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have two mules-Very well, get me two. Then returning, a man was not to be had with fresh expreffions of furprise, that I should be eager to fee mountains that did not concern me. After raifing fresh difficulties to every thing I faid, they at last plainly told me, that I fhould neither have mule nor man; and this with an air that evidently made the cafe hopeless. About an hour after, I received a polite meffage from the Marquis Deblou, feigneur of the parish, who hearing that an inquifitive Englifhman was at the inn, enquiring after volcanoes, proposed the pleasure of taking a walk with me. I accepted the offer with alacrity, and going directly towards his houfe met him on the road. I explained to him my motives and my difficulties; he faid, the people had gotten fome abfurd fufpicions of me from my queftions, and that the prefent time was fo dangerous and critical to all travellers, that he would advife me by no means to think of any fuch excurfions from the great road, unless I found much readinefs in the people to conduct me: that at any other moment than the prefent he fhould be happy to do it himself, but that at prefent it was impoffible for any perfon to be too cautious. There was no refifting this reafoning, and yet to lose the most curious volcanic remains in the country, for the crater of the mountain is as diftin& in the print of Monf. de St. Fond, as if the lava were now running from it, was a mortifying circumftance. The Marquis then fhewed me his garden and his chateau, amidit the mountains; behind it is that of Gravene, which is an extinguished volcano likewife, but the crater not difcernible without difficulty. In converfation with him and another gentleman, on agriculture, particularly the produce of mulberries, they mentioned a fmall piece of land that produced, by filk only, 120 livres (51. 5s.) a year, and being contiguous to the road we walked to it. Appearing very fmall for fuch a produce, I stepped it to afcertain the contents, and minuted them in my pocket-book. Soon after, growing dark, I took my leave of the gentlemen, and retired to my inn. What I had done had more witneffes than I dreamt of; for at eleven o'clock at night, a full hour after I had been afleep, the commander of a file of twenty milice bourgeoife, with their mufquets, or fwords, or fabres, or pikes, entered my chamber, furrounded my bed, and demanded my paffport. A dialogue enfued, too long to minute; I was forced first to give them my paffport, and, that not fatisfying them, my papers. They told me that I was undoubtedly a confpirator with the Queen, the Count d'Artois, and the Count d'Entragues (who has property here), who had employed me as an arpenteur, to measure their fields, in order to double their taxes. My papers being in English faved me. They had taken it into their heads that I was not an Eng lishman-only a pretended one; for they speak fuch a jargon themselves, that their ears were not good enough to difcover by my language that I was an undoubted foreigner. Their finding no maps, or plans, nor any thing that they could convert by fuppofition to a cadaftre of their parish, had its effect, as I could fee by their manner, for they converfed entirely in Patois. Perceiving, however, that they were not fatiffied, and talked much of the Count d'Entragues, I opened a bundle of letters that were fealed-thefe, gentlemen, are my letters of recommendation to various cities of France and Italy, open which you pleafe, and you will find, for they are written in French, that I am an honeft Englishman, and not the rogue you take me for. On this they held a fresh confultation and debate, which ended in my favour; they refufed to open the letters, prepared to leave me, faying, that my numerous questions about lands, and measuring a field, while I pretended to come after volcanoes, had raised great fufpicions, which they obferved were natural at a time when it was known to a certainty that the Queen, the Count d'Artois, and the Count d'Entragues were in a confpiracy against the Vivarais. And thus, to my entire fatisfaction, they will ed me a good night,

and left me to the bugs, which fwarmed in the bed like flies in a honey-pot. I had a narrow escape-it would have been a delicate fituation to have been kept prifoner probably in fome common gaol, or, if not, guarded at my own expence, while they fent a courier to Paris for orders.20 miles.

The 20th. The fame impofing mountainous features continue to Villeneuve de Berg. The road, for half a mile, leads under an immenfe mass of bafaltic lava, run into con figurations of various forms, and refting on regular columns; this vaft range bulges in the centre into a fort of promontory. The height, form, and figures, and the decifive volcanic character the whole mafs has taken, render it a most interesting spectacle to the learned and unlearned eye. Just before Aubenas, mistaking the road, which is not half finifhed, I had to turn; it was on the flope of the declivity, and very rare that any wall or defence is found against the precipices. My French mare has an ill talent of backing too freely when fhe begins: unfortunately the exercised it at a moment of imminent danger, and backed the chaife, me and herself down the precipice; by great good luck, there was at the spot a fort of shelf of rock, that made the immediate fall not more than five feet direct. I leaped out of the chaife in the moment, and fell unhurt: the chaise was overthrown and the mare on her fide, entangled in the harness, which kept the carriage from tumbling down a precipice of fixty feet. Fortunately fhe lay quietly, for had she struggled both must have fallen. I called fome lime-burners to my affiftance, who were with great difficulty brought to fubmit to directions, and not each purfue his own idea to the certain precipitation of both mare and chaife. We extricated her unhurt, fecured the chaife, and then, with still greater difficulty, regained the road with both. This was by far the narrowest escape I have had. A bleffed country for a broken limb-confinement for fix weeks or two months at the Cheval Blanc, at Aubenas, an inn that would have been purgatory itself to one of my hogs: alone-without relation, friend, or fervant, and not one perfon in fixty that fpeaks French. Thanks to the good providence that preferved me! What a fituation-I fhudder at the reflection more than I did falling into the jaws of the precipice. Before I got from the place there were seven men about me, I gave them a 3 livre piece to drink, which for fome time they refused to accept, thinking, with unaffected modefty, that it was too much. At Aubeans repaired the harness, and, leaving that place, viewed the filk mills, which are confiderable. Reach Villeneuve de Berg. I was immediately hunted out by the milice bourgeoife. Where is your certificate? Here again the old objection that my features and perfon were not defcribed. Your papers? The importance of the cafe, they faid, was great: and they looked as big as if a marfhal's batton was in hand. They tormented me with an hundred queftions; and then pronounced that I was a fufpicious looking perfon. They could not conceive why a Suffolk farmer could travel into the Vivarais. Never had they heard of any perfon travelling for agriculture! They would take my paffport to the hotel de ville-have the permanent council affem bled-and place a centinel at my door. I told them they might do what they pleased, provided they did not prohibit my dinner, as I was hungry; they then departed. In about half an hour a gentleman-like man, a Croix de St. Louis came, asked me fome queftions very politely, and feemed not to conclude that Maria Antonietta and Arthur Young were at this moment in any very dangerous confpiracy. He retired, faying, he hoped I fhould not meet with any difficulties. In another half hour a foldier came to conduct me to the hotel de ville; where I found the council affembled; a good many queftions were afked; and fome expreffions of furprife that an English farmer fhould travel fo far for agriculture-they had never heard of fuch a thing; but all was in a polite liberal manner; and though travelling for agriculture was as new to them, as if it

VOL. IV.

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it had been like the antient philofopher's tour of the world on a cow's back, and living on the milk; yet they did not deem any thing in my recital improbable, figned my paffport very readily, affured me of every affiftance and civility I might want, and difmiffed me with the politenefs of gentlemen. I defcribed my treatment at Thuytz, which they loudly condemned. I took this opportunity to beg to know where that Pradel was to be found in this country, of which Oliver de Serres was feigneur, the well known French writer on agriculture in the reign of Henry IV. They at oncepointed out of the window of the room we were in to the houfe, which in Villeneuve de Berg belonged to him, and informed me that Pradel was within a league. As this was an object I had noted before I came to France, the information gave me no flight fatisfaction. The mayor, in the courfe of the examination, prefented me to a gentleman who had tranflated Sterné into French, but who did not fpeak English: on my return to the auberge I found that this was Monf. de Boiffiere, avocat general of the parliament of Grenoble. I did not care to leave the place without knowing something more of one who had diftinguished himfelf by his attention to English literature; and Ï wrote to him a note, begging permiffion to have the pleasure of fome converfation with. a gentleman who had made our inimitable author speak the language of a people he loved fo well. Monf. de Boiffiere came to me immediately, conducted me to his house, introduced me to his lady and fome friends, and as I was much interested concerning Oliver de Serres, he offered to take a walk with me to Pradel. It may easily be fuppofed that this was too much to my mind to be refufed, and few evenings have been more agreeably fpent. I regarded the refidence of the great parent of French agricul ture, and who was undoubtedly one of the firft writers on the fubject that had then appeared in the world, with that fort of veneration, which thofe only can feel who have addicted themfelves ftrongly to fome predominant purfuit, and find it in fuch moments indulged in its moft exquifite feelings. Two hundred years after his exertions, let me do honour to his memory, he was an excellent farmer, and a true patriot, and would not have been fixed on by Henry IV. as his chief agent in the great project of introducing the culture of filk in France, if he had not poffeffed a confiderable reputation; a reputation well earned, fince pofterity has confirmed it. The period of his practice is too remote to gain any thing more than a general outline of what may now be sup-pofed to have been his farm. The bafis of it is limeftone; there is a great oak wood near the chateau, and many vines, with plenty of mulberries, fome apparently old enough to have been planted by the hand of the venerable genius that has rendered the ground claffic. The eftate of Pradel, which is about 50co livres (2181. 15s.) a year, belongs at prefent to the Marquis of Mirabel, who inherits it in right of his wife, as the defcendant of De Serres. I hope it is exempted for ever from all taxes; he whofe writings laid the foundation for the improvement of a kingdom, fhould leave to his pofterity fome marks of his country men's gratitude. When the prefent bishop of Sifteron was fhewn like me, the farm of De Serres, he remarked, that the nation ought to erect a statue to his memory. The fentiment is not without merit, though no more than common fnuff-box chat; but if this bifhop has a well cultivated farm in his hands it does him honour. Supped with Monf. and Madame de Boiffiere, &c. and had the pleasure of an agreeable and interefting converfation.21 miles.

The 21ft. Monf. de Boiffiere, wishing to have my advice in the improvement of a farm, which he has taken into his hands, fix or feven miles from Berg, in my road to Viviers, accompanied me thither. I advifed him to form one well executed and well improved inclofure every year-to finish as he advances, and to do well what he attempts to do at all; and I cautioned him against the common abuse of that excellent

4

husbandry,

husbandry, paring and burning. I fufpect, however, that his homme d'affaire will be too potent for the English traveller. I hope he has received the turnip-feed I fent him. Dine at Viviers, and pass the Rhone. After the wretched inns of the Vivarais, dirt, filth, bugs, and ftarving, to arrive at the hotel de Monfieur, at Montilimart, a great and excellent inn, was fomething like the arrival in France from Spain: the contraft is ftriking; and I feemed to hug myfelf, that I was again in a chriftian country, among the Milors Ninchitreas, and my Ladi Bettis, of Monf. Chabot.23 miles.

The 22d. Having a letter to Monf. Faujas de St. Fond, the cebrated naturalist, who has favoured the world with many important works on volcanoes, aërostation, and various other branches of natural history, I had the fatisfaction, on enquiring, to find, that he was at Montilimart; and, waiting on him, perceived that a man of distinguished merit was handsomely lodged, with every thing about him that indicated an easy fortune. He received me with the frank politenefs inherent in his character; introduced me, on the fpot, to a Monf. l'Abbé Berenger, who refided near his country-feat, and was, he said, an excellent cultivator; and likewise to another gentleman, whose taste had taken the fame good direction. In the evening Monf. Faujas took me to call on a female friend, who was engaged in the fame enquiries, Madame Cheinet, whose husband is a member of the National Affembly; if he have the good luck to find at Verfailles fome other lady as agreeable as her he has left at Montilimart, his miffion will not be a barren one; and he may perhaps be better employed than in voting regenerations. This lady accompanied us in a walk for viewing the environs of Montilimart; and it gave me no small pleasure to find, that she was an excellent farmerefs, practises confiderably, and had the goodness to answer many of my enquiries, particularly in the culture of filk. I was fo charmed with the naiveté of character, and pleasing converfation of this very agreeable lady, that a longer ftay here would have been delicious-but the plough!

The 23d. By appointment accompanied Monf. Faujas to his country-feat and farm at l'Oriol, fifteen miles north of Montilimart, where he is building a good house. I was pleafed to find his farm to amount to two hundred and eighty fepteres of land: I fhould have liked it better, had it not been in the hands of a metayer. Monf. Faujas pleases me much; the livelinefs, vivacity, phlogifton of his character, do not run into pertnefs, foppery, or affectation; he adheres fteadily to a subject; and fhews, that to clear up any dubious point, by the attrition of different ideas in conversation, gives him pleasure; not through a vain fluency of colloquial powers, but for better understanding a subject. Monf. Abbé Berenger, and another gentleman, paffed the next day at Monf. Faujas’: we walked to the Abbé's farm. He is of the good order of beings, and pleafes me much; curé of the parish, and prefident of the permanent council. He is at prefent warm on a project of re-uniting the proteftants to the church; fpoke, with great pleafure, of having perfuaded them, on occafion of the general thanksgiving for the eftablishment of liberty, to return thanks to God, and fing the Te Deum in the catholic church, in common, as brethren, which, from confidence in his character, they did. He is firmly perfuaded, that, by both parties giving way a little, and foftening or retrenching reciprocally fomewhat in points that are difagreeable, they may be brought together. The idea is fo liberal, that I question it for the multitude, who are never governed by reafon, but by trifles and ceremonies,--and who are ufually attached to their religion, in proportion to the abfurdities it abounds with. I have not the leaft doubt but the mob in England would be much more fcandalized at parting with the creed of St. Athanafius, than the whole bench of bishops, whofe illumination would perhaps reflect correctly that of the throne. Monf. l'Abbé Berenger has prepared a memorial,

FF 2

memorial, which is ready to be presented to the National Affembly, propofing and explaining this ideal union of the two religions; and he had the plan of adding a claufe, propofing that the clergy fhould have permiflion to marry. He was convinced that it would be for the intereft of morals, and much for that of the nation, that the clergy should not be an infulated body, but holding by the fame interefts and connections as other people. He remarked, that the life of a curé, and especially in the country, is melancholy; and, knowing my paffion, obferved, that a man could never be fo good a farmer, on any poffeffion he might have, excluded from being fucceeded by his children. He fhewed me his memoir, and I was pleafed to find that there is at prefent great harmony between the two religions, which must be afcribed certainly to fuch good curês. The number of proteftants is very confiderable in this neighbourhood. I ftrenuously contended for the infertion of the clause refpecting marriage; affured him, that at such a moment as this, it would do all who were concerned in this memorial the greatest credit; and that they ought to confider it as a demand of the rights of humanity, violently, injuriously, and relative to the nation, impolitically with-held. Yefterday, in going with Monf. Faujas, we paffed a congregation of proteftants, affembled, Druid like, under five or fix fpreading oaks, to offer their thanksgiving to the great Parent of their happiness and hope. In fuch a climate as this, is it not a worthier temple, built by the great hand they revere, than one of brick and mortar? This was one of the richest days I have enjoyed in France; we had a long and truly farming dinner; drank a l'Anglois fuccefs to THE PLOUGH; and had fo much agricultural converfation, that I wished for my farming friends in Suffolk to partake of my fatisfaction. If Monf. Faujas de St. Fond come to England, as he gives me hopes, I fhall introduce him to them with pleasure. In the evening return to Montilimart.30 miles.

The 25th. To Chateau Rochemaur, across the Rhone. It is fituated on a basaltick. rock, nearly perpendicular, with every columnal proof of its volcanic origin. See Mont. Faujas's Recherches. In the afternoon to Piere Latte, through a country steril, uninteresting, and far inferior to the environs of Montilimart.22 miles.

The 26th. To Orange, the country not much better; a range of mountains to the left fee nothing of the Rhone. At that town there are remains of a large Roman building, feventy or eighty feet high, called a circus, of a triumphal arch, which, though a good deal decayed, manifefts, in its remains, no ordinary decoration, and a pavement in the houfe of a poor perfon, which is very perfect and beautiful, but much inferior to that of Nifmes. The vent de bize has blown strongly for several days, with a clear sky, tempering the heats, which are fometimes fultry and oppreffive; it may, for what I know, be wholesome to French conftitutions, but it is dreadful to mine; I found myself very indifferent, and, as if I were going to be ill, a new and unusual sensation over my whole body: never dreaming of the wind, I knew not what to attribute it to, but my complaint coming at the fame time, puts it out of doubt; befides, inftinct now, much more than reason, makes me guard as much as I can against it. At four or five in the morning it is so cold that no traveller ventures out. It is more penetratingly. drying than I had any conception of; other winds ftop the cutaneous perfpiration; but this piercing through the body feems, by its fenfation, to dry up all the interior humi dity.

20 miles.

The 27th. To Avignon.-Whether it were because I had read much of this town in the hiftory of the middle ages, or because it had been the refidence of the Popes, or more probably from the ftill more interesting memoirs which Petrarch has left concerning it, in poems that will last as long as Italian elegance and human feelings fhall exist, I know not-but I approached the place with a fort of intereft, attention, and expect

ancy,

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