Page:A Tour Through the Batavian Republic.djvu/26

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14
TOUR THROUGH

country, so that an alarm would instantly be given and widely circulated, on the appearance of an hostile fleet.

Near the great church stands the tree of liberty, surmounted with a huge tin hat, which is decorated with the tricoloured ribbon. Various emblematic figures, painted more wretchedly than the hopes and angels on the sign-boards of our hedge ale-houses, are attached to the branches; and long scrolls of Dutch verses, to the merits of which I am not competent to speak. But, alas! the tree is withered and dead. I should imitate the folly of the persons who planted and ridiculously nicknamed the tree, were I to say more than I believe that few trees, of a certain age and growth, survive transplantation, and that the death of this tree was nothing more than the natural consequence of its removal. I congratulate myself that I do not belong to a nation which can be amused with such insipidities.

The face of the country, the appearance of the people, and what I have seen of their houses, are quite as different as I expected