I spoke of the custom of advertising the deaths. A considerable portion of the daily newspapers is devoted to these announcements, which are printed in display type, like the advertisements of dry-goods sellers with you. I will roughly translate one which I happen to see just now. It reads, “Death advertisement. It has pleased God the Almighty, in his inscrutable providence, to take away our innermost loved, best husband, father, grandfather, uncle, brother-in-law, and cousin, Herr—–, dyer of cloth and silk, yesterday night, at eleven o’clock, after three weeks of severe suffering, having partaken of the holy sacrament, in his sixty-sixth year, out of this earthly abode of calamity into the better Beyond. Those who knew his good heart, his great honesty, as well as his patience in suffering, will know how justly to estimate our grief.” This is signed by the “deep-grieving survivors,”—the widow, son, daughter, and daughter-in-law, in the name of the absent relatives. After the name of the son is written, “Dyer in cloth and silk.” The notice closes with an announcement of the funeral at the cemetery, and a service at the church the day after. The advertisement I have given is not uncommon either for quaintness or simplicity. It is common to engrave upon the monument the business as well as the title of the departed.
THE OCTOBER FEST THE PEASANTS AND THE KING
On the 11th of October the sun came out, after a retirement of nearly two weeks. The cause of the appearance was the close of the October Fest. This great popular carnival has the same effect upon the weather in Bavaria that the Yearly Meeting of Friends is known to produce in Philadelphia, and the Great National Horse Fair in New England. It always rains during the October Fest. Having found this out, I do not know why they do not change the time of it; but I presume they are wise enough to feel that it would be useless. A similar attempt on the part of the Pennsylvania Quakers merely disturbed the operations of nature, but did not save the drab bonnets from the annual wetting. There is a subtle connection between such gatherings and the gathering of what are called the elements,—a sympathetic connection, which we shall, no doubt, one day understand, when we have collected facts enough on the subject to make a comprehensive generalization, after Mr. Buckle’s method.
This fair, which is just concluded, is a true Folks-Fest, a season especially for the Bavarian people, an agricultural fair and cattle show, but a time of general jollity and amusement as well. Indeed, the main object of a German fair seems to be to have a good time and in this it is in marked contrast with American fairs. The October Fest was instituted for the people by the old Ludwig I. on the occasion of his marriage; and it has ever since retained its position as the great festival of the Bavarian people, and particularly