We passed a convent turned into a prosperous-looking manufactory and we met a troop of merry priests talking gayly and laughing together, and very effective in their black robes against the white road. When we came to the village that was a municipium under Augustus and a colonia under Hadrian, we found it indeed scanty and poor, but very neat and self-respectful-looking, and not unworthy to have been founded by Scipio Africanus two hundred years before Christ. Such cottage interiors as we glimpsed seemed cleaner and cozier than some in Wales; men in wide flat-brimmed hats sat like statues at the doors, absolutely motionless, but there were women bustling in and out in their work, and at one place a little girl of ten had been left to do the family wash, and was doing it joyously and spreading the clothes in the dooryard to dry. We did not meet with universal favor as we drove by; some groups of girls mocked our driver; when we said one of them was pretty he answered that he had seen prettier.

At the entrance to the ruins of the amphitheater which forms the tourist's chief excuse for visiting Italica the popular manners softened toward us; the village children offered to sell us wild narcissus flowers and were even willing to take money in charity. They followed us into the ruins, much forbidden by the fine, toothless old custodian who took possession of us as his proper prey and led us through the moldering caverns and crumbling tiers of seats which form the amphitheater. Vast blocks, vast hunks, of the masonry are broken off from the mass and lie detached, but the mass keeps the form and dignity of the original design; and in the lonely fields there it had something august and proud beyond any quality of the Arena at Verona or the Colosseum at Rome. It is mostly stripped of the marble that once faced the interior, and is like some monstrous oval shaped out of the earth, but near the imperial box lay some white slabs with initials cut in them which restored the vision of the "grandeur that was Rome" pretty well over the known world when this great work was in its prime. Our custodian was qualified by his toothlessness to lisp like any old Castilian the letters that other Andalusians hiss, but my own Spanish was so slight and his patois was so dense that the best we could do was to establish a polite misunderstanding. On this his one word of English, repeated as we passed through the subterranean doors, "Lion, lion, lion," cast a gleam of intelligence which brightened into a vivid community of ideas when we ended in his cottage, and he prepared to sell us some of the small Roman coins which formed his stock in trade. The poor place was beautifully neat, and from his window he made us free of a sight of Seville, signally the cathedral and the Giralda, such as could not be bought for money in New York.

Then we set out on our return, leaving unvisited to the left the church of San Isidore de Campo, with its tombs of Guzman the Good and that Better Lady Dona Urraca Osorio, whom Peter the Cruel had burned. I say better, because I hold it nobler in Urraca to have rejected the love of a wicked king than in Guzman to have let the Moors slay his son rather than surrender a city to them. But I could only pay honor to her pathetic memory and the memory of that nameless handmaid of hers who rushed into the flames to right the garments on the form which the wind had blown them away from, and so perished with her. We had to take on trust from the guide-books all trace of the Roman town where the three emperors were born, and whose "palaces, aqueducts, and temples and circus were magnificent." We had bought some of the "coins daily dug up," but we intrusted to the elements those "vestiges of vestiges" left of Trajan's palaces after an envious earthquake destroyed them so lately as 1755.

The one incident of our return worthy of literature was the dramatic triumph of a woman over a man and a mule as we saw it exhibited on the parapet of a culvert over a dry torrent's bed. It was the purpose of this woman, standing on the coping in statuesque relief and showing against the sky the comfortable proportions of the Spanish housewife, to mount the mule behind the man. She waited patiently while the man slowly and as we thought faithlessly urged the mule to the parapet; then, when she put out her hands and leaned forward to take her seat, the mule inched softly away and left her to recover her balance at the risk of a fall on the other side. We were too far for anything but the dumb show, but there were, no doubt, words which conveyed her opinions unmistakably to both man and mule. With our hearts in our mouths we witnessed the scene and its repetitions till we could bear it no longer, and we had bidden our cabman drive on when with a sudden spring the brave woman launched herself semicircularly forward and descended upon the exact spot which she had been aiming at. There solidly established on the mule, with her arms fast round the man, she rode off; and I do not think any reader of mine would like to have been that mule or that man for the rest of the way home.

We met many other mules, much more exemplary, in teams of two, three, and four, covered with bells and drawing every kind of carryall and stage and omnibus. These vehicles were built when the road was, about 1750, and were, like the road, left to the natural forces for keeping themselves in repair. The natural forces were not wholly adequate in either case, but the vehicles were not so thick with dust as the road, because they could shake it off. They had each two or four passengers seated with the driver; passengers clustered over the top and packed the inside, but every one was in the joyous mood of people going home for the day. In a plaza not far from the Triana bridge you may see these decrepit conveyances assembling every afternoon for their suburban journeys, and there is no more picturesque sight in Seville, more homelike, more endearing. Of course, when I say this I leave out of the count the bridge over the Guadalquivir at the morning or evening hour when it is covered with brightly caparisoned donkeys, themselves covered with men needing a shave, and gay-kerchiefed women of every age, with boys and dogs underfoot, and pedestrians of every kind, and hucksters selling sea-fruit and land-fruit and whatever else the stranger would rather see than eat. Very little outcry was needed for the sale of these things, which in Naples or even in Venice would have been attended by such vociferation as would have sufficed to proclaim a city in flames.

On a day not long after our expedition to Italica we went a drive with a young American friend living in Seville, whom I look to for a book about that famous city such as I should like to write myself if I had the time to live it as he has done. He promised that he would show us a piece of the old Roman wall, but he showed us ever so much more, beginning with the fore court of the conventual church of Santa Paula, where we found the afternoon light waiting to illumine for us with its tender caress the Luca della Robbia-like colored porcelain figures of the portal and the beautiful octagon tower staying a moment before taking flight for heaven: the most exquisite moment of our whole fortnight in Seville. Tall pots of flowers stood round, and the grass came green through the crevices of the old foot-worn pavement. When we passed out a small boy scuffled for our copper with the little girl who opened the gate for us, but was brought to justice by us, and joined cheerfully in the chorus of children chanting "Mo-ney, mo-ney!" round us, but no more expecting an answer to their prayer than if we had been saints off the church door.

We passed out of the city by a gate where in a little coign of vantage a cobbler was thoughtfully hammering away in the tumult at a shoe-sole, and then suddenly on our right we had the Julian wall: not a mere fragment, but a good long stretch of it. The Moors had built upon it and characterized it, but had not so masked it as to hide the perdurable physiognomy of the Roman work. It was vastly more Roman wall than you see at Rome; but far better than this heroic image of war and waste was the beautiful old aqueduct, perfectly Roman still, with no visible touch from Moor, or from Christian. before or after the Moor, and performing its beneficent use after two thousand years as effectively as in the years before Christ came to bless the peacemakers. Nine miles from its mountain source the graceful arches bring the water on their shoulders; and though there is now an English company that pipes other streams to the city through its underground mains, the Roman aqueduct, eternally sublime in its usefulness, is constant to the purpose of the forgotten men who imagined it. The outer surfaces of the channel which it lifted to the light and air were tagged with weeds and immemorial mosses, and dripped as with the sweat of its twenty-centuried toil.

We followed it as far as it went on our way to a modern work of peace and use which the ancient friend and servant of man would feel no unworthy rival. Beyond the drives and gardens of the Delicias, where we lingered our last to look at the pleasurers haunting them, we drove far across the wheat-fields where a ship-canal five miles long is cutting to rectify the curve of the Guadalquivir and bring Seville many miles nearer the sea than it has ever been before; hitherto the tramp steamers have had to follow the course of the ships of Tarshish in their winding approach. The canal is the notion of the young king of Spain, and the work on it goes forward night and day. The electric lights were shedding their blinding glare on the deafening clatter of the excavating machinery, and it was an unworthy relief to escape from the intense modernity of the scene to that medieval retreat nearer the city where the aficionados night-long watch the bulls coming up from their pastures for the fight or the feast, whichever you choose to call it, of the morrow. These amateurs, whom it would be rude to call sports, lurk in the wayside cafe over their cups of chocolate and wait till in that darkest hour before dawn, with irregular trampling and deep bellowing, these hapless heroes of the arena pass on to their doom. It is a great thing for the aficionados who may imagine in that bellowing the the gladiator's hail of Morituri salutant. At any rate, it is very chic; it gives a man standing in Seville, which disputes with Madrid the primacy in bull-feasting. If the national capital has bull-feasting every Sunday of the year, all the famous torreros come from Andalusia, with the bulls, their brave antagonists, and in the great provincial capital there are bull-feasts of insurpassable, if not incomparable, splendor.

Before our pleasant drive ended we passed, as we had already passed several times, the scene of the famous Feria of Seville, the cattle show which draws tens of thousands to the city every springtime for business and pleasure, but mostly pleasure. The Feria focuses in its greatest intensity at one of the entrances to the Delicias, where the street is then so dense with every sort of vehicle that people can cross it only by the branching viaduct, which rises in two several ascents from each footway, intersecting at top and delivering their endless multitudes on the opposite sidewalk. Along the street are gay pavilions and cottages where the nobility live through the Feria with their families and welcome the public to the sight of their revelry through the open doors and windows. Then, if ever, the stranger may see the dancing, and hear the singing and playing which all the other year in Seville disappoints him of.