Page:Guatimala or the United Provinces of Central America in 1827-8.pdf/111

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CHAPTER IV.

Amusements, -Theatre, -Bull Fights, -Literature, -Newspapers, -Booksellers, -Fine Arts, &c. &c.


The stranger's first impression, that Guatimala is exceedingly dull and lifeless, will not, in all probability, be materially changed on a more intimate acquaintance; especially if he be one of that numerous class to whose very existence public amusements seem necessary, since there is not, perhaps, a city in the world where diversions of every species are more neglected.

The theatre,[1] established about a year ago, is not much better in appearance than a country barn. In the heavy showers which frequently fall during the rainy season the water trickles through the roof, both into the pit and

  1. The author would not have noticed an amusement, the moral tendency of which he considers ruinous, had it not been to illustrate the character of a people who can bear with no purer substitute for a barbarous exhibition than a licentious theatre. He does not know that the failure of the experiment can be regretted. Whether any thing would have been gained by the change may well be doubted. When will they learn that an early education in the principles of the Bible can alone effect any important change in the habits and manners of a nation?