in nearly a month. We saw one Sunday's Carnival, one opera, one masked ball. We had several friends, who were anxious for us to stay, and go into society; but time pressed, and we had to decline. Every evening we used to go to the theatre, and some of our friends would invite us to petits soupers. At Florence all Richard's friends, finding I knew his sister in England, were kind to us; and we were very sorry to start at 3 a.m. on February 11 en route for Venice.
We were five individuals, with our baggage on our backs, turned into a rainy street, cutting a sorry figure and laughing at ourselves. The diligence started at once. We had twenty-one hours to Bologna, drawn by oxen at a foot's pace through the snow, which the cantonniers had cleared partially away, but which often lay in heaps of twelve or twenty feet untouched. I never saw such magnificent snow scenes as when crossing the Apennines. We slept at Bologna, saw it, and took a vetturino next day. The drive was a dreary, flat snow piece of forty miles in length. Malebergo was the only town. We here came across a horrid thing. Two men had fallen asleep in a hay-cart smoking; it caught fire, burnt the men, cart, hay, and all. The horse ran away, had its hind-quarters burnt out, and they were all three dead, men and horse. It gave us a terrible turn, but we could do nothing. Next morning we were up at four o'clock. We crossed the river Po at seven o'clock; it was bitter cold. We drove fifty miles that day; the last twelve were very pretty. At length we reached Padua. The ground was like ice; our off leader fell, and was dragged some little distance. (How