We then proceeded to look at the suburb of this city called Bortscheid, by far the finest part of the city and at some elevation above it. It commands an extensive view. We also visited the various bath establishments; the taste of the water had some resemblance to that of Harrogate, and is good in bilious, scrofulous and cutaneous complaints. On our return to the hotel we learned the news of the capitulation of Paris to the Allied powers. It is said to be purely a military convention by which the French army is to evacuate Paris and retire behind the Loire. There is no talk and no other intelligence about Napoleon, except that he had been compelled by the two Houses of Legislature to abdicate the throne. We are still in the dark as to the intentions of the Allies. I regret much that my friend and fellow traveller L. is obliged to return to Bruxelles and cannot accompany me to Cologne, to which place I am impatient to go and to pay my respects to old father Rhine, so renowned in history.
I left Aix-la-Chapelle on the morning of the 2nd of July and arrived at Cologne about six o’clock in the evening, putting up at the Inn Zum heiligen Geist (Holy Ghost), which is situated on the banks of the river. The price of the journey in the diligence is 18 franks. On the road hither lies Juliers, a large and strongly fortified town surrounded by a marsh. It must be very important as a military post. The road after quitting Juliers runs for the most part thro’ a forest, and has been much improved and enlarged by the French; before they improved it, it was almost impassable in wet weather. We met on the road several Prussian waggons and reinforcements on their march to Bruxelles. Two of my fellow travellers in the diligence were very intelligent young men belonging to respectable families in Cologne and were returning thither; they likewise complained much of the overbearing demeanour of the Prussian military towards the burghers.
Cologne is a large, but very dull looking city, as dull as Liege; it would seem as if all towns and cities under ecclesiastical domination were dull or rendered so by the prohibition of the most innocent amusements. The fortifications are out of repair; but the Prussian Government intend to make Cologne a place of great strength. The name of the village on the opposite of the river is Deutz, and in the time of the French occupation there was a tete-de-pont. The next morning I was obliged to appear before the police, and afterwards before the Commandant de la Place, in order to have my passport examined and vise. At the bureau of the police it was remarked to me that my passport was not en regle, the features of the bearer not being therein specified. I replied that it was not my fault; that it was given to me in that shape by the English Consul at Bruxelles and that it was not my province to give to the Consul