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a signature to a passport issued by the other. They who desire to visit both countries had better take either an English secretary of state's passport, or a French passport, which the two ministers will not object to countersign : but in the latter case they are compelled to land at a French port, Calais or Dunkirk, for example, and proceed through France and Belgium. In order to enter Holland from Belgium or Belgium from Holland a special permission must be obtained. (See Route XIX.)
Accounts are kept in guilders and cents.
The Guilder, or Dutch florin, is worth 1s. 8d. English. It is divided into 20 stivers, and into 100 cents : 1 stiver=5 cents, is worth 1 penny English. The silver coins most commonly met with are,
d. The guilder (or Duteh florin) 100 cents = 20 stivers = 1
guilder (a very common coin) 25 cents = 5 stivers 0 it guilder, or dubbeljtie
10 cents =
2 stivers 0 2 zó guilder
5 cents = 1 stiver =0 1 Ducatoon
315 cents 63 stivers = 5 S-guilder pieces
300 cents = 60 stivers 5 Zealand (Zeeausche) rixdollar 260 cents = 52 stivers Rixdollar
= 250 cents = 50 stivers = 4 2 Dollar (daalder)
= 150 cents = 30 stivers = 2 6 Achtentwintig
= 140 cents = 28 stivers = 2 The gold coins are,
£ d. The William (Willem) = 10 guilders
= 0 16
8 1 Willem
= 0 8 4 The following are less common : The gold ryder = 14 guilders
3 4 gold ryder
0 11 8 Ducat
5 guilders 2 stivers O 8 9 The current value of the ducat changes with the value of gold. Travellers ought, therefore, to provide themselves only with Williams, which are the newest gold coins: they have also the advantage of being current all over Germany.
The difference between eents and centimes should be borne in mind. Cent, a Dutch and Belgian coin, is the too of a guilder, or of 1s. 8d. Centime, a French coin, is the ido part of a franc, or of 10d. The cent is nearly equal to 2 centimes, and is worth about of a penny English.
£30 = 351 Williams, after deducting commission.
Travellers should provide themselves with Dutch money at Rotterdam, or at the first town of Holland they enter, as French coins are not current here, as they are in Belgium ; a traveller recently had difficulty in exchanging French and English money even at so considerable a place as Haarlem, and found there no professed money-changer.
Money of Holland is current also in Belgium, and up the Rhine as far as Cologne,
3. CUSTOM HOUSE. The Dutch custom-house officers are usually civil, and by no means troublesome in examining the baggage of persons not travelling with merchan
5. TREKSCHUITS. 3 dize. A small fee here, as elsewhere, will expedite and tend to lighten the search in the traveller's portmanteau.
4. TRAVELLING IN HOLLAND — ROADS, POSTING, DILIGENCES, AND MAP.
The French posting regulations introduced into Holland at the time when it was united to France still continue partly in force. Two Dutch leagues make 1 post. The league is equal to about 3} English miles.
“ The high roads are good. The regulations as to the number of horses to be attached to a calèche or berline are much the same as in France; a single postilion, however, is allowed to drive 4 horses. The price is 1 guilder a post for each horse, and a guilder to the postilion, with about a guilder a post for the road tax for 4 horses, and about half that sum for 2; making the whole expense for 4 horses rather less than is paid for 2 in England.”—1835. W. M. T.
There is considerable irregularity in the charges for post-horses in Holland, and much depends upon the honesty of the postmaster.
Diligences. On all the great roads, numerous diligences run several times a day. They are very precise in the time of starting. They belong to private indi. viduals or companies licensed by government. The best are those of Van Gend and Co. ; they are roomy and convenient, and travel at the rate of about 6 miles an hour. If more persons apply for places than can be accommodated in the coach, an additional carriage, or “by-chaise,” is prepared, by which the passenger may proceed at the same rate of fare as by the main diligence. There are two classes of stages: one, called snorwagen, used by the lower classes, is very cheap, and is sometimes patronised by the English, either in their desire to economise, or in ignorance of the fact that it is an inferior conveyance. “ A hired carriage, or glaswagen, capable of holding 6 persons
and a servant, from Rotterdam to Amsterdam, by Leyden, costs upwards of 40 guilders, including tolls and all expenses, except a gratuity of 3 or 4 guilders to the driver, who provides for himself and horses. A calèche costs less."-W. M. T. The average expense of a hired carriage and horses is about įth less than in England.
Roads. As there are no stones in a large part of Holland, it may naturally excite wonder that there are any roads at all : but the want of stones is supplied by a small and tough kind of brick, or clinker, which, after the foundation of the road is levelled, are placed edgewise close together, and the interstices are filled with sand, so as to make a hard, smooth, and level highway, very pleasant to travel over. The average cost of making such a road is about 17,000 g., more than 14001., per English mile. As all heavy goods are conveyed by water, the wear and tear on the roads, traversed almost entirely by light carriages, is not very great.
In many parts the roads run on the tops of the dykes; and, as there are no parapets or railings, there is at least the appearance of danger, and accidents sometimes happen.
The tolls are very high, sometimes equalling in one stage the expense of one post-horse. A carriage with 4 wheels and 2 horses pays from 6 to 8 stivers at each turnpike ; and a toll generally occurs every 3 miles English. The passage money for crossing ferries is also high.
The best Map of Holland and Belgium to which the traveller can be referred, is that published by Mr. John Arrowsmith in 1835.
5. TRAVELLING BY WATER — TREKSCHUITEN.
The canals of Holland are as numerous as roads in other countries, and afford the most abundant means of conveyance in every direction, and from all the larger towns, several times a day.
BARGES, called TREKSCHUITEN (drag-boats), navigate the canals, and convey passengers and goods : they are divided into two parts; the fore-cabin, called rium, appropriated to servants and common people; and the after-cabin, or roef (roof), set apart for the better classes, and a little more expensive; it is smaller, and will contain 6 or 8 persons. It is generally fitted up with neatness, and may be engaged by a party exclusively for their own use.
The towing horse is ridden by a lad (het jägertje), who receives a few cents at each stage ; a stiver will be considered handsome pay. It is amusing to observe how quickly and neatly he passes the numerous bridges, disengaging the tow-rope, and fastening it again, without impeding the progress of the vessel.
The advantages of the trekschuit are principally its cheapness. The usual cost of travelling by it is about a stiver a mile, and these are the charges between some of the principal lowns:Rotterdam to Delft 10 stivers Leyden to Haarlem 1 guilder Delft to Hague
12 ditto Haarlem to Amsterdam - 15 stivers Hague to Leyden 1 guilder Amsterdam to Utrecht - 25 ditto
Its disadvantages are, — 1st, That, being drawn by one horse only, it does not travel faster than 4 miles an hour. 2dly, Though the banks of the canal are often enlivened by gardens and villas, yet it sometimes happens that they are so high as to shut out all view, which is very tiresome and monotonous. 3dly, Though separated from the other cabin by a partition, the tenant of the roof is liable to be annoyed by tobacco smoke, and the sometimes boisterous mirth of his fellow-travellers in the rium : and, 4thly, The trekschuit almost invariably stops on the outside of the town to which it is bound, and does not enter it. Hence you have sometimes to walk more than a mile to reach an inn, and are compelled to intrust your luggage to porters, who, though they do not deserve the character of thieves, which Mrs. Starke has bestowed on them, at least are most exorbitant in their charges ; so that you are compelled to pay sometimes twice as much for the carriage of a portmanteau and bag into a town as for the whole passage by the boat.
Still, notwithstanding all these désagrémens, for the mere novelty of the thing, no one should visit Holland without making trial of this, the national conveyance. Even those who travel in their own carriage should send it round by the road, and take their passage in a trekschuit for one stage, either between Delft and Hague, or Hague and Leyden, or from Leyden to Haarlem, or Amsterdam to Utrecht; and the experiment cannot fail to afford them amusement.
The communication is kept up constantly between all the great towns of Holland and the intervening places by trekschuits. A boat sets out several times a day, starting with the greatest punctuality; and if a passenger be not on board at the stroke of the clock, he runs a risk of losing his passage,
6. WATER. In the provinces of Holland bordering on the sea, the water is generally very bad, not drinkable ; and strangers should be careful to avoid it altogether, except externally, or they may suffer, and be delayed on their journey. In many parts, good drinking water is brought in large stone bottles from Utrecht; so that Utrecht water must be asked for at inns. As a substitute for spring water the effervescent waters of Seltzer, Geilnau, and Fachingen, all coming from the Brunnen of Nassau, are constantly drunk at meals : a large bottle costs
about 5d. ' A very agreeable beverage is formed by mixing these waters with Moselle wine and sugar: some consider red Bordeaux wine with a little lemon and sugar added to the Seltzer water, a more palatable drink.
Dutch inns are certainly, on the whole, inferior to those of most other countries of Western Europe.
“ Having entered Holland, the traveller must be prepared for extortion ; during his stay in Holland, he must expect but little civility.” These are the words of the author of “ Dates and Distances;” and the editor of the present work has met with many examples confirmatory of the remark, though there are, of course, exceptions. Dutch inns and beds are, however, generally clean.
Charges.—A bed-room, which may also be used as a sitting room, costs, on an average, from 1 to 3 guilders; dinner at the table d'hôte, 1 to 2 guilders ; ditto in private, 2 to 3 guilders; breakfast with tea or coffee, 60 cents.
8. A GENERAL VIEW OF HOLLAND. There is not, perhaps, a country in Europe which will more surprise and astonish an intelligent traveller than Holland. Although so near our coasts, and so easily accessible, it is seldom explored by the English, but rather passed over by them in their haste to reach the picturesque scenes of the Rhine and Switzerland. The attractions of Holland are certainly of a different kind; but they are of a character so entirely peculiar, that whether a traveller visit this country at the outset or termination of his tour, he will be equally sure to find in it what is to be seen nowhere else.
The routes from Rotterdam to Amsterdam, and thence to Cologne, described in the following pages, may be fully explored in a fortnight; and there is certainly no road in Europe which in so small a space has so many curiosities to show, and upon which lie so many cities, great in commerce and renowned in history, As a country to reside in, Holland appears hardly endurable : but for a journey of two weeks the universal flatness and the monotony of scenery are not tiresome, The aspect of the country is too strange to fatigue.
A Jarge part of Holland is a delta, formed of the mud deposited by the Rhine and other rivers, in the same manner as the Delta of Egypt has been formed by the Nile. The greater portion of it has been perseveringly rescued from the water, to whose dominion it may almost be said to belong, by the continual efforts and ingenuity of man, and in a long series of years. Much of it is mud driven up by the sea, in return for what it carries away from some parts of the coast. Were human agency and care removed but for six months, the waves would, without doubt, regain their ancient dominion, so much of the land lies below the level of the sea; and an extensive tract of the country would be reduced to the state of those vast wastes, composed of sand and mud-banks, quite unfit for human habitation, which now lie at the mouths of the Nile and Mississippi. these fields, gained by such difficulty, and preserved with constant watchfulness from the waters, have been, in more instances than one, inundated by their owners during their contests with foreign foes; and Dutch patriotism has not hesitated to subject the land to temporary ruin in the desire of preserving liberty. The cutting of the dykes, and opening of the sluicegates, which was resorted to in order to free Holland from Spanish tyranny, was a desperate resource, and in itself a national calamity, entailing beggary for some years upon a large portion of the population, owing to the length of
time and the very great expense which a second recovery of the land from the sea required. It served, however, to show that it needs not the moun. tains of Switzerland, or the fastnesses of Tyrol, to enable a brave people to defend their native land.
Upon the whole, Holland may be considered as the most wonderful country, perhaps, under the sun: it is certainly unlike every other. What elsewhere would be considered as impossible, has here been carried into effect, and incongruities have been rendered consistent. “ The house built upon the sand” may here be seen standing ; neither Amsterdam nor Rotter, dam has any better foundation than sand into which piles are driven through many feet of superincumbent mud. We speak contemptuously of any thing which is held together by straws, yet a long line of coast of several provinces is consolidated by no other means than a few reeds intermixed with straw wisps, or woven into mats. Without this frail but effectual support, the fickle dunes, or sand-hills, would be driven about into the interior, and would overwhelm whole districts of cultivated land. In Holland the laws of nature seem to be reversed; the sea is higher than the land; the lowest ground in the country is 24 feet below high-water mark, and, when the tide is driven high by the wind, 30 feet! There are few other countries where, as in this corner of the globe, the keels of the ships are above the chimneys of the houses, and where the frog, croaking from among the bulrushes, looks down upon the swallow on the house-top. Where rivers take their course, it is not in beds of their own choosing ; they are compelled to pass through canals, and are confined within fixed bounds by the stupendous mounds imposed on them by human art, which has also succeeded in overcoming the everywhere else resistless impetuosity of the ocean : here, and nowhere else, does the sea appear to have half obeyed the command, “ Thus far shalt thou go, and no further.”
In a very extensive district, the canals are brimful of water, which can hardly stir, and, when in motion, moves with a current barely perceptible. There is not a stone or pebble to be found, and there are no hills, save such as are rajsed by the winds; unless, indeed, we take into consideration those vast artificial mountains of granite, which have been brought at enormous expense from Norway and Sweden, and sunk under water to serve as barriers to the sea. Excepting the eastern provinces, the parks of Haarlem and the Hague, and the avenues leading from one city to another, the land does not produce much wood: but then entire Norwegian forests have been buried beneath the mud in the shape of piles.
In almost every respect, nature appears in the character of a hardhearted stepmother : man seems but little beholden to her; he has done every thing for himself. Is it then to be wondered at that she should be forgotten, or at least kept out of sight? Thus, where trees occur, they are found growing, not in the natural way, but as they have been arranged by the plummet and line, in rank and file, in straight rows and avenues. Their branches are not allowed to spread abroad as nature intended, but are cut and clipped till they are iransformed into green walls, or are even trained into more grotesque shapes. By way of improving still further upon nature, the trunks and lower branches are not unfrequently painted over with bright colours.
The Dutchman may be said to have made even the wind his slave. It might be supposed that the universal fatness, and the absence of those elevations which afford shelter to other countries, would leave this at the mercy of every blast that blows, to sweep every thing before it. So far is this from being the case, that not a breath of air is allowed to pass without paying toll,