What I Remember, Volume 2 eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 369 pages of information about What I Remember, Volume 2.

But perhaps the most remarkable and most singular scene of all that rose-water revolution was the Duke’s departure from his capital and his duchy.  Other sovereigns in similar plight have hidden themselves, travestied themselves, had hairbreadth escapes, or have not escaped at all.  In Tuscany the fallen ruler went forth in his own carriage with one other following it, both rather heavily laden with luggage.  The San Gallo gate is that by which the hearse that conveys the day’s dead to the cemetery on the slope of the Apennine leaves the city every night.  And the Duke passed amid the large crowd assembled at the gate to see him go, as peaceably as the vehicle conveying those whose days in Florence, like his, were at an end, went out a few hours later by the same road.


Among the very great number of men and women whom I have known during my life in Italy—­some merely acquaintances, and many whom I knew to be, and a few, alas! a very few, whom I still know to be trusty friends—­there were many of whom the world has heard, and some perhaps of whom it would not unwillingly hear something more.  But time and space are limited, and I must select as best I may.

I have a very pleasant recollection of “Garibaldi’s Englishman,” Colonel Peard.  Peard had many more qualities and capabilities than such as are essential to a soldier of fortune.  The phrase, however, is perhaps not exactly that which should be used to characterise him.  He had qualities which the true soldier of fortune should not possess.  His partisanship was with him in the highest degree a matter of conviction and conscientious opinion, and nothing would have tempted him to change his colours or draw his sword on the other side.  I am not sure either, whether a larger amount of native brain power, and (in a much greater degree) a higher quality of culture, than that of the general under whom it may be his fortune to serve, is a good part of the equipment of a soldier of fortune.  And Peard’s relation to Garibaldi very notably exemplified this.

He was a native of Devonshire, as was my first wife; we saw a good deal of him in Florence, and I have before me a letter written to her by him from Naples on the 28th of January, 1861, which is interesting in more respects than one.  Peard was a man who would have all that depended on him ship-shape.  And this fact, taken in conjunction with the surroundings amid which he had to do his work, is abundantly sufficient to justify the growl he indulges in.

* * * * * “My dear Mrs. Trollope,” he writes, “I am ashamed to think either of you or of other friends at Florence; it is such an age since I have written to any of you.  But I have been daily, from morning to night, hard at work for weeks.  The honour of having a command is all very well, but the trouble and worry are unspeakable.  Besides, I had such a set under

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What I Remember, Volume 2 from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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