Obrazy na stronie

sizes, rendering it almost impossible to form any idea of the architecture ?

The building of which a view is given on p. 135, is not yet completed. Its architectural front is on Park Place, but its entrance is in the narrow end on Broadway.* We regret for many reasons that the cut should be so far an inadequate representation of a building, which occupies an important position among the new structures of the day, and moreover is so conspicuously placed, particularly as the detail, which is entirely slurred over in the drawing, is very good and in many points of view quite worthy of notice. The Broadway Bank, which is the name of this new candidate for our admiration, is built of brown freestone, with highly decorated windows and entrance porch, rusticated basement and chamfered rustic quoins at the angles. The cornice is massive and_handsome, and its length on Park Place front is relieved by a circular pediment crowning a projection

in the centre of the façade. the preparations for this number's illus It is however as melancholy as it is absurd trations to do themselves or the subjects to see so fine a building, and one evidently credit; a fact which we regret as much erected at great expense, attempting to for their sakes as ours. We hope to deceive the spectator with an elaborate have no occasion for apologies hereafter. cornice and pediment made of wood,

The new Bank corner of John-street painted and sanded in imitation of and Broadway, of which the above en slone, a stratagem which, if it is discreditgraving is a very indifferent view, is less able in smaller buildings or temporary deficient in shadow than most of its con structures, is miserably mean and petty in temporaries. The window-hoods on Broad an erection like the one under consideraway are bold and handsome, and the side tion, which owing to its size and position on John-street is worthy of a broader is the most important Bank yet put up in thoroughfare than the one it faces. Its New-York. We have no sympathy with windows are very handsome and effective, the architect who will suggest, or the but was it worth while, -oh doubtless capitalist who will adopt, such a wretched most worthy occupants ! to put up so expedient. fine a building, and then deface it with a We close_our present paper with the fantastic display of signs of all shapes and Merchants’ Exchange, a huge pile of gra


Mercantile Bank.

* The mutations of this rather pron:inent corner are noteworthy, as exemplifying New-York progress. In the boyish days of a revered author, still hale and hearty, this spot, and the Park opposite, were open fields, where Geoffrey Crayon saw balloon ascensions, and battled with his scho-Imates; and much younger men remember petty grocery shops and stable-yards in the same vicinity. In 1953, the geographical centre of fashion has not only passed this point, but now stretches about two miles further up town! llalleck, in his " Fanny," refers to a later occupant of this corner, when he says,

"In architecture our unrivalled skill,
Cullen's magnesia ship has loudly spoken

To an miring world." Later still, the dwelling house of the late Philip Ilone worthily adorned this spot. This was ruthlessly displaced by a very substantial and well-built structure of brick and granite: which, after being permitter a brief existence of only five or six years, was, in turn, not destroyed, but removed, in 1852. w.give place to the present structure. The materials of the old (:) building were sold; they were taken away. brick by brick, and stone by stone, and the building was reproduced in another street, just as it had looker in Broadway.

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nite, admirably built and handsome in its design. Its centre is occupied by a large circular hall, whose multitudinous echoes laugh the science of acoustics to scorn, and make whispers impossible. This central hall, which runs up to the top of the building and is crowned by a dome, is surrounded by offices which, in point of cheerfulness, eclipse any thing which Egyptian catacombs have yet been able to offer us. We enter them whenever we have occasion, with a gloomy apprehension that our friends will be found in a mournful state of mummy, and the disappointment is too contrary to what seems natural, to be as pleasing as it ought. The building is enormous, and built with a praiseworthy solidity, which will defy the ravages of time; yet solid as it is, and ridiculously extravagant as was its cost, there is probably no building in the world so absurdly inconvenient. The great pyramid of Gizeh is almost as well lighted; and, owing to its immense size, which enables it to maintain a uniform temperature, it is better suited to the uses of daily life. The Exchange was built by the merchants of New-York; and cost one million eight hundred thousand dollars; the original stockholders lost every penny of their

investment, and it was recently sold for a sum hardly sufficient to pay the mortgage held by the Barings in London. The new Royal Exchange, in London, cost £112,000, and is every way superior to our New-York building, in architectural beauty, convenience, and comfort. The best front of our Exchange is on Wall-street; yet, even in the offices on this side, gaslights are required almost constantly, and there is no room in the building which is decently lighted. The basement story, compared to which the Catacombs of Paris are gay, has no means by which it can be warmed; being without fire-places, furnace-registers, or access to chimneyflues. We have spoken of the great Rotunda; a hall, eighty feet in diameter, paved with marble, and whose walls are decorated with columns and pilasters, of finely polished white marble, having plaster capitals -the marble ones which were carved for this hall in Italy, being found too small, were replaced by those which at present disgrace the building. Altogether, whether we look at the unimposing character of the structure itself, the immense amount of money actually thrown away, the absurd arrangements of the interior, and the utter want of design, resulting from an

entire lack of knowledge and taste in the Time, with his offspring, which we proarchitect, which are the chief characteris- phesy with the sadness becoming such a tics of the building, and which make it vaticination, will outlast the pyramids, the dreariest, least inviting, and most ex and remain as food for inextinguishable pensive place of business in the city; we laughter to generations whose grandfathers are at a loss for a comparison, which shall and great-grandfathers are yet unborn. place its mingled absurdities in the strong But we wish that some of our city's est light. We wish the unfortunate ar best architecture were as sure of resistchitect, Isaiah Rogers, no more punish- ing the ravages of time as this solid ment than to have his name carved in block of granite, and its sister of marble, granite letters on the pediment; there to the Custom House, whose character we survive the blows of Fate and shocks of shall analyze in a future paper.

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THROUGH the darkened streets of Florence,

Moving toward thy church, Saint Lorenz,
Marched the Bearers masked and singing
With their ghostly flambeaux flinging,
Ghostlier shadows that were swinging
Round the portals and the porches,
As its spirits which had hovered
In the darkness undiscovered,
Danced about the hissing torches,
Like the moths that whirl and caper,
Drunken round an evening taper.
Unconsoled and unconsoling
Rolled the Arno, louder rolling
As the rain poured—and the tolling
Through the thick shower fell demurely,
Fell from out one turret only
Where the bell swung sad and lonely,
Prisoned in the cloud securely.
Masked in black with voices solemn,
Strode the melancholy column,
With a stiff and soulless burden,
Bearing to the grave its guerdon.
While the torch flames, vexed and taunted
By the night winds, leapt and flaunted,
'Mid the funeral rains that slanted,
Those brave bearers marched and chanted,
Through the darkness thick and dreary,
With a woful voice and weary,

Light to light and dark to dark,

Kindred natures thus agree;
Where the soul soars none can mark;
But the world below may hark,

Miserere Domine.
Dew to dew and rain to rain

Swell the streams and reach the sea-
When the drouth shall burn the plain,
Then the sands shall but remain,

Miserere Domine.
Flame to flame--let ashes fall

Where the fireless ashes be,
Embers black and funeral
Unto dying cinders call

Miserere Domine.
Life to life and dust to dust!

Christ who died upon the tree,
Thine the promise, ours the trust,
We are weak, but thou art just !

Miserere Domine!
1st Bystander.

There, stand aside-the very eaves are weeping,

As are the heavens in sympathy with us :-
Italia's air hath not within its keeping
A nobler heart than that which lies there sleeping,

For whom the elements are wailing thus.
2d Bystander.

I reverenced him—he was a marvellous schemer;

Hath built more airy structures in his day
Than ever wild and opiate-breathing dreamer

Hath drugged his dreams with even in Cathay
VOL. 1.-10

His fancy went in marble round the earth,

And whitened it with statues—where he trod The silent people leapt to sudden birth,

And all the sky exulting high and broad

Became a mighty Pantheon for God !
You reverenced him ? I loved him with a scope

Of feeling I may never know again,
And love him still, even though beyond all hope
The Priest, the Bishop, Cardinal and Pope

Should banish him to wear a burning chain
In those great dungeons of the unforgiven,
Under the space-deep castle walls of Heaven.
I know the Church considered it a sin,

I know the Duke considered it a shame, That our Alzoni would not stoop to win

What any blunderer now-a-days may claim,
A niche in Sante Croce-which hath been

And is, to them, the very shrine of Fame !
Why, look you, why should one carve out his soul

In bits to meet the world's unthankful stare,
For Ignorance to hold in his control,

And sly-eyed Jealousy's detracting glare ? To see the golden glories of his brain

Out-glittered by a brazen counterfeit ? The starriest spirit only shines in vain

When every rocket can out-dazzle it!

They bear the great Alzoni—he is dead:

Our hope is dead and lies on yonder bier-
There is no comfort left for any here,

Since he is dead.
Oh, mother Florence, droop your queenly head,

And mingle ashes with your wreath of flowers-
Build funeral altars in your ducal bowers,

For he is dead.
Oh, sacred Arno, be your ripples shed

No more in music o'er your silver sands, –
But mourn to death, and wring your watery hands,

For he is dead.
Ye dusky palaces, whose gloom is wed

To princely names that never may depart,
Drown all your lights in tears—the prince of Art,

Your hope, is dead.
Ye spirits who to glory have been led

In years agone, departed souls of might,
Make joyful space in Heaven-for our delight

On earth is dead !

And thus with melancholy songs they bore him,

Into the chapel—'twixt the columns vast
They set the bier and lit great tapers o'er him,

And looked their last.
They looked and pondered on his dreamy history

Whose sudden close had left them broken-hearted. Till cloudy censers veiled the light in mystery,

And they departed.

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