A Wanderer in Holland eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 339 pages of information about A Wanderer in Holland.
a Photograph by Franz Hanfstaengl
    The Spinner.  Nicholas Maes (Ryks)
        From a Photograph by Franz Hanfstaengl
    Clara Alewijn.  Dirck Santvoort (Ryks)
    Family Scene.  Jan Steen (Ryks)
        From a Photograph by Franz Hanfstaengl
    The Little Princess.  Paulus Moreelse (Ryks)
        From a Photograph by Franz Hanfstaengl
    The Shepherd and His Flock.  Anton Mauve
    Helene van der Schalke.  Gerard Terburg (Ryks)
        From a Photograph by Franz Hanfstaengl
    Elizabeth Bas.  Rembrandt (Ryks)
        From a Photograph by Franz Hanfstaengl


It would be useless to pretend that this book is authoritatively informing.  It is a series of personal impressions of the Dutch country and the Dutch people, gathered during three visits, together with an accretion of matter, more or less pertinent, drawn from many sources, old and new, to which I hope I have given unity.  For trustworthy information upon the more serious side of Dutch life and character I would recommend Mr. Meldrum’s Holland and the Hollanders.  My thanks are due to my friends, Mr. and Mrs. Emil Lueden, for saving me from many errors by reading this work in Ms.



Chapter I


To Rotterdam by water—­To Rotterdam by rail—­Holland’s monotony of scenery—­Holland in England—­Rotterdam’s few merits—­The life of the river—­The Rhine—­Walt Whitman—­Crowded canals—­Barge life—­The Dutch high-ways—­A perfect holiday—­The canal’s influence on the national character—­The florin and the franc—­Lady Mary Wortley Montagu—­The old and the poor—­Holland’s health—­Funeral customs—­The chemists’ shops—­Erasmus of Rotterdam—­Latinised names—­Peter de Hooch—­True aristocracy—­The Boymans treasures—­Modern Dutch art—­Matthew Maris—­The Rotterdam Zoo—­The herons—­The stork’s mission—­The ourang-outang—­An eighteenth-century miser—­A successful merchant—­The Queen-Mother—­Tom Hood in Rotterdam—­Gouda.

It was once possible to sail all the way to Rotterdam by either of the two lines of steamships from England—­the Great Eastern, via Harwich, and the Batavier, direct from London.  But that is possible now only by the Batavier, passengers by the better-known Harwich route being landed now and henceforward at the Hook at five A.M.  I am sorry for this, because after a rough passage it was very pleasant to glide in the early morning steadily up the Maas and gradually acquire a sense of Dutch quietude and greyness.  No longer, however, can this be done, as the Batavier boats reach Rotterdam at night; and one therefore misses the river, with the little villages on its banks, each with a tiny canal-harbour of its own; the groups of trees in the early mist; the gulls and herons; and the increasing traffic as one drew nearer Schiedam and at last reached that forest of masts which is known as Rotterdam.

Project Gutenberg
A Wanderer in Holland from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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