Page:The Emperor Marcus Antoninus - His Conversation with Himself.djvu/422

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242
The Mythological Picture

them was larger than the other. The first Court had a crowd of People at the Gate, and within we saw a great Company of Women. Just at the entrance of the first Gate, there stood an Old Man, who by his Gesture and Countenance seem’d to be busy in giving Advice to the Crowd as they came in.

And being a long time at a stand about the Design of the Fable, a grave Man somewhat in Years, making up, begins to discourse us in this Manner. Gentlemen, says he, I understand you are Strangers, and therefore ’tis no wonder the History of this Picture should puzzle you: For there are not many of our own Countrymen that can explain it. For you are to observe, this is none of our Town Manufacture. But a long while ago, a certain out-landish Man of great Sense and Learning, and who by his Discourse and Behaviour seem'd to be a Disciple of Pythagoras, and Parmenides; This Genteleman I say happening to Travel hither, built this Structure, and Dedicated both the Temple and this Piece of Painting to Saturn. Sir, said I, had you any Acquaintance with this Gentleman? Yes, says he, I had the Benefit of his Conversation; and was one of his Admirers a long time. For, to my thinking, tho’ he was but young, he

talkd