and while doing so he happened to pass near the gentlemen that were looking at the paper.

"We want twelve," said one of the gentlemen, "and we have got only nine."

"Yes," said the other, "we want three more. It must be that there are a great many in town who would like to go, if we could only find them out."

Rollo's attention was immediately arrested by these words. It was obvious that the gentlemen were forming a party to go somewhere, or to see something, and he felt quite confident that his uncle George would like to join them.

"At any rate," said he to himself, "I should like to go, wherever it is."

So Rollo summoned courage to accost the persons who were consulting together, and to ask them if they wished to find some gentlemen to make up a party.

"Gentlemen or ladies either," said one of them, "no matter which. We are making up a party to go and see the statues in the Vatican by torch light."

When Rollo heard the words "torch light," his interest in the proposed party was greatly increased, and he said he had no doubt that his uncle would like to go.

"I am very sure he would like to go," said Rollo, "and to take me."

"Very well," said one of the gentlemen, "that will make two. And we only want three. Where is your uncle?"

"He is in the reading room," said Rollo. "Wait a moment, and I'll call him."

"That's right," said the gentleman. "Tell him it will cost us a scudo and a half apiece."

So Rollo, taking out half a paul from his pocket,—that being the price of admission to the reading room for a single day,—and giving it to the clerk at the desk, opened a door by the side of the desk, and passed into the reading room. Instead of being only one reading room, however, he found that there were two, with an open door leading from one to the other. There were a great number of very comfortable sofas and arm chairs all about these rooms, and great tables in the middle of them covered with newspapers and magazines. The walls of both rooms were completely covered with paintings of all sizes, most of which had been left there for sale. There were a great many gentlemen sitting around the tables and upon the sofas, reading. Among them Rollo soon found Mr. George. He had established himself in a comfortable arm chair, near a great window that looked out upon the square. But he was obliged to keep the curtain down, on account of the beggars outside, that gave him no peace as long as they could see him.

"Uncle George," said Rollo, "here are some gentlemen who want to make up a party to go and see something by torch light, and I thought that perhaps you and I would like to join it."

"Where is it that they are going?" asked Mr. George—"to the Vatican?"

"Yes," said Rollo, "it is the Vatican. A scudo and a half apiece."

"Very well," said Mr. George. "I should like to go. Where are the gentlemen?"

"They are out here in the bookstore. Come out and I will show them to you."

So Mr. George laid down his paper, and followed Rollo out into the bookstore. Rollo led the way to the place where the gentlemen were standing, and then introduced his uncle, in a distinct and audible voice, thus,—

"This is my uncle, gentlemen, Mr. George Holiday."

The gentlemen greeted Mr. Holiday in a very polite manner, and informed him of their plan, and that they wanted three more names to make up the necessary number for a party.

And here I ought to say in explanation, that what is called the "Vatican" is a vast collection of very magnificent and imposing buildings,—consisting of palaces, chapels, halls, galleries, and the like, almost without number,—and it is filled with paintings, sculptures, manuscripts, books, jewels, gems, and other curiosities and treasures of incalculable value. It is situated in close proximity to the great Church of St. Peter's—the largest and most gorgeous church in the world. Indeed, the church and the palaces form, as it were, one vast architectural pile, which is of almost inconceivable magnificence and grandeur.

The various edifices which compose the Vatican were several centuries in building, and the immense magnitude and extent of the edifice, and the exhaustless wealth of the treasures of art deposited there, astonish every beholder. The buildings are so extensive that they require eight grand staircases and two hundred smaller ones to gain access to the different stories. There are twenty open courts and over four thousand different rooms. Some of these rooms are galleries nearly a quarter of a mile long, and are filled on each side with sculptures and statuary, or other works of art, from end to end. The length of these galleries is not, however, out of proportion to other parts of the structure. The church of St. Peter's, including the portico, is considerably more than a quarter of a mile long.

Now, among the treasures of the Vatican are an immense number of ancient statues which were dug up, in the middle ages, in and around Rome; and some of these sculptures are the most celebrated works of art in the world. They are arranged with great care in a great number of beautiful chambers and halls, and are visited during the daytime by thousands of people that have come to Rome from every part of the world. The picture galleries, the collection of ancient curiosities, and the library rooms containing the books and manuscripts, are also in the same manner thrown open, and they are thronged with visitors almost all the time. These apartments are so numerous and so extensive that in one day a person can do little else than to walk through them, and give one general gaze of bewildering wonder at the whole scene. And a very long walk it is, I can assure you. At one time, when I set out from the painting rooms, (which are far in the interior of the buildings,) with a party of friends, intending to go out, in order to go home, we walked steadily on at our ordinary pace, without stopping, or deviating from our way, and we found that it took us twenty minutes to get out to our carriage!

In addition to these visits made during the day, small parties are sometimes formed to visit the galleries of statuary by night. It is found that the illumination of a torch, by the strong contrasts of light and shade which it produces, brings out the expression of the statues in a very striking manner, so as to produce sometimes a most wonderful effect.

It is, however, somewhat expensive to exhibit these statues by torch light, partly on account of the cost of the torches, and partly on account of the attendants that are required. The cost is nearly twenty dollars. It is accordingly customary to make up a party, whenever an evening visit to the Vatican is proposed, in order to divide the expense. The number that can see the statues to advantage in these evening visits is from twelve to fifteen. A party of twelve is sufficient to pay the expense at the rate of a scudo and a half for each person.[7]

[Footnote 7: The scudo is the Roman dollar. It is worth considerably more than the American dollar.]

It was such a plan as this that the gentlemen were forming, whose party Mr. George and Rollo were now proposing to join.

The gentlemen had been much pleased with Rollo's appearance and demeanor when he accosted them, and they were now still more pleased, when they saw Mr. George, to find that he was a young gentleman, of about their own age, and that he was so prepossessing in his countenance and in his air and manner. Mr. George readily agreed to join the party. They asked him if he knew of any body else that he thought would like to go. He inquired whether there were to be any ladies in the party. They said that there were to be several. "Then," said Mr. George, "I will be responsible for the twelfth place. I am quite sure that I can find some person that would like to go.

"And suppose I find more than one?" said Mr. George.

"That will do no harm," replied the gentlemen. "We can have from twelve to fifteen in the party."

"Then I will take the three places," said Mr. George, "and I will pay my proportion now. Which of you gentlemen acts as treasurer?"

One of the three gentlemen said that he had undertaken to collect and pay over the money, but he added that it was not necessary for Mr. George to pay at that time. Mr. George, however, preferred to do so, and he accordingly took out his purse and paid his four scudi and a half, which was the amount due for three persons. The gentlemen seemed to be quite pleased to find that their party was thus made up, and they told Mr. George that since he had taken and paid for the three remaining places, he might bring with him any number of persons that he pleased, so long as he did not make the party more than fifteen in all. It was agreed, too, that the party was to rendezvous that evening, at eight o'clock, at the foot of the grand staircase, leading from the portico of St. Peter's up to the principal court of the Vatican.

Mr. George, as soon as he went home, sent Rollo to Mrs. Beekman's room to inform her of the proposed party, and to ask her if she would like to join it.

"And may I invite Allie too?" asked Rollo.

"Yes," said Mr. George, "and Charles. Though I don't think they will wish to go, for such children generally feel very little interest in statues."

It is true that young persons, like Charles and Allie, generally feel little interest in sculptures and statuary; but, on the other hand, they feel a very great interest in torch light, and both Charles and Allie were exceedingly eager to join the party. It was finally agreed that all three should go. It was arranged that Mr. George and Rollo were to call for them at seven o'clock. Mr. Beekman was engaged to dine that evening with a party of gentlemen, and so he was left out of the account altogether.

At seven o'clock, accordingly, Mr. George and Rollo called at Mrs. Beekman's rooms, and a few minutes afterwards they all went together down to the door of the hotel, where Mr. George beckoned to the coachman of one of the carriages that stood in the square.

The whole party entered the carriage, after Mr. George had made his bargain with the coachman, and immediately set off. They rode for some distance along a pretty straight road, and then came to a bridge, which was opposite to a great round castle. They went over this bridge, and then turning to the left, under the walls of the castle, they went on towards the Vatican.

"We shall arrive there some time before the hour," said Mr. George; "but I thought it was better to be too early than too late."

"Yes," replied Mrs. Beekman, "we can amuse ourselves half an hour in rambling about the colonnades and porticos of St. Peter's."

In front of St. Peter's there is an immense area, enclosed on each side by a magnificent semicircular colonnade. There are four rows of lofty columns in this colonnade, with a carriage way in the centre between them. The space enclosed between these colonnades is called the piazza,[A] and it is adorned with fountains and colossal statues, and on days of public festivities and celebrations, it is filled with an immense concourse of people. It is large enough to contain a great many thousands.

[8][Footnote 8: A Pronounced piatza.]

When Mr. George and his party arrived, they dismissed the carriage and began to walk to and fro under the colonnade and about the piazza. The time passed away very rapidly; and at length, a few minutes before eight, the other carriages began to come. All the persons who belonged to the party were anxious to arrive in time, for they were afraid that, if they were too late, the others would have gone into the Vatican, where, the building being so immense, it might be very difficult to find them.

Accordingly, before the clock struck eight, all the party were assembled at the entrance door.

The entrance opened from a vast covered gallery, which formed one of the approaches to St. Peter's, between the end of the colonnade and the main front of the building. There were several Swiss sentinels on guard here. They were dressed in what seemed to Rollo a very fantastic garb. In a few minutes the men who were to accompany the party through the galleries appeared. One of them carried a great number of very long candles under his arm. Another had a long pole with a socket at the top of it, and a semicircular screen of tin on one side, to screen the light of the candles from the eyes of the visitors, and to throw it upon the statues. When all was ready, these torch bearers moved on, and were followed by the whole party up the great staircase which led to the galleries of the Vatican.

After going upward and onward for some time, they came at length to the entrance of one of the long galleries of sculpture. Here the torch bearers stopped and began to prepare their torches. They cut the long candles in two, so as to make pieces about eighteen inches long. Taking six or eight of these pieces, they placed them together like a bundle of sticks, and tied them, and then crowded the ends together into the socket upon the end of the pole. This socket was made large enough to receive them. They then lighted the wicks, and thus they had a large number of candles all burning together as one.

The screen, which I have already spoken of, covered this blaze of light upon one side, so as to keep it from shining upon the faces of the company.

Thus provided the torch bearers went on, and the company followed them. Of course, there is only time in the two hours usually appropriated to this exhibition to show a comparatively small number of the statues. The torch bearers accordingly selected such as they thought were most important to be seen, and they passed rapidly on from one to another of these, omitting all the others. When they approached a statue which they were going to exhibit, they would hold the torch up near the face of it in such a manner as to throw a strong light upon the features, and so bring out the expression in a striking manner. The screen shielded the eyes of the company from the direct rays of the flame, and yet there was sufficient light reflected from the marble walls of the gallery, and from the beautiful white surfaces of the statues arranged along them, to enable the company to discern each other very distinctly, and to see all the objects around them.

The company passed in this manner through one of the long galleries, stopping here and there to look at the great masterpieces of ancient art, and then they entered into a series of comparatively smaller chambers and halls. Rollo was exceedingly interested in the exhibition, and in all the attendant circumstances of it; but he could not tell whether Allie was pleased or not. She seemed bewildered and struck dumb with amazement at the strange aspect of the scenes and spectacles which were continually presented to view. The immense extent and the gorgeous magnificence of the galleries and halls, the countless multitude of statues, and the almost spectral appearance which they assumed when the torch bearers threw the bright light of the torch upon their cold marble faces, all impressed her with a solemn awe, which seemed so entirely to subdue and silence her, that Rollo could not tell how she felt, or what she thought of the strange spectacle which he had brought her to see.

After about an hour, the first set of candles that had been put into the socket of the torch pole were burned down, and then the torch bearers supplied their places with another set formed by the remaining halves of the candles which they had cut in two. These lasted another hour. By that time the company had seen all the most striking and celebrated statues in the principal halls and galleries. They had been making a sort of circuit through the palace in passing through these rooms, and now came out very near the entrance door, where they had come in. Here the torch bearers left them, and went away with their apparatus to the part of the building where they belonged, while the company, descending the grand staircase, came out into one of the porticos of the church, and issuing from the portico they found carriages in waiting upon the piazza, and ready to convey them home. Mr. George and his party reached their hotel about nine o'clock, all very much pleased with the spectacle which they had witnessed.



CHAPTER XI.

CONCLUSION.

Rollo was so much pleased with his torch light visit to the Vatican, and he found, moreover, on talking with Charles and Allie about it the next day, so much evidence of their having been greatly pleased with it, that he planned, a few days afterwards, a torch light visit to the Coliseum. It is very common to make moonlight visits to the Coliseum, but Rollo thought a torch light view of the majestic old ruin would be better. On proposing his plan to his uncle, Mr. George said that he had no objection to it if Rollo would make all the arrangements. He did not know any thing about it himself, he said.

Rollo said he had no doubt that he could arrange it, with the help of a commissioner.



So Rollo looked out a good commissioner, and the commissioner arranged the plan. I have not space to describe this visit fully, but must pass on to the conclusion of the book. I will only say that the torches which were employed on this occasion, were different from those employed in the exhibition of the statues in the Vatican, being more like those used by firemen in America. There were also more of them in number, the commissioner having provided four. With these torch bearers to light their way, Rollo's party explored the Coliseum in every part, and they found that the grandeur and sublimity of the immense corridors and vast vaulted passages of the ruin were greatly enhanced by the solemnity of the night, and by the flickering glare of the torches, shining upon the massive piers, and into the dark recesses of the ruin.

I do not know how many more torch light visits to wonderful places in Rome Rollo would have planned, had not the time arrived when Mr. George thought it was necessary for them to go back to France.

"It is getting late in the season," said Mr. George, "and every body is leaving Rome. I don't think it is safe for us to remain much longer here ourselves, on account of the fever."

Rome is extremely unhealthy in the summer months; and in the environs there is a very wide tract of country which is almost entirely uninhabitable all the year round, on account of the prevalence of fever.

"Very well," said Rollo, "we will go whenever you please."

"We must take our places in the steamer and in the diligences several days beforehand," said Mr. George. "We will go to the steamboat office to-day."

There are several lines of steamers that go from Rome to Marseilles, which is the port of landing for travellers going to France and England. Some of these steamers go "direct" across the sea, while others coast along the shore, sailing at night, and stopping during the day at the large towns on the route. The first night they go to Leghorn, the second to Genoa, and the third to Marseilles. At first Mr. George thought that he would take one of these coasting steamers; but he finally concluded to go "direct."

"It would be very pleasant," said he to Rollo, "for us to stop at those towns, and ramble about during the day, and then in the evening set sail again, provided we could be at liberty to land at our pleasure, to ramble about unmolested wherever we wished to go, as we can do in America."

"And can't we do so?" asked Rollo.

"No," said Mr. George. "In the first place we must have our passports stamped here for all the places that we wish to visit, and that will cause us here a great deal of trouble, and not a little expense. Then to land we must have our passports all examined again, and stamped, and there will be more money to pay; and likely as not we should be detained half the morning in getting through all these formalities, and so our time would be passed in fruitless vexation instead of pleasure. Then, when at last we were free, and began our rambles, we should be beset by beggars every where, and have no peace."

"What a foolish plan it is to plague travellers so much with all these ceremonies about passports!" said Rollo.

"I am not certain that it is foolish for such governments as these," replied Mr. George. "You see, they are governments of force, maintained over the people against their will, by means of military power. The people at large hate the government, and are all the time plotting to destroy it; and if the plotters were allowed to go freely to and fro all over the country, they would be able to organize their plans, and general insurrections would be arranged, and the governments might thus be overthrown. By allowing nobody to travel without a passport, stating who he is, and where he came from, and where he is going, the government keep every thing under their control."

"But I think the governments ought to be overthrown," said Rollo, "and better governments, such as the people would like, set up in their places."

"So do I," said Mr. George; "but it is not surprising that the governors themselves of these countries don't think so. They wish to retain their stations and their power, whether the people like it or not; and the passport system is a very cunning contrivance to help them do it. And then, besides, they have a very good pretext for keeping up the system."

"What is their pretext?" asked Rollo.

"They pretend that the object is to assist them in stopping and arresting robbers, and murderers, and other criminals who attempt to escape from one part of the country to another after committing their crimes. And the system is sometimes useful in this way, I have no doubt; though these criminals can often elude the authorities by procuring false passports."

"And the plotters against the government, too, I suppose," said Rollo.

"Yes," said Mr. George, "sometimes."

This conversation took place while Mr. George and Rollo were walking towards the steamboat office, to take their passages to Marseilles.

They arrived at the office. The clerk answered their inquiries in respect to the steamer with great politeness. The conversation was in the French language. He told them that the steamer started from Naples every evening, and that it stopped in the morning about eight o'clock at Civita Vecchia[9] to take in the passengers from Rome. It was necessary for the passengers to go from Rome to Civita Vecchia by diligence, or by post, or with a vetturino.

[Footnote 9: Pronounced Tchivita Vekkia.]

"Then there are no carriages from your office," said Mr. George.

"No, sir," replied the clerk. "We take the passengers at Civita Vecchia. They find their own conveyances there."

"Very well," said Mr. George. "I will take two berths in the steamer for Thursday morning. Can I see a plan of the steamer so as to select the berths?"

"No, sir," said the clerk, "we have no plan of the steamer. And besides, we cannot positively promise you any berths. It depends upon how many passengers there are from Naples. The passengers from Rome take the berths that are left vacant. They take them in the order in which they take passage here."

"Are there many that have taken passage before us?" asked Mr. George.

"No, sir," said the clerk, "only two. Your numbers are 3 and 4."

"Then, if there are more than two berths that are not occupied by the Naples passengers, we can have them?"

"Yes, sir," said the clerk.

"And suppose there are not more than two," asked Rollo, "what shall we do then?"

"Why, then you will have sofas or cots," said the clerk.

"O, that will do just as well," said Rollo. "I would as lief have a sofa or a cot as a berth."

So Mr. George paid the money, and took tickets numbers 3 and 4, and then, having inquired the way to the diligence office, they bade the clerk good morning, and went away.

"And now," said Mr. George, "we must go directly to the diligence office, and secure our places for Civita Vecchia. If we put it off, the places might all be taken, and then we should lose the passage money we have paid for the steamer."

"Would not they pay us back again?" asked Rollo.

"I am afraid not," said Mr. George. "But I think we are in season, for it is now Tuesday, and we do not sail till Thursday."

On entering the diligence office, Mr. George saw one or two clerks standing behind a counter. They seemed busy talking with persons who had come in to engage places, and entering their names in great books. As soon as one of the clerks was at liberty Mr. George accosted him, saying that he wished to get two places in the diligence for Civita Vecchia on Wednesday.

The clerk looked at the book, and said that all the places were taken for Wednesday, except one.

"That's bad," said Mr. George. "We shall have to go down on Tuesday, then, and stay a day at Civita Vecchia. Are there any places for Tuesday?"

The clerk looked, and said that every place for Tuesday was engaged.

"But there is a coach on Wednesday night," he added, "that arrives at Civita Vecchia in the morning in time for the steamer."

Then turning over to another place in his book, he looked at the list of names, and then told Mr. George that there was only one vacant place for Wednesday night.

"Dear me, Rollo!" said Mr. George, "how unfortunate! We ought to have attended to this business before."

"I'll tell you what we can do," said Rollo. "One of us can go on Wednesday morning, and the other wait here and come on in the night."

"That is the only thing that we can do," said Mr. George, "unless we hire a carriage to ourselves, and that would be expensive. Should you dare to go alone?"

"O, yes, indeed," said Rollo.

"But remember," said Mr. George, "that all the people will be speaking Italian. You will have to ride among them like a deaf and dumb boy."

"Never mind that," said Rollo. "Deaf and dumb boys get along in travelling very well. Besides, I am almost sure that there will be somebody in the diligence that can speak French or English."

"And which would you rather do," asked Mr. George, "go in the morning or in the evening? If you go in the morning coach, you will have to set out very early, before it is light, and then stay at Civita Vecchia, in a strange hotel, alone, all night. If you go in the evening, you can remain here, where you are acquainted, all day; but then you will have to ride alone in the night."

"I would rather go in the morning coach," said Rollo.

"Very well," said Mr. George. "That's what we'll do."

This conversation between Mr. George and Rollo had been carried on in English; but now Mr. George turned to the clerk, and said in French that he would take the two places that were left, one in the morning coach and one in the evening coach of Wednesday. The place in the morning coach was upon the banquette. The one in the evening coach was in the coupe. Mr. George had scarcely uttered the words by which he engaged the seats, before two gentlemen came in in a hurried manner to ask for seats in the diligence for Wednesday. The clerk told them that the last of them had just been engaged.

When Wednesday morning came, Rollo was awakened by the porter of the hotel knocking at his door before it was light. He got up, and opened the door a little way, and took in the candles which the porter handed to him. Mr. George had intended to get up too, and go with Rollo to the office; but Rollo particularly desired that he should not do so.

"I have nothing to carry," said he, "but my little valise, and the porter will go with me to take that, and to see me safe through the streets. So that it is not at all necessary for you to go, and I would much rather not have you go."

Mr. George perceived that Rollo felt a pride in taking care of himself on this occasion, and so he yielded to this request, and remained in his bed. If he had not been convinced that Rollo would be perfectly safe under the porter's care, he would of course have insisted on going himself. Rollo was soon dressed, and then going to his uncle's bedside, he shook hands with him, and bade him good by.

"I shall be looking out for you at the diligence office in Civita Vecchia," said he, "when the diligence arrives to-morrow morning."

So saying, he took his candle in one hand and his valise in the other, and sallied forth into the long corridor of the hotel. He had to walk a a great distance along this corridor, passing a great many doors, with a pair of boots or shoes before each of them, before he reached the head of the staircase. He descended the staircase, and at the bottom of it found the porter waiting for him. The porter had another candle, which was upon a table in the hall. He took Rollo's candle, and also the valise, and then unbolted and unlocked the front door. A sleepy-looking boy was ready to lock it again, after Rollo and the porter had gone out.

So they sallied forth into the cool morning air. There were lamps burning in the streets, and in one direction, where there was an opening among the buildings, Rollo could see some faint signs of the dawn in the eastern sky.

The porter could only speak Italian; so he and Rollo walked along together in silence through the solitary streets. They soon arrived at the diligence office, where there was a bright light of lanterns, and a bustle of people coming and going, and of postilions bringing out horses. The diligence was all ready before the door. The baggage, which had been brought for the purpose the night before, was all loaded. Rollo paid the porter, and then climbed up to his place on the banquette. The horses were soon harnessed in, and the diligence set off; but there were several stoppages necessary at police stations and passport offices before the journey was fairly commenced, so that the sun was rising when Rollo took his final leave of Rome.

He had a very pleasant journey across the country, and arrived at Civita Vecchia about three o'clock. As he descended from the coach, a pleasant-looking man, in a sort of official costume, accosted him, asking him if he was going to Leghorn in the steamer that afternoon. The man spoke in English, though with a foreign accent.

"No," said Rollo; "I am going to Marseilles to-morrow morning."

"Ah! Then you go to the hotel," said the man. "This porter will take your valise, and show you the way."

So saying, the man, who was a commissioner of the hotel, put Rollo under the charge of a porter, who conducted him to a large and very substantial-looking hotel near by. Rollo ascended by a flight of stone stairs into the second story of the hotel, and there engaged a room for the night, and ordered dinner. He had a very good dinner, all by himself, in a great dining room with long tables in it, where there were at the same time several other persons and parties dining. After dinner he went out to ramble about the town. He was surprised at the massive masonry of the piers, and breakwaters, and forts, that lined the shores, and at the number of vessels and steamers in the basin. He returned to the hotel in good season, and amused himself there till nine o'clock observing the different parties of travellers that were continually coming and going.

The next morning he watched for the diligence from a piazza on the second story of the hotel—the diligence office being at the next door. The diligence arrived at the proper time, and Rollo called out to his uncle George when he saw him getting out from the coupe. This was at seven o'clock; at eight Mr. George and Rollo embarked, with a great many others, in a small boat, to go on board the steamer, and at half past eight the paddles of the steamer began to revolve, and to bear them rapidly away from the shores of Italy out over the blue waters of the Mediterranean, on the route to Marseilles.

THE END

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