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says Virgil in the third Æneid; and Pliny acquaints us, that those which had been often victorious at the games were not only honoured with burial rites, but had magnificent monuments erected to eternize their memory. This Timeus confirms : he tells us, that he saw at Agrigentum several pyramids built as sepulchral monuments to celebrated horses : he adds, that when those animals became old and unfit for service, they were always taken care of, and spent the remainder of their lives in ease and plenty.--I could wish that our countrymen would imitate the gratitude and humanity of the Sicilians in this article; at least the latter part of it. I don't know that our nation can so justly be taxed with cruelty or ingratitude any

other article as in their treatment of horses, the animal that of all others is the most entitled to our care.

How piteous a thing it is, on many of your great roads, to see the finest old hunters, that were once the glory of the chase, condemned, in the decline of life, to the tyranny of the most cruel oppressors ; in whose hands they suffer the most extreme misery, till they at last sink under the task that is assigned them. I am called away to see some more antiques, but shall finish this letter to


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night, as the post goes off for Italy to-morrow morning.

13th, afternoon. We have seen a great many old walls and vaults that little or nothing can be made of. They give them names, and pretend to tell you what they were, but as they bear no resemblance to those things now, it would be no less idle to trouble you with their nonsense than to believe it. We have indeed seen one thing that has amply repaid us for the trouble we have taken. It is the representation of a boar-hunting, in alto relievo, on white marble ; and is at least equal, if not superior, to any thing of the kind I have met with in Italy. It consists of four different parts, which form the history of this remarkable chase and its consequences.

The first is the preparation for the hunt. There are twelve hunters, with each his lance, and a short hanger under his left arm of a very singular form. The dogs resemble those we call lurchers. The horses are done with great fire and spirit, and are perhaps a better proof of the excellence of the race, than even the testimony of their authors; for the artist that formed these must certainly have been accusa tomed to see very

fine horses.



The second piece represents the chase. The third the death of the king, by a fall from his horse. And the fourth the despair of the queen and her attendants on receiving the news. She is represented as falling down in a swoon, and supported by her women, who are all in tears.

It is executed in the most masterly style, and is indeed one of the finest remains of antiquity. It is preserved in the great church, which is noted through all Sicily for a remarkable echo; something in the manner of our whispering gallery at St. Paul's, though more difficult to be accounted for.

If one person stands at the west gate, and another places himself on the cornice, at the most distant point of the church, exactly behind the great altar, they can hold a conversation in very low whispers.

For many years this singularity was little known; and several of the confessing chairs being placed near the great altar, the wags, who were in the secret, used to take their station at the door of the cathedral ; and by this means heard distinctly every word that passed betwixt the confessor and his penitent; of which, you may believe, they did not fail to

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make their own use when occasion offered. The most secret intrigues were discovered ; and every woman in Agrigentum changed either her gallant or her confessor. Yet still it was the same. At last, however, the cause was found out; the chairs were removed, and other precautions were taken, to prevent the discovery of these sacred mysteries ; and a mutual amnesty passed amongst all the offended parties.

Agrigentum, like Syracuse, was long subject to the yoke of tyrants. Fazzello gives some account of their cruelty, but I have no intena tion of repeating it; one story, however, pleased me; it is a well-known one, but as it is short, you shall have it.

Perillo, a goldsmith, by way of paying court to Phalaris the tyrant, made him a present of a brazen bull, of admirable workmanship; hollow within, and so contrived that the voice


in it, sounded exactly like the bellowing of a real bull. The artist pointed out to the tyrant what an admirable effect this must produce, were he only to shut up a few criminals in it, and make a fire under them.

Phalaris, struck with so horrid an idea, and perhaps curious to try the experiment, told the


a person shut


goldsmith that he himself was the only person worthy of animating his bull: that he must have studied the note that made it roar to the greatest advantage, and that it would be unjust to deprive him of any part of the honour of his invention. Upon which he ordered the goldsmith to be shut up, and made a great fire around the bull; which immediately began to roar, to the admiration and delight of all Agrigentum. Cicero says, this bull was carried to Carthage at the taking of Agrigentum; and was restored again by Scipio after the destruction of that city.

Fazzello adds another story, which is still more to the honour of Phalaris. Two friends, Melanippus and Cariton, had conspired his death. Cariton, in hopes of saving his friend from the danger of the enterprise, determined to execute it alone. However, in his attempt to poignard the tyrant, he was seized by the guards, and immediately put to the torture, to make him confess his accomplice: this he bore with the utmost fortitude, refusing to make the discovery; till Melanippus, informed of the situation of his friend, ran to the tyrant, assuring him, that he alone was the guilty person ; that it was entirely by his instigation

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