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The triumphal arch of Trajan, one of the most admirable works of antiquity, remains entire with its inscription. 333. Loretto. In the marquisate of Ancona, is Loretto, a small town on a hill, three miles from the gulf. This town is worthy of notice only on account of the Casa santa, or Holy Chapel, which the inhabitants say was originally the house in Nazareth, in which the Virgin Mary was saluted by the angel. This house, they pretend, remained in Judea, till that country was conquered by the infidels, when a company of angels, to save it from pollution, bore it in their arms, over sea and land, and set it down in a field belonging to a lady called Lauretta, which gave name to the chapel. In this is the statue of the Virgin, carved out of wood, with the child Jesus in, her arms. To this chapel, devotees resort from all parts of Italy, to pay homage to the blessed Jesus, and to make presents. It is said that 100,000 pilgrims have thronged to the place in a single day, and a hundred masses are said daily in the chapel. Even the sculpture on the marble gates is disfigured by the kisses of ardent devotees. 334. Washles. The southern part of Italy, from the ecclesiastical state to the strait of Messina, is called Naples, from the principal city of the territory, and for many years has been governed by the Spanish branch of the Bourbon family. To the same kingdom belongs the island of Sicily. The territory of Naples is in length from north to south, 280 or 300 miles, in medial bredth, 100 miles. Its inhabitants are ab ur millions and a half. 335. History. The southern part of Naples was very early settled by Greeks and called Magna Grecia. The more northern and mountainous parts were inhabited by the Samnites, a warlike people, who for 70 years maintained their independence against the whole power of Rome, but at length this part of Italy was subdued by the Romans. It afterwards underwent various revolutions. During the crusades it was possessed by the Norman princes, who yielded it to the power of the Emperors of Germany. Afterwards the French prin

ces of Anjou possessed Naples and Sicily, and then the kingdom came into possession of the Spanish branch of the Bourbon family. Lately Naples has been conquered by the French, and with Sicily, given to a brother of the French Emperor. 336. Climate and Productions. Naples, being situated between the 36th and 42d degrees of latitude, and having the sea on three sides, enjoys a mild climate in winter ; snow and ice not being seen except on the mountains. The summers are hot, and sometimes the people are oppressed by the siroc, a south east wind that almost deprives the body of power to move. The soil of Naples is generally good, and produces all kinds of grain and fruits in the richest abundance. Naples furnishes also, oil and wine, manna, alum, sulphur, marble, with fine wool and silk. 337. Mountains. The chain of Appenines runs through the Neapolitan territories. Five miles from the city of Naples is Vesuvius, the volcano, which has often poured forth its fiery contents upon the country and villages below. The base of this mountain is 30 miles in circumference, and its altitude 3,600 feet.— This part of Italy is subject to earthquakes, especially the southern point, or Calabria. These earthquakes of ten precede the eruptions of Vesuvius. In 1783, about 50,000 people perished in a tremendous earthquake, which shook Sicily and Calabria. Great numbers also perished in 1805, before an eruption from the mountain. 337. Rivers and Strait. The rivers of Naples are wo and hardly worth description. The strait which separates Sicily from the continent, at Messina, contains the famous Scylla and Charybdis, which were anciently represented as a dangerous rock and whirlpool. Scylla is a lofty rock, under which are caverns against which the waters dash, and make a hideous roaring. Charybdis is not a whirlpool, but a place where the water is agitated by beating against or running over rocks. The strait is not dangerous, except when the wind opposes the current. 338. Religion. The Roman-Catholic religion exists in all its austerity in Naples; but there is no office of in


quisition. There are in Naples 20 archbishops and 107 bishops. The clergy are estimated at 200,000. More than half of the lands in the kingdom are owned by the church. It is said that the government has lately reduced the number of convents. In Sicily there are three archbishops and eight bishops. 339. Education. There are in Naples and Sicily four universities, viz. those of Naples, Salerno, Palermo, and Catania ; of which the first is the most useful. In the city of Naples, also, is an academy of sciences and magnificent collections of antiquities. This is also the favorite seat of music. But education in general is neglected; and the inhabitants are sunk in ignorance and superstition. 340. Government. The government of Naples and Sicily has been a monarchy, but not absolute; for the states, composed of deputies from the nobility, the citizens and prelates who have baronies, still meet every second year, under the name of a parliament, for the purpose of making grants of subsidies to the king.— Royal edicts, before they acquire the force of laws, must be registered by an assembly, consisting of deputies from the nobles and citizens. The proceedings of the courts are dilatory, and Naples contains 30,000 lawyers. 341. Commerce. The exports of Naples are chiefly wheat; oil to the value of four millions of florins; wine, of which many sorts are made ; wool, silk, saffron, and fruits in great quantities. The imports are woollens, hard ware, and articles of luxury, from the East and West Indies. The manufactures are few, in proportion to the richness of its soil and value of its productions. The trade centers in Naples, but is chiefly in the hands of foreigners. The fisheries, especially those of the tunny, anchovies and corals, are valuable. 342. City of Mahles. Naples, the metropolis of the kingdom, is a large and beautiful city, 110 miles from Rome, situated on a spacious bay of the Mediterranean, with a good harbor. The circumference is about 18 miles, the walls indifferent, but the population 400,000 souls. The houses are of stone, with flat roofs, lofty and uniform, but many of them with balconies and lattice windows. The tops of the houses afford pleasant walks in summer evenings. The streets are well paved, but not lighted at night. The city contains numerous palaces, convents and churches, the magnificence of which exceeds the power of description. The city swarms with monks and nuns; and 30,000 lazzaroni, or beggars, are said to live there upon charity. 343. Sicily. The island of Sicily, which has been united with Naples in one kingdom, lies to the southward of Italy, from which it is separated by the strait of Messina, which, in the narrowest part, is only a mile and a half in bredth. It lies in the 37th and 38th degrees of latitude, and extends from the 13th to the 16th degree of east longitude. It is 210 miles in length and 133 in bredth. Its name is derived from the Siculi, ancient inhabitants of the island. Its present inhabitants are about 1,300,000. 344. Climate and Productions. The climate of Sicily is temperate and salubrious, and the soil famous for its fertility, and especially for the great quantity of wheat which it produces. Among its productions are also wines, fruits, oil, tobacco, silk, cotton, sugar, and medicinal roots; all of an excellent kind. Sicily also contains mines of silver, copper and lead, which are neglected. Near Palma, are beds of the best sulphur, and every part of the island contains excellent marble, The adjacent sea furnishes a variety of fish, among which are the tunny and anchovy, which are exported in large quantities. - 345. Palermo. Palermo, which is called the capital of the island, is situated on the north side, upon a bay which forms the harbor, and on a fertile plain, which is like a well cultivated garden, filled with fruit trees and watered by rivulets. Two great streets intersect each other in the center of the city, where is a handsome square. The buildings are elegant and uniform, and the city is filled with churches, monasteries, palaces, fountains, statues and columns. Adjoining to the town, near the sea, is a public garden or promenade, planted

with orange and lemon trees, formed into arcades. Palermo is the residence of the nobility, who fill thry, the and public places with elegant carriages, drawn b:vere tiful horses richly caparisoned. The city contai.hey hundred and fifty thousand inhabitants. ns; 346. Custom of fireserving dead bodies. In Palenthere is a singular custom of drying and preserving de bodies, instead of burying them. The bodies are ca ried to the Capuchin convent, where, after funeral sel vice, they are dried in a stove heated by a composition of lime, which makes the skin adhere to the bones.—, They are then placed in niches and fastened to the wall in a standing posture, with a piece of coarse drab thrown over the shoulders and round the waist, and in their hands holding a piece of paper, containing their epitaph. The muscles of the face being distorted by the drying of the skin, the neck twisted, the eyes sunk, and the mouth drawn awry, render this groop a most singular combination of hideous and ludicrous images. 347. Messina. Messina is a large town, situated near the strait on the eastern side of the island, with a spacious harbor in front. A range of mountains run along the shore in the rear of the town, and the town lies upon a declivity which gives it a beautiful appearance. It is a place of considerable trade in silk, oil, fruits, corn and wines; and formerly contained 60 or 70,000 inhabitants; but its population has been diminished by severe calamities. In 1743, 46,000 of its inhabitants perished by pestilence, and in 1783, the city was, in a great measure, destroyed by an earthquake, and several thousands perished in its ruins. Its present inhabitants are about 30,000. 348. Syracuse. Syracuse, once the capital of the island, and a powerful city, which defied the power of Carthage, is situated near the south east part of Sicily, on a good harbor. Anciently it was of a triangular form, and consisted of five divisions; its circuit being 22 miles, and its population, more than half a million of soulsBut during a continual series of misfortunes and revolutions, Syracuse has declined, and suffering severely by an earthquake in 1693, its population is not more than 20,000 souls. The traveller who reads the ac

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