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Ho! watchmen, ho!
Be praise in heaven above,
Us help and ceaseless love. Now towards the matin chime; < - For quiet rest,
The Lord be blest;
The warning of the last line I was obliged to follow; the droning voice of the old watchman seemed to say that he thought more of sleep than of anything else. But I heard the diligence at the great stone-arched gateway, outside of which it stopped. The diligence was full, and a cabriolet, for additional passengers, accompanied it. I asked, was there room in the latter for me; a decentlooking man, perceiving I was from England, hastened kindly to make use of his knowledge of our language, and informed me that the carriage contained only himself and a mill! I looked in, and entered, wondering how the mill was to get in, or where it was—another man being already within the small vehicle. My kind informant fell into a fit of musing; and after we had gone on some time, suddenly said, "It is a miller—not a mill."
So we passed Slagelse, and the famous hill of Holy Anders, who was carried thither in his sleep from Jerusalem; and then we came to Korsor, and got into a boat and passed the Great Belt, and a very rough Belt it was, and got to Nyeborg in the Isle of Funen, which we ought to spell as the natives spell it—Fyen.
And at Nyeborg, what made the most lasting impression on my memory was the extraordinary number of pictures in the church—and these not saintly pictures, nor biblical ones, but clerical! One might think that all the priests who had had charge of that church, from the time of Martin Luther, were there represented in somewhat corresponding figures, as plump and comfortable looking, with black gowns and white ruffs, and each attended by one, two, or three, I suppose, wives, in black gowns and white aprons—the old fashioned mourning of the North—and by a vast number of quaint-looking children, who were all, I conjecture, represented as weeping for the death of the stout and healthy priest, to whose memory the picture was dedicated, while he was depicted in full rotundity.
VOL. I. Q
A more absurd practice than that of putting the pictures of deceased pastors in churches, from whence those of saints are banished, can scarcely be conceived. It is practised in Sweden also. But there the pictures take the side of loyalty, rather than piety, in the country churches. I have seen Charles XII. capering on horseback at the side of an altar; his charger's feet raised over the heads of his soldiers, who are engaged with bayonets beneath them. And the companion of this strange altar-piece, at the other side, was the common print of Bernadotte, with his hand on the sword which he seems always trying to draw.
What subjects for contemplation to a Christian congregation!
"Voyager! c'est un triste plaisir!" said wise Madame de Stael; and, though I have often contradicted her aphorism, I can now sincerely respond to its truth. Verily a triste plaisir it is to rock on the cross-grained Kattegat, and the Skaggerack must be as bad. A name, they say, is nothing, but these names are expressive ones to me.
"Berce, berce, berce encore,
Says M. Lamartine, in his eulogy on the sea, and I echo the last line as my most fervent wish; yet I am as happily exempt from that "malady of the sea" as, I suppose, the French poet must be when he complained of being rocked upon it for the last time.
I have been coasting by the pleasant isles of poor Denmark: by beechwood shores and through cockchafer-covered waters; bloodstained these lately were, but now as calm beneath the sunny skies as if the demon of civil war—foolish, useless, and cruel war—had not so lately breathed its deadly breath on scenes so peaceful now.
Away from Nyeborg we sailed without a breeze, and along the pretty Isle of Fyen (it is a pity to write its name, as we do, Funen), and so on by the coast of Jutland, which was quite visible beneath the golden light of a setting sun. And I watch the gradual termination of woodland and cultivated scenery till the red curtain of the western sky falls slowly over the beams of dazzling gold, and as the light mellows, the beechwoods are left behind us; cultivation thins, and thins, and finally disappears; now the moon brings forth her chaster radiancy, and in the wake of our steamer there is a line of white and gold, rippling, broken, beautiful. A little longer, and dark, smutty clouds are gathering round her orb; she