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house for Catharine of Portugal contingently; an event which afterwards took effect.
"The first occasion that occupied it, after the death of queen Henrietta-Maria, was the funeral obsequies of George Monk duke of Albemarle, &c. who died within a few months afier the queenmother, and whose interment was solemnized with more pomp than ever was known to have been conferred upon a subject. The whole expence was defrayed by the king; and the ceremonial has been preserved in a great number of large engravings; but what brings it forward to us is, that the body was, •* fay his majesty's command, removed to Somerset House, and there placed for many weeks in royal state, attended with all the ceremonies of pompous mourning."
"The next opportunity we have of observing this palace to have been made use of was on an occasion very different in itself, and most important in the event; for it became the residence of William prince of Orange, afterwards king William III. when he came hither to espouse the princess Mary, lo"77. It may be presumed that it was the place of their joint residence after the marriage for the few weeks they remained in England, before they embarked for Holland.
** After the demise of king Charles II. this palace became the property, during life, of the queen dowager Catharine of Portugal; and here she kept her court* till her secession into her native country. The manners of Catharine were far from being ac
ceptable to the English; and, as she had been treated with the coldest neglect by king Charles, who had peopled his court with illegitimate issue by mistresses who resided under the queen's eye, a longer residence in England could not be very flattering to her, who was childless, and without agreeable inducements. To this we may add, that she had lived here long enough to be a witness to the overthrow of her own religion. She retired to Portugal, therefore, soon after the revolution had fully taken place, in the year 1692, where she died in 1705; and though she was a rigid papist, and resided within the pale of the church of Rome, she was complimented, during her life, with beinp prayed for by name in our liturgy as a part of the royal family.
"Thus this queen dowager had the ostensible occupation of Somerset House during the whole reigns of king James II. and king William, till the third year of queen Anne. It is but justice to her memory, however, to add what bishop Burnet says of this queen after she took leave of England and returned to Portugal, where, during the bad state of that king's health, his lordship says, "our queen dowager was set at the head of their councils; her administration much commended; and that she was very careful of the English, and all their concerns f."
"April 10, 1775, a message from the king was delivered to both homes of Parliament, that "his majesty, desirous that a better and more suitable accommodation should be made
3 L 2 for for the residence of the queen, in case she should survive him, and being willing that the palace in which his majesty now resides, called the Queen's House, may be settled for that purpose, recommends to both houses to take the same into consideration, aud to make provision for settling the said palace upon her majesty, and for appropriating Somerset House to such uses as shall be found most beneficial to the public."— "An act was consequently passed, May 26, 177 S, intituled, "An act for settling Buckingham House on the queen, in lieu of Somerset House."
• " At this period, we learn by one of Bagford's MS.S. both the bom die tine monka t St. James's, and the capuchins at Somerset House, had good libraries." t " Own Times, sub aaoo 1704."
"In 1779, the stately front of the new building, now called by its old name Somerset Place, was completed."
"The royal academy, instituted in December 1768, and first opened January 2, 1769, originally held their meetings in Pall-Mall, where, on the 26th of May, they had their first exhibition of paintings; but in 1779 removed .to Somerset House, wliere they occupy the west wing of tfie north front, and where they first held their annual exhibition, May 1, 1780. On the groundfloor of this wing is their exhibition room for sculpture, and the hawkers and pedlars office.
"The royal society first held their meeting in Somerset House, Nov.30, 1780; and the society of antiquaries on Thursday, Jan. 11, 1781. The apartments of these two learned societies occupy the greatest part of the east wiug of the north front; on the ground-floor is the library of the society of antiquaries; behind which are the privy seal and signet offices, the lottery office, and the hackney coach office.
"The south front, separated from
the Thames by a noble terrace, i» occupied by the navy office and stamp office.
"The west wing contains the navy pay office and victualling office; and at the northern end of this wing, till lately, was the sick and wounded office, which has very recently been incorporated with the transport office in Dorset-square, and the old office has not yet been appropriated. Behind this wing is a street, bounded to the west by the treasurer of the navy's house, and by houses appropriated to the commissioners. The salt office, formerly in this wing, is now consolidated with the excise office.
"In the east wing is the tax office; the offices of the duchjfs of Cornwall and Lancaster; the office of the auditor of imprest; the pipe office; comptroller of the pipe,aud clerk of the estreats; behind all which is a street, bounded to the east by ground not yet built on.
"The surveyor also under the surveyor of the board of works has apartments for his residence, but not an office here."
Extract from a Journal, during the late Campaign in Egypt. Ba Captain C. B. Burr.
[From the Asiatic Researches, Vol. VHh)
About three miles to the westward of Ginnie, on the opposite side of the Nile, are situated the ruins of the ancient temple of Isi.«, now better known to the Arabs by the name of Dendra; being a corruption of Tentyris, which name was once borne by a city, of which the present temple is all that remains to denote its former splendour. That part which still exists, is surrounded by such heaps of rubbish, broken walls, and fragments of an Arab village, long since mouldered on its parent ruins, that little is perceptible in approaching, except five clumsy pillars forming part of a detached temple at some distance from the gate, with which it is in a right line, though now separated by a tank, tilled by the inundation of the Nile. These columns are connected at their base by a stone wall in which there appear to have been eight, one at each corner, and one on either side of an entrance in front and rear of the building; which is about forty feet long, and possessing nothing worthy attention. >
Beyond this, on the summit, and partly buried in the mound of rubbish, is a gateway much ruined on the side we approached from, but whose internal face is an object of peculiar admiration: its high state of preservation, the excellence of its sculpture, the simplicity of the style, the excellent execution of the figures, chiefly female, the hieroglyphics, and other ornamental parts, excited my surprise beyond what I had expected or thought possible. It is probably rather an advantage to the temple, its being so surrounded with ruins as to be secreted till you approach sufficiently near to receive a more perfect impression of its beauties. The rubbish, however, with which it is choaked up, confines the sight too much, and almost precludes the possibility of viewing the building with so good an effect as would arise from a greater choice of situation, on the part of the spectator. Passing this gateway, the passage through which is also beautifully sculptured, we reached on the right hand a temple, surrounded by
a gallery, still entire, though almost buried; the whole ornamented with a variety of figures, surrounded with hieroglyphics, which doubtless explain the meaning of the various objects, some human, others of a less definite nature; the workmanship is in very great preservation, but the gallery so filled as to prevent our standing erect, though the body of this temple, into which we descended, was near thirty feet in height, covered with large slabs of stone. The entrance to this edifice is through a corridore, supported on pillars, almost buried in the ruins.
The grand temple, retired from the gateway about fifty yards, presents a front of one hundred and forty feet at the base; at least what is now the terreplain: and about sixty feet in height, the rest being invisible. This part is in the most perfect state; the fillet, torus, and almost every ornamental part, save what the bigotry of the Arabs has induced them to deface, being in excellent preservation. In the centre, an entrance of nineteen feet leads into a peristyle, divided by three rows of columns on either side of twenty-two and a half feet circumference, the front row connected to each other, at their bases, by a wall; which, from a part that has been cleared away by the Savans to ascertain the elevation of the building, exceeds ten feet in height; from the. top of this to the entablature of the columns, the space is left open; within are nine pillars to the right and left (tallying in size and design with those in front), that support the roof of the peristyle; which is ornamented in the most beautiful style, with a vast variety of figures, and representations of aquatic scenes. Mauy groupes of men and beasts are 3L 3 here here represented; some perfectly of a terrestrial and familiar nature, olhers allegorical, amongst which is a line figure of a bull butting at the new moon. The dresses, the utensils, canoes, and many of the articles of the domestic economy of the ancient Egyptians, are herein represented in the most miutite and pleasing manner; and the entire state of these figures, not only in shape, but colouring, conveys the most perfect idea of the habits of the times. A vast resemblance exists in the dresses with those at present worn in India; the cholie of the women, the moond, and many others, claiming a direct comparison. It has often struck me, and never more forcibly than in contemplating this temple and its sculptures, that there must have existed a much greater affinity in the customs of, and of course a more friendly intercour;e amongst, the nations of the East formerly, when they pursued oue system of worship, than since the introduction of Christianity and Mahometanism; which, by generating the most rooted and inveterate prejudices, have estranged the affections of mankind from those, whom no political difference could ever have affected. Of this we had an example even amongst the present inhabitants, who, regarding us as infidels, hate us, though we came as friends. Their dislike, however, they found it prudent to conceal; but they were not equally reserved with respect to the Hindoos, whom they often expressed their abhorrence of. This detestation of Paganism has induced them, and doubtless been their sole motive for takiug so much pains, to mutilate every figure of Isis, whose features are chisseled out; and many of the other figures, whose situations were not so elevated as to preserve
them from the destructive contact of the Arab, have suffered almost perfect annihilation. All beyond it. however, are extremely perfect, and the whole ceiling, with one or two trifling exceptions, is entire; the capitals of the pillars are square, each face having had a representation of Isis's head, on it, which, though to roughly handled, the turban has in no iustance been destroyed; and the colouring of it, the baudeaus, and other decorations, are still in the greatest perfection. The stone of which the temple is built is a kind of freestone. As this would not receive either polish or paint, figure* and hieroglyphics, with which every part of the peristyle, both internally and externally, is covered, have, in the .interior, been plastered over with a fine cement, which has not only received a polish that has stood the test of ages, but has retained the brilliancy of the tints, particularly the blue, in a manner almost incredible. The mystic symbol of the winged orb, of which reiterated representations decorate the ceiling of the central division of the peristyle, extending entirely across, bears the brightest hues; the same mysterious type adorns the entablature over the entrance, and the interior face of the same part of the gateway; the walls are covered with various sculptures, representing different parts of the history of Isis, one or two of the principal figures in each being evidently the same, though each compartment into which the wall is divided, represents some separate eveut: but above the head of Isis, on each of the sides of each column, the two central front oues excepted, is the Deity's birth, without variation, all most elegantly executed, and exact counterparts of each other. The
interior interior length of this peristyle is one hundred and twenty-three feet, and sixty-four deep; the walls at either end, near nine feet thick, decreasing externally as they ascend; the slabs of atone forming the roofs, are over the centre columns, twenty-five feet long, about six broad, and extremely thick.
Hence, by a large portal of elegant architecture, we entered the vestibule, the roof of which, considerably lower than that of the peristyle, is supported by six pillars, three on either side; their decorations much mutilated: the little that is visible shews them to be fluted. This room is about half the length and breadth of the outer one, but being nearly tilled with rubbish, we passed through another large door, into a room of the same length and height, but narrow enough to admit of large slabs reaching across without the intervention of pillars. Apertures are cut in the ceiling to admit air and light; and a passage or door, to the right and left, leads to other parts of the temple. Facing the door where we had entered, is another, which led into a third room, rather larger, and lighted in like manner from.above; from these there are four doors leading to different parts of the building, to the right and left; and a portal facing that by which we had entered, which led as into a dark recess about thirty feet long, and twenty-five broad, whose roof in like manner consisted of transversal slabs. Tlu> probably was the great sanctuary, at the further extremity of which was a hole, through which we were enabled to descend into a vault, which, like the rest of the apartments, is nearly tilled with earth. We, however, ascertained by our lights, that the floor
above was formed of numerous small slabs of stone cemented to each oilier, and destitute of any other support than what they derived from the judicious manner in which they were united, Returning hence, after visiting some rooms to our right, we went through a passage to the left that led to an apartment, where we in vain endeavoured to maintain our ground against a host of hats, that finally obliged us to resume the course of this passage, which led by many steps of easy ascent, and many windings round the centre, to the summit of the temple; in approaching which it branches off to the right and left, the latter opening to a corridore, within which was a sanctuary, through the floor of which a perforation afforded light to a part of the temple which had not fallen under our observation. On the ceiling of this corridore, which is about twenty feet long, and half that breadth, is a curious female figure sculptured in relievo, represented iu a bent, extended posture. The limbs, though disproportioned, are particularly beautiful: it is in the highest preservation, and worthy peculiar attention. By some steps projecting from the rear of the peristyle, we ascended to its summit, whence we commanded a fine view of the country, Ginnie, our camp, and the meanderings of the river; in our rear was a spacious burial, ground; beyond, an extensive desert. The intervening distance to the Nile was covered with rushes and a thorny weed, which gave the country a verdant appearance, and supplied the place of a luxuriant cultivation. The numerous villages, each shaded by its grove of dates, afforded a faint conception of an Indian scene; but the sterility of the neighbouring deS L 4 «erte