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VxiUi '.lie Peshawar Column" &c. 




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Author of " The Adventures of a Naval Officer " 

The ATHEN/EUM, says— 

" The scene of these adventures lies in Borneo, where the 
author is absolutely at home ; and as we read the spirited 
accounts of expeditions against pirates up the rivers and 
in the interior, of rescue parties, of the bravery and tact of 
Rajah Brooke, of adventures with man and beast, we have 
the satisfaction of knowing that these things actually hap- 
pened to men whom the author knew, and whose names are 
written in the Naval and Colonial history of their country. 
For the general reader it will suflBce to know that the pic- 
ture of life in the Royal Navy and in Borneo during the 
early forties is drawn with intimate knowledge and with a 
due regard for proportion. The book deserves, and we 
hope will enjoy the success which its predecessor has, we 
believe, achieved." 

The GLOBE, says — 

" Sir Spenser St. John repeats the success made with his 
former volume of reminiscences. The book is admirable — 
simple, direct, and so full of exciting incident that any boy 
would be delighted to read it after his father had finished 
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The TRIBUNE, says— 

"The book is written in a bright and engaging style, 
and is filled with interesting anecdotes and adventures and 
may be cordially recommended to the lover of tales of 

The WORLD, says— 

•' All who enjoyed Sir Spenser St. John's exciting rolume 
* The Adventures of a Naval Officer,' will be glad to know 
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(Lieut.-Colonel, late Boyal Army Medical Corps.) 


" Experiences and Adventures in the Afghan War," 

" A Record Voyage in H.M.S. Malabar," 

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Author of "A Voice from Oblivion," etc. 


" Morocco is many things to many folk. Seen through 
the eyes of the casual tourist, it is a kind of bazaar run by 
Oook for the benefit of those who wish, at short notice and 
without much incidental inconvenience, to get the smell 
of the Bast in their nostrils. Mrs. Mansell Pleydell has a 
most intimate knowledge of the country — one of the last 
autonomous African States — for she has, even though her 
residence was in Tangier, a port of bastard Orientalism, 
lived many years in the land. . . . All the most amus- 
ing of her experiences are bound up with sport ... of 
captures, and all but captures, by the infamous Raisuli ; of 
a dinner party at the Tangier residence of the disgraced 
minister, El Menibhi; of a Moorish wedding and of an 
encounter with Spanish outposts. Mrs. Pleydell has some- 
thing to say, and says it well. But, above all else, she has 
succeeded in catching the atmosphere of the land and in 
writing of Morocco. . . . The sadness and sorrows, the 
strange Eastern scenes, the mysterious voices of the quietly 
falling night, the baffling mixture of good and evil with 
nature, the pathos of ruin that has fallen on Islam in its 
westernmost homes, are all in Mrs. Pleyd ell's pages, and 
for this alone the book is worth reading." 

A Trip through 
the Balkan States 

I left Portsmouth by the 9.41 a.m. train on the 
25th August, 1908. With the knowledge acquired 
by a previous experience I had so regulated my 
" kit " that my box, when packed, whose contents 
were to last me for thirty-five days, weighed 
almost exactly 55 lbs. To make doubly sure of 
this important fact, I had the box weighed again 
by a porter at the station, whose astonishment 
was very apparent when he found the weight to 
be exactly as I had foretold. I merely remarked 
that the old soldier is not so bad after all, and 
should know a thing or two about "kits," especially 
after three campaigns. The porter's sympathies 
and admiration were at once enlisted, for he had 
also served his time in the army. 

There was only one occupant of my carriage 
besides myself, and I saw at once that he was 

8 A Trip through the Balkan States 

a foreigner. So many foreigners, nowadays, speak 
English, that I was not surprised, in reply to my 
statement that it was a fine day, to find that my 
friend spoke the English language fluently. 

I mentioned my present mission and informed 
him of my desire to learn for myself some of the 
aspects of affairs regarding the apparently little 
known Balkan States. He was interested, even 
enthusiastic, at once, but soon wandered off into 
what was, evidently, one of the ideals or dreams 
of his life, namely, the federation of Europe. 

Now, this was a subject about which I knew 
very little, nor did I remember ever having heard 
the question discussed among my English friends. 
This fact, however, does not prove its non-existence, 
which so many Englishmen might have us believe, 
so I leaned over towards my friend, anxious to 
become better acquainted with his views on the 

He entered fully into the matter and, moreover, 
stated that, in his opinion, each country in Europe 
should contribute to a general standing army, the 
whole force to be placed under a chosen Comman- 

A Trip through the Balkan States 9 

" Say the Kaiser, for instance, to start with," he 
added with, I thought, just a suspicion of merri- 
ment in his eyes. 

When he had gone thoroughly into the subject 
and stated his views, he asked me for mine. 

Well, from a common-sense aspect, I merely 
remarked that the idea was Utopian in the extreme 
and that it would be almost impossible to carry out 
so long as different religions prevailed. Indeed, 
I ventured the remark that the people of the world 
would be happy and content if they had but one 
universal religion and acted up to it. I then asked 
him what he would do with the Pope, who had 
such enormous political, as well as religious, power, 
There was some diflficulty here, and my friend 
could advance no theory on this point, clever man 
as he undoubtedly seemed to be. 

In support of my further suggestion as to the 
power over their flocks of the Eoman Catholic 
priests, I mentioned the fact of those clerics who 
could quell riots when all other peaceful and per- 
suasive methods failed, and added that perhaps 
they could as easily cause them ! 

Should the federation of Europe ever be an 

lo A Trip through the Balkan States 

accomplished fact, I also told my interesting friend 
that in time there would be but one language, and 
that it would not be, I thought, Esperanto, which 
is neither classical nor historical. 

I began to wonder if he were a German. I did 
not like to ask him, but ventured the remark that, 
talking of languages, the German takes the trouble 
to acquire them — especially English and French — 
because he does not want to miss anything ! 

** No," I said, in conclusion, for the train was 
nearing London. *' If each country had to con- 
tribute towards a European standing army, what 
would prevent these small armies fighting against 
one another should occasion arise ? " 

I asked, finally, if there would not be a great 
loss to trade, in the manufacture of arms, etc., if 
his Utopian idea came into practice. He rejoined, 
very quietly, 

" No ; a cannon, when made, is of no use to 

There was evidently a deep meaning in this, and 
as I bade him " good-bye/' I remarked that, after 
all, the English have the best form of democratic 
government in the world, with the best *' figurehead." 

A Trip through the Balkan States ii 

He winked knowingly, and running off, exclaimed 
that King Edward could, in his opinion, be king of 
France if he wished ! 

I drew a long breath and called for a porter. 

A journey from Charing Cross to Folkestone by 
the 2.2 p.m. train and a very rough passage across 
the Channel to Boulogne concluded my first day's 

As an experiment, I went to a so-called second- 
class hotel, described as one of less pretension than, 
well, say the " Cecil," but—" don't do it ! " Never 
again, say I, in Boulogne, at any rate. 

In my diminutive and dark bedroom there were 
neither gas, electric light, nor bells. An old bit 
of candle was stuck in an inebriated sort of way, 
into a candlestick on the chest of drawers, but there 
were no matches. 

I must say, however, that this hotel was in- 
finitely cleaner than a certain commercial establish- 
ment which I once sampled in one of England's 
largest cities, but the food was worse. The sugar 
was in the usual continental oblong lumps and the 
serviettes were larger than the towels ! The same 
funny little dinners prevailed, where one was given 

12 A Trip through the Balkan States 

a microscopic potato with one's fish and not another 
during the whole repast. 

On the following morning I made the acquaint- 
ance of some of the folks who were staying at the 
hotel. In the little smoking-room were a couple of 
Britishers who had just run over " to have a look 
at France," and who, no doubt, would return to the 
bosom of their respective families quite satisfied in 
their minds as to the absolute superiority of every- 
thing and everybody British. 

They had seen Boulogne. In their conversation 
they were summing up the virtues of all the 
doctors who had attended them at different periods 
of their lives. 

One ventured the remark that he found bael fruit 
the best thing for dysentery, and added that when 
he went to a chemist in Boulogne for that drug he 
was asked if he thought he was in the tropics ! 
This wonderful medicine, he stated, was not in the 
British Pharmacopoeia, and was spelt b-a-l-e ! 

The topic tben chauged to the shaving process, 
one gentleman remarking that he did not shave, 
but used clippers ! By his appearance I think this 
statement was correct. 

A Trip through the Balkan States 13 

In mutual confidence they both made the rather 
alarming remark that in their youth they had been 
intended for the medical profession; and, indeed, 
that they had " walked the hospitals." They even 
spoke as if they would have actually become fully- 
qualified medical men had they vouchsafed to 
continue their walks in this direction. By a 
dispensation of Providence this was, however, 
not to be, and perhaps some lives have been 

While this conversation went on, both these 
gentlemen had expressions on their faces as if they 
were frightened at what they had said. 

At luncheon I was edified by the wisdom and 
speech of the ladies present. Speaking of the 
wonderful attributes of " Whiteley's," one lady 
said that even a bottle of fleas had been procured 
at this establishment for a desirable customer; 
while another, a trifle more ancient, remarked that 
one could even get cremated or embalmed by the 
" Universal and Cheerful Provider ! " 

The conversation was becoming distinctly in- 
teresting, if a little morbid. A small wizened dame 
who, when she had finished her repast, folded her 

14 A Trip through the Balkan States 

serviette and carefully put it into a case emblazoned 
with her initials in scarlet, squeaked in a timorous 
manner that the fancy needlework at Whiteley's 
was excellent. Indeed, she made all her son's 
waistcoats from models obtained there. I saw one 
of the sons and one of the waistcoats. 

It was strange to be in Boulogne for the first 
time in my life, and this is, perhaps, my best 
excuse for alluding to the town at all. I noticed 
the slouchy-looking soldiers, off duty, with their 
absurdly short tunics and enormous trouser pockets, 
receptacles for untold goods. I saw but two motors 
and two bicycles in the streets. Oh, shades of 
Southsea ! 

I bought my postage stamps at a tobacconist's, 
which is the prevailing custom, and visited Notre 
Dame, a miniature St. Paul's. Here I discovered 
in a conspicuous position in the building a frag- 
ment of a certain miraculous hand, there being 
an eminence for kneeling upon, placed in front of 
it. The whole interior was, on this occasion, 
draped in blue and white, and I was greatly 
struck with a very beautiful figure of Christ and 
the Virgin Mary in a storm-tossed boat. 

A Trip through the Balkan States 15 

On my way home I had some coffee at a res- 
taurant, where I noticed the serious and childlike 
manner in which a Frenchman will devour cakes, 
and was further edified by the sight of an American 
lady and gentleman eating their ices alternately 
from each other's glasses. I heard an Englishman 
asking for tea-cake ! This, like buttered toast and 
biscuits, is a luxury one does not find on the 
Continent. Indeed, I don't think I have ever 
seen a foreigner indulge in tea : it is sweets, or 

The next day, the 27th, it rained hard till noon, 
and I could scarcely realise that I was across the 
Channel, for the same south-westerly gale was 
blowing, and people were holding on to their hats as 
at Folkestone. 

I left Boulogne by an evening train for B41e. It 
was a twelve hours' journey and I found the pillow 
which I had in my rugs a great comfort during the 

It seldom occurs that one can have a whole side 
of a compartment to oneself on the Continent 
where so many people appear to travel by night. 
You must therefore be prepared to sit up or lean 

1 6 A Trip through the Balkan States 

against the side of the carriage during the whole 

In my compartment were an Italian- Swiss with 
his wife and infant. He informed me that he had 
been manager of a restaurant near Liverpool for 
two years, and that he was now going to see his 
wife's father who lived in Eussia and had a large 
confectionery business. We became quite con- 
fidential during the journey — I because I wanted 
information, and he because, being a business man 
he had an eye to business on this occasion, and was 
already anticipating the conditions under which he 
and his family would be able to sleep comfortably 
during the night. His wife was tall, fair, and 
healthy-looking, and her husband remarked that 
Swiss girls were strong — a statement borne out to 
his entire satisfaction by the fact that she was the 
only lady on the boat from Folkestone to Boulogne 
who was not ill. Now, the young couple appeared 
to be very devoted to one another and to their 

The husband was, as is usual with foreigners, 
unshaven, which the baby did not seem to object to 
on the innumerable occasions which were relegated 

A Trip through the Balkan States 17 

to the kissing process. They were evidently not 
suffering from poverty, and I daresay during their 
stay in England had managed to put by a nice little 
sum of money, even if it had been accomplished at 
the cost of a great deal of indigestion among their 
customers from the creamy properties of the Swiss 

At 7 p.m. they both went in to the five-franc 
dinner (there was a restaurant car on the train) 
leaving the baby asleep, and extended on the seat 
of the carriage. I was therefore alone with the 
infant, and terrified in case it should awake and 
scream while its parents were oblivious of the 
fact. During dinner the mother came back once 
to ask me if baby was all right. This, of course, 
in her best French. I assured her that all was 
right, and she went away smiling. 

We reached Laon at 9.45 p.m., when the 
family made preparations for rest and comfort. 
The lady lay down, having removed her boots, on 
the seat opposite mine, using the infant for a 
pillow. I may mention that, previous to this, the 
husband had prepared the baby's food, which con- 
sisted of water, sugar, and milk, and forced the 


1 8 A Trip through the Balkan States 

india-rubber teat of the bottle containing the 
nourishment into its mouth. 

Lights were now extinguished, and the husband 
curled himself up in a marvellous manner, and in 
an extremely small space, at the end of my seat, 
and went fast asleep. The baby squirmed and 
screamed through the long night, while its mother 
was occupied at intervals in reaching out her hand 
on a voyage of discovery with regard to the child's 
mouth, to insert therein the afore-mentioned magic 

The climax came, however, when baby fell out 
on the floor ! There was now a hubbub on all sides, 
but I will not dwell on the subject, which was 
certainly painful — to the baby. 

At 5.30 a.m. the next day, we arrived at Alfc- 
Miinsterol on the German frontier, where our 
handbags were examined by the Custom's officials. 
Shortly after this my friends arose from their — 
what appeared to be — ideal couches, and proceeded 
to wash baby and give it clean linen — but there! 
The lady then performed her own toilet, rolling 
up her masses of fair hair into becoming knots and 

A Trip through the Balkan States 19 

We reached BMe at 6.45 a.m. My hotel here, 
which, by the way, was another example of those of 
" lesser pretension," and called the St. Gotbard, was 
very comfortable and clean. The manageress and 
head waiter were kindness and civility itself, and, 
thank heaven ! there was no portier ! It was also 
convenient to the station and one could walk across. 
The food was good, and one enjoyed once again the 
old-fashioned Swiss breakfast, with its jam, faked 
honey, and politeness. Our hotel was, moreover, 
evidently popular with outsiders in the town, for 
I noticed a good many portiers from other hotels 
coming to the bar in the evening, to bestow their 
patronage and obtain beer. I wondered why they 
did not get their drinks at their own hotels. 

I managed to get a stroll in the afternoon, but 
had to return speedily, on account of the extra- 
ordinary fascination which the white shoes I was 
wearing had for the inhabitants of Bale. They 
did not stare, I must admit, at all rudely, but 
merely in wonderment. All the same it made one 
feel shy, which is perhaps a form of self-conscious- 
ness. I may add, that in Boulogne I wore brown 
boots, which also drew a great deal of attention on 

20 A Trip through the Balkan States 

the part of the populace. 

The shops in Bale were full of photos of 
Zepperlin, of airship fame; indeed, he appeared 
to be considered a great hero in these parts. 

All Swiss men seem to be able to carry weights 
on their backs with the greatest ease, and I even 
saw a large number of boys going to school carry- 
ing knapsacks. 

Now, everyone appears to have been in Bale, 
which leaves one very little to write about, but if 
I should be asked what the place is noted for, I 
might safely venture : its fine railway station with 
bare interior, its dainty hotels, its splendid open-air 
fruit, vegetable and flower market, its old streets 
and houses, and its muddy-looking Ehine. It is, 
moreover, kept in a remarkably clean condition. 

I noticed that in the dusk of the evening the 
streets were occasionally made gay by the sight of 
ladies riding bicycles very gracefully, and holding 
Chinese lanterns for lights. 

I left Bale by the 8.50 a.m. train, on the 29th 
for Innsbriick, the Custom's examination on the 
Austrian frontier being at Buchs, which we reached 
at 1.30 p.m., the same day. 

A Trip through the Balkan States 21 

A good many Germans were travelling by this 
train and I noticed how few of them possessed 
a trunk of any kind, bags and packages, carried 
by hand, and placed in the carriage racks, contain- 
ing all that would appear to be necessary to their 
wants. I also observed that in railway journeys on 
the Continent one shows one's ticket in the carriage 
to an examining official who is, evidently, attached 
to the train, and very seldom in the station, as is 
the custom in England. 

Soon after the train starts and at all important 
junctions you are requested to show your ticket, 
while, before reaching your destination, you give 
it up. This appears to be a better arrangement 
than the one of rushing about with your ticket 
in your hand, and perhaps squeezing through a 
crowded and narrow gateway. 

After leaving B^le we passed some beautifully 
wooded hills and orchards with heavily-laden apple 

The air was warm and balmy, and the whole 
country inviting, very pretty villages being dotted 
about — one named Eiken being especially pic- 
turesque. The great abundance of fruit in these 

22 A Trip through the Balkan States 

villages was remarkable, many trees being propped 
up to enable them to support their loads. 

Our first stop was at Brugg at 10 a.m. Then 
we passed through a very long tunnel and the 
country opened out into a lovely panorama of 
valleys and hills. A pretty, winding river was 
crossed and re-crossed and then we arrived at a 
small town called Baden. 

One noticed that bullocks were used a good deal 
for draught purposes as we proceeded farther, and 
my attention was also drawn to a dog which was 
guarding sheep in a field, and who appeared to be 
on rather unusually friendly terms with them. 
Indeed, he was walking about among them quite 
freely, keeping, of course, an eye upon them at 
the same time and prepared, no doubt, to assert 
his authority when necessary. 

At 10.35 a.m. we reached Zurich, where all the 
railway officials were, more or less, smoking cigars. 
We left again at 11.15 a.m. 

In the meantime a couple of Frenchwomen, one 
very stout and the other very thin, got into my 
carriage. They immediately began to exchange 
great confidences. The thin one pulled up her 

A Trip through the Balkan States 23 

skirt a trifle before sitting down; the stout one 
did not. 

As we left Zurich, one had a splendid view of 
the town and lake, and how lovely it all was 
as we passed along by the water's edge ! Is there 
another place in the world to equal Zurich ? And 
how glorious the scenery became as we reached the 
smaller lake of Wesen, with the hills on the right, 
some of which are high enough to be kissed lightly 
by the clouds, while others have a much closer 
acquaintance ! It is emotional ! 

There was, I forgot to mention, one German 
gentleman, besides the French ladies, in the 
carriage. He spoke good English, and I noticed 
that, in common with so many men on the Con- 
tinent, his voice was very sonorous, and also that 
be was, as usual, able to afford the table d'hote 
luncheon in the restaurant car. 

At these functions one sees the constant and, 
seemingly, cleanly practice with regard to for- 
eigners in general of tucking the napkin under the 
chin, or to one side. At one o'clock precisely the 
thin lady was reading her Prayer Book for all she 
was worth, while the stout one slumbered. These 

24 A Trip through the Balkan States 

two, confidential and bosom friends as they were, 
had evidently different views. 

At Buchs our carriage filled up. The assistant 
station-master (?) here informed me that I could 
only take ten cigars, free of duty, into Austrian 
territory. Now, I had an open box containing 
about forty and I found that the duty upon them 
was extremely high. It therefore became a ques- 
tion whether it was worth while keeping them, 
especially as I had no money to waste. I decided 
it was not, so having taken out the ** allowed ten " 
I asked the official how I had best dispose of the 
remainder. He said, with a smile, that that ques- 
tion could be easily settled. I took the hint and 
handed the cigars to him ! The German who was 
in my carriage was highly amused when I told 
him the story and was, moreover, somewhat as- 
tonished at my innocence in saying anything 
about the box of cigars in the first instance. How- 
ever, I lit one of the ten, rather savagely, and pon- 
dered over the question : " Should one always be 

After leaving Buchs the scenery was still very 
beautiful and the fields intensely green, while fir 

A Trip through the Balkan States 25 

trees lined our route and mountains appeared on 
both sides. It was, moreover, becoming perceptibly 

At 4.30 p.m. we went through the Arlberg tunnel, 
which is 10,000 yards long, and then passed St. 
Anton, and over the Trisanna bridge, siid to be 
258 feet high. The Stelvio Pass carriage road is 
also in these parts and is 9,000 feet high, which is 
probably one of the highest in Europe. 

The scenery became more varied towards even- 
ing, several rapid, rough streams, pretty mountain 
villages, and distant snow-capped hills being con- 
tained in the panorama. 

As we journeyed on, the hills became nearer and 
more rocky, clouds being low upon them and gorges 
very plentiful. 

The picture was still more beautiful at Strengen, 
and then we crossed the river Inn and, leaving 
it, made our way hundreds of feet above, until 
the river appeared to trace its way to a snug little 
village below. It, however, turned up again and 
we re-crossed it before arriving at Landeck, where 
it became wider and quieter. 

We reached Innsbruck at 6.30 p.m. Having 

26 A Trip through the Balkan States 

driven a considerable distance to the hotel I had 
intended staying at I was rather disgusted to find 
that there was not a vacant room ! 

After a journey lasting nearly all day, and when 
one is tired, hungry, and unwashed, I know of 
nothing much more disagreeable and calculated to 
try one's temper than to be told, when you think 
you have at last secured rest and food, that there 
is no accommodation for you. It makes one feel 
sorry that one came — for the moment, at any rate. 

On this occasion, however, what appeared to be 
my misfortune was the very opposite, for having 
been directed to another hotel which, by the way, 
was also one of the " unpretentious " variety, and 
called the Veldidena, I found that I had got into 
clover. I must, therefore, be forgiven for eulogis- 
ing, to some extent, my home at Innsbriick. 

On driving up to the entrance I was told that 
all the single bedrooms were engaged, but that 
I could have a double one on paying a little extra, 
which I agreed to. 

The Veldidena is a hotel of the rustic order and 
is situated some distance from the town. The 
tramway, however, passes the door. My bedroom 

A Trip through the Balkan States 27 

was a large one, containing three bedsteads, each 
adorned with two huge, very soft, square pillows 
the width of the bed. I rather liked these pillows, 
for when lying down the treatment accorded to 
one's body was more rational than if one's head 
alone is elevated. 

There were no table d'hote meals, all food being 
served in a restaurant, where you ordered what 
you pleased and when you wished. There were 
girls to do the waiting, who were assisted by a 
couple of smart little boys, all of whom were the 
acme of alertness. They did not, however, under- 
stand a word of English, which did not seem to 
matter much so far as their waiting was concerned. 

The food was plentiful and homely, the bread 
being extremely nice, and I thoroughly enjoyed 
the excellent thick broth which was served at mid- 
day and was made of rabbit and vegetables, with 
plenty of rice. When one ordered tea which, as 
is usual on the Continent, appears to be considered 
a luxury, the waiters inquired if you took it with 
milk, sugar being supplied without a question. 
The opposite to this prevails in England. 

Now, there were two restaurants in the hotel, 

28 A Trip through the Balkan States 

one, before-mentioned, for the residents, and the 
other, a public one, for travellers and country folks. 
And how everyone, including the children, lapped 
up the beer! But there, I do not wonder at 

While sitting at my evening meal, Austrian 
officers, in their tunics and, of course, wearing 
swords, came in to dine, and I noticed that they 
invariably tucked their napkins under the right 
side of their chins. I wondered if there were any 
code of ethics in the matter according to countries. 
There appeared, indeed, to be no one but Austrians 
in the hotel, and the only thing English which 
was noticeable was a very fine red setter which 
wandered about the rooms and made the acquaint- 
ance of everybody. One wished he could speak ! 

A frequent occupant of the table next mine was 
a young Austrian (with his mother) who smoked 
half a dozen cigarettes after early breakfast and 
went on with the process after each meal. It is 
curious that in countries where the males appear 
to be never without a cigarette or cigar in their 
mouths, the habit has never extended to the 

A Trip through the Balkan States 29 

I mentioned before that large quantities of beer 
were consumed and it was somewhat remarkable 
to notice that the travellers and peasants who 
came in for refreshment in the adjoining restaurant 
would consume a quart of beer before beginning 
their meal, and then go on with it ad infinitum. 

The next day, the 30th, it was raining hard, and 
very misty when I got up, and the mountains in 
which Innsbruck is set like a jewel in a ring were 
scarcely visible. One was now in an Alpine pro- 
vince of the Austrian empire where the Eomans 
have left their mark. The old German tribes also 
invaded the country at one time or another and a 
certain number of them settled in it. 

Innsbruck is the capital of the Austrian Tyrol, 
and is situated on both sides of the river Inn, 
which is rapid-flowing and muddy-looking. Its 
population is about 35,000. It is nearly 2,000 feet 
above sea level, and the average height of the sur- 
rounding mountains is about 7,000 feet. 

I was greeted, on going down to breakfast, by 
the proprietress who, in pretty, broken English 
asked me "if I had slept well." This was quite 
unusual, I thought, in a hotel, and was enough to 

30 A Trip through the Balkan States 

soften the heart 1 In fact, I have never before met 
with greater attention than in this cosy estabHsh- 
ment. The proprietor was a fine, honest-looking 
fellow, but hardly knew a word of English. 

I may mention, too, that all my bedroom things 
were nicely arranged and dusted by the maid, and 
that everything was scrupulously clean. Indeed, 
I have come to the conclusion that where the 
management of a hotel is performed by a woman, 
it is infinitely better done, with regard to cleanli- 
ness and order, than if in the hands of the sterner 

There was a pretty little beer garden in the 
hotel grounds at the back, where one could sit 
" under the spreading chestnut tree; " but, on this 
occasion, there was no opportunity of enjoying 
this luxury, owing to the rain, which at noon was 
still coming down in torrents. The air, however, 
was warm and there was no wind. 

During the afternoon, a violent thunderstorm 
came on. I went out, in spite of the rain, and 
having reason to believe that letters for me may 
have been directed to another hotel in the town, I 
went there and made inquiries of the majestic 

A Trip through the Balkan States 31 

portier in that establishment. I then asked him 
to direct me to Cook's office, which he did, but 
added, sarcastically, " He won't be open to-day," 
(referring to the manager) " Sunday — he is too big 
a man for that ! " 

To avoid the rain I went in to a cinematograph 
show which was held in a tiny theatre, wherein it 
was insufferably hot. The front seats were, sen- 
sibly I thought, the cheapest, the prices increasing 
as you went back, and the floor was gradually 
raised. Perhaps in England in, say, ten years 
time, this plan will be adopted ! One does not 
care to be too close to the shivering cinematograph. 

Among the pictures exhibited were portraits of 
the European kings. That of Edward VII was 
received with respect, while that of William of 
Germany was greeted with laughter. There were 
also some excellent pictures of wild animals, lions, 
zebras, leopards, crocodiles, etc., which appeared to 
be in a state of nature and roaming about their 
native forests and river sides. During the per- 
formance an official squirted scent over our heads, 
which was certainly a novel, if not a necessary 

32 A Trip through the Balkan States 

A stroll through the streets quickly brought to 
one's notice that it was Sunday, for all the shops 
were closed. 

It was remarkable, somewhat, that nearly every- 
one out of doors wore hooded cloaks, which were 
certainly very sensible things for the wet weather. 
The countrymen had thick woollen stockings on, 
and very stout black boots. The Austrian, more- 
over, wears his hair very closely cropped, and it 
is a wonder they do not shave their heads and have 
done with it ! 

The town is small and clean, with fine streets 
and buildings, and plenty of letter-boxes. In some 
respects it is quaint too, and not quite like any 
other. The cloisters, with their shops, remind one 
of Berne, while there are picturesque bits like 
Salzburg, although Innsbriick, to my mind, is not 
so romantic-looking as that place. There is plenty 
of space and the shops are fairly good. 

One notices that the streets are busy with people, 
who, however, appear to be principally sightseers. 

Big dogs, unmuzzled and unled, wander about, 
but I saw neither motor-cars nor bicycles. 

Perhaps the most interesting building is the 

A Trip through the Balkan States 33 

Eglise de Cour, or Court Church. This was com- 
menced in A.D. 1553, and finished ten years after, 
and contains, probably, certain works of art which 
are unique. There are, in the interior, ten fine 
columns of red marble and twenty-eight brass 
statues, more than life size, which represent the 
royal forefathers of the Emperor Max. Most of 
these are dated A.D. 1525, or thereabouts, and 
they include a particularly fine one of Arthur, King 
of England. There are also twenty-four beautifully 
sculptured plaques of Carrara marble representing 
the different achievements of the Emperor Max, 
including his marriage, and victories over his 

Adjoining this church is the theatre, built in 
1835, a fine building with four stately columns at 
the entrance. Opposite, is the King's palace, a 
large, plain building. 

Among the other buildings of note may be 
mentioned the beautiful Volksthe4tre, the Arc de 
Triomphe, erected in 1765 by the citizens of 
Innsbriick as a souvenir of the entry of the Arch- 
duke Leopold with his fimicee, Maria Ludovica, 
the University, the Museum, and the Conservatoire 

34 A Trip through the Balkan States 

of Music. I may add that there is also a fine 
statue of Andreas Hofer, the patriot and Tyrolese 
leader, whose name, in these parts, is one almost 
to conjure with. 

The old town of Innsbruck is very interesting, 
and was founded in the twelfth century. It con- 
tains some exceedingly quaint houses and old 
walls, etc. 

The next day, the 31st, it was much colder, and 
the mountains, now visible as the mist cleared 
away, were seen to be covered with snow. The 
air was brisk and very dry and one could realise 
what a healthy climate it was. The sun came out 
at 9 a.m. and I spent the morning in walking. 

I left for Budapest at 3.50 p.m., my last im- 
pression of lunsbriick not being a good one, owing 
to the inferior and dirty railway station and the 
slowness of the porters therein. 

On this occasion my carriage was full at the 
start, and if we were all going to Budapest it was 
a certainty that we should have an " all night 
sitting." The capable German and his wife were 
with us, but he would persist in opening and 
shutting doors and windows according to tunnels, 

A Trip through the Balkan States 35 

which were pretty frequent. I was, however, glad 
to leave this duty to him unconditionally. 

On leaving Innsbriick, the mountain and forest 
scenery was truly superb, while snow-capped hills 
could be seen in the distance. 

We soon skirted a very deep ravine, and one*s 
attention was drawn to a fine cascade. Tunnels 
were innumerable and the snowy hills were getting 
nearer on our right as we journeyed. 

We passed over the Brenner Pass, which is 4,000 
feet high, and then the beauty of the scenery in- 
creased, dozens of cascades and glaciers enhancing 

As we proceeded, a pretty little town — Gozenzas 
— lay below us. We were rather a merry lot, I 
must say, in our carriage, and included a dainty 
little French girl, with her father, who could only 
speak their own language. As the two Germans 
could, however, converse fluently in both English 
and French, there was plenty of conversation. 

The railway now began to descend considerably 
and we eventually arrived at the before-mentioned 
Gozenzas, which I found was a great resort for 

36 A Trip through the Balkan States 

At 6 p.m. Francesfeste was reached, where one 
noticed some Austrian fortresses and where I got a 
cup of coffee. At 8.25 p.m. we arrived at Toblach, 
near which place are the celebrated dolomites. We 
could not, however, see these extraordinary for- 
mations, as it was quite dark. The French folks 
left us at Toblach. 

We started again shortly, and met a great many 
trains full of Jaegers who were coming from the 
army manoeuvres. At 9.30 p.m. we reached Lienz, 
where one was able to indulge in a nice little supper 
for 2 krs. 60 hellers, and which was brought to the 
carriage. My meal was supplemented, moreover, 
by a delicious pear which the German lady peeled 
and gave me, bless her ! 

At 3 a.m. the following day, September 1st., we 
arrived at Marburg and I here indulged in one of 
my cigars, which were now reduced to five ! My 
German friend did not smoke, which is very unusual 
among his countrymen. At 3.45 a.m., he and his 
wife got out, rather to my disgust, as we had been 
on quite friendly terms which lessened considerably 
the monotony of a long journey. I was now alone 
in the carriage. The morning air was a bit chilly 

A Trip through the Balkan States 37 

and for the first time I found an overcoat very 

At 5 a.m. I noticed that the country had become 
flat and there was a dense mist over the fields. 
Later on the morning was glorious, and what ap- 
peared to be a fair-sized lake came into view. My 
compartment filled up by degrees, the occupants 
including six young children, one of whom was 
carrying a puppy very carefully wrapped in a huge 
blanket, a father, mother, and nurse. Nine coats 
of different sizes and patterns were accordingly 
hung round the carriage wherever a suitable or 
unsuitable peg presented itself, while the parcels 
innumerable which they all carried were deposited 
anywhere. The youngest child, about two years 
old, wore pearl ear-rings. Quantities of food were 
soon produced, and as there is no shyness about 
foreigners at any age, they one and all set to and 
thoroughly enjoyed themselves. One of the little 
girls was very beautiful, and, moreover, a con- 
summate little actress. Indeed, had I been quite 
certain that she had not been eating garlic I should 
have liked to have kissed her ! 

At 10.30 a.m. we arrived at Budapest, and the 

38 A Trip through the Balkan States 

morning was fine and sunny. I put up here at 
what is called a " first-class " hotel, being one of 
''great pretensions." My bedroom, however, was 
not too clean, and the food was only passable, 
considering the cost. I found the system of paying 
one's hotel bills by coupons convenient, in that one 
is not obliged to carry nearly so much money as 
otherwise ; but in the Austrian and Hungarian 
hotels where table d'hote meals are not, as a rule, 
supplied, the managers do not care for coupons 
which ensure meals at fixed prices, and make it also 
difficult for them to know what to provide for the 
exact amount. This was explained to me by the 
head waiter here, who I found to be very civil, and 
when travelling alone in foreign parts a little civility 
is very acceptable. 

While having my smoke after dinner in the lounge, 
a guide of the ** regulation pattern," conversant in 
every European language, polite and persuasive, 
came and sat beside me. In answer to my question 
as to whether I should find any difficulty about 
hotel accommodation whither I was proceeding the 
next day, he replied, 

" Bucharest is not the same as Budapest, 

A Trip through the Balkan States 39 

and is a place people usually want to get away 

I rather doubted this assertion, and could see that 
my friend was a strong and devoted admirer of the 
Hungarian capital. He asked me if I had ever met 
the late Sir Havelock Allan, for he had had the 
pleasure of " showing him round." 

I rather astonished him by saying that I had 
shaken hands with Sir Havelock Allan the day he 
was killed on the Indian frontier ! The guide then 
informed me that he knew the renowned Baden 
Powell, and finally drew my attention to an Austrian 
Countess who, with her husband, passed by during 
our conversation. He said, 

" She was Miss Vanderbilt who got title in ex- 
change for money, and who, like so many citizens 
of America, do not despise a high-sounding 

And how money is worshipped on the Continent ! 
At the hotels they seem to consider nothing else, as 
a rule, and one feels that any kindness shown is due 
to an anticipated " tip," and that every bow and 
smile has its price. To witness the slavish grovel- 
ling of officials, from the manager down to the 

40 A Trip through the Balkan States 

lowest flunkey, before a Vanderbilt married to a 
Count is a bit sickening, as well as amusing. 

The next day, the 2nd September, it rained a little 
in the early morning, but the sun came out at ten 
o'clock, clouds gathering again towards noon, when 
the air became cooler. 

I left Budapest by the 2.40 p.m. train. At the 
station I was lucky enough to meet an extremely 
civil and useful interpreter who saw to my box and 
procured me a seat in the only carriage which was 
proceeding as far as Orsova, the Hungarian frontier 
town. Indeed, I don't know what I should have 
done without him, and I never gave a man a 
shilling, in this instance a krone, with greater 
pleasure. I noticed that male travellers in these 
parts had a signed photo of themselves with, 
probably, descriptive details, in their card cases. 
This would seem to be a good idea in case identi- 
fication should be necessary, say, after an accident. 

Our carriage was full at starting, and an old 
gentleman with a very benevolent countenance 
sat opposite me. I tried him with French and in- 
formed him that I was English. At this his eyes 
glistened and he smiled with evident delight. He 

A Trip through the Balkan States 41 

spoke sufficient broken English, although with 
great effort and a good amount of stuttering, to 
make me understand that he was a pensioned 
chief of police, and, like all foreigners, thought that 
the English spoke very fast. He was yet another 
example of a non-smoker, although he carried an 
empty cigar case which was used as a receptacle for 
his travelling cap! He told me he was learning 
English in his old age, with the object of visiting 
England next year, and that he had already 
translated, with his master, the first act of ** The 
Lady of Lyons." He lived at a place called Kecs- 
kemet, which name he wrote down carefully in my 
pocket-book, and seemed proud of the fact that it 
was, as he tried to explain to me, a " self-governed** 
town of 60,000 inhabitants, its chief exports being 
poultry, eggs, and fruit. He got out at his 
destination, where we arrived at 4.45 p.m. having 
bade me good-bye with a warm shake hands, and 
a parting remark that he failed to understand 
the subtle difference between the English words 
** voyage," and "journey." There was no time to 
explain, however. 
The corridor system in continental trains makes 

42 A Trip through the Balkan States 

travelling very safe, as well as sociable, and its 
general adoption in England would, no doubt, put 
an end to murders, suicides, and assaults which 
nowadays are not so very infrequent. At all the 
small stations en route fruit was sold, which was a 
great relish on such hot days. We arrived at Sag at, 
which is evidently a large factory town, at 6.10 p.m. 
It now commenced to rain, and everything looked 
very dismal ; even the barges and small craft which 
were ** laying to " on a small river we crossed 
having a wet day appearance. Towards 8 p.m. I 
was getting very hungry and, unfortunately, one 
sandwich, brought with me, a piece of chocolate 
and a cigar, had to suffice for my dinner ; a glass 
of Pilsen beer would have been most acceptable, 
but it was not to be. As a rather silent English- 
man, I was always struck by the constant and 
untiring conversation that was going on in my 
carriage. One would think that everyone entering 
a carriage was well acquainted with each other, and 
one can but admire this friendliness and sociability 
on the part of foreigners, although I wondered, at 
times, if it ever became a bore to certain individuals 
of perhaps quiet natures. 

A Trip through the Balkan States 43 

We arrived at Orsova at 1.10 a.m. the next day, 
September 3rd, and this being the frontier town 
one had now to change trains in order to enter 
Eoumania, which commences at Verciorova, the 
distance between the two places being very small, 
and taking only ten minutes to traverse. It was 
a matter of great importance that one should not, 
at this hour of the morning, make any mistake 
with regard to trains. My passport was called for, 
for the first time, at Orsova, and after examination 
was stamped by an official. I found that I had 
to put my watch on an hour at Verciorova, where 
there was a Custom's examination of handbags 
only. My passport was here again scrutinised, 
this time very carefully, and the details contained 
in it were copied. 

I thought the station looked very clean and I was 
able, moreover, to get a cup of coffee and a piece 
of rather nasty cake. Having secured an obliging 
porter, who relieved me of the things I was carry- 
ing, I was soon settled in the Koumanian train. 
The carriage was beautifully upholstered and very 
comfortable. We started again at 3.5 a.m., my 
companions consisting of one lady and four gentle- 

44 A Trip through the Balkan States 

men, one of whom, I noticed, wore blue celluloid 
cuffs, a fact mentioned because I do not remember 
ever having seen such things before. About half an 
hour after starting, the lady discovered, apparently, 
that she was in a wrong train, and insisted upon 
standing at the door and arguing with the four 
gentlemen, as to whether she or the railway 
officials were to blame. The argument continued, 
by my watch, for nearly three quarters of an hour ! 
At four o'clock she got out, at our first stopping 
station. It was pitch dark and very chilly, and I 
must say I rather pitied her. 

Being unable to sleep I saw the morning break, 
and as the dim light of day appeared I rubbed my 
eyes on looking out of the window, for everything 
was so Eastern in appearance. It was almost like 
India. Graceful women, in white draperies, were 
carrying pitchers on their heads, supported by the 
hand, and were hurrying along, barefooted, and 
with stately walk. The Bombay woman came 
vividly to one's mind. 

The morning, too, was lovely and one could see 
that the land was in a splendid state of cultivation, 
fields of maize and corn being in great abundance. 

A Trip through the Balkan States 43 

We passed gardens of sunflowers and very cleanly- 
kept, although small, railway stations which were 
filled with groups of peasantry. The men wore 
astrakhan caps, and there was a Cossack look about 
them, more especially when mounted on ponies, as 
one often saw them. At first sight, one was aware 
of the fact that Eoumania is a mixture of East and 
West: the general appearance of the country folk, 
the oxen-drawn country carts, the women driving the 
cattle in the fields, and the hideous, slate-coloured 
buffaloes representing the Eastern aspect. The 
closely-cropped hair of the Austrian, almost convict 
like, one had now got away from, the Eoumanian 
being more rational in this respect. 

Judging from their language, which was just as 
peculiar to listen to and impossible of translation as 
Hungarian, the four gentlemen in my carriage were 
evidently Eoumanians. I was, consequently, unable 
to fraternise with them in any way. 

Now, I may mention that before leaving Buda- 
pest I managed, luckily, to obtain five Eoumanian 
shillings, which I trusted would see me through 
with regard to porters and cab, if necessary. 
I could not, therefore, afford to spend these 

4^ A Trip through the Balkan States 

shillings otherwise, and had to look longingly at 
the lovely fruit on sale at the different stations, 
and with which my four companions amply supplied 
themselves and consumed under my very nose in 
the carriage. There were grapes — and it was such a 
thirsty day ! — plums, which were tied to long sticks, 
apples, and exceedingly fine, new walnuts. After a 
surfeit of these, the four gentlemen made and lit 
their cigarettes, while I had to be satisfied, secretly, 
too, with a couple of biscuits and a peppermint for 
breakfast ! 

It was no doubt getting perceptibly warmer as we 
journeyed along, and the country was very flat. We 
passed no rivers of any size. 

Bucharest was reached at twelve noon, but w^here 
was my box? It had not arrived! This was 
terrible, as I would be unable to change my clothes 
and boots. Could anything be much worse, I 
thought, after so long a journey ? (twenty-one hours). 

There was an hotel omnibus at the station and I 
drove off in it at once, having discovered that the 
railway porters here would do nothing for you under 
sixpence. On arrival at the hotel my passport was 
examined and its details taken down before I was 

A Trip through the Balkan States 47 

allowed to negotiate for a bedroom. The portier, 
an Austrian, was very civil, although full of self- 
importance, and only able to speak a few words of 
English. I got a very nice luncheon, which included 
a quail boiled in rice and rather like the Indian 
pilaow ; indeed, I rather think it was called by that 
name, here. The cooking and food were both 
extremely good at this hotel, and I noticed that the 
pepper was of the ordinary English variety and not 
the red stuff one gets in Hungary, which has neither 
heat nor flavour. The country wine (white) I found 
to be excellent. Dinner was served in the open air 
and at small tables, a huge grape-vine shading one 
from the sky. Grapes were very plentiful here, but 
were small and flavourless, while the melons and 
plums were exceedingly good. I may add that the 
water and wines were well iced. 

After lunch I felt, more than ever, the want of a 
change of clothes, and the temporary loss of my 
box was a warning to one to always carry one's 
money on one's person, a plan which I, luckily, had 
adopted. And, God help you if you haven't your 
passport in Koumania ! 

In the afternoon I paid a visit to what is called 

48 A Trip through the Balkan States 

Das Eumanische Athenaum, an imposing-looking, 
circular building with five majestic pillars at the 
entrance. It contains a very fine concert-room and 
also a collection of sculpture and painting, none of 
which, however, call for any special remark. 

The carriages on hire in Bucharest are exceed- 
ingly smart little conveyances, (chaises) each with a 
pair of horses, arab-looking, sleek, and long-tailed, 
with bells round their necks. They are loosely and 
swiftly driven by Hungarians, and, on inquiring if 
Eoumanians were not able to drive, my informant 

** Oh, yes, but they have other business to do ! '* 
The drivers wear neat little blue velvet caps with 
peaks, and similar in shape to those worn by our 
naval officers. They are robed in dark blue velvet 
gowns, reaching almost to the feet, and with girdles 
of red, white, or yellow, etc. I heard that tha 
introduction of one-horse vehicles was tried, but 
that Bucharest would not tolerate the indignity 
at any price ! The only traffic in this gay city which 
I noticed, was the constant stream of these swiftly 
driven chaises, all being of similar type ; and, further, 
almost everybody appeared to drive. 

A Trip through the Balkan States 49 

The following day, the 4th, was beautifully fine, 
and the morning cool. I had a very comfortable 
bedroom, and ordinary English pillows for one's 
head, with an extra small and very soft one for 
placing, I believe, between the knees. A further 
luxury was a lavatory basin at the end of the bed- 
room, which had a spray attachment for a head 
shower bath. This was, moreover, the first time I 
was supplied with a bath towel. I found that most 
of the servants spoke French fairly well, and that 
cigarettes, and not cigars, were chiefly smoked. 

Bucharest is a large and busy town. In the 
main streets, which are asphalted, and well paved, 
the shops are excellent and rather French in 
appearance. In fact, there is a decided French 
flavour about the whole place, although in certain 
parts the Eastern element is very marked, even to 
the pecuhar odour. There is, moreover, a fascinat- 
ing air of gaiety about Bucharest, more so even 
than in Budapest, and cafes abound in the principal 
streets and boulevards, 

A small river, the Limbovitza, runs through the 
town, over which are several bridges. Among the 
shops, I noticed one, and also a restaurant, with the 

50 A Trip through the Balkan States 

words "High Life" written over them, but what 
this indicated it would be difficult to surmise. 
There were plenty of establishments for the sale 
of music (although I did not hear a sound of music 
in the streets) and one found therein that there 
are other composers in the world besides those 
whose names one is accustomed to, and, moreover, 
I saw no music written by Englishmen, There 
were some very fine drapers' shops, including a 
'* Louvre ; " and those for the sale of gentlemen's 
attire were excellent. The confectionery establish- 
ments were also first-rate and very tempting. All 
the tobacconists appeared to sell foreign stamps 
for collectors, as well as picture postcards. 

The traffic kept to the right, and the tramcars 
were drawn by horses in the town itself ; electric 
power being used in the outskirts. It is strange 
that many of the streets (I believe the larger ones) 
are named ** Galea," while in Spain they are 
** Calle ; " and that others are called ** Strada," the 
same as in Malta. 

I found that boot-blacks were plentiful ; in fact, 
they shine in Bucharest ! Fruit was sold at every 
street corner, peaches, plums, grapes, pears, and 

A Trip through the Balkan States 51 

walnuts being in great abundance. In a certain 
shop I saw an advertisement stating that an Eng- 
lish professor, with a diploma of the ** High School, 
London," taught the EngHsh lamba (tongue), and 
I wondered who the professor might be, and what 
"High School'' he referred to. 

I saw no beauty of face or figure among the fair 
sex during the day, but, as in India, the ladies 
appeared to come out in the evening, when some 
'Very fine specimens of the Budapest type were to 
be seen. They wore extremely smart and well- 
fitting skirts, some indulging in coloured collars to 
their bodices. 

The streets appeared to be always crowded with 
officers, swaggering along, and as if they had very 
little to do. They were fairly smart-looking, some 
being extremely handsome, and not such dandies 
as Austrians who, one would think, could scarcely 
walk in their skin-tight uniforms. They were 
generally clad in light textured cloth tunics of a 
pale dove colour and with different hued facings, 
orange being much worn. I noticed occasionally 
some brown tunics, I believe, worn by Jaegers, 
while a scarlet coat was now and then to be seen. 

52 A Trip through the Balkan States 

Their trousers were, as a rule, dark, and piped 
with red, but some had two very broad red stripes, 
almost the entire width of the leg. The head- 
dress was a shaho of black, blue, or white, some 
of them being about two-thirds of the colour of 
the facings, and one-third black, and ornamented 
with gold braid. The senior officers wore less of 
the colour and more of the gold braid. A few 
officers I met had, however, a cap very like the 
_French hepi. Their boots were of a very good 
shape (this was also noticeable among civilians) 
and a great number wore long boots and spurs. 
The cadets had plumes in their shakos, those of the 
First Grade having red ones, the Second yellow, 
and so on. The soldiers appeared to all wear very 
coarse white drill tunics, which were well soiled, 
and immensely thick, dark trousers piped with 
red and tucked into ungainly butcher boots. Very 
few were to be seen in the streets. Commission- 
aires, who had red caps, appeared to be public 
servants, and were to be seen everywhere. One 
found them most useful for taking messages, 
telegrams, etc. 
. The public buildings in Bucharest were very 

A Trip through the Balkan States 53 

striking and, I think, would hold their own against 
any in Europe. They are all more or less white in 
appearance and one can see that a great deal of 
art has been bestowed upon them. The post-ofi&ce 
is, perhaps, the finest, while the State Bank and 
the Palace of Justice are well in keeping. The 
King's palace, on the other hand, is not a very im- 
posing building. There are some fine monuments, 
erected, doubtless, to great men, but a want of 
knowledge of Eoumanian history is a block to any 
description of them on my part. Of the hotels, the 
Grand Hotel du Boulevard is the most imposing. 
My church-hunting expedition was almost fruitless, 
as well as very tiring; the weather, too, was 
extremely hot. Furthermore, when I did manage 
to discover a church, I found it, as a rule, closed. 
One saw a great number of priests about, and they 
were tall, bearded men, in long, black gowns and 
a sort of " chimney-pot " hat made of dark velvet. 
One is stared at unmercifully in Bucharest, not 
rudely, and perhaps deservedly ! The cause, on 
this occasion, was because I ventured to wear 
breeches and putties instead of trousers ! The fact 
is, if one wishes to travel and ** sight see" peace- 

54 A Trip through the Balkan States 

fully on the Continent, one should adopt nothing 
conspicuous or too British in costume. 

The weather was becoming perceptibly warmer, 
and I began to suffer intensely from thirst in con- 
sequence, besides feeling a good deal out of sorts. 
The want of a change of clothes and boots was also 
very trying, and my feet were getting sore. I 
waited until noon for my box, and as it had not 
arrived, wired to the frontier station, Verciorova. 
The only English speaking waiter in the hotel 
cheered me up by saying that if the Custom's 
officials were keeping the box, they would not send 
it on until twenty-four years had elapsed ! He 
meant twenty-four hours. At 6 p.m. a reply wire 
was received, saying that the box was being sent on 
immediately. This was some comfort, at any rate. 
I went to bed very early and spent a wakeful night. 
The fact was, the delay in receiving my box meant 
my detention in Bucharest and consequently the 
running short of money ; my heart was therefore 
more than gladdened when at an early hour the next 
morning (September 5th) the portier brought the 
news to my room that the box was at the station ! 
I hurried over breakfast and drove to the station. 

A Trip through the Balkan States 55 

where I was informed a Custom's examination of 
my box would be held and certain fees demanded 
(5 francs). It was explained to me by an official 
that my box had been detained at Verciorova 
because it had not been examined there. I re- 
membered that my handbag was looked at, but I 
had no thought for my box, as I had been told 
at Budapest, before leaving, that heavy luggage 
which was insured, as mine was, would only be ex- 
amined on arrival at Bucharest. Thus the matter 
was explained which, however, did not quite 
appease the annoyance I had suffered and which, 
moreover, cost me a good deal of money. 

Although still feeling very poorly, and suffering 
from intense thirst, I was thankful to be able to 
change my clothes and boots and go out for a stroll. 
After a good long walk I discovered the Public 
Gardens, which were rather like a small park, with 
ornamental water, bridges, boats, swans, and foun- 
tains. There were not many flowers to be seen. 
What appeared to be an island was also there, upon 
which was built a large restaurant. Here the 
bands played at certain hours, but the one I heard 
was not up to much. While strolling in these 

56 A Trip through the Balkan States 

gardens I was astonished to hear a small boy 
whistle '' The Merry Widow " waltz ! But after all 
has not the music of this operetta a continental 
origin? Here, too, I got an introduction to 
Bucharest beer, a nice, light beverage which, with 
petroleum, forms one of the chief industries of the 
place. Meat is also exported in considerable 

On my way home, and while sipping coffee at 
a restaurant I heard a conversation anent the 
Eoumanian navy! This was certainly edifying 
and somewhat startling to me, for I had not 
known previously that the State possessed one. I 
was also informed that there was very little gold 
coinage in the country, and found, as is usual all 
over the Continent, that French gold is readily 
accepted. It was strange to note what a large 
number of money-changing bureaux there were in 
Bucharest ; indeed, this can be said of all con- 
tinental towns, and one can but observe that 
similar establishments are difficult to find in 

I left Bucharest by the 8.10 a.m. train on Sep- 
tember 6th for Sofia, although I felt, at the time, far 

A Trip through the Balkan States 57 

from able to sit through a long journey. Thank 
goodness, however, the dreadful thirst had sub- 
sided a Httle. 

At 10.50 a.m. we reached Eamadan, which I was 
told was the last town on the Eoumanian frontier. 
We left the train here, and boarded a steamer 
which crosses the Danube, about a mile wide, hav- 
ing embarked a good number of passengers. In a 
few minutes Eustchuck was reached. 

I may mention that during the railway journey 
from Bucharest I received a great deal of attention 
and kindness from a little German gentleman in my 
carriage who spoke English fluently. As usual, 
he was most civil and polite, and as capable as I 
have always found his countrymen. On arrival at 
Eamadan he bustled about and got my ticket for 
the steamer, everyone seeming to make way for the 
little man. To save time and trouble he also 
shoved my passport (which was called for) in with 
his own, and after its examination, handed it back 
to me, I was very sorry to bid him " good-bye " at 
Eustchuck, where he remained. 

On board the steamer was a holiday party going 
to Eustchuck for the day. They all wore blue 

58 A Trip through the Balkan States 

rosettes, as one often sees on similiar occasions in 
England. There was a very strict Custom's exam- 
ination at Eustchuck, and, how trying and tiring 
it all was, with heavy handbag, rugs, mackintosh, 
and stick in one's hands, and having then to find 
one's key to open one's box which a porter has 
already seized and is carrying before you ! Then 
trying to extricate, from an inner pocket, one's 
passport for inspection, and at the same time being 
severely scrutinised by the military-looking officials ! 
It all wants a bit of doing ! Finally came the rush 
to get a seat in the train which stood waiting on 
a steep incline above, not knowing for certain 
whether or where you may have to change on your 
journey. After a struggle which made me breath- 
less, and a severe twist of my left arm, I managed 
to spring on to the very high splashboard of my 
carriage, and with my heavy weights, squeezed past 
others who were also, " candidates for seats ! " 
Now during the last hour my passport had been 
inspected three times, and I was thankful when 
the train moved off, at 11.40 a.m., for Sofia. 

Two parties, of three each, filled up the com- 
partment, and having seated themselves, they 

A Trip through the Balkan States 59 

began at once to spread napkins on their knees for 
a meal. This consisted of hard-boiled eggs, fried 
fish, reminding one of establishments for the sale 
of this commodity at home, lumps of ham, ex- 
tremities of fowls, cheese, bread, small plums, 
grapes, and a huge bottle of light wine. These 
travellers evidently knew how to travel, and did 
themselves well. They had neither knives nor 
forks, consequently chickens were rent asunder 
gaily, and sometimes viciously, eggs were swallowed 
with determination, grapes consumed, skins and 
all ! I confess I should not have objected to join 
them, as I had had nothing to eat since starting on 
the journey. It was a case, too, of sitting bolt up- 
right in so crowded a compartment. 

After leaving Kustchuck, the country was very 
flat and burnt up and the villages looked even more 
eastern than those in Koumania. It was very hot 
and the two ladies in the carriage appeared to feel 
it intensely. I had an enormous man leaning 
against me for hours, and I felt I should have 
liked to have pricked him ! One of the travellers 
was a veritable young dandy, clothed in a very 
tight, khaki-coloured suiting, his hat and hair 

5o A Trip through the Balkan States 

being of the same hue. 

Now, I have come to the conclusion that one of 
the greatest annoyances in continental traveUing is 
the restlessness of foreigners, for they are con- 
stantly going in and out of the carriage, pushing 
past one and smiling graciously. At one of the 
stopping stations, an old lady of about seventy 
got in. She v^as adorned with a couple of pig-tails, 
which was somewhat puzzling, for she was cer- 
tainly not Chinese. 

As we journeyed along, bullock carts drawn by 
ugly black buffaloes were everywhere to be seen. 
The day was beautifully fine — we passed within 
sight of Tirnovo which was the ancient capital of 
Bulgaria and a flourishing town from 1186 to 1393, 
but declined rapidly under Turkish rule. Tirnovo 
rises to a considerable height on a series of rocks, 
and consists of steep terraces, precipices, and barren 
defiles, while a small river winds its way here and 
there, which enhances the picturesque, although 
rugged, beauty of the place. The town is ex- 
tremely narrow, and the principal street runs along 
the summit of rocks which are connected by 
bridges. This, moreover, is the only street which 

A Trip through the Balkan States 6i 

is accessible to vehicles. From here, the town 
descends in successive and steep terraces. 

Towards evening, the conductor of the train 
inquired of passengers if they would have dinner 
at seven o'clock ? Just think of it ! I had had no 
food nor drink since my dinner of the previous day, 
and, indeed, precious little then, as I had been 
feeling so out of sorts. I could not have lasted 
much longer without food. 

A little later some high hills appeared on our 
left, but otherwise the country was remarkably 
flat. The scenery soon changed again, however, 
and high, rocky mountains, which looked typical 
of eagles' homes, seemed to rise up beside us as the 
moon appeared. One was again struck by the 
mingling of east and west, and it was not an un- 
common sight to see a village which might al- 
most be taken for an Indian one while, standing 
on a pathway in front of it, were girls with fine 
figures, dressed in white muslin and picture hats, 
who might be seen any summer's day in Brighton 
The East was again strongly suggested by the 
occasional appearance of caravans, halting and 
camping, with fires ablaze, and the oxen being 

62 A Trip through the Balkan States 

watered at a river close by. There were no camels, 
however. Bulgarian peasants are, I believe, all 
farmers, and, tethermore, own their farms. 

I found, when I rose from my seat to go into the 
restaurant car for dinner, that my knees were so 
stiff that stretching by machinery was almost 
indicated ! 

We arrived at Sofia at 10.10 p.m. and on coming 
out into the open air I found it very cold. My box 
was all right this time, and I was glad to see at 
the station a porter from the hotel I was going 
to. We drove away in a two-horse chaise which 
travelled very fast under its pair of willing and 
loosely-harnessed ponies. Leaving the station, and 
as we drove along, one was strongly reminded of 
an up-country Indian cantonment, but when the 
tramcars appeared a little later, the scene changed. 
Presently there was a suggestion of Cairo, then a 
boulevard and cafeSj thronged with motley groups, 
which gave a French look, although there were a 
good many Turkish fezzes to be seen. 

After a fairly long drive we arrived at the hotel, 
a building of not much importance. The hotel 
officials were extremely polite, but were entirely 

A Trip through the Balkan States 63 

ignorant of the English tongue. One or two spoke 
French, one, German, and the chambermaid, 
Italian 1 The proprietor was, I believe, an army 
officer. There was a careless air about the place, 
and it was not too clean. My bedroom, however, 
was a nice large one and furnished with a very 
comfortable bed, the covering consisting of a 
sandwich made of a thin layer of blanket between 
two sheets. The pillows were large and soft. 
Electric light was also supplied. I was very tired, 
and glad to get to bed. 

The next morning, 7th September, I woke at 
5.30 a.m. and on looking out of the window, saw 
two parties of soldiers, unarmed, marching along. 
They were fine men, but not very particular about 
keeping step, and wore long and well-shaped brown 
overcoats, with smart German caps with white 
(summer) covers. Following them were some 
rough-looking cavalry, who were rather like Cos- 
sacks in appearance. 

I found it impossible to sleep any more, on 
account of the traffic which was made terribly 
noisy by the stone-paved streets. The electric 
tramcars also began running pretty early. It 

64 A Trip through the Balkan States 

was a beautiful day, so after my niorning coffee, 
which was very uninviting, I went out. Has the 
art of making good coffee on the Continent been 
forgotten, for one rarely gets it nowadays? I 
may mention that there was a restaurant attached 
to the hotel where all meals were served. It was 
quite like an English one, only that there was a 
counter at one end for the sale of sweets and cakes. 
A lady was in charge of this counter and just over 
her head was a stuffed eagle, while there was 
another at the other side of the room, exactly 
opposite. This brought to my mind the high rocks 
I had seen during the journey to Sofia. I may 
further add that the hotel confectionery counter 
was, so far as I could discover, the only place in 
Sofia for the sale of this commodity. 

Now, I noticed that the soldiers and policemen 
had a distinctly Eussian look. They were stalwart 
and erect. The officers, of whom I met dozens in 
the streets, the varieties of whose uniforms, as in 
Eoumania, were quite bewildering, wore well- 
fitting frock coats, with plenty of room in them, 
while some had white tunics with light blue over- 
alls and broad red stripes. A few were to be seen 

A Trip through the Balkan States 65 

in light blue tunics and some had very smart over- 
coats or cloaks of the same colour. The German 
cap which has evidently been adopted for the army 
is far preferable to the English one, as it is softer 
and not so large in circumference; in fact, it is 
more like our naval of&cers* cap. The Kussian 
appearance of the soldiery which I mentioned 
before has, no doubt, been arrived at in imitation 
of the Kussians, whom they appear to love very 
much and speak of as their liberators. Indeed, one 
of the principal streets in Sofia is named after a 
Kussian general who fought in the war of 1877-8 
and whose name was Dondukoff. 

The police are dressed in khaki coloured tunics 
with red facings and red and black sashes round 
the waist, and have dark blue, red-piped trousers 
tucked into butcher boots. They, also, wear the 
German cap, with white covers, and are armed 
with sword and revolver. There is a great 
difference to be observed between the appearance 
of the military cadets here and those in Eoumania, 
for the former are clothed as one might expect 
a village school-boy to be, and one would. I think, 
never suppose them to be under military training. 

66 A Trip through the Balkan States 

as seen in the streets, or that they were eventually 
to become officers. 

The costumes of the peasants, which it would 
be very difficult to describe, are much more seen 
in the streets than at Bucharest, while I noticed 
a good number of long-bearded, black-gowned, and 
tall-hatted priests about. The chaise drivers do 
not wear long velvet coats, and are, for the most 
part, Bulgarians, while the ponies are badly 
groomed and not in such good condition as those 
in the Koumanian capital. 

Sofia is a city which is somewhat difficult to 
describe correctly, for it is in the making, and is 
practically a new place. Even the paving of the 
streets is at present in progress, and when one 
leaves one or two of the principal thoroughfares, 
it is very difficult as well as unpleasant to make 
one's way about, owing to the general upheaval 
of the roads, and the laying down of material. In 
the more important streets this material consists 
of bricks of a superfine appearance, and which are 
of Bulgarian make, laid down diagonally, while 
small blocks of granite are also used. 

I was lucky in securing the services of one of 

A Trip through the Balkan States 67 

the hotel officials to accompany me in my morn- 
ing's walk, for he not only spoke French but was 
also highly intelligent. He informed me, almost 
at once, that the Bulgarians liked the Eoumanians, 
English, and Russians, but were not fond of the 
Servians, nor had they any affection for the 
Greeks. Strange to say, he did not refer at all to 
the Turks. He informed me that Sofia was about 
thirty years old, and that previous to this, it was 
no more than a large Turkish village. One could 
readily see that a great many marks of the Turkish 
occupation were still present, mosques being dotted 
about the town, here and there. 

We first passed the Eoyal Palace of the Prince, 
which is a fairly fine building. Next we came to 
the Officers' Club, a large and handsome erection 
built for the accommodation and messing of army 
officers. Not far from this is the Parliament House, 
which is a very small and unpretentious building. 
Having obtained admission to this, I found that the 
seats of the Deputies, who constitute the Parha- 
ment, were in two blocks, one being for the accom- 
modation of those in favour of the Government, 
and the other for those who are against it. This 

68 A Trip through the Balkan States 

sounds peculiar, but my guide explained the matter 
in this way. A handsome chair for the ruling 
Prince was placed at one end of the building, and on 
a dais, and there was also a gallery for visitors. In 
adjoining rooms were a library, with portraits of 
previous presidents on the walls, and a reading- 
room in which all the principal European daily 
papers and magazines were to be found, including a 
copy of " The Times." 

Opposite the Parliament House stands a magni- 
ficent monument to Alexander II, Czar of Eussia, 
the liberator of Bulgaria from the Turks. It is 
surmounted by a very fine equestrian figure, in 
bronze, of Alexander II, while on the pedestal 
beneath are bronze figures representing different 
phases in the war of 1877. It is altogether a 
remarkable and artistic work. We next passed 
the estabhshment of the Minister of War, and 
then L'Imprimerie Municipale, both fine buildings. 
I then visited the tomb of Prince Alexander of 
Battenburg, the first ruler, I believe, of Bulgaria. 
In the mausoleum is contained the uniform worn 
by the Prince in the war of 1877. 

The National Theatre in Sofia is a truly beauti- 

A Trip through the Balkan States 69 

ful structure, and far more imposing than that 
in Bucharest. Indeed, it would be hard to surpass 
it. My guide had now to leave me, but before 
doing so, directed me to the museum. This is 
most interesting, although small, and is contained 
in the principal Turkish mosque, a relic of the old 
days. Here one finds a great number of ancient 
paintings of religious subjects, which have evidently 
come from churches. There is also a large 
collection of bronze ornaments, coins, pottery, and 
stones, containing cryptograms of great age. I 
also noticed an old wooden cannon standing in 
one of the rooms, and a beautiful replica in stone 
of the monument to Alexander II. In two of the 
rooms upstairs is a small collection of modern 
paintings, one very fine example depicting the 
terrors connected with the Bulgarian atrocities at 
the hands of the Turks. One would rather like 
to hear the Turkish version of these atrocities. 

I next made my way to the Cathedral of St. 
Dimanche, which is decidedly a Turkish-looking 
structure, and is not very large. Within, there 
was nothing unusual to notice, nor varying from 
the ordinary Orthodox (Greek) Church. On leav- 

JO A Trip through the Balkan States 

ing the cathedral, from the rising ground upon 
which it stands a good view of the Balkan 
mountains can be obtained. I next passed through 
what was very like an Indian bazaar. There 
were rows of tiny shops for the sale of fruit, 
bread, and nuts, etc., while chair-mending and 
other work was going on in some of the houses. 
There was, withal, a strong Eastern odour pre- 
vailing, and one could easily realise that flies were 
in great abundance. A dog, however, was rarely 
to be seen. 

Now, most of the shops in Sofia are extremely 
poor and primitive; in fact, there is hardly one 
which reminds one of Western ideas. The streets 
were thronged with motley-clothed groups, and I 
seldom came across an up-to-date European lady. 
On the other hand, girls wearing Turkish trousers 
were frequently to be seen, and it was noticeable 
that the peasant women wore their hair in long, 
narrow plaits hanging down their backs like 
Chinese pigtails. Those worn by elderly ladies 
were, I fear, false! Boot-blacks, seated behind 
their very smart and shiny boxes, were numerous, 
and I noticed a good many old book shops. 

A Trip through the Balkan States 71 

I was informed that the present Zoological 
Gardens, which, by the way, I did not see, 
was to be greatly enlarged, and also that the 
foundations of a Palais de Justice were already 

Meanwhile, Sofia is to-day very Eastern, not 
too clean, and, moreover, quite different to any 
other European town I have visited. It was 
cooler than in Bucharest ; consequently, I was 
able to continue my stroll for some hours, and 
went round some of the smaller streets, where I 
discovered, stowed away as it were, a good-sized 
market place. There was abundance of grapes 
here, and one recognised the " brinjal " of India, 
on sale. What a condition the greater part of 
Sofia is in with regard to sanitation, or even 
ordinary cleanliness ! If it is the desire of the 
Bulgarian authorities to raise the city to the 
dignity of an ordinary European capital, two- 
thirds of it might be swept away with advantage 
and rebuilt. I fear, however, that this description 
does not appear to tally with what one commonly 
reads in the papers with regard to Sofia, but my 
opinion must stand. Further, it is almost farcical 

72 A Trip through the Balkan States 

to see an up-to-date electric tramcar wending its 
way through unmade streets which would not do 
credit to an Eastern village ! 

Sanitation would appear to go hand in hand 
with civilization, while fine shops, well dressed 
ladies, private carriages, and music, go to make 
up a civilised state of affairs. None of these things 
however, came to my notice, although I must con- 
fess to having discovered one forlorn little music 
shop, but with no instruments within its dark 

To find any resemblance between Sofia and 
Paris, as some writers would have one consider is, to 
me, not only impossible but highly ridiculous. It 
is, consequently, rather difficult to realise that 
Bulgaria possesses a very fine army. Now, al- 
though the authorities appear to have done very 
little with regard to making Sofia an up-to-date city 
during the last thirty years, they have paved and 
made highly respectable, as well as imposing, the 
surroundings of the Eoyal Palace. They have 
seemed to have forgotten everything else. I dis- 
covered a very nice Public Garden, however, which 
was thronged with people all the morning. There 

A Trip through the Balkan States 73 

were a great number of officers promenading there, 
many of whom I noticed were short men with just 
a little of the Japanese in their general appearance. 
Some of these officers wore brown tunics, which 
were drawn in at the waist by plaits behind, and 
had scarlet facings. 

I think that the most dignified, most erect, and, 
finest men I saw in Sofia were the orthodox 
priests, while the handsomest were decidedly Turks. 
I did not hear a sound of music in the place, and 
found little or no public amusement. The theatre 
was, unfortunately, closed at this time of year, and 
the only diversion which men seemed to have and 
which, moreover, was a pretty constant one, was 
their meetings at the little round caf& tables, where 
they gossiped and refreshed the inner man. Here 
one saw numbers of officers in full uniform and 
wearing swords, and who were apparently on 
equal social terms with everyone else. Indeed, the 
military officer on the Continent does not appear 
to have anything like the same social status as in 
England, nor is he so terribly exclusive. This 
constant meeting of friends in cafes would, I fear, 
soon grow stale and irksome with English folks, but 

74 A Trip through the Balkan States 

they all seem to be very content with everything in 

At dinner time, (the air being decidedly chilly) a 
man with red hair struck one as an uncommon 
sight in these parts, while there was a note of 
homeliness in the shouting of newspaper boys, one 
of whom came up to my table and lit the fag end of 
a cigarette which he had picked up, with the hotel 
matches ! 

After dinner a hotel porter who, by the way, in 
great confidence informed me that Bulgaria pos- 
sessed a navy, asked me if I were not going to the 
Theatre of Varieties ? Now, a little amusement of 
the kind would have been most welcome, but I felt 
that, not knowing a word of the language, and per- 
haps having a difficulty in finding my way back to 
the hotel, at midnight, it would be unwise to ven- 
ture to this place of amusement which, moreover, 
was some distance off. 

Before leaving Bulgaria I may mention that the 
chief industries of the country are the cultivation 
of roses and tobacco. Only one crop of roses is, I 
believe, produced in the year, and this lasts for 
about three weeks from the end of May. The 

A Trip through the Balkan States 75 

flowers are plucked in the early morning and are 
then taken to the distilleries. Here the essence of 
roses is extracted, in which is found the oil that is 
so extensively used in the making of perfumes and 
scented soaps. 

I left for Belgrade the next day, September 8th, 
by the 5.55 p.m. train. The train was very crowded 
and I had great difficulty in getting a seat, the pro- 
cess of trying to squeeze in while carrying a large 
bundle of rugs in one hand and my bag and stick in 
the other, resulting in a further wrench of my left 
arm. I managed, however, to secure a corner seat 
in a very dirty smoking compartment, which was 
anything but conducive to sleep. Indeed, only one 
side of the compartment had seats, all of which 
were occupied. It was a lovely evening, and as we 
left Sofia there was a good view of the Balkan 
mountains. I found the money question during 
these journeys somewhat difficult, for it was well 
nigh impossible to enter a new country without a 
few coins (which were of no further use) in your 
pocket belonging to the last one and, what was 
more important, with a supply of the money now re- 
quired* I had, however, managed fairly well up to 

7^ A Trip through the Balkan States 

the present (" touch wood ! ") and was sticking very 
devotedly to a couple of ten franc French pieces, to 
be used in case of necessity, as French gold is a 
perfect mascot on the Continent. Indeed, I found 
that such coins were readily accepted at railway 
stations (in payment of tickets) hotels, restaurants, 
and shops. English gold, on the other hand, you 
may be obliged to change at a bank. I found 
that the cost of taking round my box, weighing 
about 55 lbs., worked out roughly at something 
equivalent to sixpence an hour while travelling iDy 
railway, a fact perhaps worth remembering. As 
we proceeded the country looked bare and primi- 
tive, and one might almost have imagined one was 
in Afghanistan, as I remember it. I found that, 
without a knowledge of the different languages of 
the Balkan States, the word *' direct " was most 
useful, as well as understood by railway officials, it 
signifying that there was no change during the 

We reached the Servian frontier at about 7 p.m., 
but our train did not stop until we arrived at Nisch. 
It was then dark, and the scenery, consequently, 
lost to sight. About midnight an individual got 

A Trip through the Balkan States 77 

into our carriage, who rather abruptly asked me, in 
good English, if I were English ? I was so aston- 
ished, as well as delighted, to hear my own language 
again, that for a moment I was rather taken aback. 
However, he commenced a friendly conversation at 
once, and informed me that he was a chief engineer 
on the Servian State Eailway, and at present 
engaged in making a small railway in the country. 
He further said he had been in England for some 
time, to acquire a knowledge of his profession and 
the language. In a burst of enthusiasm he ex- 
claimed that he ** simply adored the English, their 
customs, kindness, food and homeliness." The 
''afternoon teas" strongly appealed to him. I drew 
him out to some extent with regard to Balkan 
politics, and the situation generally, which I will 
enter more fully into at the end of my account. 
He considered, moreover, that the murder of the 
late King and Queen of Servia was quite justified, 
the former having been weak and careless of his 
people's wants, and the latter not at all a desirable 
person. The King, I believe, wished that his wife's 
brother should follow him on the throne, which my 
friend stated could not for a moment be enter- 

78 A Trip through the Balkan States 

tained. Indeed, I gathered that the general opinion 
of the Servians was that these seemingly atrocious 
murders were quite justified, and when speaking of 
the subject, many smiled and treated it as rather a 
joke ! In fact it was, in the people's opinion, the 
only way they had of getting rid of a system of 
tyranny and incompetence. They had now, my 
friend continued, an excellent sovereign. The 
country, however, which is rich in corn and maize, 
fruit and cattle, was still suffering, according to my 
informant, like Bosnia, from the coercion of Austria 
in preventing free trading, and in many ways 
curbing its development and a free access to the 
north and east. He agreed with me that the 
"Young Turk'' movement might have a great in- 
fluence on the Bosnians. 

Drifting back to England, my friend told me 
how much he liked the informal salutation " Good- 
morning " which was so much preferable to the 
bowing and scraping of the German which was, in 
his opinion, humbug! I was next informed that 
to-day was the anniversary of the birthday of the 
Crown Prince and that I was further to keep my 
eyes open with regard to any display in the town on 

A Trip through the Balkan States 79 

that account. It was positively delightful to hear 
this young Servian exclaim : ** Naturally ! " (with 
a soft roll of the ** r ") in answer to my various 
questions, and he had withal a charming frankness 
of manner which was most attractive. Speaking 
of religious matters, I was informed that in the 
Orthodox Church they had no images, but that 
pictures were allowed, and that there was neither 
adoration of the Virgin Mary, nor confession ; that 
no musical instrument (organ, etc.) was allowed in 
the services, but that a choir performed; and, 
finally, that there was no belief in the real pre- 
sence. Now, I must confess that these statements 
somewhat astonished me, and I am, further, not 
prepared to vouch for their correctness. 

Another piece of information was to the effect 
that the priests of the church were obliged to 
be married, once only, and as these individuals 
enter the priesthood at about the age of twenty, 
I felt obliged to remark that there must be a 
very large number of young husbands among 

Now, I may mention that this conversation, 
which was most interesting to me, helped consider- 

So A Trip through the Balkan States 

ably to pass away what would otherwise have been 
a dull and tiresome journey. 

We arrived at Belgrade at 4.55 a.m. on the 
morning of September 9th, having passed a very 
extensive park just before reaching the city. My 
friend said it was a pity I had not been able to see 
the Servian scenery during the journey, which was 
extremely beautiful. However, I had seen the 
Austrian Tyrol, and I believe he had not ! 

My attention was called to the river Sav6 which 
we crossed by a bridge about half a mile long, before 
reaching our destination. When we got out of the 
train, my friend insisted upon helping me with 
regard to my box and the Custom's examination 
settled with my porter and got a man to carry all 
my things to the hotel, which was about half a, 
mile distant, for a franc. He further thought that, 
after our long journey, a walk in the early morning 
would do us good. My passport was not, strange to 
say, asked for on this occasion, although my name 
was carefully written down at the station by a 
mihtary-looking official. So we started off, follow- 
ing the man who was carrying my things over his 
shoulders in a rather remarkable manner, and a 

A Trip through the Balkan States 8i 

little later my friend bade me good-bye, saying that 
he hoped he might meet me again soon, and that 
he intended returning to England in due course. 
I still followed my man, bent as he was with the 
weight of my box, etc., and it was rather a funny 
sight to behold us trudging along over the very 
rough and stony paths of Belgrade at five o'clock 
in the morning. 

We soon, however, arrived at my hotel, ** The 
Grand," which is in the main street, where I found, 
to my chagrin, that not a single individual spoke 
either English or French ! A few understood 
German, which I do not; regrettable fact. There 
was a portier here, a very decent fellow, but I 
noticed that he would only condescend to answer 
one question at a time, and then would walk away. 
I managed to make my wants known as best I 
could by graceful gesticulation and persuasion and 
was escorted to my bedroom, where I actually found 
a piece of soap ! Now, with regard to general cleanli- 
ness, this hotel was far superior to that in Sofia ; 
indeed, there was a better ** air " about the whole 
establishment. The usual restaurant system for 
meals prevailed^ the three dining-rooms being large 

82 A Trip through the Balkan States 

and scrupulously clean. The bread, I was glad 
to find, was rather like our English variety, 
and a Hungarian flavour prevailed generally, es- 
pecially with regard to the red pepper and Pilsen 

Although a bit weary after my eleven hours of 
sitting up in the train, I came downstairs after a 
wash, at 6 a.m., and had a cup of coffee, which 
beverage was, I must say, better than one usually 
obtained. I could not help smiling, however, when, 
placed before me were five huge rounds of very 
dry bread, measuring 5^ inches high, and no 
butter ! 

My watch had now to be put back an hour, and 
I was apparently getting away from the East. I 
went for a stroll, and first noticed that the police 
carried revolvers and bayonets and were dressed in 
blue with red facings, the usual Servian cap, and 
butcher boots. The town was gaily decorated with 
Servian flags of three stripes, red, blue, and white, 
in honour of the Crown Prince's birthday. Belgrade 
signifies " White City " which is a good name, for 
the houses are in most cases white, the larger 
number of them having but one story. 

A Trip through the Balkan States 83 

So far as public buildings are concerned, Sofia is 
superior to Belgrade, but as a town it is in many 
ways inferior. The streets of the Servian city, 
some of which are of the boulevard type, are 
certainly very roughly paved, but they are cleanly 
kept, while the shops are better than those in 
Sofia. There is also a good electric tram service, 
the traffic moving to the right. It was interesting 
to see the carts passing along the streets drawn 
by oxen, which appear to do all the draught 

The Servian people are polite and hospitable, if a 
little reserved. They go to bed early, and one notices 
how deserted the streets are at night, at an hour 
when they would be thronged in the larger English 
towns. They are fond of dancing, one of their 
favourite national tunes being the so-called "Kolo." 
There would appear to be no very poor people in 
the country, and there is a system of peasant pro- 
prietorship for the land, the total area of which is 
about 28,850 square miles, being considerably less 
than that of Scotland. 

As I walked along the streets I met dozens of 
army officers in full uniform, and what brilliant 

84 A Trip through the Balkan States 

uniforms they were! The asfcrakhan caps which 
they all appear to wear, and which, on this 
occasion, were surmounted in front with tall white 
plumes, are most becoming and smart. I noticed 
that the Infantry wore pale blue tunics and 
dark coloured trousers, while the Cavalry had red 
breeches. One is, however, forced to observe in all 
these countries the great distinction between the 
gorgeously-equipped officers and the coarsely- 
dressed rank and jQle. The officers I met on this 
occasion were coming from the cathedral, where a 
service had been held with reference to the birth- 
day of the Crown Prince. Both he and the King 
were probably at this service, but I did not see 
them. I went into the cathedral, the interior of 
which is imposing and furnished with the usual 
number of paintings of Christ, etc., on the walls. 
Some of the paintings, however, stood upon desks 
in different parts of the building, and I saw a good 
many visitors kiss them while crossing themselves. 
I was greatly struck by the small number of seats 
(which I had also noticed in other Orthodox 
churches I had visited) for the accommodation of 
worshippers, which led one to believe that a very 

A Trip through the Balkan States 85 

large part of the congregation must stand during 
service. The seats, moreover, were of the hardest 
wood, had perfectly straight backs, and were placed 
against the walls of the building. On leaving the 
cathedral I walked to the public gardens, where 
a great number of officers were sitting on the seats ; 
and many stylishly-dressed ladies, for the most 
part in white and very up-to-date costumes, were 
strolling about. They were, moreover, decidedly 
elegant-looking and had good figures. 

The gardens are well kept and fairly extensive, 
while at the eastern end stands a very old fort or 
castle of Eoman origin. The ground here is very 
high, and one gets a fine view of river and country 
scenery. The blue Save can be seen wending its 
way down on the left to join the mighty Danube, 
and forming with it one river, which proceeds to 
the Black Sea. 

Across the river stands the town of Semlin, called 
Zimony by the Hungarians. Although a Hungarian 
town, Zimony is, I believe, chiefly peopled by 
Servians, who, I was informed, have their own 
municipality. I next walked to the King's palace, 
which was some distance from the old fort, 

86 A Trip through the Balkan States 

and found that the building in which the late 
King and Queen were murdered, and which stood 
alongside the present palace, had since been 
demolished, as, I believe, it became an eyesore to 
the people after so tragic an event. The piece 
of groimd upon which the building stood has since 
been converted into a lawn, upon which a military 
band plays. Among the public buildings of note 
may be mentioned the residence of the Minister of 
War, the different embassies, the National Theatre, 
and the Bank of Servia, none of which, with the 
exception of the theatre, is at all striking. I noticed 
the Hotel Moscow, which stands in a prominent 
and open position, and is the principal one in 

At dinner where, by the way, my waiter used 
what I thought to be a very novel and ingenious 
corkscrew, on the lever system, I was intensely 
gratified by hearing quite the most delightful little 
band of musicians I had ever come across. Such 
performers, and such music ! The band consisted 
of two violins, a 'cello, double bass, flute, clarinet, 
and grand piano, a harmonium being occasionally 
substituted for the latter. The combination of 

A Trip through the Balkan States 87 

these instruments was perfect, and what appeared 
to be Mozart's music was rendered in a masterly 
fashion, while the Boccherini minuet was played 
with a delicacy which I had before never realised. 
Lighter compositions were, moreover, given with 
great dash. 

Now, it was much to be regretted that this 
music was not listened to by the many diners 
present, many of whom were officers and jabber- 
ing, pretty women, and that the completion of 
each item was received with what might be called 
insulting silence. In fact, it once more afforded 
one the opportunity to assert that the English, 
after all, are the most musical people, speaking 
generally. I noticed that the piano was a very fine 
one, and that the clarinet had a beautiful tone. 
After an hour's interval the band began to play 
again, and in the programme was one of Sousa's 
best marches, which was given with original and 
striking variations and with much force, imagina- 
tion and, be it said, even emotion. I would journey 
to Belgrade again to hear this band, which played 
with such faultless intonation and execution, and 
which had a repertoire, a copy of which I was able 

88 A Trip through the Balkan States 

to obtain, of marvellous variety and extent. I 
noticed, however, that the only English composi- 
tion included in it was a selection from "The 
Gondoliers," and I may mention that, with regard 
to literature, translations of *' Sherlock Holmes " 
were to be seen in the book shops. The seven 
performers who constituted the before-mentioned 
band were, individually, consummate artists, their 
solo work being particularly good. The music 
ceased at 11 p.m., and having finished playing, the 
artists left their instruments on the floor, and 
walked off, careless fellows ! 

I left Belgrade for Serajevo (Bosnia) at 4 p.m., 
on 10th September, my box having been booked as 
far as Bosnabrod. The heat in the carriage at 
starting was terrific, the temperature being about 
90°, I should imagine, and before entering the train 
my name was taken down by an official. 

There was a Custom's examination at Zimony, 
which we reached in a quarter of an hour, having 
crossed the Sav6. Here the opening of one's 
handbag, the procuring of one's box for the same 
purpose, the examination of one's passport and, 
finally, the struggle to one's carriage, always 

A Trip through the Balkan States 89 

difficult to find, and which, in this instance, had 
been nearly filled by new-comers, were all very 
trying. Having settled myself once more in a seat, 
it suddenly and luckily occurred to me that I had 
not got back my passport which, on this occasion, 
had been seized by an official wearing a Prussian 
helmet in the train just before our arrival at 
Zimony ! There were only a couple of minutes 
before starting, and I had to rush off and find, the 
best way I could, the little box office wherein the 
passports were examined and where, after verifica- 
tion, I received the important document. Had I 
not gone for it, it would no doubt have remained 
at Zimony, and goodness knows how soon I should 
have required it again, or how I should have fared 
without it ! 

As was usual, the occupants of my carriage began 
entering into conversation at once, and at the top 
of their voices. In fact, one would have thought 
they were all bosom friends. There appears, more- 
over, to be no secrecy or modesty about these 
conversations, and all, male and female, join in. 
We left Zimony at 4.50 p.m., and entered Hun- 
gary, but, worse luck, I still possessed five Servian 

go A Trip through the Balkan States 

francs which were of no further use to me. The 
conductor of the train who, by the way, examined 
my ticket three times in the first hour, gave me to 
understand that I was to change at *' India ! " *' Oh, 
that's all right," I rejoined, in my best French, 
and at 5.45 p.m. we arrived at this curiously and 
tropically-named station. I changed trains here, 
and went on again, I think without a stop, until 
9.20 p.m., when we reached Vincovze, where I 
had once again to alight. The guard of the train 
was most kind, under rather difficult circumstances, 
and came to my carriage several times to make 
known to me by signs and gesticulations — for he did 
not understand a word of any language I knew — 
that he would let me know when to get out. This 
he did, and then promptly escorted me to a station 
official, under whose charge he placed me, telling 
him, at the same time, that I was an Englishman 
travelling to Bosnabrod. I daresay he wondered 
what I wanted to go there for. The station official, 
a venerable old fellow with a kind face, pulled 
out his watch and pointed to the time I would have 
to start again. I then sat down and was able to 
get a glass of Pilsen beer which I had with a piece 

A Trip through the Balkan States 91 

of very dry bread from my bag. I also gave my 
old friend a glass of country wine which was 
procurable at the station, and in which he drank 
my health. 

It was a lovely moonlight night and the air was 
balmy. We started again at 11.20 p.m. and 
crossed the Sav^ once more at 12.80 a.m. the next 
day. I had been put very hurriedly into a carriage 
where I found, to my disgust, there was not a 
vacant seat ! After a short period of standing, 
however, the conductor of the train came to the 
rescue, and with a deal of searching found me a 
place in another carriage. The train was very 
full, and I noticed that there was only a single 
line of rail. Among the occupants of my com- 
partment were a couple of Mahomedans who sat 
cross-legged on the seats. This journey was al- 
together a very trying one, and my arm ached a 
good deal from carrying my bag while changing 
trains and rushing about during the night. 

At 6 a.m. (11th September) the air felt quite cool 
and it was very misty outside. As we passed the 
different small stations en route, one noticed the 
large number of Turkish fezzes about, which were 

92 A Trip through the Balkan States 

worn a good deal tilted forward. There were high 
hills and a fair-sized but shallow river, the Bosna, 
on our left, while the vegetation was profuse, ferns 
and wild flowers growing in abundance. As the 
mist gradually cleared off, maize fields came into 
sight, and when the sun appeared the green fresh- 
ness of everything was quite beautiful. We next 
crossed a river gorge where women could be seen 
washing clothes on the rocks as they do in India. 
The river then appeared on the right, the hill and 
dale scenery becoming more impressive, while the 
whole country assumed a wooded appearance. 
This, by the way, was the first train I had yet been 
in which was not of the corridor type, it being of 
a narrow gauge. There was, however, a central 
gangway in the carriages, running fore and aft, 
along which the conductor could pass ; the carriages, 
moreover, communicated with one another. 

As we journeyed on, I noticed a small village 
perched up on some rocks to our right, and that 
our train was winding its way through gorges and 
beside hills in an unusual manner. The scenery 
gave one an idea of the Tyrol, only on a smaller 
scale. At 7.20 a.m. we reached Zenitza, a small 

A Trip through the Balkan States 93 

town and railway junction, and where the river 
led a tortuous course on our left and beautiful 
valleys and hills came in view in the distance. 
An Austrian in our carriage was at one time 
busily occupied in putting on a rather complicated- 
looking mask to fix his moustachios, and it gave 
one the idea that the young man had been severely 
wounded! He, however, removed the mask later 
on, when his hirsute adornment was displayed in 
all its rebellious glory ! No one, I may add, took 
the slightest notice of the procedure, and I there- 
fore concluded that it was a customary performance 
in these parts, even in pubhc. 

The river Bosna was now running through rocky 
channels and over large boulders, and as we crossed 
it later on, the scenery became more beautiful. 
At one of the stopping stations I bought a bag 
of grapes at the window which a fellow passenger 
insisted upon seizing and running off to a pump to 
wash. Such kindness and attention on the part 
of a stranger were rather foreign to one : indeed, 
I found the Austrian, generally, politeness itself, 
although one did ask me in immaculate French 
on one occasion, what language I was speaking 1 

94 A Trip through the Balkan States 

I was, I may mention, at the time endeavouring 
to utter a correct sentence in French ! 

We arrived at Serajevo, the capital of Bosnia, 
at 10 a.m. and my box was there all right. A 
hotel bus was waiting at the station and I was 
glad to drive once more to my resting place. 
Difficulties were, however, before me for I found 
once more that not a word of English or French 
was understood by the hotel officials who greeted 
me with their best smiles, and further, that sight- 
seeing and the arranging for my journey on, etc., 
would give some trouble. 

Dinner was served at midday and was on the 
ordinary restaurant system. I found the food to 
be excellent and there was, moreover, plenty of it, 
while the local beer was light and sparkling and 
very like that of Pilsen. Hungarian red pepper, 
again ! I have sought, alas ! for any heat or flavour 
in it, but have failed to find it. Now, at meal 
times especially, one is apt to judge of the habits 
of foreigners by our English standard, and to for- 
get that, because they may put their knives in 
their mouths, make terrible throat noises, and 
tuck their napkins under their chins, such habits 

A Trip through the Balkan States 95 

do not necessarily prove them to be wrong. We 
dislike these habits because they are different to 
what we have been accustomed. 

With regard to the beef question, they simply 
malie one eat it in foreign hotels because of one's 
British nationality, which to me is a cruel tyranny. 
Oh, why cannot one get away occasionally from 
beef? And why is one to be eternally smirched 
with a character for having a continual longing 
for it? 

Serajevo is a small, clean town of some 41,000 
inhabitants, prettily situated, something in the 
Innsbriick style, at the base of hills, and with the 
Bosna river running through it. The main streets 
are asphalted, but the roads on the outskirts, where 
there is an electric tramway service, are white, 
chalky-looking, and very dusty. The shops are 
fairly good, and the streets thronged with people 
of almost every nationality. One notices many 
Mahomedans, including veiled women made hideous 
by the peculiar masks worn, on which are painted 
black eyes and a nose and mouth. The inhabitants 
promenade the riverside in the afternoons and, 
more so, the two main streets in the evening. 

96 A Trip through the Balkan States 

My first evening I stood at the comer where 
these two streets cross one another, and saw the 
motley groups of people, all seemingly in jubilant 
conversation, except the poorer Turks and lonely- 
looking veiled women who passed by in silence. 
There were smart Austrian officers with a sprink- 
ling of cadets, who were also well uniformed, and 
all branches of the service were represented. 
Among the ladies one saw the Jewess, stout, and 
opulent looking; the Servian, comely, and well 
dressed ; the Austrian, elegant, and smiling ; and 
the Spaniard, who wears a curious, oblong white 
silk cap, with a flowery pattern and a gilt border. 
A few carriages passed by, and I noticed a pair of 
particularly well-bred chargers, one being ridden by 
its owner, a military veterinary surgeon, and the 
other led. Gay young school-girls, looking older 
than their years, also ran past. Beside me stood 
a Pole who was staying at my hotel. He knew a 
little German, and was able to make me understand 
the scene by gesticulation. 

By 8 p.m. all the shops, which were very well 
lit, were quickly closed, and the crowd almost in- 
sensibly dispersed and disappeared, one solitary and 

A Trip through the Balkan States 97 

military-looking policeman being all that was left 
animate of the gay scene of a few moments before, 
I then went back to the hotel, and while seated at 
a table in the restamrant, Madame, the proprietress, 
and her husband came and sat beside me. Neither 
of them knew a word of English or French. Ma- 
dame was from Vienna, while her husband was a 
Bosnian. Now, of all the good-natured, kind-look- 
ing, and civil people I have met in continental 
hotels this lady takes the first place. She was not 
exactly pretty, in the accepted sense of the term, 
but she had the sweetest of smiles. My friend the 
Pole and another gentleman were also sitting at 
the table, the latter, by the way, understanding a 
little French. The head waiter, a very civil Aus- 
trian, I found could speak a few words of English 
and the proprietor gave me to understand that he, 
the waiter, would be at my disposal for a couple of 
hours the next morning to show me round, and 
that further, Madame would procure tickets (which 
were necessary) for us to view the large Mahome- 
dan mosque. Madame was a bit of an actress, and 
occasionally, putting her hand over her heart in a 
dramatic manner, would exclaim that she "loved 

gS A Trip through the Balkan States 

the English ! " She had, I may mention, in answer 
to an inquiry about my tastes in food, ordered a 
couple of trout for my dinner, procured from the 
Bosna. They were delicious, and I felt that I was 
in luck, as well as extremely grateful for such 

Serajevo is made the more interesting owing to 
its Turkish quarter, so the next day, the 12th 
September, I strolled out after breakfast, accom- 
panied by the head waiter, intending to visit it. 
We first passed the town hall, an imposing build- 
ing in the Eastern style, then the large military 
barracks, and the Koman Catholic cathedral, which 
is a very plain and modern building with an interior 
of an Oriental flavour, but with nothing impressive. 
Here my guide, like all good Austrians, knelt down 
and said his prayers. Near this is the military 
post-office, an extensive building, where apparently 
a great deal of work is done, while further on is 
the Orthodox or Servian church, a large, plain, and 
dirty building. On entering this, I was conducted 
to a room in which the bishop's mitre and vest- 
ments were kept, and was also shown a curious 
figure of Christ painted in oils, but raised, and 

A Trip through the Balkan States 99 

attached to a piece of crimson drapery in which the 
figure was folded. As far as I could understand, 
this figure was presented to the church by the 
Kaiserin of Bussia. Opposite the church is a quaint 
and very ancient Turkish cemetery which is no 
longer used. 

I could not discover a theatre in Serajevo and I 
do not think there can be one. 

On returning to the hotel, the good Madame 
asked me to inspect her kitchen, which she showed 
me with evident pride, (it was very clean) and then 
introduced me to her head cook, a stout old dame 
who had worked in the hotel for years. I was 
further promised more trout for my breakfast next 
day ! I strolled out again in the afternoon, and 
went to the Turkish quarter or bazaar, which at 
once reminded me of India. Here one saw the 
Turk in his element, and squatting on the hard 

All kinds of small shops abound : shoemakers, 
tinsmiths, corn dealers, fruit sellers, bakers, lock- 
smiths and others, too numerous to mention, being 
represented, while the sale of curios and fancy 
articles was also a feature, the many varieties of 

loo A Trip through the Balkan States 

which being both interesting and peculiar. Dotted 
about were Turkish coffee-houses, where one saw 
the Turk imbibing, and smoking cigarettes, and, 
withal, looking deliciously lazy. A good many 
were, moreover, engaged in gambling. One noticed 
the remarkably fine complexions of these Bosnian 
Turks, their faces having a warm, delicate glow, 
while some of the Turkish young girls I saw were 
extremely beautiful. 

I then went on to the principal mosque, but 
failed, even with Madame's ticket, to get admission 
to the building. In the courtyard was a circular 
reservoir of water, with taps, beneath which the 
devout Mahomedan sat to wash his feet and hands 
before going to prayer. Having done this, he 
would ascend the steps of the mosque and on a 
mat would bend down, rising, and praying earn- 
estly, and then bend down again several times. I 
next visited the Koman Catholic church of St. 
Paul, which is far more beautiful than the cath- 
edral, and is surmounted by a dome. A walk of a 
couple of miles, passing through the market, a well- 
built and covered-in building, brought me to a large 
Infantry barracks in which I saw several squads 

A Trip through the Balkan Si^t^s loi 

of Austrian soldiers drilling. During my walk I 
noticed a good many Austrian officers about who 
invariably wore the most spotless of white gloves. 
Indeed, you may see them standing at the corner of 
a slum, or walking through the open-air market of 
the Turkish quarter, but never without the im- 
maculately white gloves. 

On my way home a peculiar thing was brought 
to my notice, viz., a train running along the road at 
intervals, and on the same hne as that used by the 

The Spanish element in Serajevo is both strange 
and interesting, and I failed to discover how these 
people originally came to Bosnia, where they have 
been, I was informed, four hundred years. They 
are pretty numerous, and, I believe, are all Jews. 
They still speak Spanish and reside in the so-called 
Spanish quarter. I visited this, and the sight of 
the Senoras hanging out of windows and beckon- 
ing to others in Spanish style brought one back to 
Gibraltar. The wearing of the fez is very general 
in Bosnia and it is, therefore, difficult for the 
stranger to distinguish the genuine Turk from 
the Bosnian; the latter, by the way, being of 

I02 A ' Trip througfh the Balkan States 

any nationality, including Servian, Jewish or 

While sitting outside the hotel in the evening 
smoking my cigar, a good-sized, muzzled dog would 
insist on putting his paw on my foot. What he 
meant it was impossible to discover, but there was 
no doubt he knew. The dog was, moreover, a 
stranger to the hotel. 

I said "good-bye" to Madame and her husband 
as I bade them good-night, for I was leaving early 
the next morning, and the good soul put a flower in 
my coat and exclaimed, "Good-bye, little Eng- 
lander ! " in pretty, broken English which she had 
no doubt acquired for the occasion. Her husband, 
meanwhile, laughed, and playfully put his hand 
before his eyes to screen the view ! 

There was a violent thunderstorm during the night, 
but it was quite fine and cool at 4.15 the next 
morning, when I was called. I drove to the station 
in the hotel bus and left by the 6.5 a.m. train, hav- 
ing secured the services of a very willing porter to 
get me a good seat. I noticed, moreover, that the 
Serajevo porters wore metal numbers by which one 
can remember them, which seems an excellent plan. 

A Trip through the Balkan States 103 

As we left, some small forts could be seen on the 
neighbouring hills, and the scenery generally was 
not very striking. The railway now may be des- 
cribed as a tiny one of narrow gauge, which winds 
its way round innumerable curves, and crawls along 
occasionally by hillsides which are covered with 
multitudes of ferns. 

We were soon at a good height, with a lovely 
valley and village below, and moving very slowly. 
We crossed a bridge over a precipitous gorge and 
the scenery suddenly became intensely beautiful. 
Our first stop was, I think, at a small station called 
Ivan, which reminded one of an Indian hill station. 
The day was lovely, and the air brisk, and one felt 
very much alive. After passing through a tunnel 
which took about three minutes to traverse, the 
view became more exquisite still, the wooded hills 
which abounded being high and the valleys stretch- 
ing away to greater distances. Bosnia is indeed a 
beautiful country. We passed an old Turkish, 
railed-in graveyard, which spoke of bygone days, 
while hard by, the picturesque Bosnian peasants 
were cutting the corn in the fields. Then we began 
to descend cautiously by the side of a mountain 

104 A Trip through the Balkan States 

stream, and lo ! and behold ! a cyclist was to be seen 
on a road hard by, who easily beat us in pace 1 One 
looked up at high, rocky summits, and then down 
some 500 feet below at the never tired stream rush- 
ing along, while in front the hills had grown into 
bare, rugged mountains. We soon skirted a very 
precipitous ravine, the blackberry growing profusely 
by the roadside, and then passing through another 
tunnel, an almost Eigi-like situation, but in a differ- 
ent garb, presented itself. Short tunnels soon be- 
came the order of the day, and we curved about in 
so wonderful a manner, that one could see, at great 
distances below, the tunnels we were about to enter, 
and above, the exits of those we had left. 

Meanwhile, we were descending markedly and 
were soon on the level again, with the mountain 
stream for our companion, and then once more came 
out into a valley, where our speed was increased 
accordingly. At 10.30 a.m. we arrived at Jablanica, 
where there was a small hotel. On leaving here, a 
fair-sized river, flowing pretty fast, appeared on our 
left, while further on were the inclines of rocky 
mountains and a couple of rather imposing water- 
falls. We soon crossed the river, which began to 

A Trip through the Balkan States 105 

widen a little, and reached Mostar, the capital of 
Herzegovina, at 12.45 p.m. 

I was able to get some lunch here, luckily, and 
bought also the usual bunch of grapes for two- 
pence. There were evidently large barracks at 
Mostar, and a couple of good-sized forts were to be 
seen on the adjacent hills. After leaving here, we 
kept along the right bank of the river, which 
widened again, and passed a very curious and 
evidently ancient town which was perched up on 
the rocks to our left. There appeared to be 
military posts all along the railway, which is truly 
a wonderful work of art, its windings among rocks 
and it ascents and descents being most remarkable. 
A succession of short tunnels now presented itself, 
and by 3 p.m. we had risen again to a considerable 
altitude, the railway being more or less hewn out of 
the rocks, while the valley looked about a thousand 
feet below ! 

At 3.30 p.m. we practically said " good-bye " to 
scenery, for the present at any rate, and were 
running between high rocks and shrubs which 
closed us in on the right, and cultivated land with 
distant rocks on the left. Bosnian peasantry in 

io6 A Trip through the Balkan States 

their picturesque garbs were to be seen all along 
the route, and many appeared to be living in 
almost as primitive a state as the natives of India. 
At 5.45 p.m. I got the first glimpse of the sea, and 
how beautiful and blue it looked, and so far off. 
Still, there was a feeling of homeliness, and even 
comfort about it, to the heart of a Britisher. 

Gradually ascending again to, probably, 1,000 
feet above the valley and sea, the sight around 
us was gorgeous in the extreme, albeit the height 
and majesty of the scene was of an awfully 
inspiring nature. Is there another such sight in 
Europe ? We next descended on what seemed to 
be the very edges of precipices ! It all lacked the 
colouring of Switzerland, certainly, for the sur- 
roundings were more barren and rocky, but it had, 
withal, a grandeur of its own not to be forgotten or 
surpassed. An inlet of the sea, the colour of which 
was of a peacock blue, was soon to be seen tracing its 
way inland below, and many villages were dotted 
about. A few boats were to be seen making their 
way along this inlet, and from the position of our 
train down to the water's edge, the country was 
well wooded with tall firs. We next skirted the 

A Trip through the Balkan States 107 

side of the inlet, and crossing a bridge over an 
awful precipice, got a glimpse of the open sea and 
the islands of Dalmatia. 

It was now getting dark, but there was a lovely 
red reflection from the glorious sunset, far away 
behind the islands. At 6.30 p.m. we arrived at 
Gravosa, a small town with what might be called a 
harbour and landing-place for passengers from the 
many little pleasure steamers that frequent the 
place. There were also small sailing vessels, which 
evidently carry on trading. I got out of the train at 
Gravosa, and then had a very fast carriage drive of 
twenty minutes along a dusty country road with 
trees on either side, when Kagusa came into view. 

This is a very fashionable resort overlooking the 
blue sea of the Adriatic. My hotel, ** the Imperial," 
is an up-to-date, handsome and well-appointed 
establishment, and I found that most of the officials 
spoke English. The regulation ** head waiter 
smile " was very marked in this hotel, and there was, 
moreover, a facetiousness about it which was so 
refreshing. One appears to be obliged to '* tip " 
this class of individual because he doesn't wait upon 
you. In fact, I was always ignorant as to who 

io8 A Trip through the Balkan States 

really was the head waiter, until awakened to the 
fact by receiving at his hands my bill, he being the 
only one privileged to have this honour. And, oh ! 
how this hotel business spoils the character of all 
those connected with its service. An otherwise 
charming, kind and obliging people become simply 
money servers, and the visitor is but a unit 
who has to pay for every bow and smile. At 
breakfast the meals were served a la table d'hote, 
while at dinner one noticed, even in this first-rate 
establishment, the want of good, honest vegetables 
especially potatoes ; that is to say, recognisable as 
such. There were foreigners of many nationalities 
here, but I did not observe any of them helping 
themselves to salt or pepper, except, perhaps, with 
cheese, while as to sauces or pickles — perish the 
thought ! Different habits of different countries 
were to be seen, and I noticed an occasional 
German or Austrian lady, dressed regardless of ex- 
pense, putting her knife in her mouth. And why 
not ? If, again, a gentleman was pouring out wine 
or mineral water and his guest was to share it, he 
would pour a little of the liquid into his own glass 
first and then help his guest. And, should a visitor 

A Trip through the Balkan States 109 

come to sit at your table, he would gravely bow, and 
ask if he might do so. 

Now, Eagusa is difficult to describe. It is an 
ancient, fortified town overlooking the Adriatic, its 
old walls being still a prominent feature. To enter 
the town one has to pass over a bridge which 
crosses a bastion, and under old archways of 
considerable thickness. There is a main street run- 
ning through the centre of the town, while other 
streets, which are extremely narrow, are to be found 
at one side, and parallel to it. On the opposite 
side are streets which consist of flights of steps 
ascending to a good height and very much like 
those in Malta. They are all paved with large, flat 
stones, and there are no tramways. The whole 
town rather reminds one of Malta. The houses are 
strongly built of stone, while the shops are small, 
and principally devoted to the sale of curios, 
tobacco, stationery, and postcards. I visited three 
Eoman Catholic churches, which were large build- 
ings with the usual decorations, although I did not 
see an image of any kind in them. Before enter- 
ing the town, and on the right, is a beautiful inlet 
of the sea, garnished with huge rocks, the water, as 

no A Trip through the Balkan States 

it shallows towards the old walls, being as clear as 
crystal. If you pass right through the town and 
emerge from one of the archways, you will find 
yourself on the wharf of a delightful little harbour, 
wherein are small craft of every description. The 
view from here carries one straight out to sea again, 
a pretty island with a huge, rocky hill being on 
one side of the view. There are modern forts in 
different directions, and the Austrian officer may 
be seen sporting his figure everywhere. 

One is struck with a certain air of freedom about 
Eagusa which is decidedly unusual, and one may 
even come across a soldier with his girl ! The 
inhabitants, moreover, do not for, a wonder, stare 
one out of countenance. 

It was warm, but not at all oppressive, the air 
being clear and brisk, with now and then a whiff of 
the sea. The trees and plants have quite a tropical 
appearance, palms growing profusely, and in com- 
pany with the pine and cactus. Indeed, the hotel 
verandah was simply clothed in green, and the 
passion flower appeared to be almost growing wild. 
Eagusa would make a splendid subject for a theatri- 
cal performance, and its natural scenery would lend 

A Trip through the Balkan States m 

colour of an exceptional character. The Dalmatian 
peasantry are very picturesque, and a great variety 
of costumes, difficult to describe, may be seen in 
the little market place which is within the city 

I appeared to be the only Englishman in the 
hotel, the greater number of the visitors having 
probably come from Vienna or Trieste, and by sea 
route from the latter place. I did not even come 
across the ubiquitous American. The hotel was 
well equipped with regard to continental news- 
papers, and, by the way, what wretched little things 
they are, as a rule, and printed too on such atro- 
cious paper. I found no amusement in Eagusa (I 
believe a band played, occasionally) and I venture to 
assert that there is more going on in one good- 
sized seaside town in England, more music, more 
theatres, and more variety shows in a week, than 
there would be in Eagusa, or indeed in any other 
foreign town I have visited on this journey, in a 

The next day, the 15th September, I left this 
beautiful but desperately ** slow " place and drove 
in to Gravosa, where I caught the 9.45 a.m. train 

112 A Trip through the Balkan States 

for Bosnabrod. It was a lovely morning, and as 
we left the little railway station it was strange but 
welcome to see the small craft, brigs and brigan- 
tines, lying at anchor close up to the line. Once 
again we journeyed over the wonderful mountain 
railway, and I was, more than ever, awe inspired by 
the gigantic heights and grey-brown rocks. There 
was a very courteous fellow sitting opposite me in 
the carriage. He was an Austrian officer going on 
leave, and, strange to say, in mufti. One would 
never have guessed, from his appearance, that he 
was an officer, but one thing rather peculiar about 
him was that he wore dark brown kid gloves, a 
thing I had never previously seen done by a civilian, 
the weather being extremely hot. I suppose it was 
a kind of second nature to him, as officers in uni- 
form always wear them. As we journeyed on, I 
observed that wherever there was a patch of green 
among the barren, rocky hills, the opportunity to 
build a few peasants' cottages thereon had been 
seized upon, and further, that the maize crop ap- 
peared to be all gathered in, and was laid out in the 
little square yards attached to the cottages, where 
the sun was still ripening it. 

A Trip through the Balkan States 113 

We arrived at Mostar at 3.30 p.m. This is the 
most important town between Ragnsa and Sera- 
jevo, and the station was crowded with peasants 
clad in their picturesque garbs. On leaving Mos- 
tar, one notices, more particularly, what might 
be termed the military road which appears to ac- 
company the line of rail the whole way and runs 
parallel to it, a river passing between the two for a 
considerable distance. We passed fantastic little 
waterfalls on either side of the route which was, 
moreover, a very tortuous one. Serajevo was 
reached at 10.30 p.m. and, although very tired and 
hungry, having been in the train since early morn- 
ing, I made up my mind to continue my journey. 
There were a great number of military officers in 
the station, and it was often a source of wonder to 
me what they were all doing under such circum- 
stances. It did not matter at what hour of the day 
or night one arrived at a station, there they were 
strutting about in full uniform which, moreover, 
always looked new and spotless. Indeed, it would 
never have surprised me to see a station master in a 
cocked hat and feathers, spurs and sword ! or if the 

guard were to have started the train at the call of a 


114 A Trip through the Balkan States 

trumpet ! There was a terrible military air about 

We continued our journey at 11.10 p.m., and 
reached Bosnabrod the following morning, 16th 
September, at 9.15 a.m. I had to get out of the 
train here to book my box on to Agram, where I in- 
tended stopping. We left again at 10.15 a.m., and 
ten minutes after starting, all the passengers, with 
bags and bundles, were hustled out to wait at a 
siding for another train. This change was probably 
at the Bosnian frontier and we were now entering 
Croatia. I was beginning to think, by this time, 
that eating and drinking can to a great extent be- 
come a habit, and that one can accustom oneself to 
very little food. In this instance I had been satis- 
fied with three sandwiches (which I brought with 
me from Eagusa) during the last twenty-four hours. 
We crossed the Save river just before arriving at 
Agram at 2.30 p.m., and it was raining slightly. 
I found Agram to be distinctly a shopping town, 
the establishments of provision dealers, drapers 
and chemists being perhaps the best examples. I 
soon, moreover, came to the conclusion that it was 
a place to get out of. The greater part of the town 

A Trip through the Balkan States 115 

appeared to be brand new, and there is, moreover, 
a new cathedral, yellow and plain, and with a 
pair of very high steeples which rather make the 
body of the building look stumpy. It is called St. 
Stephan. The old cathedral of St. Marco, which 
was built in A.D. 1100 was, I believe, destroyed by 
an earthquake, as indeed was the greater part of 
the town, in 1880. There are some new public 
buildings, but like the people one sees in the 
street, they are uninteresting. Indeed, I did not 
think it worth while to buy even a postcard ! The 
tramways have not yet got beyond the wretched 
little one-horse variety. As I walked about the 
streets it seemed to me more and more inexplicable 
that one never heard a man or boy whistling, or 
even a woman singing at her work, and I have 
often wondered whether there are any popular 
tunes on the Continent. 

My hotel was about the worst imaginable, and 
indeed hardly superior to the one in Boulogne 
where, however, there was somewhere to sit down 
except in one's bedroom. Here I could find no 
resting place or sitting-room, and further, no one in 
the establishment spoke a word of French or 

Ti6 A Trip through the Balkan States 

English. It appeared to rae to be a hotel of the 
commercial variety, for the yard was full of the 
usual heavy, strong-bound boxes which one sees in 
such establishments at home, and wonders where 
on earth they are made, bought, and sold. I took 
a stroll after dinner, as the evening was fine, 
having once again indulged in the delicious Pilsen 
beer, and having mentally added that it was a great 
pity one only got about half a glass of the liquid by 
the time the froth had subsided. 

At breakfast the following morning, I got into 
conversation with a very interesting Croatian who 
spoke English and French fairly well, and was 
probably a journalist. He took me for one, at 
any rate, and opened his heart forthwith. He was 
especially fluent on the subject of Croatian in- 
dependence, and laid great stress on his Slav 
language, giving me to understand that it was quite 
distinct from the Finnish tongue of the Hungarian. 
The Croatian language, he said, was the same as 
that of the Servians, although written differently. 
But the religion of the Croatians is Eoman Catholic, 
while that of the Servians is Greek Orthodox. 
During the morning, which was decidedly chilly, I 

A Trip through the Balkan States 117 

ascended by the little railway to Old Agram, where 
one gets a fine view of the modern town. I went 
into a very ancient church there, whose roof had 
been newly tiled in colours and upon which was 
worked a large coat-of-arms. The interior was 
Alhambra-like in style, and I noticed that there was 
a very fine square tower. At dinner time I met my 
Croatian friend again, when he further informed me 
that they had their own Government laws, admin- 
istration, and system of education, and that out of a 
population of 70,000 in Agram, three quarters were 
Croatians and one quarter other nations. The 
principal industries appear to be agriculture (corn 
and maize) paper, and boots. The Croatians, 
like the Irish, seem to have a continual griev- 
ance, and they, moreover, cordially dislike the 

I confess to very soon tiring of Agram and was 
not sorry to leave for Fiume the same day by the 
2.45 p.m. train. One of my carriage companions 
was a nice young Italian who was journeying to 
his home at Milan. He spoke a little French and 
informed me that he had served for one year in the 
army and had been a sergeant in an Alpine regi- 

ii8 A Trip through the Balkan States 

ment. He showed me, with evident pride, his dis- 
charge papers, which he apparently carried about 
with him. Towards evening we passed some fine 
mountain scenery and well wooded hills. We 
reached Fiume at 8 p.m. and I drove to the Hotel 
Europe where, thank heaven, English was spoken 
freely. As in the Agram hotel, save for the chair 
in one's bedroom or at a restaurant table, there was 
not another to be had, while as to a sitting-room or 
lounge, I could discover neither. I partook of an 
evening meal in the hotel restaurant, which was 
very expensive. 

The next morning (18th September) I was up at 
four o'clock and left for Venice by the 5.50 a.m. 
train. I managed to get a cup of coffee and piece of 
bread before starting, and was once again convinced 
that a little " roughing it " does one a deal of good, 
for it not only leads one to eat less, from compul- 
sion, be it said, but shakes one up into the bargain. 
The weather was still fine, in fact it had scarcely 
rained at all, at any rate during the day, since I left 
Innsbriick. The sea view, on leaving Fiume, was 
very pretty, and further on there was some beauti- 
ful mountain scenery. At 7.45 a.m. we arrived at 

A Trip through the Balkan States 119 

St. Peter. I noticed, by the way, what was to me 
an unusual custom prevailing in this train, viz., 
that women were employed for dusting purposes, 
and I daresay they did it well. 

Divaca was reached at 8.30 a.m. and we then 
passed through a barren and stony country, getting 
another glimpse of the sea later on. At 10.15 a.m. 
we crossed a broad river, and then the country 
appeared to be well cultivated and rich-looking. 
The district about here is, I believe, a great wine- 
producing one. The first Italian town we stopped 
at was Udine, which was reached at 11.20 
a.m., and there was accordingly a Custom's ex- 

We arrived at Venice at 2.45 p.m., and I pro- 
ceeded in a gondola to my hotel, where I found, to 
my astonishment, mosquito nets around my bed ! 
The journey by water to my hotel, the Metropole, 
took about half -an-h our, so one had a good oppor- 
tunity of noticing the antiquity of the buildings en 
route, as well as the noisiness and jubilation of the 
populace. Nearly every one was singing at the 
tops of their voices, and appeared, moreover, to be 
in a gay mood, and there was, further, not the 

120 A Trip through the Balkan States 

slightest doubt regarding the natural sonority of 
the men's voices. There were also plenty of chil- 
dren about, not too clean, perhaps, but playing 
heartily, which is so unusual a sight on the Con- 
tinent. I failed to discover, however, any ladies 
with the so-called Venetian red hair. Venice is 
certainly romantic, but romance does not always 
go with cleanliness ! The romance of the place is 
moreover, greatly marred nowadays by the steamer 
traffic which prevails, and which interferes also, by 
the constant swell from the steamers, with the 
graceful progression of the gondolas on the Grand 

On getting up the next morning I found my face 
covered with an eruption from mosquito bites 
which would have done credit to a Bengal station 
in July. In fact, all the time I was in Venice 
I suffered tortures from the same cause, which 
made one not only unsightly, but irritable and dis- 
appointed. Strange, too, that no one had ever 
warned me of the fact, although I noticed that a 
large number of the inhabitants were similarly 
disfigured by bites. The nets on one's bed, more- 
over, did not seem to prevent the enemy's attack. 

A Trip through the Balkan States 121 

Otherwise the hotel was charming in every respect. 
We had quite the best bread I have tasted on the 
Continent and the only apples I had come across 
with a British flavour. Potatoes, as usual, were 
few and far between, and at dinner I must confess 
one could have taken a walk between the courses ! 
There were a few Germans staying at the hotel 
who at meal times rather reminded one that they 
were more feeders than diners, just as some folks 
are more clothed than dressed. The usual Yankee 
visitors, male and female, were forcibly represented 
and "took charge" accordingly. Indeed, their 
voices could be heard all over the building. 

The next day (20th September) was Sunday, so I 
took the opportunity of attending Mass in the 
gorgeously decorated cathedral of St. Mark. One 
heard here a fine example of the glorification of a 
Christian religion, both in ritual and music, by the 
clerics of the church. As to the rest — well, it ap- 
peared to me to savour of unreality. Hundreds of 
people, who were evidently sightseers, were prome- 
nading the great building, chattering to one another, 
pointing, and discussing every-day subjects while 
the service was going on. Only a very few were 

122 A Trip through the Balkan States 

intent upon any religious observance, and these 
were kneeling on chairs, muttering their creed and, 
I presume, orthodox prayers. Among the crowd I 
observed what was presumably a country priest 
going through his devotional curriculum in all 
earnestness, while beside him knelt another who 
was talking loudly to his friends, and pointing to 
the condition of the roof. And yet these two priests 
were of the same religion ! An occasional obbligato 
of bell tinkling varied the service, while the expec- 
toration of men, aye, and of women too, was not 
absent ! The body of the cathedral simply became 
a promenade, and children were playing about 
among the empty chairs. During the whole of the 
service, boxes for a money collection were being 
rattled, rather aggressively, all over the building 
— which rather savoured of a certain seaside per- 
formance ! 

The congregation, meanwhile, appeared to be 
quite content in the knowledge that a religious 
ceremony was going on, which presumably was a 
sufficient unction for their souls. Everything, in 
fact, seemed to be done for them. One might be 
tempted to ask, with all due respect, is this re- 

A Trip through the Balkan States 123 

ligion? The walking about and talking of the 
sightseers did not, moreover, appear to disturb the 
few who were muttering their prayers. When in 
Belgrade, a Koman Catholic gentleman remarked 
to me how astonished he was at the quiet devotion 
of the congregations in Protestant churches. He 
confessed, however, that his experience in this 
direction was very limited, and that he had not 
been in Southsea. He further informed me that 
in his church people chattered away freely, as they 
pleased, while the ceremonies were going on, a fact 
I had now amply verified up to the hilt, in my 
Sunday visit to St. Marco. 

On leaving the cathedral I made my way to the 
academy or picture gallery which probably con- 
tains a unique collection of paintings by the old 
Italian masters, including a few by Titian. They 
are almost entirely devoted to subjects connected 
with the Christian religion. I then returned to St. 
Marco and noticed, on the firing of the midday gun, 
how scared all the pigeons, which are so unusually 
tame and frequent the Plaza, became. Indeed, it 
was many minutes before they were reassured and 
returned to their perpetiual haunt. On my way 

124 A Trip through the Balkan States 

home I saw an Infantry regiment march out of 
barracks. The men appeared to be so heavily 
weighted and encumbered by their huge vaHses, 
that the poor httle fellows could scarcely walk. 
They did not trouble, moreover, to keep a very 
correct step, and altogether looked anything but 

I left Venice for Milan at 8 a.m. on 21st Sep- 
tember, and it was a coldish, dull morning. We 
passed Verona at 9.50 a.m. and arrived at Milan at 
12.30 p.m. I went to the Hotel Victoria, where I 
was given a paper to fill in containing a longer list 
of questions than usual, and which included one's 
age and the name of one's father ! I found my hotel 
to be full of priests and the manager informed me 
that they had been to Eome to see the Pope and 
take him a large sum of money, adding that " he 
wished he were a Pope ! " 

Milan is a busy and go-ahead town, and appears 
to have a great deal of bustle and traffic. Indeed, 
it is rather remindful of a large English town ; 
say, Birmingham. 

The electric tramway service is very extensive, 
and is evidently in too great a hurry to stop at 

A Trip through the Balkan States 125 

certain points en route, so that one is obliged to, 
more or less, jump on and off the cars. It is also 
very difficult to cross some of the streets, on account 
of the large number of tramcars which follow along 
in strings. I noticed that the policemen carried 
very nice walking-sticks with tassels to them, and 
wore black kid gloves ! In almost every street were 
to be found first-rate little cinematograph theatres, 
in which, as at Innsbriick, the most expensive seats 
were farthest back. I found, with some difficulty, 
the world-renowned La Scala, but could hardly be- 
lieve, from the miserable exterior, that so wonderful 
a hall as the great opera house existed inside. The 
exterior is a disgrace to Milanese art, and, on view- 
ing it, one would think it had once been, with its 
old, red-tiled roof, a hospital of bygone days. I 
was shown, with some grandeur by an attendant, 
the statues of Verdi, Bellini, Eossini, and Donizetti, 
and found that the enormous stage was occupied by 
workmen who were getting things into order for 
the production of the next opera. Another disgrace 
to Milan is the approach to and exterior of the Con- 
servatoire of Music. It was all very well to inform 
one that Verdi and Mascagni and others had trod 

126 A Trip through the Balkan States 

the hallowed ground, but surely it is high time that 
the building were made compatible with its reputa- 
tion and traditions. 

At dinner I met a very intelligent young 
American, a Harvard man, who enlightened me . 
by saying that he considered the English nobility 
a "set of cads." I think he may have meant 
snobs. He also strongly objected to American girls 
(who, like all girls, he explained, were foolish) 
marrying titles; and further endeavoured to make 
one believe that a millionaire might be poor because 
he could not perhaps realise his invested capital 
except at a great loss, and therefore refrained from 
doing so ! This theory requires, to my mind, a 
bit of studying and is somewhat difficult to under- 
stand. Speaking of Milan cathedral he said that 
in his opinion it was " too utterly utter," whatever 
that implied. I think he meant that there was 
too much filigree about it. I would, however, 
venture to state that the first sight of this building 
would be calculated to give some people a lump 
in their throats. Later on, in the smoking-room, 
my young Harvard friend informed me that 
dentists were called doctors in America, for the 

A Trip through the Balkan States 127 

very good reason that they were obhged to be 
doctors before becoming dentists. I do not know 
if this statement is correct, but if it is I think 
it seems a sensible plan. We have, in England, 
oculists who must have medical degrees, so why 
not dentists ? It would at any rate be the means, 
probably, of doing away with the class distinction 
which exists in England between doctors and 

I may mention that, during my short stay in 
Milan, a good many Italians tried to impress upon 
me that their part in the Triple Alliance was 
merely a political one and that Italians were more 
in sympathy with the French and English than 
with the Germans. 

To revert to the cathedral, one can scarcely 
realise, from written accounts, how beautiful it is, 
for, like the Taj at Agra, it stands alone in its 
marble glory! It was commenced in 1386, and 
founded by a certain Duke of Milan. The white 
marble of which the entire structure is built was 
taken from the quarries of Mount Gandoglia near 
the Lake Maggiore. It is almost entirely Gothic 
in design, but I believe the west front, which 

128 A Trip through the Balkan States 

to my mind is the weak spot in this otherwise 
gorgeous structure, is in the Grecian style, and 
workmen are still busy in making alterations in 
and additions to its ornamentation. The shape of 
the building is that of a Latin cross, and comprises 
five naves and entrances. The length is about 480 
feet, which is equal to that of St. Paul's, while the 
height of the two cathedrals is also about the same. 
The separation of the five naves is formed by fifty- 
two large, fluted marble columns of about seventy- 
two feet high, and the height of the largest nave is 
164 feet. The walls of the building are about eight 
feet thick, and some 300 statues adorn the interior 
and exterior of this marvellous church. 

One is allowed, on payment of a small fee, to 
ascend to the roof of the building, which is accom- 
plished by 158 steps ; and should one be inclined to 
a further ascent, the cupola, which was built in the 
last century, can be reached. This has a gilt statue 
of the Virgin Mary, to whom the church is dedi- 
cated, surmounting it. This pinnacle, however, is 
but one amongst 136 lesser ones, each adorned with 
twenty-five statues ! These statues appear to be 
innumerable as one gazes around, and some are very 

A Trip through the Balkan States 129 

beautiful, as well as costly ; two of the latest, I be- 
lieve, being valued at 500,000 francs each ! In every 
angle and nook of the vast roof one is surprised by 
graceful arches, galleries and parapets. 

After descending, and feeling somewhat tired, I 
sat down on one of the many rush-bottomed chairs 
in the nave, but was soon accosted by an official for 
the price of my rash behaviour. And how this 
spoiled the devotional aspect of affairs and made one 
contemplate the fact that nothing, after all, pays 
like religion ! 

Milan can boast of other things besides its cathe- 
dral, and go where you will, it would be impossible 
to find such an arcade and colonnade as exist 
there. The extent of this wonderful structure, its 
height, and the artistic merits of its shops, make 
it at once unique and worthy of this great Italian 

On going to my room at 10.30 p.m., I was whist- 
ling softly, when a stern voice came from the 
adjoining chamber asking me in peremptory tones 
to desist, as the owner of the voice wished to 
sleep. Of course I desisted, but at six o'clock 

the next morning I was awakened, and kept 


130 A Trip through the Balkan States 

awake, by the same gentleman, who for exactly 
half an hour was clearing his throat in thunderous 
tones ! I bore this, however, but felt I would have 
liked to retaliate. 

I left for Turin at 10.15 a.m., 23rd September, and 
arrived there the same day. At the railway station 
in Turin, and also I may add, at Milan, I found 
great difficulty in getting a porter. There was 
nothing to note in this rather short journey, and 
it was not long after my arrival before I began to 
view the place. There are excellent shops in Turin, 
which are chiefly situated in capacious arcades, the 
number and extent of which are positively bewilder- 
ing. These arcades flank the very long, straight, 
streets. The Via Eoma and Via Garibaldi appear 
to be two of the principal streets, and I found that 
cinematograph theatres were again rampant, there 
being, I should say, half a dozen in almost every 
street. There is an immense central railway sta- 
tion and the tramcars, as in Milan, appear to have 
no stopping points en route. I saw no beautiful 
women, and the postcards seemed to be inferior 
to what one expects nowadays. There was, strange 
to say, an absence of spaghetti from the restaurant 

A Trip through the Balkan States 131 

bills of fare, a delicacy one rather looked forward to 
in Italy, and the bread reminded one of macaroni. 
I was constantly struck by the number of dwarfs 
about the town, both male and female, and they all 
appeared to be employed as hawkers. 

Now, there is a great deal to see in Turin and a 
great deal that is of interest, but one requires more 
time than I had at my disposal. Of the churches of 
interest may be mentioned the Domo, or cathedral, 
a not very striking building, but containing a won- 
derful Capella all in black marble. The Ssicro Cuore 
di Maria church is modern, but possesses the largest 
organ of all the Italian churches, I believe, having 
6,000 pipes, five keyboards, and thirty pedals. I 
visited the Eoyal Palace and was escorted through 
all the rooms, where one was feasted with a great 
display of gold and glitter, but nothing very im- 
pressive. Among the monuments, and Turin 
possesses a great number, I was struck by the 
beauty of the Traforo del Frejus, which was 
erected to commemorate the piercing of the 
Frejus, and was made of masses of rock which 
were taken from the tunnel. 

The next day I took the tramway as far as 

132 A Trip through the Balkan States 

Valentine Castle, a pretty building of the seventeenth 
century, in the French style. It is at present the 
seat of an engineering school. Leaving this, one 
finds the river Po close by, and on the left ; and 
a walk along its banks, where the scenery is 
picturesque and with wooded hills rising on the 
other side of the river, brought me to a mediaeval 
castle which, to my mind, is quite the most inter- 
esting thing to be seen in Turin. Everything 
here appears to be as it was in mediaeval days, and 
in the dining-room, to keep up the suggestion, the 
long table is laid with plates, glass and cutlery of 
that period. The kitchen, bedrooms, chapels, prison, 
throne room and other chambers are all furnished 
in the original style (fifteenth century) and form a 
very interesting reminiscence of the days when 
" knights were bold." The surroundings of this 
part of Turin constitute the Valentine Park, a well- 
kept and ornamented place in which there is a 
magnificent monument to Amedeo di Savoia Duca 
d'Aosta by David Calandra and upon which 
standsone of the finest equestrian statues in 
Before leaving Italy I may remark that I did not 

A Trip through the Balkan States 133 

hear a band of any kind, either in Milan or Turin, 
and that I noticed with what an air of jauntiness 
ItaHans wear their straw hats which, moreover, 
are not so high in the crown as one sees in 

I left for Paris by the 7.25 a.m. train on 25th 
September, and at the door of the hotel quite half 
a dozen "bootses" stood waiting to say "good- 
bye " to me. The portieVy however, informed me 
that it did not matter to which one I gave the 
usual " tip." This was a decided relief, and I 
forthwith made a careful selection, being influenced, 
no doubt, by the one with the most winning 
smile ! 

Eain began to fall soon after we started, but 
ceased at noon. We passed through the Mont 
Genis tunnel and reached Modane, (where there 
was a Custom's examination) which is, I believe, 
the French frontier station, at 10.45 a.m. I was once 
again asked by a fellow-traveller, as I had frequently 
been asked before, if I were travelling alone, and 
rather wished my questioner would explain. 

At Chambery there were five people in my 
carriage besides myself, four of whom were priests. 

134 A Trip through the Balkan States 

Strange to relate, a study of mouths instantly 
impressed itself upon me. There was the old 
priest with the straight-cut mouth and long upper 
lip which may have denoted reverence ; then the 
mouth of his companion with its turned-down 
corners depicting, perhaps, the capable man, and 
one who should govern. There was the mouth 
with protruding upper lip, red and fleshy, denoting 
a weak intellect, and the fourth priest had a large, 
mobile mouth that might mean anything ! 

We passed Dijon at 5.15 p.m. and arrived in 
Paris at 10.15 p.m. The following morning I 
strolled out. It was a dismal, wet day, and how 
dismal Paris can be on such a day ! I had already 
come to the conclusion that times had changed in 
the French capital, having been informed that early 
coffee and rolls were served in the coffee room. 
Why, in this very same hotel I remember the time 
when this little meal was brought to one's bed- 
room as a matter of course. Now, however, one is 
generally charged extra for such a luxury. I was, 
I may add, given a dessert spoon with my coffee 
cup. The question of finger glasses next came to 
my mind, and I remembered that I had never seen 

A Trip through the Balkan States i35 

one at any hotel I had been in on the Continent. 
And how one longs to get a good cup of tea, and 
some homely bread and butter. The waiters in 
Paris seem to work so automatically that they give 
one the idea that they have a "story," and that 
their thoughts are far away. Finally, one must, 
on the Continent, remove from one's thoughts all 
question of class distinction, the most monied being 
the most revered. 

I left Paris at 10 a.m. on 27th September, my 
companion on this occasion being one of the better 
class American ladies, a widow, who had been 
married to a Scotchman, bless his heart ! She told 
me that she felt, after her travels, glad to be re- 
turning to a God-fearing people, meaning the 
English. She added, however, that the Britishers 
were far too careless in everything, especially the 
women, and that she feared what the end would 
be. She informed me that she preferred dealing 
with English tradesmen to anyone else, but had, 
the previous day in Paris invested in a smart 
muslin dress for which she had given 570 francs ! 
My friend was highly intelligent and well informed, 
and was much afraid that anyone should mistake 

136 A Trip through the Balkan States 

the usual globe-trotting American for the better 
class. Finally, she gave me to understand that she 
was exceedingly well off, her husband having been 
a banker, and intended, moreover, to do herself well 
and spare no expense. The only thing, in fact, she 
wanted was a nice, suitable companion. 

In conclusion, I may add that my box (which, as 
before stated, weighed when packed, 651bs.) cost me 
about £4, in English money, to take round the 
whole journey, which worked out, on an average, 
at about sixpence an hour while travelling by 

On arrival in London I was surprised, as well 
as disgusted, to find that, after inquiry at six 
hotels, I could not get a bedroom ! and that 
further, I was not likely to get one anywhere. 
The Franco-British Exhibition had brought thou- 
sands of foreigners to London, who consequently 
swelled the ranks of those requiring hotel accommo- 
dation. I felt that I was almost turned out of my 
own country, and that, also, there was a moral in 
the fact. My journey, therefore, was not yet quite 
over, and I once more took a seat in a railway 
carriage and went south — and home. 

A Trip through the Balkan States 137 

On making the foregoing travels known to some 
of my club friends, I was hailed as an interesting 
personage and spoken of as " the last man from the 
Balkans." I was soon informed, furthermore, of the 
serious developments which had taken place almost 
immediately after I had left the land of the Serbs and 
was requested to give my opinions as to the present 
state of affairs, coupled with what I had heard and 
seen. I therefore spent the afternoon with my 
friends, who were most anxious to learn from me 
what I considered would be the political outcome of 
recent events. I will therefore here relate my 
part of the conversation, to the best of my 

Austria, up to the present, has been more 
unfortunate in her wars than other countries 
have, and when the Emperor Francis Joseph 
came to the throne, his armies were fighting 
against the Hungarians and the people of Northern 
Italy. The war of 1859 lost him Lombardy, and 
that of 1866, Venetia. When, by the treaty of 
Berlin, Austria was allowed to occupy (not annex) 
Bosnia and Herzegovina, in 1878, it must be 
understood that the Sultan of Turkey's sovereignty 

138 A Trip through the Balkan States 

was not abolished thereby. The peoples of Bosnia 
and Herzegovina, before this occupation, enjoyed 
more freedom than they have done since and, 
moreover, the Austrians have always been alive to 
the wish of the Slav races, which include the greater 
part of the peoples of the Balkan States who are 
not Turkish or Austrian, to escape from their yoke. 
Indeed, the country people of Bosnia, Herzegovina, 
and Croatia, have no doubt been taught, from 
time to time by Servian agitators, that their coun- 
tries, by right, belong to Servia and, moreover, 
look to the King of Servia as their rightful ruler. 
Austria is said to have always endeavoured to sup- 
press the Servian language in the schools of Bos- 
nia and Herzegovina, and, moreover, to have natur- 
ally favoured the Koman Catholic portion of the 
population. It was not very surprising, therefore, 
that the peoples of these two countries rose in 1882 
against their Austrian conquerors, and although 
they suffered defeat thereby, it took 200,000 men 
to overcome them. The present annexation of the 
two countries is considered by Austria to be merely 
a verbal change and that it VTill end, in time, the 
existing friction. 

A Trip through the Balkan States 139 

The act, however, constituted a breach of the 
BerHn treaty, as an occupation, only, was sanctioned 
by the Powers concerned. There is, too, a good 
deal of moral or sentimental, if not practical, 
difference between a sovereignty over a country and 
merely an occupation of it. It may easily be 
imagined, therefore, that the feelings of the Serbs 
are much deeper than Austria supposes, or wishes 
to suppose, and that the annexation of Bosian and 
Herzegovina is considered a death blow to their 
existence and an end to their aspirations in the 
future. This was well exemplified by the fact that, 
not long since, a form of self-government for the 
two countries was being agitated, and delegates had 
been chosen to proceed to Budapest, and there 
represent their case. While on their way, however, 
the news of the annexation reached them ! 

Now, it is rather curious, as well as worthy of 
note, that the Mussulman Serbs, who, with the 
Servians, probably constitute four-fifths of the 
inhabitants of Bosnia and Herzegovina, have joined 
those of the Orthodox Greek Church in this move- 
ment for self-government. Russia was oripjinally 
the protector of the Slav race against Turkish 

I40 A Trip through the Balkan States 

power, but latterly German (or Austrian) influence 
has become a more serious menace and perhaps 
may be traced to the fact that Germany's road to 
the East is through the Balkans. There can be no 
doubt, also, that the present weakness of Eussia, 
together with the troubles and anxieties of Turkey, 
have influenced Austria in her annexation of Bosnia 
and Herzegovina. Austria-Hungary with a popu- 
lation of 45,000,000, and with an army of — shall 
we say ? — 2,000,000 men, cannot be considered any- 
thing but a strong power, and is, moreover, impor- 
tant enough, among the European powers, to de- 
mand respect and consideration. The result of the 
present crisis in Balkan affairs would appear to 
depend, to a great extent, on the attitude of Turkey 
towards Austria, and a good understanding between 
the two countries is necessary for the consumma- 
tion of a peaceful issue. 

The removal of the Turkish boycott on Austrian 
trade was, therefore, to be wished for as a pre- 
liminary step towards a mutual understanding. 
Russia, of course, poses as the protector of the Slav 
races, with, some assert, a decided leaning in 
favour of Turkey, but it is doubtful if she is at 

A Trip through the Balkan States 141 

present competent to put her policy into action, or 
give more than a moral support, remembering that 
Germany is bound to help Austria, if necessary, 
against her. 

To sum up, then: the Bosnians and Herzego- 
vinians if united in arms with the Servians and 
Montenegrins (whose interests are identical) could 
not hope to be successful in a war against Austria- 
Hungary which would probably end in the com- 
plete loss of their independence, like Croatia and Dal- 
matia. The evacuation of the Sandjak of Novibazar 
by Austria-Hungary has, moreover, nothing to do 
with the case of Bosnia and Herzegovina, as it was 
occupied as empowered by the Berlin Treaty and 
with the knowledge that its evacuation could be 
carried out when she, Austria- Hungary, pleased. 
In turning to the earlier history of Bosnia and 
Herzegovina one finds that the two countries 
originally formed part of Dalmatia when the latter 
was a Koman province. They were afterwards 
occupied by Slavs, becoming a kingdom in 1376. 
In 1461 the Turks came upon the scene and 
brought the two countries under their rule. In 
1862 the Turks granted a form of local govern- 

142 A Trip through the Balkan States 

ment, and at that time there was a good deal of 
bad feeling between Christians and Mahomedans. 
Indeed, religious differences have always tended to 
impede any hope of complete unity. The Austrians 
interceded, to some extent, in 1876, with the result 
that there was some improvement in the state of 
affairs, and I do not think it can ever be said that 
Austria has governed Bosnia and Herzegovina 
badly, although certain restrictions to freedom have 
existed and no university has been allowed to be 

The terrible course of events in Bulgaria at the 
hands of the Turks in 1876, caused all the Balkan 
Christians to wish to free themselves from Turkish 
rule, and resulted in Austria being allowed to 
occupy Bosnia and Herzegovina. The peoples of 
these countries have, however, long cherished the 
hope of one day becoming citizens of the Free 
Servian states, the Sultan's authority being looked 
upon as more or less chimerical. The obstacle to 
this cherished hope has in course of time been 
removed from Turkey to Austria-Hungary. It 
may be mentioned that by the provisions of the 
Protocol of the agreement lately signed by Austria- 

A Trip through the Balkan States I43 

Hungary and Turkey, the former country has 
renounced all rights with regard to the Sandjak of 
Novibazar, and that all Turks living in Bosnia shall 
retain their Ottoman nationality and religious 
freedom (as hitherto) and shall, moreover, have 
equal rights with others. Further, that Austria- 
Hungary shall pay a compensation, in gold, for 
landed property which was possessed by the 
Turkish state. It is, however, to Servia that all 
eyes are now turned for a solution, if possible, of 
the Balkan question, for by the last act of Austria 
the Servians think they will eventually be wiped 
out, and if such be the case, that it would be 
infinitely preferable to end their independence in 

The feelings, moreover, of the Servians will 
always be bitter against Austria-Hungary, and they 
will tell you of the continual overbearing attitude 
adopted towards them by Austria. They alao dweil 
upon the antagonism of the Press of Vienna and 
Budapest and the more recent prevention of the 
entry of munitions of war into their country by 
Austria, which, to say the least, seemed a very 
high-handed measure. Indeed, Austria has from 

144 A Trip through the Balkan States 

time to time closed her frontier to Servians com- 
mercial traffic, and probably has put difficulties in 
the way of free trade. Again, the treatment lately 
of the accredited Montenegrin Envoy when on his 
way to Servia, and his subsequent arrest at Agram, 
where he was detained twelve hours and his 
luggage searched, has not tended to improve 
matters. In fact, many Servians think that Austria 
is deliberately goading them on to take up arms, 
which would be made a sufficient excuse for war, 
the Austrian intention being the total absorption 
of the Serb race, of which they have, probably, 
already absorbed one half. The conquest of Servia 
would give Austria control of the Morava Pass 
which leads to Vandar and the ^gean Sea. But if 
it be true that Austria desires the conquest of 
Servia, it is more than probable that both Eussia 
and Italy would raise an objection. Servia, on the 
other hand, also desires, and legitimately, an outlet 
to the sea, and a consideration of her geographical 
position will explain this. Bounded on the north 
by Austria-Hungary, on the south by Bulgaria and 
Turkey, on the east by Bulgaria and Eoumania, 
and on the west by Bosnia, she is hemmed in to a 

A Trip through the Balkan States 145 

very large extent. She fought for her independence 
against Turkey, hoping to secure a united Serb 
nation in the Balkan Peninsula. Indeed, any 
freedom the Servians possess to-day, they have had 
to struggle hard for, and they have, moreover, a 
very small part of the lands occupied by their race 
at the present moment. 

But the Servians, although Slavs, and having the 
same blood and speech as Bosnians, Herzego- 
vinians, and Croatians, etc., seem to forget that a 
thirty years' occupation of Bosnia by the Austrians 
has made great changes even in the character of 
the Bosnian Slavs. Servia, no doubt, feels that 
Bosnia and Herzegovina should be united to her, 
and asks, therefore, for some "compensation," a 
claim, however, for which there does not appear 
to be any legal right. 

Now, with regard to this *' compensation," *' com- 
promise," or '* sop," some diplomatists think that 
satisfaction would be given if the territory called 
the Sandjak of Novibazar, which projects from 
Macedonia towards Bosnia, and separates Servia 
from Montenegro, were handed over to Servia. 
By this means, Servia and Montenegro would be 


146 A Trip through the Balkan States 

able to join hands and, furthermore, get an outlet 
in the Adriatic. Such a *' compensation," however, 
would be, as matters stand at the time of writing, 
at the expense of Turkey. The Servians have 
always hankered after a strip of Bosnian territory, 
and perhaps this concession on the part of Austria, 
although a smaller one, would be better. It would 
take the form of a strip of territory at the south- 
east corner of Bosnia, of some thirty or forty miles 
wide, which would be a belt of union between the 
two countries. Through this small tiact of country 
runs, I believe, the Austro-Hungarian railway from 
Serajevo, one branch of which goes to the Servian 
frontier and the edge of the before-mentioned 
Sandjak, and the other to a town called Foleta 
which is in Herzegovina. This railway is a 
military and strategical one. The strip of land 
thus acquired would contain the river Drina and 
the town of Vishegrad, and would unite Servia, 
Montenegro, and the sea. If war should un- 
happily break out, Belgrade, faced and flanked 
as it is by Austria-Hungary, would be, in a 
military sense, untenable. The seat of Govern- 
ment would, in all likelihood, be moved to Nisch. 

A Trip through the Balkan States 147 

In fact, it is somewhat doubtful whether the 
strongest nation could afford, in case of war, to 
leave its capital on the frontier, as Belgrade is, 
which rather reminds one of the old lines : "An 
Austrian army awfully arrayed, boldly, by battery, 
besiege Belgrade." 

It may be mentioned that the old capitals of 
Servia were far away from the frontier, and the 
removal to Belgrade was, in those days, made to 
secure the advantage of being nearer Austria and 
further from Turkey! How time has conspicu- 
ously altered this idea. Nisch is, in other respects, 
also superior to Belgrade as a capital, being a 
railway centre and having lines passing through 
it to Sofia and Constantinople. One may sur- 
mise that perhaps some day a line will also 
run through it to Antivari, on the Montenegrin 

Now, in case of war, how does Servia stand with 
regard to the forces at her disposal ? The resources 
of a country with a population of, say, two and 
a half millions cannot be very great. The peace 
strength of the army is about 22,000 rank and 
file raised, during the drill season, to perhaps 

148 A Trip through the Balkan States 

35,000. The war establishment, however, would 
be about 200,000 men of the so-called first and 
second ban, behind which would be a third of some 
50,000 more. The total war strength may, there- 
fore, be put down at approximately, 250,000 men. 
One drawback to these forces is, that there appears 
to be a difference in the pattern of the rifles issued 
to the Infantry, some being armed with Mauser 
repeating rifles and others with the Berdan, single 
cartridge, variety. The Cavalry are armed with, 
I believe, Mauser-Eoka carbines. Factories exist 
in Servia for the conversion of rifles and the manu- 
facture of ammunition and powder. The artillery 
are probably not so efficient as they might 

Finally, I am of opinion that the fact of Austria- 
Hungary coming to terms over the question of 
Bosnia and Herzegovina will not settle the matter 
so far as Servia is concerned. Servia has always 
entertained the hope of a union with these two 
states and, indeed, may also see in such an agree- 
ment a further policy of expansion on the part of 
Austria, and may naturally ask themselves where 
and how it will all end ? On the other hand, the 

A Trip through the Balkan States 149 

defeat of Servia would not be of much gain to 
Austria, as the Servians are too poor to pay a war 
indemnity. Again, what country would dare to 
help Servia in case of war? Eussia, Italy, 
England? I think not, for these countries might 
not consider the existence, even, of Servia, neces- 
sary to them. The country which would appear 
to have the most sympathy with the Servians is 
Montenegro which, like Servia and Eoumania, is 
an independent state. The Montenegrins are a 
proud and gallant people who for centuries held 
their own against Turkey. Their mode of warfare 
would be chiefly mountainous and of the guerilla 
type, and to defeat them a country would probably 
require ten times as many men as the Montene- 
grins can muster. Their army at present consists 
of 36,000 Infantry, and 1,200 Artillery, but the 
State is said to possess three rifles to each man, so 
that, if necessary, the Serbs of outlying districts 
could be armed. They also possess forty-eight 
mountain, twenty machine, thirty-six field, and 
forty-four siege guns. 

The position to be taken by the Bulgarians in 
the present crisis is difficult, as well as uncertain. 

ISO A Trip through the Balkan States 

What is the present attitude of Bulgaria towards 
Turkey, under the suzerainty of whose Sultan it 
was made a principality in July, 1878 ? To gain 
her independence, therefore, must not Bulgaria 
obtain the sanction of Turkey ? The seizure of 
the railway by the Bulgarians seems to have been 
the starting point of all the present troubles, and 
was, I believe, carried out by order of the Minister 
of Commerce, Prince Ferdinand and his Prime 
Minister being away at the time. The pretext for 
the seizure has been stated to be the sending by 
the Turkish government of a couple of officers and 
a company of soldiers into Bulgarian territory for 
the settling of a railway strike. Of course, this 
act was a serious one. There are, however, still 
a number of Bulgarians, and one can easily meet 
them in Sofia, whose sympathies are with the 
Turks and who, consequently, are against the 
attitude taken up by their present government, 
From conversations, moreover, which I had with 
Bulgarians, I was also led to believe that they 
infinitely preferred the Turks to the Greeks. They 
still, moreover, dream of the freedom of Macedonia 
and its Bulgarian population, a situation which 

A Trip through the Balkan States 151 

rather clashes with the views of the Greeks regard- 
ing that country. Good relations between Bulgaria 
and Turkey were not improved by the boycott of 
Bulgarian trade or by certain passages in the 
speech from the Turkish throne which seemed to 
suggest that the annexation, by Austria, of Bos- 
nia and Herzegovina was a consequence of the 
proclamation of Bulgaria as an independent 

A great deal would seem to depend upon the 
issue between Turkey and Bulgaria, and if the 
question of financial compensation be raised for 
the seizure of the railway, it is difficult to surmise 
how Bulgaria can meet it, seeing that the arrears 
due to Turkey of the Bulgarian tribute are, I believe, 
thirty years due. The differences, on the other 
hand, between Bulgaria and Servia are not very 
serious. They are both Slav peoples, and should 
Austria-Hungary move against Servia, who can 
say if the Bulgarians will stand by and do nothing ? 
At the same time, those who are **in the know" 
are of opinion that Austria-Hungary is in sym- 
pathy with Bulgaria with regard to Turkey, and 
some observers have even gone so far as to think 

152 A Trip through the Balkan States 

that an understanding already exists between 
Austria and Prince Ferdinand. 

The matter, indeed, becomes more complicated 
the more one goes into it. A solution, perhaps, 
would be forthcoming should Servia, Montenegro, 
Bulgaria, Eoumania, and, perhaps (who can say?) 
Turkey, form an alliance. Such an alliance would 
further have the moral support, if no more, of the 
Serbs of Bosnia, Herzegovina, and Croatia, etc., 
Bulgaria, unlike Servia, has an outlet to the sea, 
with a large coast line, and is, moreover, more free 
to act, as she has not as a neighbour Austria- 
Hungary. Bulgaria, indeed, holds a very strong 
card in the game ; at the same time, her acts may 
possibly be to some extent controlled by the desire 
to obtain some of the districts belonging at present 
to Turkey. In case of war, it is the opinion of 
most critics that the Bulgarian army is a factor 
to be reckoned with. The Bulgarians, moreover, 
delight in their army, its perfection, at any rate 
in their eyes, and its absolute reliability. They 
are, however, a people rather fond of the game 
of bluff, especially where it concerns Turkey, and 
are apt to be a little too conceited, perhaps, with 

A Trip through the Balkan States 153 

regard to their strength. It remains to be seen 
whether such absolute confidence is justified. On 
a peace footing, the army consists of about 45,000 
rank and file, and their training is mainly con 
ducted according to Eussian ideas, which, how- 
ever, may be changed some day. The Infantry 
is composed of thirty-six regiments of two batta- 
lions each, armed with Mannlicher rifles, of which 
there are said to be some 200,000 in the country. 
The Cavalry is somewhat weak, and consists of 
four (some say six) regiments, of four squadrons 
each, and a divisional corps, the total amounting 
to, say from twenty-seven to thirty-six squadrons. 
Non-commissioned officers both of Cavalry and 
Infantry are armed with revolvers and swords. 
Of the Artillery there are nine field regiments, each 
having six horse batteries, a battery having four 
guns in peace and six in war time. There are 
also a large number of quick-firing guns and a 
mountain artillery. A Mihtia also exists which 
would be armed, probably, with Berdan rifles and 
could be raised in war time to about 100,000 men. 
In case of war, the strength of the army has been 
put down to 200,000 men; indeed, some say 

154 A Trip through the Balkan States 

350,000. Other nationalities, besides those en- 
numerated, may be involved in a Balkan crisis, 
among whom may be mentioned the Koumanians, 
who up to the present time appear to have kept 
aloof. Again, what are the Albanians, who are 
Mahomedans, going to do'? They hate the Serbs, 
if I mistake not, a great number having been driven 
out of Servia in 1878. 

In conclusion, one must revert to Servia, which 
country at the present time is the centre of obser- 
vation, and upon whose action so much depends. 
It is all very well to say that, consequent upon the 
advice of Eussia, Servia should abandon all idea of 
territorial compensation, and that an improvement 
in the situation has already taken place. Austria 
will not be satisfied with half measures and will in- 
sist upon Servia making an absolute renunciation of 
her demands, and, be it noted, that no conference 
held to discuss the situation will influence Austria 
or cause her to budge an inch! France, too, is 
inclined to consider that Austria is acting the part 
of a bully in the matter, and does not wish to see 
Servia left quite at the mercy of her powerful 
neighbour. Austria-Hungary will be guided solely 

A Trip through the Balkan States 155 

by her own interests and, be it said, will be respon- 
sible for the peace of Europe. 

The final question then remains. Will Servia 
renounce for ever her territorial claims ? 

Impressions in Germany and Austria 

Impressions in Germany 
and Austria. 

I was sitting in my club, smoking, one evening in 
July, 1906, and the conversation turned upon our 
relations with Germany. When I informed the 
company that I proposed visiting that country 
shortly, although I did not know one word of the 
language, one of my friends remarked that it was 
a foolish thing to do, especially as the Germans 
were not on good terms with the English. Another 
said the journey which I was about to take would 
almost be impossible of achievement under the 
circumstances, and that, moreover, the heat would 
be intense and would necessitate my returning 
home before I was half way through my tour. My 
own ideas, however, were very strong on the subject, 
for I had always felt that the strained relations 
between England and Germany were probably due 
in a great measure to certain newspapers whose 
hysterical articles should be stifled. Indeed, I felt 

i6o Impressions in Germany and Austria 

sure that the Germans were far better folks than 
the man in the street and others at home thought, 
but that there must, naturally, be a certain amount 
of jealous rivalry between the two countries. 

I therefore mapped out my plans for the journey, 
and made up my mind to visit some of the principal 
towns of Germany and Austria, etc., and to draw 
my own conclusions, based upon what I saw and 
whom I came in contact with. I was well aware 
that I might have great difficulties, but that fact 
seemed to give a point to the undertaking. 
With regard to the heat, I had no fear, for I had 
had seventeen years' experience of tropical and 
Mediterranean climates, while, as to knowing abso- 
lutely nothing of the language I had great faith in 
the linguistic powers of the German waiter. I may 
add that all my journeys were performed by day, 
for by this procedure one has an excellent view of 
the country, and a night's rest in bed, which is a 
great advantage and comfort, while it is much 
easier to look after one's belongings by dayhght, 
especially when the ordeal of Custom's examina- 
tions has to be gone through. 

With regard to luggage, I think it is wiser to 

Impressions in Germany and Austria i6i 

take a small, light box than a couple of portman- 
teaux or Gladstone bags, as most travellers, 
especially foreigners, do. If you take the latter, 
carrying them by hand to save cost of luggage in 
the van, it is a case of not only rushing to get first 
into your carriage in order to find room for them 
in the overloaded racks, but also of constantly 
paying porters for carrying them. On the other 
hand, a small box will not cost so very much, and 
saves a deal of trouble, while one's clothes will be 
better packed. Mine, when packed, only weighed 
46 lbs. and as it contained sufficient linen, etc., for 
the whole journey, washing bills were saved, which 
was a great consideration. One should also carry 
a fair sized handbag, which will be found very 
useful for odds and ends. 

I can further strongly recommend having plenty 
of pockets in one's garments, and also flaps with 
buttons, made to them. A canvas case for umbrella 
and sticks will also be found useful, and last, but 
not least, a pound of plain biscuits and some 
chocolate in your handbag will come in handy in 
the train and may, occasionally, save one a good 
deal of money in the way of luncheons. I would 


1 62 Impressions in Germany and Austria 

advise the traveller to be very early when starting 
at the London station, as one's box has to be 
weighed, etc., and you will find that an hour to 
spare will not be too much. I made out my route 
as follows : — 

London, Dover, Calais, Brussels, Cologne, Berlin, 
Dresden, Prague, Vienna, Budapest (by steamer) 
back to Vienna (by rail) Salzburg, Munich, Stutt- 
gart, Strasburg, Paris, Bouen, Calais, Dover, 

Leaving Victoria Station on the morning of 
11th July, I arrived after an excellent passage 
across the channel at Calais, where my handbag 
was promptly snatched out of my hand by a very 
elderly French gentleman of the porter persuasion 
who spoke English and requested the pleasure of 
escorting me to the Brussels train. Having per- 
formed this arduous duty he demanded a shilling 
(a franc would not do) which I gave him, as I felt 
quite in his clutches. I may mention that I had 
" registered " my box through to Brussels, at 
Victoria. The sole occupant of my carriage was 
a portly Frenchman, probably a small tradesman, 
who shook hands with me when I whispered to 

Impressions in Germany and Austria 163 

him the magic words "Entente Cordiale ! " He 
appeared to be in mourning, judging by his black 
shirt studs, necktie, and suit of clothes. When we 
arrived at Lille he introduced me to a newspaper 
boy who was passing our carriage window, and 
informed him of the fact that I was English, at 
which the boy grinned delightfully and made some 
flattering remarks. I knew enough French to 
understand this. I did not, however, buy one of 
his papers, so he passed on sorrowfully. 

When we started again the stout gentleman 
rolled up a cigarette in his fat fingers and smoked 
away, at the same time pointing playfully at the 
printed instructions adorning the carriage which 
strictly forbade smoking. I rather think, moreover, 
that he had only a third-class ticket (I was travel- 
ling second) but this did not trouble him in the 
least. He eventually got out and we had another 
shake hands and a mutual expression of "L 'Entente 

At Blondaine one reaches the Belgian frontier, 
which necessitates getting out and undergoing the 
Custom's examination, and then returning to your 
carriage, if you can find it. We tiien went on 

164 Impressions in Germany and Austria 

again, and I noticed, particularly, that one of the 
stations we passed had rather a stupid name — Silly. 
I arrived at Brussels the same evening and in time 
for dinner. Armed v^ith a supply of so-called cou- 
pons I drove to the Hotel Metropole, and, as re- 
quested, at once informed the manager that I was 
a coupon-holder. 

" Do you take them ? " I asked. 

" Ye-e-es," he replied, but I thought he did not 
look quite pleased, which damped my feelings. 
However, as I intended using these coupons during 
the whole of my travels I made up my mind to face 
the thing bravely, not to be too thin-skinned, and 
to await results. I found, moreover, that it was no 
use being poor and proud, money being everything, 
and that one must get used to the fact of the bow- 
ing and scraping of hotel officials getting beautifully 
less on the discovery that one is merely a coupon- 
holder although, perhaps, a gentleman. 

They may not treat the holders of coupons much 
worse than' others, but evidently look upon them 
as poorer folks and, in consequence, not to be 
worshipped. Indeed, it would be rather amusing 
to watch a continental hotel manager's face, if on 

Impressions in Germany and Austria 165 

entering his domain you said : " I have so and so's 
coupons ; I tell you this so that you may have the 
opportunity of giving me one of your best rooms ! ** 
I don't think even this would raise a smile, at any 
rate on a German. I may further mention that if 
you have coupons, you should be careful to take 
your meals at the stated hours, or you will be 
charged a la carte, which is more expensive. I 
found also, that being the possessor of coupons 
some hotel officials were always on their guard lest 
they might give one too much in the way of food 
for one's money, and I observed that in at least 
two instances my luncheon was different to the 
ordinary one and that, occasionally, fowls appeared 
to be built especially tough for the coupon-holder. 
I, however, made the resolution that if the wing of 
a chicken were tough, not to be down-hearted, but 
to try a leg, which might possibly have belonged to 
another and better bird. 

At the Hotel Metropole, Brussels, I was given 
a bedroom not quite at the summit of the magni- 
ficent building, but as it was scrupulously clean and 
arrived at by a lift, I whistled softly and was 
determined to enjoy myself. A negro, dressed in 

1 66 Impressions in Germany and Austria 

scarlet and gold, and plush knee breeches, an- 
nounced dinner, and gracefully waved one to the 
door of the gorgeous dining-room. After a sump- 
tuous repast, for which a coupon-holder has to pay 
something extra, I strolled over to a large counter 
in the hall and made the acquaintance of an inter- 
preter attached to the hotel, who certainly spoke 
the most perfect English imaginable in a foreigner 
and who, to my surprise, told me he was a French- 
man. He was, moreover, a most useful and oblig- 
ing man, and full of information. 

The next day, the 12th, I made up my mind to pay 
a visit to Waterloo, having in the first instance been 
instructed as to trains, etc., by the before-mentioned 
interpreter, who further requested me to beware of 
pickpockets and female touts. These individuals, I 
understand, infest the Waterloo trains and district. 
The interpreter provided me, on payment, with a 
ticket which would cover the cost of driving (at the 
end of the train journey) to Mrs. Brown's hotel, where 
the services of a guide would also be supplied, and 
one who apparently had the legitimate monopoly of 
describing the famous battlefield. I took a tramcar 
nearly opposite the hotel to the Midi Station. Soon 

Impressions in Germany and Austria 167 

after I sat down my attention was drawn to what I 
considered a very sagacious dog which leaped on 
the car from the street and quietly jumped off at a 
certain point a good deal further on, where I noticed 
it ran quickly down a by-street, and evidently to 
its home. At the Midi Station I booked to Braine 
TAlleud, which is the station for Waterloo. Sitting 
opposite me in the railway carriage was, strange to 
say, a German gentleman with whom I was well 
acquainted, and who was head of a music firm in 
London. He remarked, wisely, that the world was 
after all very small. Seated next him was a lady of 
rather prepossessing appearance, but whose face 
was very much " made up." She had a sort of 
chronic smile as well as, I thought, a very sly ex- 
pression. She, moreover, distinctly smirked and 
smiled, and my German friend must have thought 
that I was acquainted with her. I had never set 
eyes upon her before. When I alighted at Braine 
TAlJeud the lady got out too, continuing to smile. 
I, however, noticed a distinct change of expression 
when she saw me walk over to a carriage which 
was labelled ** Mrs. Brown" and which for my 
ticket was to convey me, and others, to Waterloo. 

1 68 Impressions in Germany and Austria 

This ladj was one of the female touts that the 
interpreter had warned me about. I have since 
wondered whether my adviser may have had an 
interest of his own in the disposal of the " Brown" 

I drove, with half a dozen other gentlemen, to 
the Hotel du Musee, and having there inspected a 
very interesting collection of arms, manuscripts, 
photos, and uniforms, etc., which had been recover- 
ed from the battlefield and, in some cases, given by 
the relatives of officers who had fought there, our 
guide joined the party. We then prepared to as- 
cend the steps of the great memorial erected by the 
Allies and on the summit of which is the statue of 
a lion. Now, although this conical mound does not 
look unusually large at the bottom, it takes a con- 
siderable time to get to the top, for it is 130 feet 
high, and I was very tired before I got half way up. 
From the summit there is a very fine view of the 
battlefield, which to be much smaller than 
one expected to find. Compared, of course, with a 
modern battlefield it is extremely small. Indeed, 
I believe Wellington's front was only about two 
miles long, and I observed that if the right of his 

Impressions in Germany and Austria 169 

position rested on Hongoumont it must have been 
pushed forward considerably in that direction. A 
good view of Hongoumont, La belle Alliance and 
La Haie Sainte is obtained, but one misses the 
ridge which one has read about as being included in 
Wellington's position, as also a certain valley. I 
was informed that this ridge was probably cut away 
to furnish material for the mount we were standing 
upon and that the valley disappeared with it. 

Our guide was Sergeant-Major Welsh, late of the 
10th Hussars, a fine, handsome fellow dressed in 
khaki uniform and displaying the Afghan and South 
African medal ribbons. I found that he had served 
with friends of mine in Afghanistan, so of course we 
became rather confidential, and during his lecture 
on the battle he came out with occasional Hindustani 
expressions, no doubt for my edification. He also 
had a habit of carefully spelling the names of all the 
interesting places connected with the battlefield, 
and I wondered if he thought all tourists were 
naturally ignorant. He had a very excellent idea of 
what occurred on the memorable day which decided 
to a great extent the fate of Europe, and knew, not 
only the names of every regiment engaged, but 

170 Impressions in Germany and Austria 

those of the principal officers. He further laid 
great stress on the fact that it was Von Bulow and 
not Blucher to whom the most credit of saving the 
AHied army should be given, and in a moment of 
enthusiasm he raised his cap in a theatrical manner 
and exclaimed, 

** I take off my hat to Von Bulow ! " 

He further informed us that on one occasion on 
making this remark a gentleman standing by shook 
hands with him and said he was one of Von Bulow's 
descendants. The Sergeant- Major then stated that 
he had had the honour of repeating his lecture to 
many distinguished persons. His fee was a franc 
a head, so that he should make a very fair income out 
of it. On this occasion, while describing the battle, 
he was frequently interrupted by a Scotchman 
present who had evidently read up the events of 
the battle thoroughly, and who argued and con- 
tested each point as narrated by the Sergeant-Major. 
Indeed, he would have his **say"in the matter, 
which contrasted very considerably with the re- 
mainder of the party, who were Irishmen and who 
appeared to be delighted with everything, whether 
true or not, and who found plenty of fun in the 

Impressions in Germany and Austria 171 

whole proceeding. The Scotchman, however, was 
not to be beaten, and when the Sergeant-Major be- 
gan in his most dramatic manner with outstretched 
arm to exclaim, 

" And, finally, gentlemen. Napoleon ordered the 
Imperial Guard, the flower of his army, to 
advance ! " the son of Scotland interrupted by 

** I hae ma doots aboot that." 

Our worthy lecturer got a bit angry once or twice, 
but managed to keep his temper (I daresay he was 
accustomed to Scotchmen) under control, and taking 
off his cap would quietly remark, 

" Well, sir, our opinions differ." 

I rather fancied that our Scotch friend was not 
enamoured of the fact that Waterloo was fought on 
a Sunday ! So I mentioned that Napoleon chose 
that day for his attack because he thought his enemy 
would be busy with Divine service. The Scotchman 
still looked both serious and doubtful. Our lecturer 
then remarked that Wellington was on the defen- 
sive, having retired from Quartre Bras, and that his 
original plan was not to fight Napoleon until 
Blucher had come up with the Prussians. 

172 Impressions in Germany and Austria 

He gave me his card before I left, and handed 
me another for an officer of the 10th Hussars 
who, I told him, lived in the town I did, and who 
is a retired medical officer ; and my friend added, 
on parting, that he had known him in the good 
old days when the doctor was the father of the 

Who won the battle of Waterloo? Such a 
question, to many Englishmen, probably sounds 
superfluous, but I should have dearly liked to have 
had the private opinions of Napoleon and Welling- 
ton on the subject. The question, too, is uppermost 
in one's mind when visiting the battlefield, and 
also when listening to Sergeant-Major Welsh's 
lecture. The fact remains that both armies were 
probably ** done " before the Prussians arrived to 
seal the fate of the gallant Frenchmen, and, had 
they not come, it is impossible to say what would 
have happened, although one may surmise that both 
armies would have ceased fighting for that day, at 
any rate. 

At the close of the lecture I drove round to 
Hongoumont in a perfect deluge of rain. I was 
there at once struck, as I had been on visiting the 

Impressions in Germany and Austria 173 

Kesidency at Lucknow, a memento of the Mutiny, 
with the pathetic nature of this old monument to 
the bravery of its defenders and attackers. The 
Httle chapel still remains, and the brickwork of the 
well, now overgrown with vegetation, still marks 
the spot where the exhausted soldiers quenched their 
thirst. The north gate and surrounding walls 
demonstrate by their condition how desperate the 
fighting must have been. 

I returned to Brussels the same evening. The 
following morning I strolled about the town and 
was struck with the crowds of people about in the 
fine broad streets, but I did not hear a sound of 
music anywhere, not even a barrel organ ; so 
different to England in that respect. I noticed very 
few dogs about, and when one did appear it was a 
wretched little animal muzzled, and dragged along 
on a leash. There was not a terrier, seemingly, in 
the land, and the only decent-looking animals were 
harnessed to small carts. Of the churches, St. 
Gudule, which reminds one somewhat of Lincoln 
Cathedral outside is, perhaps, the finest. I paid a 
visit to the Musee Wiertz, where there is a collection 
of oil paintings remarkable for their enormous size 

174 Impressions in Germany and Austria 

and gruesome subjects. I found that the officials, of 
whom one made inquiries, were civil, but discovered 
that it was well, in Brussels, to examine one's 
change, as there is plenty of bad money in circula- 
tion. The ladies I passed in the streets wore their 
hats a good deal tipped forward and did not strike 
one as being remarkable for beauty. I may mention 
that in the Hotel Metropole, as in every continental 
hotel I stayed at, there was no soap in one's bed- 
room, which is a fact worth remembering ; that the 
matches were red, the loaf sugar in large, square 
pieces, and that the coffee was very bad, but that 
the flowers for table and other decoration were 
exquisite. I would advise male travellers to bring 
with them a small looking-glass which will stand 
up, to shave by, as the bedroom mirrors are 
invariably placed in dark and inconvenient places ; 
also, not to purchase picture postcards or cigars at 
the hotel as they are so expensive — it is better to 
take a walk. I mentioned before that there was a 
supplementary charge made on the dinner coupon 
at the Hotel Metropole, and as this occurs at other 
continental hotels it is worth making a note of for 
future guidance. An extra charge is also occa- 

Impressions in Germany and Austria 175 

sionally made for one's bedroom. 

On Friday 13th I left for Cologne, having supplied 
myself with a little German money from an agent 
of Cook's whom I met at the station, and who was 
extremely courteous and obHging. One now began 
to pay for luggage, but was not charged for any- 
thing placed in the carriage which, with many 
individuals I came across, amounted to a very great 

It may be mentioned that the station for Cologne 
is the Nord, and I found the second-class carriages 
excellent. A couple of Frenchmen occupied seats 
in my compartment, and shortly after starting they 
commenced unloading their bags of eatables in a 
most serious manner, and made a good square meal. 
It was, moreover, quite fascinating to me to listen to 
the pronunciation of innumerable " Mer-cies" with a 
very long hiss on the " cies." 

As we approached the German frontier the coun- 
try was well wooded, green and fairly hilly, and we 
passed several small rivers. Other passengers got 
in and I had plenty of opportunity for observation. 
To diagnose to what country a woman belongs, I 
found that watching the mouth when speaking was 

176 Impressions in Germany and Austria 

an excellent plan. A good fat " schlloss " will 
stamp the German lady. As to the men, their feet, 
of which more anon, are very indicative, while in 
the smoking-room of a hotel you can invariably 
ascertain the fact by observing the newspapers they 
read, and these rooms are always provided with 
Enghsh, American, German, and French literature. 
Germans appears to smoke in any railway carriage ; 
indeed, I noticed that all carriages were provided 
with ash trays, although the warning not to smoke 
was written up in certain of them, as in England. 
It is, moreover, always a cigar with the German, 
one seldom sees a cigarette, and I never saw a pipe. 
The cigars they smoke are very cheap, good, and 
mild. I had lunch in the train restaurant, which 
was certainly not good. The buildings in the small 
towns and the railway stations en route reminded 
one a good deal of England. A Custom's examina- 
tion took place at Herbesthal. 

We reached Cologne at 4.20 p.m. and I found the 
station to be a magnificent one of 22,200 metres, 
and quite English in appearance, while just outside 
it stands the stately cathedral. I was much pleased 
to note how intelligent and obliging all the railway 

Impressions in Germany and Austria 177 

officials were, and had no difficulty whatever with 
regard to my luggage, owing to the excellent 
system of registration. By this system one receives, 
at the booking station, a ticket for one's luggage, 
which is given to a porter on arrival at your desti- 
nation, who then obtains your things readily and 
brings them to your 'bus or carriage which he has 
previously directed you to. At Cologne, however, I 
was even able to dispense with the services of a 
porter, my hotel bus being ready at hand, to the 
conductor of which I handed my luggage ticket. 
He instantly ran off and secured my box and away 
we went to the Hotel Disch. I may mention that 
threepence is about the correct ** tip " for a porter 
on these occasions. I was ushered into a very small 
bedroom overlooking a narrow street, and before I 
had been in it five minutes a children's school, 6>i 
fete, passed by headed by a drum and fife band 
composed of tiny boys and girls who played " God 
save the King,'* as they marched along. Then a 
street organ began to discuss a Spanish tune. This 
was all so unlike Brussels, and I felt happier. The 
Hotel Disch is a very old-fashioned building, having 
been built about a hundred years back. It was for- 

178 Impressions in Germany and Austria 

merly a castle, and on the walls there still remain some 
excellent oil paintings of that period. In my bed- 
room I observed the wedge-shaped and very large 
pillow which appears to be the universal German 
pattern and which I thought useful in design, but 
tather too large for the very hot weather. I therefore 
relegated it to the floor. The position of the look- 
ing-glass, with regard to light, was very bad, but not 
worse than one generally meets in other Continental, 
as well as English, hotels. 

The matches were again red, the towels of the 
flimsiest nature and about the size of large servi- 
ettes. The bread was, I thought, far superior to 
what one got in Brussels, and the Niersteiner at 
one mark a bottle was excellent. The menus were 
written in French and German, but never in 
English, and there was an air of homeliness about 
the hotel which one missed at Brussels. 

The German waiter appears to be more intelHgent 
and cleaner than the English. He goes to England 
and France (and occasionally to America) to learn the 
languages which, moreover, he succeeds in doing, 
and I have often wondered if an English waiter 
ever thinks it necessary to leave his country for a 

Impressions in Germany and Austria 179 

similar purpose. Nearly all the waiters and other 
hotel officials I came across had served in England 
(the greater number at the Savoy Hotel) and, what 
is more, expressed a desire to return there. I must 
say, however, that there appears to be no fun or 
humour in a German waiter. He is civil, although 
occasionally a little abrupt in manner, and some- 
times is too blase or too busy to answer your ques- 
tions, except very briefly. Of the hotel officials I 
met, the so-called portier is, perhaps, the most 
important, and I am told that he receives no wages, 
but relies on a sufficiency of " tips " to enable him 
in a few years to retire and set up an establishment 
on his own account. Some portiers I found civil, 
while others were to me unbearable. With regard 
to '* tips " I may say that they are almost com- 
pulsory to the portier, head waiter and " boots,'* to 
whom you give a mark each. Your table atten- 
dant (the head waiter does nothing in that line) 
chambermaid, and lift boy also look for them. I 
observed that dinner, as a rule, is served in the 
middle of the day at most of the German hotels, 
that the tea has a strong China flavour instead of 
the mild Indian kind one is so accustomed to at 

i8o Impressions in Germany and Austria 

home, and that there were no finger glasses. The 
use of these, I am led to conclude, is one of those 
institutions like the morning "tub " and the game of 
polo which the British officer brought from the 

Cologne is essentially a Roman Catholic town, 
and if it is worth while going to India to see the 
Taj at Agra, as some writers have observed, it is 
equally so to go to Cologne to see the cathedral, for 
where else can one find so imposing or so elegant a 
church? It is, indeed, hardly possible to look at 
its grand proportions without emotion, and a feeling 
of reverence. It is a Gothic structure, and was 
begun in A.D. 1248, and strange to say, great 
additions were made to it as late as 1842, while its 
magnificent towers were not completed till 1880. 
The towers are some sixty metres high and one 
appeared, to me, to be higher than the other, but I 
could not find an inhabitant who was able to inform 
me with certainty as to this. I may add that one 
is not so much impressed with the interior of the 
building, which is somewhat plain and undecorated, 
and whose height is scarcely realised for want of 
outside objects to afford comparison. After the 

Impressions in Germany and Austria i8i 

cathedral, perhaps the most interesting church is 
St. Gereon, which has a thirteenth century deca- 
gonal dome and is built on Koman foundations, the 
choir and crypt being of the eleventh and twelfth 
centuries. The church of St. Ursula is described 
as Eoman basilica work and has a superb Gothic 

In taking a stroll round the town, which I found 
very clean, I observed that there were plenty of 
excellent shops, those for the sale of sweets and 
cakes being especially noticeable, and that a good 
many houses and streets were under repair, as in 
London. This state of affairs does not strike one in 
Brussels, where perhaps they are always satisfied 
with things as they are. I also found the well- 
known establishments of Johann Maria Farina of 
eau-de-Cologne fame, and of Stollwerck, the 
chocolate manufacturers. The horses one sees, with 
the exception of those in cabs, are very fine, and I 
took note that all vehicles as well as tramcars, like 
the trains, keep to the right. The tram conductors 
appeared to always have a clean white collar on. In 
fact, the artisan and working classes in Germany 
always look very clean, while the former almost 

1 82 Impressions in Germany and Austria 

invariably wear white collars. The streets of 
Cologne are all asphalted and the suburbs struck me 
as being exceptionally fine. Among the buildings 
of note may be mentioned the post-office, while the 
Kaiser Wilhelm statue and monument are impressive 
works. And last, but not least, the policemen here, 
as elsewhere in Germany, are like soldiers and wear 
swords. I always found them extremely polite and 
civil, but one should never forget, on going up to 
one, to raise one's hat, when you will get in return 
an up-to-date military salute. Indeed, it is a sound 
proceeding to keep taking off your hat to people 
in this country, and you cannot be too polite. I 
noticed gentlemen, when asking questions of a 
policeman, stand with their hats raised the whole 
time, but that, although one meets with much 
politeness from officials, they never " sir " one. 

The morning after my arrival I was induced by 
the hotel portier to take a drive round the town, 
etc., and was greatly struck with the beauty of the 
Bing Strasse which, as a street, is probably unsur- 
passed. Splendid shops and private houses line this 
almost interminable street and the truly magnificent 
theatre, built in 1900 at a cost of five million marks 

Impressions in Germany and Austria 183 

is among the finest buildings one passes en route. It 
brings home to one very forcibly the fact that we, in 
England, have little sense of the decorative art, or 
else do not see the necessity for it. I visited the 
Zoological Gardens, where the 16th Infantry band 
was playing in the fine pavilion. The men were in 
plain clothes which, I was informed, was allowed on 
account of the heat. The bandmaster, on arrival, 
bowed to his bandsmen and shook hands with some. 
It was here that I first noticed the general plain- 
ness of the ladies who were, moreover, badly dressed 
and without style, but not in the least made up. I 
then took a short stroll in the Stadtgarten, which 
has an area of 400 acres, the Volksgarten, and the 
Flora, the latter being very beautiful. 

The next day, Sunday 15th, I journeyed to Bonn, 
the birthplace of Beethoven, by the 9.14 a.m. train 
which was very crowded, and it was evident that 
the people were out for a holiday. I was able, 
soon after arrival (in half an hour) to find my way 
to the fine Munster, where I heard some very good 
music during the service. There was an excellent 
choir in one of the galleries, and a conductor, and I 
noticed that a good deal of the music was " imita- 

184 Impressions in Germany and Austria 

tional " in character. The interior of this church is 
very beautiful. Walking on, I passed Beethoven's 
statue, which is erected at one side of a square, and 
then the University, which is a plain structure 
facing a well-kept green sward with fine trees. 
Numbers of students were to be met, many of whom 
had scarred cheeks, the result of duels ; and those 
who were fresh from the gory fights had their faces 
well plastered up, some being almost beyond 
recognition. I noticed that it was only the left 
cheek that was gashed, but I suppose that if a 
combatant were left-handed he would smite his 
adversary's right cheek. One is told that they are 
very proud of their appearance in this respect, but 
one would prefer to see an occasional soldier with a 
scarred face, provided he got it in honest warfare ! 
These students wear very curious caps, which are of 
many colours, and the thought struck me that 
rather a good "get-up " f or a fancy dress ball would 
be to go as a German student with one's face 
plastered and scarred. In the little town of Bonn I 
saw plenty of pictures, in the shop windows, of the 
Kaiser, but rarely one of the great master of music, 
and although this was the birthplace of the mighty 

Impressions in Germany and Austria 185 

Beethoven no one could direct me to the house he 
was born in. I wandered about hopelessly in search 
of it, but failed to discover its whereabouts, and it 
was on this occasion, especially, that I found how 
very inconvenient and trying it was not to know the 
language of the country. A waiter I accosted who 
was standing at the door of a hotel and who spoke a 
little English told me that Beethoven's house was 
only a small cottage and not worth seeing ! There 
are plenty of quaint old buildings and narrow streets 
in Bonn and there appears to be history everyhwere 
as well as plenty of food for the painter. 

Having spent a couple of hours in this very inter- 
esting old place I took the train at 12.35 for Godes- 
burg, a pretty spot and health resort on the Ehine. 
I may mention that before leaving my hotel I had 
made a better acquaintance with one of the sub- 
managers, to whom I confided my intention of visit- 
ing G-odesburg. This extremely polite young man 
thereupon telephoned to the manager of the Ehine 
Hotel there, acquainting him of the fact, and asking 
him to have a carriage to meet me at the station, 
and, strange though it may seem, he also requested 
that on this occasion the military band which was 

1 86 Impressions in Germany and Austria 

to perform in the hotel gardens should appear in 
uniform for my edification, as I had expressed a 
wish to that effect, and not in plain clothes, as 
was customary at this time of year. I have often 
wondered since whether such a request would 
have been acceded to in any other country. 

On my arrival at the station I was greeted by a 
very smart coachman, who directed me to a victoria 
drawn by a pair of fine horses. The drive was 
lovely, and I found the little town of Godesburg to 
be replete with well-built private houses and pen- 
sions. The Ehine Hotel overhangs the river, and 
the town, which has 16,000 inhabitants, is opposite 
the Seven Mountains. The scenery from the hotel 
garden is particularly charming, although the world- 
famed Ehine is quite brown in colour and not of 
the hue so frequently painted. My reception on 
arrival at the hotel, thanks to my friend at the 
Hotel Disch, was all that could be desired, the 
manager and his assistant, who spoke excellent 
English and was attired in a faultless frock coat, 
coming forward to greet me and bid me welcome. 
I found a very large dining-room, in which I was in- 
formed 500 people could be accommodated. Dinner 

Impressions in Germany and Austria 187 

was served at 1 p.m. and on taking my seat at a 
small table already prepared for me, I noticed that 
the one in front was elaborately decorated with the 
choicest of flowers, and that before one seat at the 
table was placed a large collection of toys. The 
chair, too, was decorated with strings of roses. 
Presently a tiny French maiden of some five 
summers trotted in, escorted by Papa, Mamma, and 
Grandmamma. It was the little one's birthday, and 
the treat in store for her was evidently unexpected. 
Her face, as she sat down, was a study, and one of 
intense surprise and rapture when she discovered 
that all the good things were for her, and her alone. 
During the feast, which included every kind of 
dainty and confection, Papa stood up and drank 
wine, which Mamma accompanied with a short 
speech. Then the birthday cake was brought in 
by a waiter, and this was decorated with lighted 
and coloured candles. Finally the ceremony con- 
cluded, the little girl marched off triumphantly with 
her presents, and I went on with my dinner. 

It was very enjoyable sitting afterwards at a 
small table outside overlooking the Ehine, sipping 
one*s coffee beneath the shade of a lovely tree 

1 88 Impressions in Germany and Austria 

and listening to the strains of music. The band, 
which was that of a pioneer regiment from Cob- 
lentz (and in uniform !), arrived at four o'clock and 
I found that admission to the gardens was allowed 
to non-residents of the hotel on payment of a small 
sum. The bandmaster, it appears, received 20 
marks on each occasion the band played at this 
hotel. During the afternoon numbers of motor- 
boats passed up and dovm the river, full of pas- 
sengers, many of them being students, who ap- 
peared extremely happy as they lolled about and 
sang their German songs in harmony. 

I returned to Bonn by tramway, and thence by 
rail to Cologne. While at Cologne I should have 
liked to have seen the regiments, of which there 
were five, drilling, but as at this time of year they 
parade for the purpose at about 4 a.m. I was 
obliged to forego that pleasure. 

On Monday, 16th July, I left for Berlin, and on 
this occasion had to pay a registration fee for my 
seat in the train as well as for my luggage. My 
carriage companions on the journey were all Ger- 
mans, so I had a good opportunity of making ob- 
servations. Two gentlemen sitting opposite to me 

Impressions m Germany and Austria 189 

were, I think, fairly typical of their country, and 
I may mention that on entering and leaving the 
train they raised their hats and said " Good-day " 
to the other occupants of the carriage. They sat 
with their legs apart the whole time, and I imagine 
that, by reason of the rotundity of their figures, 
they found it both difficult and uncomfortable to 
cross them. I often felt inclined to protest at the 
way they would stand up at the corridor windows 
for half an hour at a time, thereby obscuring the 
view of the country. This procedure, however, 
appears to be customary, and one can do the same 
as opportunity occurs without fear of remonstrance. 
Taking my two carriage companions from below up, 
I noticed that their feet were large, broad, and 
flat, the natural arch being almost obliterated, and 
that they wore very low heels, probably about half- 
an-inch high. The heel in walking is put down 
in a very decided manner and the German walks 
rather on the outside of the foot. Moreover, the 
foot is placed on the ground, from heel to toe, 
much more markedly than I have observed in other 
races. The boots are made of very thin leather 
and there is apparently little or no attempt at 

igo Impressions in Germany and Austria 

shape. Indeed, I found that my English boots 
were constantly the objects of curiosity and, per- 
haps, derision. I noticed, as in the case of all 
Germans, that their trousers had been well pressed 
to preserve the crease (iniquitous custom!) but 
never, thank heaven ! turned up at the bottom. 
Their links and watch and chain were much more 
flimsy-looking than ours, and I frequently observed 
that they carried small mirrors in their pockets as 
well as a tiny hair brush, which, especially when 
travelling, they occasionally drew out; a careful 
examination of their features was then made, ac- 
companied by a stroking and brushing of the hair, 
and of their huge moustachios and beard. This 
procedure is gone through in a railway carriage 
without any sense of shyness. The nails are in- 
variably clean and well kept. 

The men carry purses and wear wedding rings on 
the right hand, if married, and even a workman 
or policeman displays the little golden emblem. 
The family life seems so much more perfect than 
ours, and on holiday trips one finds the whole 
household, including the servant, enjoying them- 
selves. One of the most remarkable things one 

Impressions in Germany and Austria 191 

notices too is the absence of division among the 
classes. There appears to be nothing correspond- 
ing to the so-called " lower orders " in Germany ; in 
fact there is an air of respectability and marked 
cleanliness even among the poor, and therefore, 
class distinction is not so well defined as in Eng- 
land. The conduct, moreover, of the hmnbler 
classes, is quite as correct as that of the well-to-do, 
and they wear, apparently, as clean linen. The 
German appears to be serious as well as clean- 
minded, while his natural politeness is noticeable 
in all classes, and one seldom or never meets a low, 
brutal-looking type of man. But, although the 
German is easily first in real politeness, I consider 
the English gentleman is equally so in his habits 
and appearance. There is no doubt that the 
German considers himself superior to other races, 
and his knowledge of languages, his art, his educa- 
tion, his thoroughness, scientific mind, and sound 
business habits, all tend to uphold his opinion in 
this respect. He is jealous of the position of Eng- 
land as a world power, and I have even noticed a 
terrible look of scorn on the countenance of a hotel 
manager when you ask him what is the rate of 

192 Impressions in Germany and Austria 

exchange for an English sovereign. He will often 
reply " 20 marks." In fact, he hates to think that 
any money in the world is worth more than his 
own, and perhaps it would be undignified, at any 
rate, for him to acknowledge it. One hotel manager 
I came across exclaimed, "What do you mean?" 
when I suggested exchange, and then promptly 
walked away as if insulted. At the same time, even 
in Austria and Hungary they will not give one as 
much for a 10-mark piece as for half a sovereign. 
The Germans speak of all British campaigns as our 
/'little wars" and I often thought what a deal of 
good such trifling affairs as the Indian Mutiny, 
the Boer War, the Tirah Expedition, the war in 
Afghanistan, and the different Soudan battles would 
have done the German soldiers. They would cer- 
tainly suffer less from " swollen head ! " 

Now, as the Germans are a very " bowing " race, 
it is well, as before stated, for the visitor to follow 
their example and be continually raising his hat as 
occasion requires. The German, moreover, per- 
forms the act with great facility, not merely taking 
off his hat as we do, but bowing his head at the 
same time. A gentleman sitting at a restaurant 

Impressions in Germany and Austria 193 

table where there are others, will, on taking his 
seat and on leaving, raise his hat, although the 
others are strangers to him, and it does one good 
to observe the courtesy and grace with which a 
couple of officers bow to and salute one another 
on meeting. With regard to the musical instincts 
of the people, of which more anon, I may mention 
that I never heard a German whistle or hum a 

Let us now continue the journey to Berlin. We 
passed a good many large manufacturing towns en 
route, and I noticed plenty of display of Imperial 
eagles and German flags about. Hanover was 
reached at 3.15 p.m., and as we neared Berlin, 
where we arrived at 7 p.m., the country was beauti- 
fully wooded. I put up at the Hotel Bellevue, to 
which I drove by taximeter cab, the usual hotel bus 
not being, in this instance, available. The hotel was 
very full, considering the time of year, and there 
was only one small bedroom to be had and that a 
converted bathroom ! I, however, did not object to 
it and as the temperature of the atmosphere was 
rather high it was perhaps an advantage to have 

a bath so near at hand. There is a restaurant 


194 Impressions in Germany and Austria 

attached to this hotel, situated in a verandah, and 
as this was the coolest spot I had my meals there. 
Dinner was, as usual, served soon after midday. I 
noticed the following morning that there was a 
decided improvement in hotel boot-cleaning and 
also that the shaving water was hotter than usual. 
After breakfast I strolled out, and occasionally 
came across rather dainty little frauleins wearing 
extremely saucy Panama hats. The horses one met 
were very fine animals, and as to fruit, especially 
cherries, which were being hawked about, it made 
one*s mouth water. I have never before seen such 
lovely cherries. Flowers also seemed to be very 
plentiful, and luxuriant. I made straight for the 
Unter den Linden, which is not very far from the 
hotel, and is probably the finest street in the world, 
although one can hardly call it by that name. It is, 
in fact, a wide avenue with two rows of trees down 
the centre, having a promenade between, and a 
riding track extending along one side. Eows of 
trees also line the wide and well-kept pavements on 
either side, and fine shops complete the picture. 
Like all the streets in Berlin the Unter den Linden 
is beautifully paved and asphalted. At one end 

Impressions in Germany and Austria 195 

stands the great Brandenburg gate, which is a 
massive erection formed of imposing, though not 
very beautiful, columns, and surmounted by a bronze 
design of chariot and horses. At the entrance of 
the gate I sav^, for the first time since leaving Eng- 
land, a soldier on duty ! He was a sentry furnished 
from the Guard occupying the guard room which 
is built in the gate. At the other end of the Unter 
den Linden stands the new cathedral (Protestant) 
and looking from the cathedral, with the Kaiser's 
palace on the left, one gets a very fine idea of space. 
The cathedral is modern but magnificent and is 
surmounted by a dome. The interior is gorgeously 
decorated, the stained glass windows over the altar 
being lovely in the extreme, and depicting scenes 
in the life of Christ which are very well viewed on 
account of the wonderful light behind. The seats 
are very plain, being of varnished oak and are all 
uncushioned. The Kaiser has two seats, numbered 
five and six, which are situated in a row with 
others. Attached to the cathedral is a beautiful 
marble mausoleum. Near the Kaiser's palace stands 
the memorial statue of William the Great, which is 
certainly the finest thing of the kind I have ever 

19^ Impressions in Germany and Austria 

seen. It is, however, in a bad situation and might 
have been placed in a more prominent and advan- 
tageous position. 

I noticed that the German statuary, generally, 
is particularly fine, there being always a life-like 
resemblance to the original subjects both in detail 
and expression. The lions at the base of this 
monument ought to be studied by many of the 
artists who have designed such animals in some 
other countries, for example at a certain town 
hall in the South of England. I visited the 
Eeichstag and Bismark's monument, and also 
that commemorating Victory. The latter is very 
imposing and I found two old soldiers in atten- 
dance at the base of it, where one pays a small 
fee for ascending. Both these veterans wore 
the 1870 War Medal and on one I observed the 
bar for Spicheren, while the other possessed that 
for Metz, and the old soldiers were quite proud 
if a visitor should draw attention to them. I 
ascended the monument, from the summit of which 
a very good view of Berlin is obtained. Leading 
from the monument is the Sieges Allee or Avenue 
of Victory, and I may mention that all this part of 

Impressions in Germany and Austria 197 

Berlin is situated in the Thiergarten, so named 
because some years back there was a large forest 
containing deer there. In one part of this garden I 
noticed a dug-out circle of earth in which children 
were amusing themselves in erecting forts, etc., 
with spades, and this space is evidently set aside 
for the purpose. The Sieges Allee is a very beauti- 
ful avenue with tracks for riding. Along both 
sides of the avenue white marble statues have 
been erected, on pedestals, of all the German 
rulers from Albrecht der Baer A.D. 1100, to 
Wilhelm der Grosse, the present Emperor*s grand- 
father. Kound each statue is built a marble 
alcove where one can sit. I continued my walk 
through the Thiergarten and then returned to the 

The next day I strolled about the city. Very 
few dogs were to be seen, but one occasionally met 
a little dachshund, muzzled and led. I saw no 
beggars, no tall hats, and not a single instance 
of drunkenness. The best shops, to my mind, are 
in the Liepziger Strasse and the great number of 
them is almost bewildering. Friedrick Strasse 
is also a fine street, somewhat savouring of Oxford 

iqS Impressions in Germany and Austria 

Street, only, I thought, superior to it in many 
ways. The tramway system in Berlin appears to 
have been brought to great perfection, the drivers 
being certainly good, and I noticed many of them 
wearing goggles. The cars travel at a good pace, 
and one can go for a very long way for a penny. 
There is, however, a want of traffic management, 
generally, and I found it; more difficult to cross 
a street in a crowded part of Berlin than any- 
where in London, one's difficulty being increased 
on account of vehicles keeping to the right. I 
visited the Zoo, and may remark that this was 
the only place where I saw any decent-looking 
dogs. Indeed, it seemed to me cruel to see beauti- 
ful Newfoundlands in cages, as specimens, instead 
of enjoying freedom and friendship. 

Keverting to the shops in the principal streets, 
I noticed very few for the sale of boots and shoes, 
and was surprised to find that American boots 
were to be obtained readily, as they are all over 
Germany, but I never saw any English ones. One 
cigarette shop I passed had a notice in the window 
to the effect that the proprietor spoke ten 
languages! One obtained a very nice, mild cigar 

Impressions in Germany and Austria 199 

for about a penny ; indeed, if one gives more the 
article appears to be of the same quality. I laid 
in a stock of these cigars, and was always amused 
when the shop attendants invariably addressed me 
in French on discovering I was not a German. 

While in Berlin I heard three military bands 
which, to my mind, were not superior to our 
Guard's or Koyal Marine Light Infantry's. Their 
programmes, however, were infinitely superior to 
what one is ordinarily accustomed to in England. 
The cornet players appeared to produce quite 
a different tone from ours and played with more 
expression, performing their " turns " carefully and 
gracefully, as a good vocal artist does. The bass 
instruments seemed to have more of the 16-ft. 
organ tone than ours, which added very consider- 
ably to the general sonority. The bandmasters, 
who, by the way, wear swords, appear to have 
real musical instinct, if one can judge by their 
conducting, although one old gentleman whom 
I saw wielding the baton and who was, perhaps, a 
little past his time, was more or less conducted by 
the bandsmen, (who I may mention sometimes 
took off their belts before playing) ; in fact, hi 6 

200 Impressions in Germany and Austria 

beat sometimes came after the band had played 
the chord ! Now, I think that the fact of Germany 
having produced the greatest musicians accounts 
also for their exceptional intellectual capabilities in 
other directions, and you will find that the scale 
of musical instinct gradually goes down until the 
savage races are reached, where there is none. 

Such men as Bach, Beethoven, and Wagner no 
doubt had large intellects, and had they not 
devoted all their time to music, could have done 
other great things, Indeed, the musical capacity 
of a nation perhaps influences its capacity for other 
things, in which sense I should say England is 
really more musical than she is given credit for. 
I have often thought, however, with regard to 
music, that it is a pity Germany has not produced, 
occasionally, such a man as Gounod or Sullivan, 
for it might have given their people a more 
humorous tendency, a lighter side to their rather 
ponderous nature, and a more melodious voice. 
Before leaving this subject I may mention that 
I came across very few music shops in Berlin 
which statement, I may say, includes all the 
towns I visited in Germany and Austria, and when 

Impressions in Germany and Austria 201 

I did happen to see one, it appeared to be for the 
sale of music only, for I never discovered a piano 
in such establishments ; so different from England. 
The next place I visited was Charlottenburg, 
which is reached in about half an hour by tramway 
from the Bradenburger Tor. The great mausoleum 
is here, which is a very striking, chaste, and beauti- 
ful construction, although the grounds outside the 
building are extremely plain and badly-kept, so un- 
like, in this respect, any other garden I saw in 
Germany. Speaking generally of Berlin, it struck 
me that its beauty would be much enchanced if it 
possessed a fine river in its midst ; but one cannot 
have everything. Among the statues may be men- 
tioned that of Frederick the Great, which is ex- 
tremely fine. I was not at all impressed by the 
University, which as a building is anything but im- 
posing. In the cafes one gets delicious coffee, and 
the beer gardens, in most of which a military band 
performs for the greater part of the day, are a great 
institution, although it is a pity that the chairs 
with which they are furnished are so uncomfort- 
able. And, by the way, what a very thirsty race 
Germans appear to be, both male and female ; and 

202 Impressions in Germany and Austria 

it is therefore an admirable thing that they have 
such a delightfully harmless and thirst-quenching 
beverage as iced Laager beer to indulge in. And 
what a delicious beverage is this Pilsen or Munich 
beer, especially the former ; and, moreover, there is 
not a headache in a gallon of it ! One may well be 
struck by the amount of money in "tips" which the 
head waiter in beer gardens and cafes pockets ; he 
apparently makes a tolerably good income thereby, 
at any rate in July and August. He appears to do 
little or no work, but walks about collecting the 
aforesaid ** tips " for drinks which the other waiters, 
or lesser lights, have supplied. I found that the 
cab drivers were certainly good, and quite superior 
to those in France and Belgium. 

Now, one great advantage with regard to general 
appearance that Berlin, in common with most of 
the other continental capitals, appears to have over 
London, is that it is more completely finished, and 
not so terribly disfigured by the upheaval of streets 
and the constant knocking down and erection of 
buildings, accompanied, necessarily I presume, by 
unsightly and obstructive scaffolding and hoarding. 
London, in fact, appears to be continually in the 

Impressions in Germany and Austria 203 

throes of being mended. 

Eather late in the afternoon I was induced by 
the hotel portier to take a carriage drive to a cele- 
brated brewery on the outskirts of Berlin, ap- 
parently some four miles off. It is called the 
Schultheiss and is celebrated for its beer. There is, 
as usual, a garden attached to the brewery, in 
which a military band plays afternoon and even- 
ing. On this particular occasion it was the band of 
the Garde Fusilier Eegiments. The programme of 
music was decidedly indifferent, worse luck, and 
marches which were of the weakest description and 
not one whit superior to those ordinarily performed 
by English bands, and which, I believe, were com- 
posed by the bandmaster, were given as extras and 
responses to encores. My musical barometer fell 
on this occasion, and my opinion, for the time, with 
regard to German superiority in this respect, was 
considerably damped. I noticed, too, that during 
the performance of the music the people talked a 
good deal, as they do at home, and I was conse- 
quently led to believe that Germans, as a rule, are 
not more instinctively fond of music than the Eng- 
lish. I waited in the brewery gardens to hear the 

204 Impressions in Germany and Austria 

evening programme, and by the time it was con- 
cluded it was past ten o'clock and quite dark. I 
stepped outside, and watched the crowd of people 
dispersing ; all, seemingly, in high spirits. The 
locality, to me, seemed quite country like, and there 
was not a vehicle to be seen ! I stood there for a 
moment, when it suddenly dawned upon me that I 
was in rather a fix, for I neither knew exactly 
where I w^as with regard to Berlin, nor a word of 
the language. In front was a steep descent, and 
about half a mile off I could see the lights of pas- 
sing trams going in all directions. I went up to a 
young gentleman, raised my hat, and said "Berlin," 
the only word I was acquainted with in German, 
with a long accent on the " lin," at the same time 
waving my hand in the direction of the tramcars. 
The young man was rather taken back by my gesti- 
culations and evident impetuosity. He, however, 
understood me and pointed down the hill, repeating 
at the same time the mysterious words " Strasse 

Ah, at last I knew the name of a street, I thought, 
which must be in the right direction and I could of 
course inquire further on. " Strasse links," I re- 

Impressions in Germany and Austria 205 

peated, and ran quickly down the hill. At the 
bottom I shouted the two magic words into the 
right ear of an old gentleman whom I nearly 
knocked down in my excitement ; my raised hat, 
at the same time, flying in the air. ** Yah, yah 1 " 
my friend gasped and pointed to a street beyond. 
I hurried on, but on arrival at this particular street 
the thought suddenly struck me that " links" might 
not be the name of a street after all, but might have 
a more subtle meaning. A postman was hurrying 
towards me (I had already become acquainted with 
the garb of these officials who, by the way, do 
not always wear swords) going home, no doubt, 
after a hard day's work. Ah, here is just the man 
for me, I thought, so I again ejaculated the word 
" Berlin " with all my persuasive eloquence, to be 
followed, if necessary, by ** Strasse links.'* The 
postman, like the old gentleman, also replied " Yah, 
yah," but seeing an expression of trouble in my 
countenance, the good fellow turned round and 
beckoned me to accompany him. We walked a 
mile or more in absolute silence. Dozens of tram- 
cars passed in all directions, and eventually we 
halted at a certain street on the left hand side. I 

2o6 Impressions in Germany and Austria 

again ventured ** Strasse links " as a query. He 
again replied *'Yah, yah," and held up his left hand, 
at the same time smiting it with his right. I 
heaved a deep sigh of gratitude, as it dawned upon 
me, at last, that "links " meant " left." But as we 
had passed several streets on that side I should have 
had the greatest difficulty in finding the one leading 
to Berlin, had it not been for the obliging and kind 
postman. A car came up in a few minutes, and the 
postman bade me enter and, at the same time, I 
saw the words "Branden burger Tor" written upon 
it, so I knew I was all right. I offered my deliverer 
sixpence for his trouble, which he pohtely refused, 
at the same time raising his hat and hurrying off. 
Good fellow, and one worthy of his country. 

Before leaving Berlin I came across the typical 
and ubiquitous Scotchman in the smoking-room of 
the hotel. He dilated upon the awful system of 
" tipping " to which one was subjected, and in- 
formed me that at Cologne he was very slyly 
evading the chambermaid on the morning of his 
departure, when he came across her face to face 
in the hall ! " But I met her like a maan," he ex- 
claimed, *' and held up my head and walked past 

Impressions in Germany and Austria 207 

her ! " Brave fellow, I say. 

On the 19th I left Berlin for Dresden at 9 a.m., 
arriving at the latter place the same day at noon. 
This was a nice short journey. I found during my 
travels how convenient the little 10-ppfenig nickel 
pieces were, much more so than cumbersome 
coppers. My hotel, the Grand Union, was quite 
near the station. I was given a charming bedroom 
this time and found all the hotel officials very civil. 
It was decidedly warmer than at Berlin, and soon 
after my arrival a fearful storm came on, accom- 
panied by such terrible thunder and lightning that 
it reminded one forcibly of India. Dinner was 
served early, as usual, and one peculiarity I noticed 
at the meal was that they gave one stewed pears 
(sweet) with ordinary salad. 

An art exhibition was going on, which I visited, 
and I was highly amused when the hall portier 
jocularly informed me that it was called the 
marriage market because there was such a deal of 
flirting going on there ! This exhibition was known 
as Austellung, and I was greatly interested in the 
exhibits, which consisted chiefly of the furniture of 
different historical periods. 

2o8 Impressions in Germany and Austria 

In the building was a very fine hall and refresh- 
ment room and while drinking my Laager there 
I listened to the trumpet band of the Corps of 
Cuirassier Eegiments. It was all brass, accom- 
panied by both kettle and military drums and there 
were about twenty-five men, who wore white tunics. 
I noticed in this band, as indeed was the case in 
others I heard in Germany, that they played the 
first movement of a waltz at about half the usual 
English " tempo," and with much more expression, 
followed by a very quick second part, and so on. 
In fact, they seemed to do more with the whole 
composition than one is accustomed to, thereby 
raising it considerably above a dance measure. This 
particular band played a waltz called " Goldregen ** 
by Waldteufel, which is a very fair specimen of that 
composer's work, who, I think, attains in this 
direction a higher standard than most of the other 
waltz writers. 

A great deal of the scenery about Dresden is very 
beautiful, especially the view from one of the many 
bridges which cross the Elbe. In fact, it rather 
reminded one of Zurich. If you cross the bridge, 
which I did by tramcar, you come to what might 

Impressions in Germany and Austria 209 

be called a suburb, Lochwitz. On arrival there I 
went up a mountain railway, at the summit of 
which an excellent view of Dresden and the 
surrounding country is obtained; a view, more- 
over, which it would be hard to equal. I went into 
a beer garden, which is beautifully situated and 
overhangs the well-wooded mountain upon which 
it stands. The usual uncomfortable chairs marred 
this garden. A thunderstorm, with heavy rain, 
came on soon after my arrival, the sun, strange to 
say, shining intensely almost the whole time and 
the birds singing. Posted up was a notice of a 
** Grosse " military concert which was to take place 
in the afternoon and evening. I waited for the 
afternoon performance, and at the appointed hour 
about fourteen bandsmen, in uniform, with the 
bandmaster arrived. The selection of music was 
again very indifferent ; in fact, I do not see how 
it could possibly be otherwise with so few instru- 
ments. One dislikes very much these '' bits " of 
bands. Their horns appeared to me to be larger 
than ours. I noticed all over Germany that mili- 
tary bandmasters hold the baton more tightly than 
one is accustomed to see in England and that there 

2IO Impressions in Germany and Austria 

is very little wrist moveraent. I also noticed that a 
selection from Sullivan's ** Mikado " frequently ap- 
peared on programmes, and often thought how 
superior Sullivan was to such composers as Doni- 
zetti, Bellini, Flotow, and all of that ilk ; and yet 
what a back place he has to take with regard to 
them. The bandmasters in Germany appeared to 
me to conduct Wagner's music better than any 

There is a rather quaint old market square in 
Dresden which reminds one somewhat of the one 
at Basle, and a monument commemorative of the 
battle of Beaumont (Franco-German War) is erected 
here. I may mention that one of the railway 
stations in Dresden is truly magnificent, and must 
have cost a very large sum, while amongst the most 
imposing buildings may be included the cathedral or 
Dom and the theatre. Of course, I visited the 
world-famed picture gallery, and found that Eeubens 
was well represented, but that I preferred the art 
of Adrian Van der Werff. The pictures of Christ 
by Guido Eemi and Corregio are very striking, and 
I came to the conclusion that the Italian School was 
not to be despised. The Sistine Madonna of 

Impressions in Germany and Austria 211 

Eaphael is considered the greatest work of all, I 
believe, and it is a wise thing to know this when 
asked. In fact, I wonder America hasn't long since 
acquired it. To me, the greatest thing about this 
picture is the womanliness of the Madonna. 

I next went into the Schloss and considered I had 
wasted a mark by so doing. As was the case in 
Berlin, music shops were conspicuous by their 
absence, or by their difficulty to find. I did discover 
one, however, and this was in a rather out-of-the- 
way street; but should you want to purchase a 
piano you would require to know your Dresden 
extremely well. I was told that Dresden china was 
not made here, which was rather a blow. Let me 
relate that I never heard a boy whistle or shout in 
the streets, and wondered what the children were 
made of. One missed, too, the evening newspaper 
boy of England, and I presume these things are not 
allowed in Dresden. 

I left Dresden by the 11.30 a.m. train on the 21st 
for Prague. Luggage was examined at Boden, on 
the Austrian frontier, and different money was again 
necessary. Soon after leaving Dresden we passed 
some very pretty mountain and river scenery, and 

212 Impressions in Germany and Austria 

traversed Saxon Switzerland. The train follows 
the Elbe, and the scenery becomes increasingly 
grand ; pine forests, rocky heights, and Swiss-look- 
ing chalets abound, while small steamers, rafts and 
barges continually pass up and down the river. On 
the frontier of Saxony and Bohemia one notices the 
wonderful sandstone formation of the banks of the 
Elbe with steep basaltic and fantastic rocks, 
woody gorges, and brooks, while at different points 
this is changed to forest-covered slopes, vineyards, 
and orchards. Among the romantic ruins one 
passes, the most imposing is perhaps the Schrecken- 
stein Castle which stands on a very high, rugged 
rock overhanging the river ; while Aussig, a small 
town having a harbour and important chemical and 
other industries, stands on one side. At the Austrian 
frontier they appeared to be a little more particular 
about Custom's duty, and a couple of holland bags 
which the officials very carefully extracted from my 
box, created a good deal of suspicion, but when he 
withdrew from them an innocent pair of boots, he 
smiled, and the crowd burst out laughing. When 
we started again it was soon easy to see we had left 
Germany, for at the different stations the Austrian 

Impressions in Germany and Austria 213 

shako was substituted for the Prussian helmet, 
while side whiskers and an occasional pipe-smoker 
might also be observed. 

In the carriage with me was a German lawyer 
who spoke English fluently. Our conversation 
turned upon a certain article which I had noticed in 
an English newspaper regarding a recruit in Berlin 
who was punished because he sneezed ! At the time 
of reading the article I had my suspicions of its 
correctness, and attributed it to the usual anti- 
German hysterical attacks, and was, therefore, not 
surprised when my travelling companion explained 
to me that the recruit in question was a young 
lawyer who evidently objected strongly to being 
called up for military service, and who, when 
brought before the medical officer for inspection, 
began to sneeze inordinately. As this was undoub- 
tedly done on purpose, and, in fact, was what a 
Britisher would call " cheek," he was ordered to 
leave the room and appear again the following day. 
This was the true story, as far as I can remember. 
After passing Bodenbach, the scenery, though still 
beautiful, was not so wild, and I noticed that the 
cottages had rather curious little eye-like windows 

214 Impressions in Germany and Austria 

in their roofs with overhanging folds of thatch which 
gave the appearance of eyelids. There were fairs 
to be seen in the villages, and swings and merry-go- 
ronnds were numerous. Hop fields, with the plants 
(are hops plants, vegetables or fruit ?) prettily 
arranged in festoons, something like the ribbons of 
a maypole, were also plentiful. Before reaching 
Prague we left the Elbe and followed one of its 
tributaries, the Moldau, until we arrived, at 3. p.m., 
at the capital of Bohemia, which is situated in the 
very centre of Europe, having passed through a 
public park and over a viaduct of more than 3,600 
feet in length. The kingdom of Bohemia has a 
population of about 6,200,000. Of this about sixty- 
two per cent, are Czechs, otherwise Sclaves or 
Bohemians ; about thirty-seven per cent, are Ger- 
mans ; and the remainder Poles. The Germans, I 
believe, contribute a good deal more to the revenue 
than the Czechs, and one observes, very soon, that 
there is no love lost between the Czechs and the 

One's first impression of Prague is, that it is 
extremely picturesque and more ancient in appear- 
ance than any place one has been accustomed to. 

Impressions in Germany and Austria 215 

Indeed, every historical period seems to have left 
memorials of its architecture and sculpture here, 
and the development of the different styles can be 
traced for a thousand years back ! Prague is situated 
on both banks of the river Moldau and as far 
back as the ninth century it was an important and 
fortified town. It is almost a Slav city, the popu- 
lation being about 500,000, of which only 35,000 are 

I put up at the Hotel Cheval Noir, otherwise the 
Schwarzes Eoss, which I found to be an old-fash- 
ioned building with courtyard, and not so clean as 
the German hotels. There was no lift, but I was 
informed that it was contemplated having one 
constructed in the ensuing winter. Dinner was 
served in the botel garden, at small tables, and a 
band played during the meal. This band was 
composed of six misguided musicians who revelled 
in antics, " minor " atrocities, and alarmingly rapid 
flourishes, with very little real music. Just imagine 
too, that out of the six performers one was wasting 
his time hammering away at a side drum and 
cymbals, while another was blasting upon the 
aggressive cornet ! The remaining four played 

2i6 Impressions in Germany and Austria 

stringed instruments and had wonderful tone and 

While I sat at my dinner table a couple of old 
ravens stalked about in a very dignified and intel- 
ligent manner, ready to pick up food of any kind, 
and much amusement was often caused by throwing 
them a lighted cigar end, with which they dallied 
suspiciously. There was a very fat and perspiring 
head waiter in this establishment who looked 
absolutely worn out from the exercise afforded by 
gathering in the " tips." I found in walking through 
the streets that they were well paved, some of them 
being pulled up for repair, which reminded one 
again of England, and that none were asphalted. I 
strolled into a restaurant, where I obtained a more 
delicious cup of coffee than I could remember 
getting elsewhere, excellent butter, and a recent 
copy of " The Sketch " which rather surprised me, 
for I may add that this was the only copy I came 
across in my travels. This restaurant, moreover, 
had quite the greatest number of English newspapers 
I had seen in the previous hotels. I observed that 
the Austrian soldiers were neater and slighter in 
build than the Germans, the skirts of their tunics 

Impressions in Germany and Austria 217 

being shorter. The ofi&cers, of whom I saw a great 
number in the streets, appeared to go in consider- 
ably for figure, their garments being almost skin 
tight, while they had small feet, many wearmg 
patent leather boots. They also wore very high 
collars to their tunics. There being a large garrison 
at Prague I had plenty of opportunity of observing 
the soldiers, and came to the conclusion that the 
Germans were superior to them. 

Lovely Prague ! City of a hundred towers ! Just 
stand on one of the bridges which cross the river, 
or ascend the Petrin tower, and the beauty of the 
view is transcendent. The Petrin tower is a small 
imitation of the Eiffel and stands on the summit of 
the mountain which gives it its name. You ascend 
the slope by a funicular railway 1,311 feet long and 
then by lift up to the tower, which stands some 
600 feet above the river. In fine weather one gets 
a view comprising a circle with a radius of 100 
miles! The first thing which strikes one is the 
magnificent castle, a huge pile, which was the seat 
of the Bohemian rulers as well as of the Eoman 
emperors, and encloses several churches, the oldest 
being St. George, built in A.D. 1150, and the most 

2i8 Impressions in Germany and Austria 

important the cathedral of St. Guy, which is 
Gothic, and reminds one a little of Cologne on a 
small scale. Charles IV, who was killed at the 
battle of Cressy, and George, who was, perhaps, the 
most popular king of Bohemia, are buried here. I 
may mention that one of the daughters of Charles 
IV, Ann of Bohemia, became the wife of Eichard 
II of England, and it was she who is said to have 
first introduced the present mode of riding instead 
of astride. What is perhaps still more interesting 
to us is the fact that the wife of King Frederick of 
Bohemia was, I believe, a daughter of James I and 
grandmother of George I, consequently an ante- 
cedent of the reigning royal family of England. 

On Sunday 22nd (I may observe that all the 
shops are closed on Sundays in Prague) I attended 
divine service at St. Guy's, where I heard some 
good music and was, moreover, greatly impressed, 
as indeed in all the Koman Catholic churches I 
visited, with the devotion of the people. 

In one of the cathedral chapels is the Sepulchre 
of St. John of Nepomuk (who was drowned from 
the old Prague bridge) with his statue and a number 
of Hfe-size (?) angels all in massive silver. St. Guy's, 

Impressions in Germany and Austria 219 

like most cathedrals, is still being restored. At the 
side of the tower of the building is a fountain with 
an old statue of St. George and the Dragon, dated 
1373, and I believe there is a plaster cast of it in 
the South Kensington Museum. The river, which 
is broad, is spanned by several fine bridges, and 
dotted about it are islands, one of them being fairly- 
large and containing a restaurant and gardens where 
military bands play. In the principal streets the 
shops are good and, strange to say, there are plenty 
of music establishments, although small, having 
great displays of violins in the windows, as also 
photos of musicians, including Popper, the re- 
nowned 'cello player, and Kuberlik, a pupil of the 

Among the buildings noticeable are the National 
Museum, which is imposing, and is situated on, 
probably, one of the finest sites in Europe ; the 
Kudolphinum, another magnificent edifice contain- 
ing paintings of the Italian, Dutch, German, and 
Bohemian masters, as well as those of modern 
artists, and the Conservatoire of Music, of which 
Dvorak was once director, and Popper, I believe, 
professor of the *cello. Smetana was also a native 

220 Impressions in Gcrnmny and Austria 

of Prague. The old University, the National 
Theatre, and the town museum are also worthy of 
note, the latter situated at the top of a very fine 
street which is lined with trees. In the old city is 
to be seen the old town hall and the wonderful and 
ancient astronomic clock. This has two dials, one 
being divided into twenty-four hours, and in appear- 
ance is something like that in Berne but, I think, 
superior to it, for here a skeleton pulls a bell and 
the twelve Apostles then pass by, followed by the 
crowing of a cock at certain hours. Behind the 
town hall stands the Kussian church of St. Nicholas, 
but I was informed that there were no services held 
there during the summer. It was very plainly 
decorated inside and there were no images. One of 
the oldest buildings in " old " Prague is the Jewish 
Synagogue, which dates from the thirteenth cen- 
tury, and close by is the Jewish cemetery contain- 
ing innumerable tombstones and a perfect maze of 
elder trees. 

I noticed here that on many of the ledges of the 
tombstones were placed small stones, which I was 
informed was a custom equivalent to the placing of 
flowers and wreaths in Christian countries. This 

Impressions in Germany and Austria 221 

custom brought back to me reminiscences of the 
East, for I seem to remember the same thing being 
done by the natives of India. Prague is day by 
day being modernised, parks and squares are being 
made and even the old Jewish Ghetto is being 
annihilated to make room for streets. I noticed an 
air of rusticity or Bohemianism about the people 
one met in the streets, and also that they did not 
stare at one. They struck me as being plain in 
feature and badly dressed, but a rather jolly lot, 
and the servants hummed tunes over their work. 
Prague is the first place, too, in which I missed the 
American, the reason being, perhaps, the difficulty 
of the language which, moreover, renders a guide 
absolutely necessary if one wishes to do sight-seeing 
thoroughly. In the hotel, instructions were posted 
up in several languages, and I thus learned that 
*' sklepnik," is Bohemian for waiter. There is a 
good tram service which here, as well as in Austria, 
travels to the left as in England, and I further 
observed that open carriages followed the closed 
ones, so that one could enjoy the cool air if so 
disposed. I found the water very '* hard." 

To enable me to be better acquainted with many 

222 Impressions in Germany and Austria 

facts connected with Prague I engaged a guide, 
who knocked at my bedroom door very early the 
following morning. He was an old Jew who spoke 
seven languages, (not including American), which, 
he informed me, he had acquired chiefly from books 
alone. He had, moreover, spent some years in 

Having struck a bargain, we started. It was 
intensely hot and I had some heavy walking to do. 
Before we had proceeded a couple of hundred yards 
he said ** Excuse me a minute," and was out of sight 
before I could turn round. Now, this occurred over 
and over again with great regularity as regards 
time and distance, so at last I was enabled by 
chance to watch my friend, and found that he had 
dived into a liquor establishment. I concluded 
therefore, that he had been performing this indis- 
cretion all along, and as his breath began to smell 
perceptibly of spirit and his speech had become a 
little thick he was not, as a guide at any rate, of 
much service to me long ere we reached home, 
which I am glad to say we safely accomplished, 
having been out for about three hours. The 
5 -kronen piece I gave him must have been con- 

Impressions in Germany and Austria 223 

siderably encroached upon in anticipation. I may 
mention that on our way home a rather smart-look- 
ing man in uniform and sword, with a lady on his 
arm, passed us. The old guide, who had not 
imbibed so much alcohol that he did not know what 
he was talking about, informed me that he was a 
postman, and that, although he was not obhged 
(perhaps he meant entitled, but this is doubtful) 
to wear a sword, he liked doing so for swagger ! I 
then wondered whether the postman possessed the 
weapon or had borrowed it for the occasion, but 
allowed this important matter to drop. 

I noticed that all the police wore green cocks' 
feathers in their caps ; that cigarettes were a great 
deal more smoked than in Germany ; that many 
ladies patronised the new corset skirt, and that, sad 
to relate, beauty, especially with regard to complex- 
ion, was remarkable by its absence. The military 
bands I heard were not so good as the German 
ones, the bass instruments being, to my mind, too 
powerful and the clash of the cymbals somewhat 
terrifying. At their performances in the beer 
gardens I observed that the slightest clap of 
approval received an encore which was sometimes 

224 Impressions in Germany and Austria 

doubled. One great drawback I consider, with 
regard to all beer gardens, is that one cannot go to 
them for music alone, or rather one is unable to 
take a seat without ordering something to eat or 
drink, although you may have already paid your 
sixpence (or its equivalent) for entry. 

I left for Vienna by the 7.25 a.m. train on 23rd 
July, which was due to arrive at 2.40 p.m. By 
the route I took one passed Kolin on the Elbe at 
8.30 a.m. and Chotzen at 9.45, and there is a 
beautifully- wooded country with miles of forests as 
you journey towards Usti. We reached Brunn at 
midday and then passed the fertile plain of the so- 
called Moravian Field, running straight for the 
Danube. I did not see the far-famed town of 
Pilsen, which is a little out of the track but is well 
worth a visit. 

Pilsen has now a population of over 50,000, 
nearly all being Czechs, and is, of course, the seat 
of the great breweries which yield annually some 
430,000 barrels of the well-known dehcious beer. 
The vaults are hewn in the solid rock and extend 
about five miles, while over 1,000 workmen are 
engaged in the production. 

Impressions in Germany and Austria 225 

In the train I had an Austrian colonel for com- 
panion, and during the journey he opened a small 
bag he was carrying, in which I caught sight of 
hair and clothes brushes and a pair of linen cuffs 
ready to put on when required. What an admirable 
plan this wristband and cuff arrangement, which 
one notices all over Germany and Austria, is. I am 
aware that in England there is a great tendency to 
decry the thing as not being correct, and that 
whenever one's cuffs are soiled, one's shirt should 
be changed. There is about as much sense or 
logic in such a conclusion as if we were to adopt a 
similar plan in the case of collars. It is, indeed, 
better to see a clean pair of cuffs, even though they 
be attached to wristbands, or a clean collar attached 
to a collar band, than dirty ones. It must be 
stated, however, that in Germany the cuffs are 
fastened to wristbands, and not placed over already 
soiled cuffs which are attached to the shirt. The 
custom is quite worthy of adoption even in the 
most conservative of countries. 

In Vienna I put up at the Hotel Metropole, which 

is perhaps one of the finest hotels in the city, and 

overlooks the Danube which at this point does not 


226 Impressions in Germany and Austria 

appear to be nearly so wide as the Thames at the 

The railway station was anything but clean. I 
was hurried by the obliging porter with my luggage 
into a two-horsed vehicle which simply flew through 
the streets. The hotel is not far from the station, 
but I was charged 4 krones for the drive. In 
future, however, such conveyances must be care- 
fully avoided, as the fare is double that of a single 
horse carriage which, no doubt, would have carried 
me just as safely, if not so quickly. The weather 
was perceptibly warmer. In my bedroom I read 
among the rules which were posted up, the follow- 
ing : " Tea urn, tea, and cream, 1 krone 40 hellers. 
Tea urn, without anything, 1 krone," which set me 
wondering whether any traveller ever ordered the 
latter and, if so, what the effect was ! There were 
double doors to my room and, for a wonder, no 
eider-down quilt on the bed, which was always 
present in the German hotels, irrespective of the 
time of year. I was not very much impressed with 
the waiting or attendance at this hotel, although 
the head waiter, I must say, was exceptionally civil. 
At dinner we had green figs, which were a treat, 

Impressions in Germany and Austria 227 

and were given stewed red currants (sweet) with 
roast fowl ! Excellent mushroom soup was also 
provided. The cigars in Austria appeared to be 
very strong and were decidedly inferior. 

Now, one might think that in a hotel of this size 
and pretension and in the heart of Vienna, one 
would find in the drawing-room a magnificent piano 
for the edification, at any rate, of the supposed 
most musical people in the world; and further- 
more, that one would be listening any evening to 
the discoursing, by the fair sex, of Beethoven and 
Mozart, ad libitum. But no ; in none of the hotels 
at which I stayed in Germany and Austria did I 
either see a magnificent piano or meet anyone who 
appeared to miss it. Indeed, the only music I heard 
was a music lesson given to a tiny German child 
upon an execrable " upright," in Dresden. I have 
come to the conclusion that the ordinary German 
is not so fond of music as the ordinary Englishman, 
but that the really musical ones rise to a higher 

My first look at Vienna did not impress me, and 
further, the city did not appear to have any par- 
ticular characteristics of its own. Indeed, Vienna 

228 Impressions in Germany and Austria 

might, in my opinion, belong to almost any country, 
and is certainly not marked with the air of progres- 
siveness which obtains in Berlin. It did not, more- 
over, strike me as being a particularly gay place; 
indeed there is rather a languid air about it. The 
shops, as a rule, are not very imposing, many being 
given over to the postcard craze, and the sale of 
fancy articles of a rather shoddy nature, while 
pictures of the fascinating " Peggy " of Boileau 
were to be seen everywhere, as in England. The 
public buildings, generally, suggest rather an 
Italian look, and the reputed great beauty of the 
women I failed to discover, although they certainly 
had fresher complexions and finer figures than 
those one met in Germany. Some of the ladies 
wore mantillas, which gave them quite a Spanish 
look, and nearly all had earrings, their ears being 
pierced for the purpose. After I had discovered 
that the traffic, which is not very extensive, pro- 
ceeded on the left as in England, I set out sight- 
seeing. The cathedral of St. Stephen is a fine 
edifice with a magnificent spire, in the Cologne 
style, 138 metres high. The interior is very beau- 
tiful, principally on account of the gorgeous 

Impressions in Germany and Austria 229 

stained windows, while a mysterious dimness per- 
vades the whole building. The streets at once 
impress one with the fact that they are not so 
clean-looking, well-paved, or imposing as those of 

I went to the Hofburg or King's palace to see 
the Guard mounting ceremony, and at 1 p.m. a 
military band arrived, the men of which wore the 
Turkish fez. This was followed by the new or 
relieving Guard who were dressed rather like the 
Italian Bersaglieri and carried on their backs horse- 
skin covered valises. They had cocks' feathers 
in their caps, which were spoilt in appearance by 
the broad black chin strap. In marching they 
pointed their toes admirably, but I think the cere- 
monial slow marching was a modification of that 
indulged in by the German soldiers, and not nearly 
so fimny ! When they presented arms the beau- 
tiful Austrian hymn was played, but the people, 
who were standing by in great numbers, did not 
raise their hats. The old and the new guards then 
went through the different movements of the 
ceremony very smartly and a good deal quicker 
than prevails in the British army. The band 

230 Impressions in Germany and Austria 

then stood round band stands which had already 
been placed there, and played a short selection of 
music lasting half an hour. There were only 
twenty-five bandsmen, and their performance was 
both excellent and impressive ; in fact, to my mind 
quite superior to that of our ordinary Infantry 
bands. Here again I noticed the wonderful tone 
of the brass, in some instances producing quite a 
sad effect by its sonority. Poor Austria! You 
have suffered many defeats ! 

While the band played, the two Guards stood to 
attention, and finally the old Guard marched away 
headed by the band. Now, this band belonged to 
one of the regiments which are recruited, I believe, 
in Bosnia and Herzegovina, formerly independent 
provinces of Turkey, but now under Austrian 
administration. The men are chiefly Mahome- 
dans. They are obliged to do three years* soldier- 
ing in Austria, and when they first came I hear 
gave a good deal of trouble. When the new guard 
had taken over its duties I noticed that the of&cer 
in command had quite a reception by his friends who 
were amidst the crowd assembled, and with whom 
he mingled for a short time, shaking hands all round. 

Impressions in Germany and Austria 231 

From the Hofburg I walked till I hailed a tram- 
car which was journeying to what is styled the 
Prater, also known to some as the Vienna Hyde 
Park. It appeared to me to consist chiefly of a 
large garden containing many restaurants and 
beer gardens, and a main street lined with shows 
which reminded one of an English fair in the old 
days. I amused myself by visiting some of these 
shows, the first being a cinematograph combined 
with a gramophone. An opera singer appeared in 
a scene and sang and acted very naturally. The 
heat in this place was truly awful, for it was a 
tiny wooden shell of a building with the sun 
streaming down upon it. It was crammed with 
people, and I felt half suffocated as well as getting 
prickly heat ! I next visited another performance 
of the same description, only in a much larger 
and nicer building, and here I saw representations 
of some riding feats by Austrian Cavalry which 
appeared to be truly marvellous. Every descrip- 
tion of diminutive theatre lined the street, while 
acrobats, (who must have suffered intensely from 
the heat) Punch and Judy shows, shooting galleries, 
hippodromes, bands, and waxworks, etc., were in 

232 Impressions in Germany and Austria 

great number and request. A big wheel a la Earl's 
Court also stood in the grounds. 

On leaving the Prater I observed a rather fine 
monument erected to Tegetthof which stands at 
the head of a wide and business-like street. Among 
the smaller monuments may be mentioned those to 
Haydn, Mozart, Beethoven, and Schubert. I then 
went to see the Votive Church, a fine Gothic edifice 
in the Cologne style which stands in a garden. 
Both this church and St. Stephen's Cathedral have 
Mosaic tiled roofs. The Imperial Museum of Art 
is a lovely building, containing numerous examples 
of Eoman, Grecian and Egyptian work. The floors 
are marble, and there is a fine collection of old 
portraits of the celebrities of every country with the 
coins of the different periods. These collections 
appear to be unique. Among the innumerable 
things of interest in this museum were ancient 
church vestments, old clocks, and mathematical and 
geometrical instruments. 

In some of the rooms were vast collections of 
glass, ornaments, bric-a-brac, caskets, china, ivory 
and bronze articles, and armour, etc., all too beau- 
tiful to describe. 

Impressions in Germany and Austria 233 

It may be mentioned here that I found it an 
advantage, if one can possibly avoid it, not to carry 
a stick or umbrella when sight-seeing, for you in- 
variably have to give it up on entering public build- 
ings and galleries, and have occasionally to pay for 
its custody. In front of the museum stands the 
truly magnificent monument to the Empress Maria 
Theresa. I passed by the University, which is a 
much finer building than that in Berlin. In fact, 
all the public buildings in Vienna are unusually 
fine, while, both in Germany and Austria, one is 
greatly impressed by their general magnificence, 
as also by the churches, monuments and theatres. 

I paid a short visit to the Chm-ch of the Capu- 
chins where the imperial vault is built, and, finally, 
saw the Eathhaus or town hall, from the steps of 
which one obtains a fine view of the palatial-looking 
Hofburg Theatre. It may be added that at the en- 
trance to the imperial palace there are two monu- 
mental fountains representing " The Power of the 
Sea" and of "The Land Forces" and it would be 
hard to imagine anything finer. 

In the evening I went to the Imperial Volksgar- 
ten, which is near the imperial castle, where a 

234 Impressions in Germany and Austria 

splendid military orchestra performed. The violin- 
ists were superb performers, bowing perfectly to- 
gether, and, as it seemed to me, intuitively. The 
cornets were, as before mentioned, played with 
expression and, at times, almost with the emotional 
vibrato of the " string family." 

For refreshment I here indulged in some thick 
chicken soup and, of course, was asked if I would 
like some beef to follow ! Oh, England ! The 
Pilsen beer seemed a trifle oniony, but I must say 
I never noticed this drawback anywhere else. The 
next day, the 25th, I walked about four miles, start- 
ing fairly early, and visited the poorer districts of 
Vienna. I found with great difficulty the huge 
general hospital which is situated in a rather 
out-of-the-way part of the city, passing the Ana- 
tomy School on the way. On returning I went 
again to the palace yard to witness the Guard 
mounting, and on this occasion an ordinary line 
regiment marched up. They wore the Austrian 
shakot which is very ugly and something like the 
English one of an early period. The band played 
for about half an hour as before and the bandmaster 
wore a cocked hat and, of course, a sword. 

Impressions in Germany and Austria 235 

Strolling homewards I met a company of Guards 
composed of unusually fine men, and splendidly 
turned out. One soon discovered that the police- 
men in Vienna are extremely civil, that a great 
number of the inhabitants smoke cigarettes (unlike 
the Germans) and that when cigars are indulged in 
holders are commonly used ; also, that all the big 
dogs have to earn their living by drawing carts, and 
that even a cabman, who, by the way, is nearly 
always smoking, takes off his cap when you engage 
him. One should learn to realise, moreover, that 
Austrians are Germans, more or less, although 
*' leavened " by time. Vienna can boast of a rather 
insignificant waxworks establishment which con- 
tains a very realistic breathing figure, a large group 
exemplifying the scene of Christ before Pilate, and 
some curious anatomical subjects, only fit for the 
eyes of the sterner sex. 

On the 26th I left at 7 a.m. by a Danube steamer 
for Budapest. The vessel was a very tiny one and 
appeared to be of about 20-ft. beam. The seats 
were very hard and uncomfortable and, conse- 
quently, my first thought was, how am I going to 
endure twelve or thirteen hours ol it? Nothing 

236 Impressions in Germany and Austria 

was charged for my luggage on this journey. 
Crowds of people flocked on board, accompanied by 
plenty of boxes and packages, and in case of acci- 
dent, although I could discover no small boats, I 
can testify to there being, at any rate, one life- 
buoy ! A couple of Irish priests from the land of 
Saints, Soldiers, and Scholars, God bless 'em ! were 
among the passengers. 

There was also one couple of Britishers, evidently 
on their honeymoon, and many foreign ladies who 
indulged in the most suffocating of scents. We 
soon got under way and passed four magnificent gas 
houses which were composed externally of bricks 
and looked like huge, circular buildings for dioramas. 

The water of the mighty Danube, which was 
narrow at the start and is some 2,400 miles long, 
was of a dirty brown colour. After we had been 
travelling for about an hour the river suddenly 
widened to an enormous extent and we then halted, 
and the passengers were transhipped to a much 
larger steamer. Having moved off again, the 
scenery, which up to this time was decidedly ugly 
and low-lying, became more pleasing. 

Now, as I had made up my mind to see and hear 

Impressions in Germany and Austria 237 

all I could, I prepared to rough it a bit and join the 
poorer classes on board, who appeared to me to be 
quite the commonest-looking and dirtiest people I 
had yet come across. I found, moreover, that rest 
was out of the question, and the constant passing 
and repassing of the passengers in the very narrow 
passage for the purpose, prevented my being able to 
even cross my legs for more than a moment at a 
time. One old German woman sitting next to me 
would insist upon continually addressing me in her 
own language, although I frantically waved my 
hands and shrugged my shoulders to express my 
ignorance of her conversation. It seemed as if she 
could not realise the fact that there might be people 
in the world who did not know what she was 
talking about. I soon became aware that it would 
be most injudicious to move from my seat for fear 
of it being instantly seized, and there certainly 
appeared to be a great many more passengers than 
there was seating accommodation for. 

Up to 9.15 a.m. the scenery was decidedly flat, 
although at times somewhat thickly wooded ; then 
high hills came in sight, one being particularly like 
Ali Masjid in the far-off Khyber Pass and which 

238 Impressions in Germany and Austria 

had a small town at its foot called Heinburg. This 
was followed by some small wooded islands dotted 
here and there. At 10.10 we arrived at Presburg, 
passing under a huge iron bridge which spans the 
river that is here, seemingly, about half a mile wide. 

There were a couple of gun-boats lying at anchor. 
If one wishes, one can take the train from Presburg 
for Budapest. We started again in a very short 
time, the scenery being still too monotonous and 
flat to be beautiful, and one felt that a few moun- 
tains should have been thrown in. The most 
noticeable and peculiar thing to me, up to the 
present, was the large number of inlets through 
which the river finds its way into the low-lying 
woods which are almost flush with the river, while 
the expanses of water are so vast that it is like a 
series of lakes. 

About midday my poor companions began to 
indulge in refreshment, which consisted principally 
of green chillies, dark brown bread, and beer. It 
was, indeed, a curious mixture of people. There 
were a few Austrian soldiers who were generally 
playing cards, three rather sporting-looking French- 
men engaged in the game of dominoes, and some 

Impressions in Germany and Austria 339 

peasant women who wore black mantillas which 
were tied like handkerchiefs round their heads, 
rather spoiling the effect. Then there was a Kus- 
sian, perhaps a student, who was absorbed in litera- 
ture, possibly of a revolutionary character, during the 
whole voyage ; a woman or two crying, probably 
because they had said " good-bye " to a relation or 
friend ; children by the dozen, all crying more or 
less ; a couple of Austrian girls, probably dress- 
makers, who flirted with an unshaven but enter- 
prising youth ; a would-be dandy with small feet, 
jewelled fingers and a rather killing manner. Then 
there was a mysterious-looking French girl who 
looked as if she hadn't slept or done her hair for a 
week, and who occupied her time in unpacking and 
then repacking, in a wonderful way, the contents of 
two minute portmanteaux, which seemed to hold 
things too numerous to mention. Presently a woman 
rushed past me carrying off a huge goose, whose 
head only appeared from a bag of sacking. In a 
few moments she returned just as hurriedly, having 
dipped the whole thing, bag and goose, into water to 
refresh the bird ! 
We met many barges eii route which were huge 

240 Impressions in Germany and Austria 

and heavily laden, and evidently engaged in the 
Danube trade. They were towed by steamers or 
tugs, each one of the latter drawing perhaps half 
a dozen barges. I noticed that the decks of these 
floating holdalls curved upwards towards the 
centre and that each one flew the Austrian ensign. 
The habitable part of some of them had such a 
quantity of flowers and little trees growing in pots 
that they looked like pretty gardens. They all 
passed gaily along in a perfect line; at the same 
time I should not be surprised if the Danube were 
considered difficult to navigate. At 2.15 p.m. we 
passed under another enormous bridge of four 
spans, and were obliged to lower our funnels in 
doing so. The land was still flat on either side, 
although hills began to appear in the far distance. 

Komarum was the next place of any importance 
we arrived at, and there appeared to be a small 
dock there for the river steamers. Our soldier pas- 
sengers landed here, and others came aboard and lit 
their cigarettes at once. They were in marching 
order and wore duck trousers, but instead of putties 
or gaiters round their legs they had a white canvas 
band about four inches wide fastened with two 

Impressions in Germany and Austria 241 

buttons, which appeared to me to be cooler and 
less cumbersome. They also had a raised cloth roll 
at the point of the right shoulder which kept the 
sling of their rifle in a good position. Some women 
came on board who wore yellow coloured handker- 
chiefs round their heads which gave them quite a 
Spanish look. 

At 3.15 we reached Eadvany. a small town which 
had the appearance of a place on the Irawaddy in 
Burma. A typical Hungarian now joined us, his 
costume consisting of greenish grey trousers with 
green piping on the outside seams, a green waist- 
coat with ball-shaped silver buttons, a coat of the 
same material as the trousers, also piped, and a 
small green slouch felt hat with a brown aigrette at 
the back. To complete the picture he wore a very 
elaborate black, red, and yellow striped silk ribbon 
from his watch with pendants of peculiar and 
original design. 

Then an old gentleman arrived and seated him- 
self opposite me. He had fastened the laces of his 
brown shoes round the outside of his trousers, 
which struck one as being odd. My previous idea 
of the beauty of the Danube was certainly getting 

242 Impressions in Germany and Austria 

very considerably damped, for the country on both 
sides was, if possible, flatter than ever, and even the 
woods, as we journeyed on, had almost disappeared. 
The river, however, was maintaining its great 
width. At four o'clock the distant hills before 
mentioned were getting much nearer, and their 
cultivation could be distinctly seen. We went 
under another bridge, this time of fine spans, at 
4.30, and our funnels were again lowered. 

Esztergom was now reached, and I noticed a 
very fine domed church with Corinthian pillars 
there, raised on a rocky mound which appeared to 
have also an old fortified wall. Great excitement 
on board was caused here by the advent of a man 
with a large basket of plums for sale. He was 
literally bombarded by the passengers, and such a 
number of persons, especially Hungarians, indulged 
in what was evidently a very agreeable fruit, that I 
had to seek shelter below to avoid the flight of 
stones therefrom. At 5 p.m. a resemblance to a bit 
of Swiss scenery made its appearance, and now 
there were wooded hills to the front and right of us 
and we were winding our way between them. The 
general scenery was becoming more impressive, but 

Impressions in Germany and Austria 243 

the water of the river was still brown. 

At the different stoppages many Hungarians 
came on board, journeying to Budapest. They all 
appeared to be of a jolly, careless disposition, and I 
was struck by the sound of their extraordinary 
language which, to me, appeared to be quite unlike 
any other. At 5.30 p.m. the full beauty of the 
Danube scenery became at last manifest and one 
was, moreover, greatly impressed by the vast ex- 
panse of the river. There was now a perfect Zurich- 
like view. On the right stood a village, Vishegra, 
close by which is a beautiful old ruin and a few 
modern villas dotted about, while there is a high hill 
beyond, on the summit of which stand other old 
ruins. Nagy Maros was on our left, somewhat 
spoilt in appearance, however, by the railway. We 
now approached several beautifully-wooded islands 
of various sizes and then Vagz came in sight. I 
was simply enchanted by the view of this town 
with its white buildings and reflections, lit up by 
the glory of the setting sun. The town stood some 
distance off and at the top of a lane of wide water 
with the green hills and vegetating lowlands on 
either side. Indeed, this view of Vagz amply re- 

244 Impressions in Germany and Austria 

paid one for the whole trip. We passed to the right 
of the town, and the river now looked still wider 
and began to gather the evening shadows. The air 
seemed stiller and one was impressed by the quiet 
grandeur of everything. I wondered as I turned 
round, on one occasion, what was the matter with 
the poor dishevelled French girl, who began to look 
so worried, and, I thought, had tears in her eyes. 
I also wondered what was her destination. What 
a journey this was ! Here was I sitting among 
crowds of poor foreigners in all sorts of costumes, 
listening to the babble of weird tongues, watching 
their habits, expressions, and appearances. Sitting, 
too, on a very hard wooden seat since early morn- 
ing, the monotony chiefly enlivened by the children 
and the live ducks, geese and fowl, tied together 
and sprawling about the deck all round one, every 
form of living thing screaming in the way most 
natural to it! The young moon is above in the 
exquisitely blue sky, and the sun is going down 
behind the purple hills, while the water fowls are 
screeching as we disturb them in their little island 
homes. At seven o'clock the sun has set, and the 
passengers are having their final tankards of beer 

Impressions in Germany and Austria 245 

for the day or, at any rate, for the journey. 

We passed beneath another iron bridge with 
funnels lowered as before, and then a much larger 
island than we have hitherto met seems to stand in 
our way. We steer to the left of it. Still another 
bridge looms in sight, which appears to have three 
spans converging together like the spokes of a 
wheel and, finally, at 7.30 p.m. — Budapest. 

The river now becomes narrower, we pass under 
a fine suspension bridge and at 7.45 are at our land- 
ing stage. It is now almost dark. I found con- 
siderable difficulty in getting a porter to carry my 
box, as I presume the poorer class with which I 
had journeyed are independent of such a luxury. 
However, I found one at last, and walked to the 
Hotel Hungaria, which was quite near. I was 
quickly given a bedroom which, as in Vienna, had 
double doors. Now I considered the Hotel Hun- 
garia to be in every respect the best I had as yet 
been in. The rooms were the best furnished, the 
food the most superior, the coffee the most dehcious, 
and the waiting the most perfect. I was in time 
for dinner, during which meal a typical Hungarian 
band performed. It was composed of eight players, 

246 Impressions in Germany and Austria 

and included a large zither, a 'cello, a double bass, 
a clarinet, and four violins. The performers were 
magnificent, as far as tone and expression go. 
They had no written music and, consequently, the 
greater part of their programme consisted of 
national compositions, at which they excel, any 
other music they played being scarcely worth 
listening to, in my opinion. Perhaps the sound of 
the clarinet rather spoiled the tone of the band, but 
as the performer thereon was chiefly occupied in 
collecting money during dinner, he seldom played. 

With regard to their national music I may say 
that it consists in innumerable minor chords, 
greatly varied, and often embellished with " imita- 
tional " effects. The music is emotional to a degree 
and one can feel that the performers have first-rate 
** ears " and appear, intuitively, to be able to har- 
monise their own music as I should say Dvorak did, 
and it is probable that very few untaught music- 
ians could ever attain so high a pitch of excellence 
in any other country. 

Now, although there is a slight similarity 
between the Hungarian and the Spanish national 
music the two cannot be justly compared, for 

Impressions in Germany and Austria 247 

Spaniards are not nearly so musical. When I 
first began to listen to the strains I thought they 
were improvising in a most wonderful manner. 
The sounds were, at times, like waves of organ 
tones ; at others, the notes were speaking, breath- 
ing, praying ! Then, suddenly, the music became 
like the roaring wind, ending in a tumult of chords 
followed by a gentle sobbing. There is no form 
and very little strictness of time in this strange 
music, only a progression of weird chromatic minor 
chords which it would be almost impossible to 
write down, while as to " Eesolutions " (musical 
term) perish the thought 1 These men made none ! 
for they are born, as nature intended, with a musi- 
cal ideal which develops as they mature and lis- 
ten to the music of their fathers. At the end of the 
great minor slow theme which invariably commences 
their compositions, there is a presto movement, and 
such a presto ! as unlike the beginning as it is 
possible to conceive. It is in a major key, is wild 
and assertive, and, as it were, rushes in to dash 
away the previous melancholy. It inspires con- 
fidence and warms the blood until it tingles all 
over one's body ; you want to rise from your table 

248 Impressions in Germany and Austria 

and shout ! On goes the presto, quicker and 
quicker, the leader, who is standing, plays his violin 
furiously, and seems to add more point, more 
originality, to the theme as he proceeds, and his 
men follow him blindly, as it were, racing after him 
in the torrent of notes which come rushing along in 
their headlong flight ! 

At the conclusion, the players wipe their brows 
(I do not remember ever having seen this done in 
England !) and the clarinet performer is busy 
collecting money. Now, will my readers believe 
that no one in the room appeared to listen to this 
music ? This was the case, however, and as I 
mentioned before, it is only the few who are, 
probably, really musical. After this piece the 
leader played Gounod's arrangement of Bach's First 
Prelude, to a zither accompaniment. I must say 
that he played this composition, so unlike his own 
country's music, correctly, as did the accompanist, 
although they were evidently playing from ear, but, 
sad to record, there was a fiendish obbligato, in the 
form of plate clattering the whole time, while the 
conversation of the dining multitude was, if possible, 
louder than ever. Now, although the zither player 

Impressions in Germany and Austria 249 

had great execution and played Bach's music fault- 
lessly, I think the instrument has an ugly twang 
and is not nearly so well adapted to the composition 
as the piano. The performance concluded with 
" coon " songs very cleverly played and with a 
strong Hungarian flavour, the 'cello doing fine 
service in the way of obbligato. This item in the 
programme was no doubt given for the edifica- 
tion of the ubiquitous American. 

Finally, I may remark that the leader scarcely 
seemed to move his bow, or, rather, his arm in 
bowing, and that the 'cellist did not play like a 
married man ! By the way, the two Irish priests 
before mentioned were quietly seated at dinner 
when I went in, doing themselves proudly. Four 
exceedingly smart Hussar officers were seated at 
a table near me, and I found that they dined here 
every evening. Their uniforms were perfect until 
they put on the terrible Austrian chimneypot 
shako J which spoiled the whole effect. I noticed 
that during certain intervals at dinner one of the 
hotel managers walked round the room bowing to 
the occupants of each table. I also found that the 
Hungarian cigar is somewhat superior to the 

250 Impressions in Germany and Austria 

Austrian, that all the pepper is red, though not 
very hot, and is obtained from a vegetable grown in 
the country, and that the cheese is handed round 
with the dessert. 

On Friday 27th I had a look at Budapest ; rather 
a tall order for, as an American observed to me, it 
is like an up-to-date go-ahead American city, which 
was the highest praise he could give it, and cer- 
tainly one's first look at the place impresses one 
with the fact that it is very modern. It is, more- 
over, a marvel how, in a few years, such a fine city 
could have sprung into existence. Budapest is 
situated on both sides of the Danube, so is Vienna ; 
but unlike it, in that the river here is 350 metres 
or about a quarter of a mile broad. It is spanned 
by half a dozen fine bridges, one being of the 
suspension variety and of truly magnificent pro- 
portions. This bridge is probably one of the 
finest in Europe, and was designed by a Mr. Clarke, 
an EngUshman. It has very large masonry pillars, 
and two huge stone lions stand at the entrance. 
One has to pay to cross any of the bridges in 
Budapest, but I discovered no one who could explain 
the reason, and it certainly seemed odd in so 

Impressions in Germany and Austria 251 

flourishing a city. I observed that the policemen 
wore ordinary black bowler hats with a long white 
plume, a broad red, white, and green band round 
the left arm, and of course, a sword ; while private 
coachmen were dressed like hussars, only with 
ordinary bowlers and plumes for headgear. The 
streets are well paved and kept very clean, and the 
smartest shops were those of milliners and military 
tailors, but even these were not much in advance of 
the Prague establishments. I saw no good cigar 
shops and there appeared to be very little worth 
buying in the shops of curios. One must remember 
that the Hunyadi Janos mineral water comes from 

Among the pubHc buildings, I was greatly 
impressed by the magnificent Houses of Parliament, 
finer to my mind than anything of the kind I had 
seen elsewhere, but as there appears to be a great 
sameness about such edifices, as well as town halls, 
I did not go inside. The Palace of Justice is also 
very fine. St. Stephen's Church is apparently 
modern, and the ornamentation of its interior is 
very beautiful. When I arrived at the church I 
found it was closed, so I promptly tackled an old 

252 Impressions in Germany and Austria 

fellow I found sitting on the steps, to whom I 
exclaimed, with my very best smile, " Inglish ! " 
pointing, at the same time, to the church door. He 
understood me, strange to say, and instantly toddled 
off and fished out a youth from some inner part of 
the establishment. The youth bade me follow, 
unlocked the main entrance door and took me 
round, explaining everything most minutely. I 
presented him with two pence (20 hellers) on 
departing and he was delighted ! 

I next discovered the fruit market, which is by 
the river side, and I have never seen such a quantity 
of apples, plums, melons and pears, etc., as there 
were for sale. I found, as usual, that the res- 
taurants were better equipped with English news- 
papers than the hotels, and observed that Hun- 
garians, as well as Austrians, have smaller feet than 
Germans, while better shaped boots and shoes were 
displayed in the shops than in Germany. I did not 
notice any monuments of much pretension. 

Now, in these Boman Catholic countries one is 
very much impressed with the almost romantic 
fascination that the religion has for the poorer 
classes ; and what a deal they attach to the 

Impressions in Germany and Austria 253 

superstitious part of the Christian faith. It is, 
indeed, beautiful to observe their devotion and child- 
like faith, which were particularly brought before 
me when I attended Mass in one of the Budapest 
churches at 10 a.m. One can sit anywhere and the 
rich and poor seem to be, as they should be, on 
equal terms. The music was very fine, but the 
singing was all in unison. 

The tramways have no overhead wires in 
Budapest, which certainly seemed an advantage, 
more especially with regard to the tendency they 
have to spoil the appearance of streets. The cars 
run on the usual rails. The heat here was more 
intense that I had yet experienced, and on leaving 
the hotel during the day I found that the ther- 
mometer in the hall registered 22° Eeaumur, or 
about 81^ Fahr. Eain, however, fell towards even- 
ing, which cooled the air a bit. When one doesn't 
feel inclined to indulge in a hotel tahU d'hote lunch, 
and is out sight-seeing, the want of an establish- 
ment where one can buy a glass of milk is often 
felt, and I failed to discover such a place in my 
travels. An ordinary sandwich, too, is an article 
not to be despised at such times and one which 

254 Impressions in Germany and Austria 

was conspicuous by its absence. From my previous 
experience when wandering about sight-seeing 
alone, I found it always advisable to take very care- 
ful landmarks by the way, and to have the name of 
one's hotel and the street or place it is in, written 
down for you in the current language. In a hotel 
like the Hungaria, a portier must surely be able to 
converse in quite half a dozen languages and has, 
moreover, a very busy time of it, if one can judge 
by the constant coming and going of visitors from 
almost every country. The fact remains, therefore, 
that the English do not require to learn foreign 
languages for travelling purposes, and it is, further- 
more, doubtful whether any of these splendid 
continental hotels would have been built but for the 
wandering Britisher and the inquisitive American 
Hotel management has, indeed, become an absolute 
art on the Continent. 

I was smoking after dinner, my first evening in 
Budapest, when I found seated beside me an 
American, one of the jovial type, and with very 
little of the typical accent. He was good-humoured 
looking, and evidently very well off. He informed 
me that he was the head of the parks and public 

Impressions in Germany and Austria 255 

gardens in a large American city, evidently an 
important post, and that consequently, he was much 
interested in the gardens abroad ; in fact, he was 
travelling with the express purpose of seeing them 
and profiting by the same, if necessary. He stated 
that he particularly liked the work of some of the 
amateur gardeners he had come across, and quoted a 
well-known Eussian Count who, to his mind, had 
designed probably the most magnificent garden in 
existence. I immediately joined in with regard to 
the occasional superiority of amateurs in other 
directions, quoting the Abbe Lizt as a musician, 
who, by the way, lived for a time in Budapest, Dr. 
Grace as a cricketer, and others. With regard to 
decorative skill and art, the French, in his opinion, 
stood head and shoulders above everybody else — it 
was born in them. I remarked that perhaps they 
made their towns so beautiful that it accounted for 
their not caring to settle down elsewhere. My 
American friend did not like the decorative work 
of the Germans, especially with regard to Berlin, 
where the statues, for instance, in the Avenue of 
Victory appeared to him to be too theatrical and too 
much like advertisement. I am not quite sure that 

256 Impressions in Germany and Austria 

I agreed with him here. As to poor old Battersea 
Park, one of our English institutions, he looked 
upon it as a vulgar display, but admired, on the 
other hand, Kew, Windsor, and the classical 
simplicity of the well-kept gardens and green 
swards of the Oxford Colleges. 

Just then a bevy of Chicago girls rushed by, 
shouting and skipping, and he informed me with 
some sadness in his tones that he was sometimes 
positively ashamed of the aggressiveness of his 
country people abroad. Now, it is a popular idea 
that the travelling American whom one meets 
everywhere on the Continent, is always rich, or, 
at any rate, pays exorbitantly for everything, there- 
by spoiling the market. I noticed, however, that a 
great many of them were water or tea-drinkers, and 
one hotel manager informed me that, in his ex- 
perience, they wanted things as cheap as possible 
and were not too fond of parting with their money. 
They travel, however, with enormous quantities of 
baggage, packed in huge boxes, for which they 
must have to pay a great deal for freightage. The 
American ladies I met impressed me with their 
high spirits and dash, but they swung their arms 

Impressions in Germany and Austria 257 

and wagged their figures too much in walking. I 

was, however, informed by one that they could not 

walk as far as English girls, because they were not 

so accustomed to it. I suppose she was referring 

to those who, in America, were well enough off to 

drive everywhere. It is customary when leaving 

continental hotels to have rather gaudy labels 

affixed to one's luggage. This I was informed is 

done to please Americans, as they rather like the 

display on their return home. There may be some 

truth in this, for when they discovered I was an 

Englishman I noticed that fewer hotel labels were 

attached. At the Dresden hotel I came across four 

Alabama young ladies, handsome, and with good 

figures, vivacious, and well dressed. They seemed 

to take everything as a joke, their spirits were so 

buoyant, but if you got into conversation about 

literature or art they became quite serious and, 

moreover, were extremely well up in such subjects. 

They spoke of mother — not mamma — and of poppa 

— not father, which was pecuHar, and informed me 

that they were "doing" Europe on £200 apiece 

given them by their respective poppas. They were 

chaperoned by an elderly lady friend, their parents 


258 Impressions in Germany and Austria 

not accompanying them. They were all chums 
from the same town in America, and there was 
something at once fascinating about them. They 
were lazy, and wanted everything done for them 
and remembered for them; this the elderly lady 
did. In fact, they had been spoilt at home, more 
especially by the negro servants. 

One of them had never heard of Lady Curzon, 
the sad news of whose death had just reached us, 
but, on the other hand, expected me to know all 
about a certain Hobson of United States naval 
fame, who, she said, lived next door to her. She 
spoke of the English as foreigners, which she said 
was usual, but I believe Canadians are exempt from 
that term ! American girls talk sensibly, have a 
great deal of self-possession, and no sham prudery. 
Finally, I never could quite see the evolution of the 
Britisher in the American, and I do not think the 
former will ever catch the latter up; perhaps he 
does not want to. Nor will the American lady ever 
have the sweet voice and accent, and the com- 
plexion of the English. Most of the Americans one 
meets abroad are too aggressive and seem to " take 
charge," as it were, directly they enter a hotel. 

Impressions in Germany and Austria 259 

Their children, too, are unchildlike and noisy. 

To return for a moment to my old enemy the 
head waiter, I must confess that at Budapest I 
never set eyes upon him until I gave him a krone 
on his presentation of my bill at the time of de- 
parture. Strange to relate, I was not troubled in 
the least by flies in any of the hotels I had been in 
up to the present, which was peculiar, considering 
the great heat. 

I left Budapest on Saturday, 28th July and took 
the 8 a.m. train back to Vienna. We skirted the 
Danube for a part of the way and there was some 
pretty scenery. 

At one station en route I purchased one of those 
fat-looking ham sandwiches which every German 
traveller of modest means, at any rate, carries with 
him, and which I was determined to negotiate. I 
must say I was not disappointed, and the ham 
appeared to me to be quite superior to any I had 
tasted in England. There is a sweetness and mild- 
ness about the ham all over Germany and Austria 
which appealed to me, and I, consequently, swear 
by it. These sandwiches are very thick, the meat 
being placed between a split roll. We arrived at 

26o Impressions in Germany and Austria 

Vienna at midday and I drove across the city to the 
West Station, where I took the 12.45 p.m. train for 
Salzburg. This drive seemed almost interminable, 
and v^e went through dozens of streets of every 
dimension. On leaving Vienna again, one passed 
through some truly exquisite scenery, hills and 
dales and woods, all beautifully green, everywhere, 
with occasional glimpses of the Danube. The cot- 
tages were very picturesque, and reminded one of 
Swiss chalets. 

As we approached Salzburg small white churches 
were seen dotted about prettily, while there were 
some snowcapped mountains in the far distance. 

One of my travelling companions was a Jew who 
spoke English very well and eulogised the res- 
taurant attached to our train. He went on to say 
that *' you could get a nice beef steak for very little 
money." I could see that he mentioned beef to 
please me — an Englishman. Oh, beef ! beef ! One 
finds it hard to get away from it, and I shall always 
remember the smug, sickly smile of the various 
waiters when they try to tempt one with " there's 
nice roast beef," which, by the way, one gets 
almost raw on such occasions. 

Impressions in Germany and Austria 261 

We arrived at our destination at 6.50 p.m., and I 
went to the Hotel de I'Europe, having just time to 
change for dinner. Here I found some of the 
Americans I had previously met, in fact they appear 
to follow one round most methodically. Again 
roast beef took a prominent place on the menu 
card (what animals they must think us!) and at 
dessert the tiniest strawberries I have ever seen 
were handed round. I may remark, by the way, 
that even in this up-to-date and magnificent hotel, 
as in all the others I had been to, finger glasses 
were conspicuous by their absence. 

There was an American bar, and a band which 
played at meal times. The Hotel de I'Europe is a 
beautiful and very artistic building set in tastefully 
laid-out grounds, full of flowers, gravel walks, nooks 
and bowers; just the place for a honeymooning 
couple. The next morning I strolled in the grounds, 
where I soon found one of those long comfortable 
chairs reminding one of India, and indulged in a 
rather expensive hotel cigar. The weather was 
deliciously cool and the air balmy, and there had 
been a heavy fall of rain. I noticed that there were 
a greater number of Parisian ladies here than usual, 

262 Impressions in Germany and Austria 

and some smart Americans who evidently did their 
best to imitate them in dress. They patronise to 
some extent the same dressmakers, but to my idea, 
signally fail in the attempt, for there is a some- 
thing, an artistic finish, a style in everything the 
French do in this respect — it is in their blood. 
French ladies appear to v^ear their hats rather on 
one side, and moreover, have a graceful walk. 
Having said this, I must confess that the most 
beautiful figure I saw during the whole of my 
journey was that of an American, and taken as a 
whole, they are plumper than the English. 

The hotel was simply crowded, and there was 
only one vacant room when I arrived, and that in 
the " dependence " of the hotel. This consisted of 
a wooden Swiss cottage in the grounds, quite rustic 
in appearance, and having just in front of it the 
only tennis court I had yet come across. I con- 
sidered my room very expensive, for it was meagrely 
furnished, there being but one chair in it and no 
wardrobe. One could breathe, however, and it was 
quite a country-like habitation, and so cool at night 
that for the first time one could bear, and enjoy, 
a light blanket. As usual I was taken for an 

Impressions in Germany and Austria 263 

American, and Germans never seem to be able, 
clever as they undoubtedly are, to distinguish the 
accent from that of the English. The Americans, 
moreover, travel much more than we do. 

The 29th was a Sunday and I went out immedi- 
ately after breakfast. Salzburg is evidently a health 
resort, and I found that different kinds of medicated 
baths, including carbonic acid, were to be obtained 
in the hotel, and that a doctor was on the spot. I 
also discovered a copy of the " Morning Post," 
which I greedily read, for it was the first time I had 
come across that paper, England being generally 
represented by the " Times " or " Daily Telegraph." 
I should describe Salzburg as a country town with 
white dust, or mud, after rain, and it was a great 
relief to be away for once from the big, gaudy, hot 
cities ; in fact, the peacefulness was delightful. 

Most of the men I met walking about were 
smoking long pipes and they all wore feathered 
plumes or tufts stuck in at the back of their soft, 
picturesque-looking felt hats. They also wore 
short knickers, like football players, which were 
generally of a dark green colour with corded decora- 
tion of a lighter hue, and thick woollen stockings, 

264 Impressions in Germany and Austria 

their knees being left bare. They were sturdily- 
built men and evidently used to climbing. Indeed, 
they reminded one very much of Scotch High- 
landers, and there is certainly nothing of the 
German about their thick, serviceable boots. I was 
informed that one Infantry regiment and one battery 
of Artillery constitute the garrison of Salzburg. 

It was too foggy at the time to attempt a trip to 
any of the mountains, which are not far off. The 
country round is not at all unlike Switzerland, 
while the town itself is ancient and romantic-look- 
ing and full of old curiosity shops. It has its Stadt 
Theatre, although this is by no means an imposing- 
looking building. It has also its pretty river, the 
Salzach, which eventually runs into the Danube; 
and its churches. I wandered through some of the 
narrow streets of the older part of the town which 
reminded one a little of parts of Bonn, and came 
across a very ancient graveyard in which I found 
the tombstone and grave of old Leopold Mozart 
who lived from 1719 to 1787. I rather wondered if 
this could be the great Mozart's father. This grave- 
yard is in the form of a square and is enclosed by 
cloisters in which are a great number of mural 

Impressions in Germany and Austria 265 

tablets, oil paintings, and recesses containing the 
skulls of those buried there, and images. It is a 
truly wonderful old place. I then crossed the river 
and got into what appeared to be an even older part 
of the town, where I found the birthplace of Wolf- 
gang Amadeus Mozart. The house is No. 9, Get- 
reidegasse, and the room in which he was born is on 
the third floor and at the back, behind the parlour. 
The street here is extremely narrow, and the house 
is of considerable height. The Mozart Museum is 
now contained in this building and is the property 
of the International Foundation Mozarteum, being 
under the patronage of her Imperial and Boyal 
Highness Archduchess Stephania, widowed Crown 
Princess of Austria-Hungary. An entrance fee of 
one krone is charged. One enters a stone passage 
and ascends the old wooden staircase until the third 
floor is reached. Outside the door of the Mozart 
rooms hangs a bell with which one summons the 
caretaker who gives admission. The birthroom is 
replete with pictures and busts of the Mozart 
family, including an oil painting of Wolfgang 
at his piano when nine years old, and other 
portraits painted at different periods subsequently. 

266 Impressions in Germany and Austria 

I noticed a play bill of the first performance of the 
"Magic Flute" which took place in Vienna, 30th 
September, 1791, and another of the first per- 
formance of the opera " Tito " which was given at 
Salzburg, 13th December, 1878, eighty-seven years 
after its composition ! Perhaps the most interest- 
ing objects are the clavichord or spinet, with only 
five octaves, on which ''The Magic Flute," etc., 
were composed, and Mozart's grand piano which 
one is instructed not to touch, but which 1 observed 
being played upon to the extent of half a dozen 
chords by a gentleman present ! In the parlour or 
sitting-room, which is in front of the birth-room, 
are many of Mozart's jewels, autographs, unfinished 
compositions, and 160 letters written by him. In a 
glass case in this room are also the original manu- 
scripts of an unfinished sonata in B flat major, a song 
with pianoforte accompaniment called " How un- 
happy I am," which is in F major, and the words of 
which were also by the composer. There is also 
an antiphon for four parts composed when he was 
fifteen and which is on ordinary twelve-lined music 
paper; another song, a sinfonia concertante in A 
major for violin, viola, 'cello and orchestra, and 

Impressions in Germany and Austria 267 

forty-one bound sheets of his exercises in counter- 
point etc. 

One sees, too, a letter written by Mozart to his 
wife, dated 6th June, 1791, partly in French and 
partly in German and another to his father of 3rd 
January, 1781. Among the trinkets and jewellery 
are his snuffbox, seventeen mother-of-pearl buttons 
which were on his court dress, a magnificent gold 
ring with twelve diamonds and a species of moon- 
stone, and a watch given to him by the Empress 
Maria Theresa. Then there is his first violin and 
bow, and, last but not least, his skull, which im- 
pressed me on account of its small size. I thought 
as I left this most interesting of places that it was 
lucky I had previously known of Mozart's birthplace 
being at Salzburg, for no one connected with the 
hotel told me anything about it, or even mentioned 
the fact : while, as to the visitors, they all wanted 
to ascend hills by electric railways ! In fact, one 
seldom even heard any of Mozart's music here, and 
I daresay the same could be said of Bonn with 
regard to Beethoven. 

I now walked through a couple of squares whose 
buildings looked very old and then under two or 

268 Impressions in Germany and Austria 

three archways, until I discovered the cathedral, 
which, although decidedly plain and commonplace 
in its exterior, is magnificent inside, with a beau- 
tifully painted domed roof. Close by the cathedral 
I discovered a much more ancient church, which 
had a highly decorated altar, and then, what to me 
was the most exquisite church I had ever seen — 
St. Peter's. Among its mural tablets I found one 
dedicated to a certain Haydn, but I do not think 
this was the celebrated *' Papa.** 

I now recrossed the river by one of the old 
bridges, on which I stood for a while to view the 
lovely old romantic town of Salzburg, w^hose houses 
are mostly of the Mozart pattern, white-fronted 
and very high, with small latticed windows. On 
my return home I again indulged in resting in the 
Indian chair under a lovely tree in the hotel garden 
and again negotiated a shilling cigar, but, somehow, 
I thought it was worth the money. I went again 
to St. Peter's Church ; who could resist it ? It 
appeared even more lovely, and I sat among the 
people, for service was going on, and was fascinated 
as before by their childish and implicit faith. 
Indeed, their devotion goes to one's heart. The 

Impressions in Germany and Austria 269 

seats were very hard, and quite deficient of comfort, 
but the praise and worship were not affected there- 
by, and one had time to meditate while the service 
went on. 

The old castle of Salzburg is perched on a rocky 
and high eminence, which is thickly wooded almost 
to the summit, and is, perhaps, the most roman- 
tically beautiful thing of its kind in the world. At 
the foot of the castle hill there is another very old 
cemetery which contains a chapel dated 1491, whose 
walls and floor are covered with ancient tombstones 
and slabs. Those on the floor will, in time, be 
quite obliterated by the constant tramping of sight- 
seers, and I even saw dogs following their mistresses 
into the hallowed and venerable building ! On my 
way home I got a delicious cup of coffee at one of 
the restaurants, but it was rather expensive, while 
the '* tip " expected was also excessive. In Salz- 
burg, as indeed everywhere I had been up to the 
present, one is forcibly struck by the absolute cor- 
rectness and respectability of the inhabitants. I 
noticed also that a great many of the dogs one 
came across had a good deal of the bull-dog strain, 
while one met the Great Dane frequently. Let 

270 Impressions in Germany and Austria 

me record that I never saw a perambulator nor a 
tramcar, so that, perhaps, Salzburg has a good deal 
of originality to be proud of. 

From the constant flow of visitors at this hotel, 
one is reminded of Switzerland in the season. The 
dollars fly, and I heard some Americans discussing 
their trip to certain salt mines, a day's journey off, 
which must have cost a considerable sum. The 
" lift " man here should be able to retire long 
before the British officer can, on a competence ; 
while, as to the manager and his satellites in all 
their splendour, one dared hardly approach them, 
especially if one was a modest coupon-holder — a 
piece of news which spreads rapidly in whispers. 
The portier in this establishment was decidedly 
more curt in his manner, even patronising, than 
usual, so I avoided him carefully. Indeed he would 
only just condescend to answer a question and then 
would walk away and leave one to stare after him ! 
I noticed this superiority of the portier more parti- 
cularly in the Austrian hotels ; on the other hand, 
the railway officials and policemen were most polite 

I left Salzburg by the 9.5 a.m. train on 30th July 

Impressions in Germany and Austria 271 

for Munich. Now, although Salzburg is in Austria, 
German trains convey one from there to Munich, 
and at the station, moreover, your luggage is ex- 
amined by the German Customs authorities, and 
German money is current. It was somewhat amus- 
ing to find that the Customs officials at Salzburg 
laid particular stress upon whether one was smug- 
gling sausages ! 

The journey was very pleasant, and we passed 
through some fine mountain and valley scenery 
with pretty little towns scattered about, and some 
fair-sized lakes. I noticed that in their journeys 
many Germans do not seem to be much impressed 
by the beauty of their country ; in fact, they 
hardly ever look out of the carriage windows. 
They prefer to close them, draw the curtains to 
keep out any sun that may invade the premises, 
and talk the whole journey. We passed Eosenheim 
en route and arrived at Munich at 12.20 p.m. I 
drove to the Hotel Bellevue in the hotel bus, 
which was a great convenience. 

Now, although this is a quiet and unpretentious 
hotel, let me record the fact here that it is most 
comfortable, that the attendants are very civil, and 

272 Impressions in Germany and Austria 

that the portier and head waiter were courteous 
and obliging. I came to the conclusion, therefore, 
that the more superior, that is expensive, a hotel 
is, the worse a person of moderate means is treated ; 
and how quickly they find out that one is not a 
millionaire. Soon after arrival I indulged in a 
three hours' trip round this up-to-date town. We 
started at 3.30 p.m. in a brake drawn by four horses 
and I found the cushions of the vehicle very com- 
fortable and springy. The journey cost four marks, 
which included the services of a guide, but as he 
" guided " in the German dialect I did not profit 
much by his voluminous descriptions of places and 
things as we passed by. I was the only English 
speaking person in the carriage, for there was not 
even an American on this occasion, or I guess the 
guide would have probably displayed a good know- 
ledge of the Anglo-Saxon tongue. When we had 
been about half way round, our guide told us we 
would stop for refreshment, which of course meant 
beer. I believe the Hof brauhaus which we entered 
is the oldest beer restaurant in Munich. It is a 
fine building, in an old-fashioned style, and has a 
red-tiled roof. We drank Munich beer in quaint 

Impressions in Germany and Austria 273 

delf mugs with metal covers, and it was very cheap 
and very deHcious; at the same time I prefer the 
Pilsen. Of course there might be a little fancy in 
this, as the golden liquor is certainly more attrac- 
tive-looking. After all, what a luxury it is to be 
able to get a long draught, on a hot day, of refresh- 
ing and iced light beer that does not affect one's 
head, and I may add that the same advantage can 
be attributed to the German cigar with regard to 

Munich appeared to me to have a more homely, 
perhaps EngHsh, appearance than any other Ger- 
man town, which is intensified by the English 
shops and hotels that are to be seen. Indeed, I 
came to the conclusion that were I to settle down 
in this country, Munich would be my selection. It 
is a very fine city, moreover, divided into two by 
the little river Isar, and like all the German towns 
I had seen impresses one with its ample space, long 
and wide streets and fine squares, in these respects 
comparing very favourably with London, whose 
Piccadilly Circus would look rather insignificant 
even in Munich. Of the monuments I saw, some 

of which are very fine, may be mentioned one 


274 Impressions in Germany and Austria 

called " Bavaria " which is some distance out of the 
town and is of huge proportions. The public build- 
ings are striking and there is a so-called English 
garden which one might liken to a small park, 
rustic and wild-looking, with some small streams 
and wooden bridges crossing them, but I saw no 

The following day I visited the picture gallery 
of the old masters, or the Pinakothek, as it is called. 
Here the works of Kubens, Eembrandt, and Van 
Dyck are very numerous, while there are some fine 
animal paintmgs by Snyder. Of all Eubens's pic- 
tures I prefer his *' Madonna in einem Blumen- 
kranz," but must confess tbat I was more impressed 
with the art of the Italian School, as represented 
here, at any rate, than that of the Dutch or German, 
Take the works of Eibera and Murillo for instance. 
What an absorbing subject the life of Christ and 
other Biblical subjects afforded all the old masters. 
The walls of such galleries as one sees at Munich 
are simply dedicated to representations of the 
Madonna, etc., and one is tempted to ask if these 
artists could not have occasionally depicted some- 
thing else? Was there nothing else in nature 

Impressions in Germany and Austria 275 

which appealed to them? How different it all is 

I walked across to the other Pinakothek, which 
contains the works of modern painters, and, to me, 
how superior, how much more artistic and varied, 
how many times more beautiful these paintings 
appeared as compared with the other and older 
schools. Scenes from Nature's beauty spots, water, 
trees, mountains ; in fact, the world as one knows 
and appreciates it. Surely these subjects must 
appeal to the general public, however inartistic they 
may be, more than the continual portraiture of old- 
world and chiefly Biblical people. 

You can breathe the air in this modern gallery of 
Munich, nor will your sense of decency be outraged 
by doubtfully modest and morbid subjects, and you 
will get away from the fleshy and debauched-look- 
ing creatures which must have emanated from the 
brains of such as Eubens. Just stand and look 
at Hans Petersen's picture of the glorious ocean, 
handiwork of the Omnipotent, and you will be 
moved by its reality, its wonderful likeness to the 
real thing, and its life ! Koubaud's group of 
Cossacks almost speaks from the canvas. Then 

276 Impressions in Germany and Austria 

observe the sea-girt rocks of Schoenlebers, the real- 
istic paintings of Brandt, the wonderful " Spiel der 
Wellen "of Bocklin, and Lenbach's portrait of 
"Wilhelm I, and say are they not more entrancing, 
aye, more clever than the productions of the old 
Dutch master ? Get a guide-book and you will, if 
artistically inclined, spend days in the New Gallery 
at Munich. I went on to the Army Museum, 
which is an object lesson to England, in that the 
traditions of, and the honour and glory due to, the 
nation's army are here collected in this magnificent 
building and guarded jealously and sacredly by the 
younger generations who are, no doubt, inspired 
thereby. But, poor France ! One is reminded, let 
me say sadly, of your struggle in 1870! Even 
Napoleon Ill's bombastic proclamation is here 
framed for the enlightenment of the Bavarian, while 
arms and accoutrements gathered from the battle- 
fields where the valiant soldiers of France bit the 
dust, are everywhere to be seen. 

At 12. 30 p.m. I went to the King's residence to 
witness the Guard mounting ceremony, which was 
somewhat similar to that which I had seen in 
Vienna. The Bavarian Guards looked very fine 

Impressions in Germany and Austria 277 

and smart, and their band, which performed for 
half an hour after guard mounting, was certainly 
the best I had yet heard. It was truly magnificent ! 
They commenced the programme with a march — 
such a march ! It was grand and inspiring, and 
whoever wrote it was as fine a real musician as the 
world has yet known. Indeed, I feel convinced 
that we have very few soldiers who can play as the 
men in this band did. The crescendoes were artis- 
tically rendered, and the bass was simply divine in 
its sonority. 

I next visited a place called the Crystal Palace, a 
very small erection in imitation of England's, per- 
haps, finest building. At the time there was an ex- 
hibition of modern paintings and sculpture held 
therein, which I have no hesitation in saying would 
be impossible to surpass. Among the paintings may 
be mentioned a seascape by Hans Schleich, which 
was quite startling in its reality, and a fine moun- 
tain and lake scene by Eckenbrechen. 

On my way back to the hotel I thought how 
terrible it seemed, at any rate to a Britisher, to see 
the dogs puUing their big loads along during such 
hot weather. Of course I am aware that there can 

278 Impressions in Germany and Austria 

be no very logical reason why this should not be, 
but the poor animals, the most faithful friends of 
man, looked as if they felt it so much and, more- 
over, were evidently suffering intensely from thirst. 

The same afternoon I went to Nymphenburg, 
which perhaps corresponds somewhat to Charlotten- 
burg at Berlin, but is far more beautiful so far as 
the grounds and country round are concerned. The 
exterior of the palace is plain and white and there 
is a large expanse of ornamental water which gives 
a very effective appearance to the whole view. At 
the back of the building is an immense greensward, 
which is varied by stretches of water, fountains and 
fine trees. There are a great number of swans, 
black ducks, and fish in these waters, all apparently 
waiting for food from the onlookers, and all, seem- 
ingly, very tame. I believe the great Napoleon 
once stayed at Nymphenburg which, I was in- 
formed, was now occupied by the Oculist Prince, 
son of the Prince Kegent of Bavaria. 

I may now take the opportunity of writing some 
impressions of the German army, as I saw a good 
many officers and men while at Munich. Taken 
as a whole, I think both the officers and men are 

Impressions in Germany and Austria 279 

physically finer than ours, for, with regard at any 
rate to the rank and file, the State gets the pick 
of the country's manhood. Had we, in England, 
conscription, we would probably have the finest men 
all round. The question of the difficulty of obtain- 
ing recruits will always have a great effect upon 
our efficiency, and if our soldiers were drilled too 
much or with such disciplinary exactitude and 
rapidity as the German, we should find a difficulty 
in inducing men to enlist. The officers are par- 
ticularly good-looking and well set up, and their 
frock-coats fit them to perfection, although I have 
been told by an English officer that they, hke the 
men, get them out of store. These coats are 
generally light blue in colour, some having crimson 
facings, while others have yellow, scarlet, etc. The 
trousers are of a darker blue and generally with 
red piping down the seams. They wear their caps 
well on the back of the head and they are of a 
more comfortable shape than the English officer's 
and have smaller peaks. I also noticed what ap- 
peared to me to be two or three shades of blue 
between the coat, cap, and trousers, in some 

28o Impressions in Germany and Austria 

The German officer appears to be always replete 
with a sense of duty and it is a treat to even see 
them salute one another. They are, indeed, soldiers, 
and nothing else. I believe they commence their 
military education at Government schools when 
very young, so that University students are not 
intended (as many of ours are) to follow the pro- 
fession of arms ; although I am informed that even 
they have to serve one year in the ranks. Uni- 
versity students apparently come from the same 
class as army officers, and when one sees the 
scarred faces of the duellists one would think their 
proper place should be in the army. Indeed, it 
perhaps would be better if this duelling were con- 
fined to the army officers. 

The general appearance of the German officers 
is marred to a certain extent by their footgear, in 
which respect, be it stated, they fall short of our 
officers. They wear, like all Germans, very low 
heels and have a large, curved, flat foot rather 
turned up at the toes, and one rarely sees a well- 
polished boot. Now this rather spoils what would 
otherwise be a perfect picture, so perhaps it has 
been ordained that the German officer should have 

Impressions in Germany and Austria 281 

an ugly foot (or boot), otherwise he might die of 
pride ! 

The restaurant and beer garden appear to be the 
principal places of meeting their friends, corres- 
ponding, to some extent, with our English club 
life, the latter being, however, preferable in many 
respects. I noticed that the officers do not tuck 
their napkins under their chins at meal times, as 
civilians do; perhaps it is against regulation when 
in uniform. I further observed that all officers, 
both in Germany and Austria, wear the most im- 
maculate linen cuffs, which appear never to be 
soiled. The reason is, as I have remarked before, 
that their shirts are probably made with wristbands, 
and the cuffs attached, and, therefore, changeable. 
One is struck by the size of, and care bestowed 
upon, their moustachios, the Kaiser pattern being 
much patronised. 

Now, although rigid discipline is the backbone 
of the German army, one cannot avoid noticing the 
slack way in which the men on guard comport 
themselves, and I believe they are allowed when on 
this duty to stand about carelessly if they please. 
But observe a guard when being relieved ! It is as 

282 Impressions in Germany and Austria 

if you pressed a button and a number of automata 
were set in motion. The slouching sentry suddenly 
appears to wake up, and he and the rest of the 
guard go through their clock-like movements with 
desperate precision; and when you see them jerk 
their stiffened legs at right angles to their bodies 
and then bring their feet down with a loud smack 
on the ground, it creates, in the uninitiated, decided 
amusement. Indeed, I often wondered if this ex- 
traordinary marching were not injurious to the 
men, as affecting the spine, etc. 

English soldiers, off duty, are much cleaner look- 
ing, smarter and more erect than the German, and 
walk better. Their uniforms, too, fit better (per- 
haps tightness has a good deal to say to this) and 
one rarely meets a German soldier with clean or 
polished boots, and never beholds either officer or 
man carrying a cane. Indeed, the German soldier, 
off duty, looks like a civilian in uniform. On the 
other hand, is the British soldierly bearing at all 
times, which is the result of ** setting up drill," an 
advantage? Is it natural, and is a man with this 
abnormal dilatation of the chest capable of doing 
as much heavy work, especially with regard to 

Impressions in Germany and Austria 283 

carrying weight, as one who has more freedom in 
his clothes ? 

German soldiers are rarely seen when off duty, 
and the "walking out" process with their best 
girls, so dear to the Britisher with, too often, his 
love-locks adorning his forehead, would appear to 
be unknown, so far as one can judge by observation. 
The stout and slovenly appearance of the German 
soldier when seen off duty, is much enhanced by 
the fact of his seemingly voluminous pockets, which 
evidently are packed, and give an increase of 
** beam " that is certainly unnecessary. All such 
defects are amply rectified when he is drilling or 
marching with his regiment; then he is a good 
deal smarter-looking and more impressive than any 
other soldiers I have seen. This, in fact, is business. 
But even then there is no pipeclay or blacking 
about him. 

A regiment of German soldiers appears to take 
more room than a similar number of our men do ; 
they are broader, and their uniforms, except in the 
case of the officers, looser. I noticed that German 
officers make constant use of tramcars in their 
journeys, and that the men salute them from the 

284 Impressions in Germany and Austria 

street when passing. The marked authority of the 
non-commissioned officers, who are also saluted by 
the privates, is also observable, and one is almost 
inclined to suggest that the latter are treated by 
the former as overgrown school-boys. 

I left Munich at 8.25 a.m. on 1st August, having 
** tipped *' on this occasion more freely than usual, 
as everyone in the hotel had been so extremely civil, 
and even the pretty chambermaid, who had a 
charming and kindly smile, made her "mark"! We 
passed Augsburg at 9.15 a.m. and Ulm at 10.30. 
The latter is a very picturesque old town with a 
river and very fine church. 

The next place of any importance was Geisheigen, 
around which are some well wooded hills. 

Stuttgart was reached at 12.45 p.m. Here I 
stopped. Now, Stuttgart is more or less enclosed 
in a ring of hills which fact, no doubt, tends to 
make the climate very hot. Indeed, it was the 
hottest place I had yet visited, and vineyards and 
beautiful gardens abound. Being the capital of 
Wurtenburg I was informed that the King resided 
here. My hotel, the Marquardt, is adjacent to the 
railway station, so I was able to walk in, a porter 

Impressions in Germany and Austria 285 

carrying my box. It is a handsome building with 
club-like comforts and appointments, but at this 
time of year far too full for much attention on the 
part of the officials. The crowds of visitors were 
principally due to travellers en route for Carlsbad, 
but I must say that everything was excellently re- 
gulated. It was rather weak of me asking the 
waiter, who showed me my bedroom, where the 
temperature was 85° fahr., how much I should give 
the porter for carrying my box, for he mentioned 
such a large sum that I afterwards wondered 
whether he appropriated half of it. I should have 
settled the question directly with the porter. I 
found that many celebrities had stayed at this 
famous old hotel, including William I, William II 
(both of Germany) Bismark, and Moltke. Also, 
that it possessed quite the fastest moving lifts (two) 
I had ever seen, travelling about double the ordinary 
pace. I further observed that the portier was quite 
civil, that the matches, which had previously been 
red, were white and that the guide-books make the 
most of the place. 

The population of Stuttgart is chiefly Protestant, 
and I was told that music is a good deal cultivated 

286 Impressions in Germany and Austria 

and that there is a considerable book trade. The 
so-called Schlossplatz is supposed, at any rate 
by the people of Stuttgart, to be one of the most 
beautiful places of the kind in the world, but I can 
justly say that this estimation is very extravagant, 
the said Schlossplatz being somewhat insignificant. 
Nor is Stuttgart an imposing town in other 
respects, and, indeed, is perhaps scarcely worth 
a visit. The shops are very ordinary ; at the same 
time there are a good number of fairly old-looking 
houses about and a rather characteristic old market 

During my afternoon stroll I came across a 
handsome church, evidently quite modern, at the 
east side of which is an expanse of ornamental 
water, with swans, which gives the appearance as 
if the building were on an island. The inside of 
this church was remarkable for its plain, Protestant 
appearance. A more beautiful church still, is 
Johannes Kirche, which is Lutheran, as indeed 
most of the places of worship appeared to be. 
The most imposing sight by far in Stuttgart was, 
to my mind, the march past our hotel of a 
magnificent regiment with its splendid band. It 

Impressions in Germany and Austria 287 

was a very solid body of stalwart and workmanlike 
soldiers, and I felt sure there were no better to be 
found. They marched more slowly than English 
regiments and their massiveness was very striking. 
Although the weather was intensely hot they all 
carried the heavy-looking horse-skin covered valises, 
and their countenances, withal, were cheerful. 
They had their trousers, which were made of a 
thick whitish drill, tucked into "high-low" boots. 
I left Stuttgart for Strassburg by the 11.40 a.m. 
train on 2nd August, and during the journey 
indulged once again in one of the wonderful ham 
sandwiches and a glass of iced Pilsen beer, which 
commodities were brought round to the carriages 
at one of the stations en route. I must confess 
I never have enjoyed refreshments more. 

At 1.50 we passed Carlsruhe, the heat being 
intense about this part. Strassburg was reached 
at 3.15 p.m. and the Ehine was crossed just prior 
to our arrival. As I only intended remaining here 
a short time, I went out soon after arrival to see 
the cathedral of Notre Dame or Munster. Its 
exterior, like that of Cologne, which I prefer, 
is truly magnificent and a fine example of Gothic 

288 Impressions in Germany and Austria 

architecture. It is built of red stone and is richly 
ornamented outside with figures. 

The building dates from A.D. 1015 when it was 
built in the Byzantine style, being subsequently 
repaired in the Gothic after its destruction by lire. 
There are two towers, the northern having a spire 
which is very delicate-looking, almost ethereal, and 
formed of six successive tiers of small turrets. It 
is 142 metres high. The interior, like that of 
Cologne, is very disappointing, and not to be 
compared with some of the English cathedrals. 

The pulpit was erected in 1486, and an 
astronomic clock was first placed in the building 
in 1352, the present one dating from 1838. This 
clock is of great and universal fame, is of the usual 
toy variety and at certain hours automatic figures 
go though curious antics which is, perhaps, rather 
out of keeping with a sacred building. All kinds 
of astronomic circumstances are also denoted by this 
clock and a dial is placed on the wall outside the 
building showing the days and hours, which is put 
in motion by the same mechanism. The position 
of the cathedral is very bad, and so crowded by 
houses that one cannot get an idea of its height and 

Impressions in Germany and Austria 289 

size. The west front is more carved and decorated 
than that of Cologne; on the other hand some 
critics might consider that the amount of variety 
in the building tends to spoil it. It is, moreover, 
dirty and badly kept; while outside, the walls of 
the building are in a disgraceful condition, chalk 
scribblings, apparently, not being prevented, while 
children evidently make a playground of the place. 
A railing should be put round this grand and 
beautiful old structure, and more reverence paid 
to its magnificence, if not to its sanctity. 

During the bombardment of Strassburg by the 
Germans in 1870, the roof of the cathedral was 
struck by a shell and set on fire, and it subsequently 
fell in. Some of the stained glass windows were 
also considerably damaged and the organ pierced. 
The old astronomical clock was not touched, but 
the spire sustained some damage. All was restored 
by the Germans, subsequently, and certain repairs 
are still going on. 

On leaving the cathedral I wandered about the 

old parts of the town, where I found many ancient 

houses in narrow streets, some being built right 

down to the river's edge. One in particular, which 


290 Impressions in Germany and Austria 

was near the cathedral, and called the Maison Kam- 
merzell, is a fifteenth century house and in a very 
fine state of preservation. It is now, at least the 
lower part of it, converted into a restaurant, but the 
building has not been altered thereby. The shops 
and streets of Strassburg rather remind one of a 
good-sized English town. I put up at the Hotel de 
Paris, which I found comfortable and the food and 
cooking excellent. The Emperor Napoleon III once 
stayed at this hotel. 

In the evening I went to the Orangerie Gardens 
by tramcar, where I heard a very find orchestra. 
These gardens are on the other side of the river 111, 
are very beautiful and extremely well kept. They 
are, moreover, extensive, and I was informed that 
they, in common with all the fine public buildings 
in Strassburg have been made since the German 
occupation and, indeed, that previous to that the 
town was, to use my informant's words, " a dirty 
hole! " 

The palace, wherein the Kaiser resides when he 
pays a visit to Strassburg, is a well-decorated but 
small building, while the Stadt Theatre is not 
important looking. A well-built and handsome 

Impressions in Germany and Austria 291 

Lutheran church is situated in the same vicinity. 

The following morning, 3rd August, during my 
walk, I inquired of a gentlemanly-looking young 
fellow with regard to certain buildings, when he 
introduced himself to me as a student of medicine, 
at the same time showing me his card. He then 
very kindly asked me if I would allow him to ac- 
company me in my walk, as he had a couple of 
hours to spare, so that he might point out and 
describe things as we passed them. This was in- 
deed gratuitous politeness, and I think one more 
rejoinder to the continual bowlings and growlings 
again the Germans which one has become rather 
tired of. My companion spoke very little English 
and I spoke about an equal amount of French, 
which language, of course, he understood, so we 
got on admirably. 

Our walk included a circuit of the town fortifi- 
cations, to reach which we crossed a bridge over a 
canal. There was very little to interest one in the 
succession of glacis and masked batteries, but it 
would have been a pleasant walk, only for the 
intense heat. My friend gave me a good deal of 
information with regard to Germany and its people. 

292 Impressions in Germany and Austria 

and among other things he told me that, as a rule, 
all soldiers become socialists when they leave the 
army. I saw the Main Guard changed and noticed 
that the men did not march during the ceremony 
quite so amusingly as in other towns I had visited. 
The band which belonged to the 105th Eegiment 
had their clarinets in front when marching, which is 
quite contrary to the usual procedure, one essential 
reason for placing the trombones in front being the 
amount of space they require when being played. 
This band performed subsequently in the square, and 
I came to the conclusion that it was a very indif- 
ferent one, and quite in keeping with the wretched 
music they played. 

In this square I found a nice open-air restaurant 
or beer garden, but furnished with the same un- 
comfortably hard chairs. How a German must 
miss these beer gardens when he comes to England. 
There are two small rivers or streams at Strassburg, 
the 111, already mentioned, and the Brensch, both 
of which flow into the Ehine about a mile and a 
half away. I believe Strassburg remained German 
till 1681, when it was ceded to France, and I sup- 
pose continued under that country's jurisdiction till 

Impressions in Germany and Austria 293 

1870. There is still a great deal of French spoken. 
At present there is an Imperial Governor of Alsace 
and Lorraine who lives in Strassburg. 

As I now intended leaving Germany and return- 
ing home via Paris, I should like to record that 
** tipping ** is, generally, much more resorted to in 
Germany than in England. Even the tramway 
conductors and the men who weigh one's luggage at 
the railway stations indulge in it, while the officials 
at the different hotels appear to have a variety of 
methods and aspirations, for at the Belle vue at 
Munich nearly everyone expected a " tip," at the 
Marquardt at Stuttgart no one did, while at such 
palaces as the Hotel de I'Europe at Salzburg — ! 
"Well, I should say that the blase portier there was 
absolutely tired of money ! I was also surprised to 
find a good many German words similar to English, 
and a waiter will unblushingly exclaim " Tank you," 
while "Warm wasser" is so near the real thing 
that it almost creates doubt, or the perpetration of 
a joke. I also found that the fact of my travelling 
alone created a certain amount of astonishment; 
that, leaving out continental hotels, which are 
certainly a great feature and one in which the 

294 Impressions in Germany and Austria 

American plays a very important part, England 
would appear to dominate the world, for its money 
is worth the most, at present ; and, finally, that one 
need not be afraid of the amount of luggage one 
might wish to place in the railway carriage racks, 
which in England are only to be used for light 
articles. It is, in fact, a case of first- come first 
served in German travelling. I may add that I 
never saw a Sister of Mercy either in Germany or 

I left for Paris by the 10.25 a.m. train on Satur- 
day, 4th August. We arrived at German Avri- 
court at 2 p.m. and in less than a minute after at 
the French station of the same name where there 
was the usual Custom'a examination and a change 
of trains. I found that one must now put back 
one*s watch about an hour. I had lunch at Nancy, 
where we arrived at 12.30, in company with a 
couple of French priests, my carriage companions. 
They were, apparently, very devout, and read their 
respective prayer books for at least an hour in the 
train. I also noticed that their boots were very 
much the worse for wear. 

Paris was reached at 6.25 p.m. where I at once 

Impressions in Germany and Austria 295 

found that I still possessed some bad money ob- 
tained at Brussels and Strassburg in change, and 
it is strange with what an amount of equanimity 
seemingly respectable folks will take one in, in 
this respect. I went to the Hotel Castille, which 
is small but recherche. All the Paris hotels were 
very full at the time, and a representative English 
lady drove up at 7 a.m. on Sunday the 5th and all 
she appeared to say, in different languages, was 
** Bad, isn't it ? " when told she couldn't have a 
room. One sometimes is burdened with the idea 
of being able to obtain a decent cup of coffee in 
Paris, but should you wish to be undeceived, a cup 
at the Hotel Castille, such as I had, will have the 
desired effect. There seems to be plenty of whistl- 
ing and singing about the streets of Paris, which 
is more noticeable after leaving the quiet German 
populace. Germany is clean and well organised in 
all departments, and its people are methodical, 
thorough, ambitious, and prudent, but they are not 
gay, nor do they appear to love their country as 
the Frenchman loves his. I was interested enough 
to get weighed in Paris and discovered that one 
does not become thinner on the rather flimsy 

296 Impressions in Germany and Austria 

dietary of continental hotels, proving, to my mind, 
that our stodgy food is no better, so far as nourish- 
ment is concerned. Moreover, it really doesn't 
much matter what one eats, the process being 
merely a filling one, in fact, like the packing of a 
Gladstone bag ! I was glad here of a light blanket 
in the early morning, and soon after breakfast 
started oif with the intention of seeing the great 
Napoleon's tomb, strange to relate, for the first 
time. I came to the conclusion that it must be 
the finest thing of its kind in Europe, but how 
badly it wanted dusting ! 

I noticed that the streets were mostly paved 
with wood, which cannot be as sanitary as asphalte 
which prevails in Berlin. In going about the 
streets I found that one runs considerable risk of 
being driven over and, apparently, not always by 
unavoidable accidents, for the French driver is not 
so bad as he is reckless. The motor-cars in Paris 
are a terrible nuisance, and I think dangerous. 

After my German experience everything seemed 
dusty and badly-kept by comparison, and it ap- 
peared to me that Paris was not so gay or smart 
as it was even twenty years ago, that the people 

Impressions in Germany and Austria 297 

are not so good-looking or so particular about dress, 
and that their feet have become larger. I wondered 
if all this were due to the democratic spirit which 
has laid so strong a hold on the country. With re- 
gard to artistic ornamentation, however, there is the 
same plethora of nude female figures as of yore! 
Just about this time there was a strong disposition 
to close the shops in France on Sundays, not, I 
presume, on religious grounds, but for holiday 

I saw in several shop windows pictures of an 
Alsatian girl with a longing, pensive look, waiting 
patiently for the French soldiers ! and I was in- 
formed that the youths of Alsace and Lorraine 
often come into France so that they may enlist 
into the French instead of the German army, and 
that, moreover, there are special regiments for 
them to serve in, but I do not know if this be true. 

With regard to the French army, I had a long 
conversation with the very intelligent head waiter 
of the Hotel de Castille who had served his time 
in the ranks. In his humble opinion, and who can 
say if he is right, the army is now in a very excel- 
lent condition and very different from what it was 

298 Impressions in Germany and Austria 

in 1870. The soldier is worked hard, both mentally 
and physically, and does not finish his labours till 
5 p.m. daily. In fact, the army is now meant for 
war, and that is the reason so little attention is 
paid to appearance in peace time. I replied that 
where you have an army of volunteers, as in Eng- 
land, you must make it attractive in peace time by 
uniform, etc. It seems, however, strange that 
one can only associate the British soldier with an 
endeavour to appear as smart as possible, even to 
private boots with pointed toes, a gay-looking girl 
hanging on his arm, locks of hair on his forehead, 
a cane in his hand and the continually going for a 
walk. Such a sight is never beheld in Germany 
or France, and the question is, which is right? 
Put a French or German soldier into plain clothes 
and you could not distinguish him from a civilian, 
but the British soldier is unmistakable in any 
clothes. The waiter further quoted our unreadi- 
ness with regard to the Boer war as illustrating the 
case of the French in 1870, and that a country, for 
its good, may have too long a period of peace. The 
French army was not too ready when called upon 
then ; they had been living more or less in splendid 

Impressions in Germany and Austria 299 

ease and false glitter, and the officers were not pro- 
perly trained to hardship, and were, moreover, too 
often the sons of fortune and influence. 

There was a good deal of truth in the waiter's 
remarks. The French soldiers of to-day look 
haggard and tired, perhaps they are tired, hut their 
faces are more delicate and refined-looking than 
the Germans. They never think of keeping step 
when walking together, off duty, and do not appear 
to be well adapted to their uniforms which, more- 
over, are anything but clean. In this description I 
except the Zouave, who looks muscular, agile and 
healthy. There is plenty of '* go " in his swinging 
walk, and he is, probably, about the best Infantry 
man in the world. I have further come to the 
conclusion that the Austrians are the best riders, 
and that the French are splendid marchers, which 
cannot be said of the English, who, however, hold 
their own at musketry. 

Finally, the soldiers of Germany are soldiers be- 
cause they are obliged to be: they do not don 
uniform to captivate the ladies, and are all looking 
forward to the day when they will take it off and 
become citizens. 

300 Impressions in Germany and Austria 

On Tuesday, 7th August, I left Paris by the 10.20 
a.m. train for Eouen, where I arrived at 12.5 p.m. 

I went to the Hotel d'Angleterre which, I under- 
stood, prides itself on being the only one in the 
place possessing a lift. For the first time during 
my travels I found that there was no hotel portiere 
which was, perhaps, an advantage, and also that it 
was very difficult to obtain a match wherewith to 
light my cigar. This was, doubtless, a protest 
against my desire to smoke a French cigar, which 
is crude, strong, and, I should say, possesses a large 
amount of nicotine. I went at once in search of 
the far-famed cathedral, whose spire I could see 
from my bedroom window. Now the cathedral 
seems, to me, to be rather spoilt by this spire, 
which is most tawdry-looking, and certainly not in 
keeping with the rest of the building. The exterior 
is delicate-looking and lace-like, while the interior is 
far more beautiful than the other cathedrals I had 
seen, but extremely dirty. It was full of ''trippers" 
and I may remark that one meets the English 
" tripper " in great variety at Rouen as I suppose 
it is just near enough to be get-at-able. 

I discovered some very fine churches here, and 

Impressions in Germany and Austria 301 

that; named St. Ouen would, I feel sure, be classed 
as a cathedral in England, while its interior is quite 
equal to that of Strassburg. For real beauty both 
inside and out, however, the Church of St. Maclou 
is pre-eminent, and the edifice seems, moreover, to 
be extremely old. The Palais de Justice is also a 
fine building, and parts of it appear to be fairly 
ancient. The principal streets are paved with small 
blocks of stone of about six or eight inches square, 
the finest being the Kue Jeanne D'Arc. 

Rouen has a picturesque appearance on account 
of the river Seine (which is broad here, and on 
which there is considerable traffic) and from the 
hills beyond, as also from the old and narrow streets 
and ancient houses, which, although not too clean 
and sweet, would no doubt delight the painter. 

The following day I took a trip up the river as 
far as La Bouille, starting at 10 a.m. and arriving 
there at 11.30 a.m. The scenery en route is ex- 
ceedingly pretty and La Bouille is a snug little 
village by the river side, nestling beneath wooded 
hills. However, I began to feel by this time that 
one is inclined to get tired even of scenery, and 
would prefer some other excitement. I returned to 

302 Impressions in Germany and Austria 

Eouen the same afternoon and had another look at 
the cathedral. I found that there had been a great 
ceremony therein, namely the enthronement of a 
certain number of bishops. The town was, con- 
sequently, full of priests, and I was sitting among 
half a dozen of them at the hotel restaurant. They 
were a cheery and genial lot, and looked remarkably 
intelligent. They, furthermore, thoroughly enjoyed 
the German beer which they ordered, and I did not 
blame them, for as I have said before, whether of 
Pilsen or Munich, it is an ideal drink, when well 
iced, for a thirsty soul. I found, by the way, that 
seltzer water is much easier to obtain on the Con- 
tinent than soda, which, perhaps, is an advantage. 
I also noticed that there is not nearly so much hat- 
raising in France as in Germany and, moreover, I 
do not consider the French, as a whole, so polite as 
the Germans. They will almost knock one down in 
the streets, sometimes, and then impertinently ex- 
claim " Pardon," which is extremely aggravating. 
They will, I hear, do anything for money and are 
polite enough when it costs them nothing. 

I left for Calais at 8 a.m. on 9th August. Amiens 
was reached at 10 o'clock, where we changed trains, 

Impressions in Germany and Austria 303 

going on again in fifteen minutes, and Calais at 
1 p.m. We had a rough crossing, and the supposed 
knowledgeable but misguided beings who would 
remain up on deck suffered accordingly, besides 
being drenched by the seas which broke over the 

And how miserable, cold, and pallid they all 
looked as they sadly trooped off the steamer ! There 
is but one thing to do, at any rate on a short sea 
journey, if one is inclined to 7nal de mer and the sea 
is a bit frisky, and that is, to keep on your back and 
as warm as possible. 

And now the train speeds on to dear old grimy 
London. The country looks different, somehow, to 
what one has been accustomed. The trees are not 
so precise and of so up-and-down an order, but 
spread their strong, crooked arms to make shade for 
those who want to rest awhile beneath them. The 
wonderful hedges, too, strike one, as well as the 
fine pasture land and the grazing cattle. There is a 
more peaceful look about it all. And the children — 
they are playing, romping, shouting, and seem to be 
glad of life — they are ruddy and flaxen-haired and 
more like children than the others. The little 

304 Impressions in Germany and Austria 

streams run almost silently, and now and then you 
may see the dock leaf hiding the violet on their 
banks. Then there is the haymaking and the sun- 
burnt men and women, and the village churches 
nestling among the old elms and oaks, and keeping 
watch o'er the walled-in graves. There is, still, a 
difference — it is home, and, after all, there is no 
place in the world so good as England to live in. 


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