It was but a few minutes' walk from the hotel to the Porta Pinciana, and, if you took this short walk, you found yourself almost before you knew it in the Villa Borghese. You might then, on your first Sunday in Rome, have fancied yourself in Central Park, for all difference in the easily satisfied Sunday-afternoon crowd. But with me a difference began in the grove of stone-pines, and their desultory stretch toward the Casino, where in the simple young times which are now the old we had hurried, with our Kugler in our hands and other reading in our heads, to see Titian's Sacred and Profane Love (it has got another name now) and Canova's Pauline Bonaparte, who was also the Princess Borghese, and all the rest of the precious gallery. However, if I had any purpose of visiting the Casino now, I put it aside, and contented myself with the gentle sun, the gentle shade, and the sweet air, which might have had less dust in it, breathing over grass as green in late January as in early June. I did not care so much for a mounted corporal who was jumping his horse over a two-foot barrier in the circular path rounding between the Villa Borghese and the Pincian Hill, though his admirers hung in rows on the rail beside it so thickly that I could hardly have got a place to see him if I had tried. But there was room enough to the fathers and mothers who had brought their children, and young lovers who had brought each other for the afternoon's outing, just as the people in Central Park do, and, no doubt, just as any Sunday crowd must do in the planet Mars, if the inhabitants are human. There was a vacherie nearby where not many persons were drinking milk or even coffee; it is never the notion of the Italians that amusement can be had only through the purchase of refreshments.

I did not get as far as the Casino till the last Sunday of our Roman stay, though we came again and again to the park (as we should call it, rather than villa), sometimes to walk, sometimes to drive, and always to rejoice in its loveliness. It was not now a very guarded, if once a very studied, loveliness; not quite neglect, but a forgottenness to which it took kindly, had fallen upon it; the drives seemed largely left to take care of themselves, the walks were such as the frequenters chose to make over the grass or through the woods; the buildings - the aviary, the conservatory, the dairy, the stables - which formed part of the old pleasance, stood about, as if in an absent-minded indifference to their various roles. The weather had grown a little more wintry, or, at least, autumnal, as the season advanced toward spring, and one day at the end of February, when we were passing a woody hollow, the fallen leaves stirred crisply with a sound like that of late October at home. We had been at some pains and expense to put home four thousand miles away, but this sound was the sweetest and dearest we had heard in Rome, and it strangely attuned our spirits to the enjoyment of the fake antiquities, the broken arches, pediments, columns, statues, which, in a region glutted with ruin, the landscape architect of the Villa Borghese had fancied putting about in pleasing stages of artificial dilapidation. But there was nothing faked in the dishevelled grass of the little stadium, with its gra-dines around the sides, and the game of tennis which some young girls were playing in it. Neither was there anything ungenuine in the rapture of the boy whom we saw racing through the dead leaves of that woody hollow in chase of the wild fancies that fly before boyhood; and I hope that the charm of the plinths and statues in the careless grounds behind the soft, old, yellow Casino was a real charm. At any rate, these things all consoled, and the turf under the pines, now thickly starred with daisies, gave every assurance of being original.

When we came last the daisies were mingled with clustering anemones, which seem a greatly overrated sort of flower, crude and harsh in color, like cheap calico. If it were not for their pretty name I do not see how people could like them; yet the children that day were pouncing upon them and pulling them by handfuls; for the Villa Borghese is now state property and is free to the children of the people in a measure quite beyond Central Park. They can apparently pull anything they want, except mushrooms; there are signs advising people that the state draws the line at mushrooms.

It was once more a Sunday, and it was a free day in the Casino. The trodden earth sent up its homely, kindly smell from many feet on their way to the galleries, which we found full of people looking greater intelligence than the frequenters of such places commonly betray. They might have been such more cultivated sight-seers as could not afford to come on the paydays, and, if they had not crowded the room so, one might have been glad as well as proud to be of their number. They did not really keep one from older friends, from the statues and the pictures which were as familiarly there in 1908 as in 1864. In a world of vicissitudes such things do not change; the Sacred and Profane Love of Titian, though it had changed its name, had not changed its nature, and was as divinely serene, as richly beautiful as before. The Veroneses still glowed from the walls, dimming with their Venetian effulgence all the other pictures but the Botticellis and the Francias, and comforting one with the hope that, if one had always felt their beauty so much, one might, without suspecting it, have always had some little sense of art. But it was probably only a literary sense of art, such as moves the observer when he finds himself again in the presence of Canova's Pauline Borghese. That is there, on the terms which were those no less of her character than of her time, in the lasting enjoyment of a publicity which her husband denied it in his lifetime; but it had no more to say now than it had so many, many years ago. As, a piece of personal history it is amusing enough, and as a sermon in stone it preaches whatever moral you choose to read into it. But as the masterpiece of the sculptor it testifies to an ideal of his art for which the world has reason to be grateful. Criticism does not now put Canova on the height where we once looked up to him; but criticism is a fickle thing, especially in its final judgments; and one cannot remember the behavior of the Virtues in some of the baroque churches without paying homage to the portrait of a lady who, whatever she was, was not a Virtue, but who yet helped the sculptor to realize in her statue a Venus of exceptional propriety. Tame, yes, we may now safely declare Canova to have been, but sane we must allow; and we must never forget that he has been the inspiration in modern sculpture of the eternal Greek truth of repose from which the art had so wildly wandered, He, more than any other, stayed it in the mad career on which Michelangelo, however remotely, had started it; and we owe it to him that the best marbles now no longer strut or swagger or bully.

It was by one of those accidents which are the best fortunes of travel that I visited the Villa Papa Giulio, when I thought I was merely going to the Piazza del Popolo, to which one cannot go too often. A chance look at my guide-book beguiled me with the notion that the villa was just outside the gate; but it was a deceit which I should be glad to have practised on me every February 17th of my life. If the villa was farther off than I thought, the way to it lay for a while through a tramwayed suburban street delightfully encumbered with wide-horned oxen drawing heavy wagon-loads of grain, donkeys pulling carts laden with vegetables, and children and hens and dogs playing their several parts in a perspective through which one would like to continue indefinitely. But after awhile a dim, cool, curving lane leaves this street and irresistibly invites your cab to follow it; and sooner than you could ask you get to the villa gate. There a gatekeeper tacitly wonders at your arriving before he is well awake, and will keep you a good five minutes while he parleys with another custodian before he can bring himself to sell you a ticket and let you into the beautiful, old, orange-gray cloistered court, where there is a young architect with the T-square of his calling sketching some point of it, and a gardener gently hacking off from the parent stems such palm-leaves as have survived their usefulness. Beyond is the famous foun-tained court, and a classic temple to the right, and other structures responsive to the impulses of the good Pope Julius III., who was never tired of adding to this pleasure palace of his. It was his favorite resort, with all his court, from the Vatican, and his favorite amusement in it was the somewhat academic diversion of proverbs, which Ranke says sometimes "mingled blushes with the smiles of his guests."

Lest the reader should think I have gone direct to Ranke for this knowledge, I will own that I got it at second-hand out of Hare's Walks in Rome, where he tells us also that the pope used to come to his villa every day by water, and that "the richly decorated barge, filled with venerable ecclesiastics, gliding through the osier-fringed banks of the Tiber, . . . would make a fine subject for a picture." No doubt, and if I owned such a picture I would lose no time in public-spiritedly bestowing it on the first needy gallery. Our author is, as usual, terribly severe on the Italian government for some wrong done the villa, I could not well make out what. But it seems to involve the present disposition of the Etruscan antiquities in the upper rooms of the casino, where these, the most precious witnesses of that rather inarticulate civilization, must in any arrangement exhaust the most instructed interest. Just when the amateur archaeologist, however, is sinking under his learning, the custodian opens a window and lets him look out on a beautiful hill beyond certain gardens, where a bird is singing angelically. I suppose it is the same bird which sings all through these papers, and I am sorry I do not know its name. But we will call it a blackcap: blackcap has a sweet, saucy sound like its own note, and is the pretty translation of caponero, a name which the bird might gladly know itself by.

Villa Papa Giulio is but a little place compared with something on the scale of the Villa Pamfili Doria though from its casino it has a charm far beyond that. What it may once have been as to grounds and gardens there is little to show now, and the Pam-fili Doria itself had not much to show in gardens, though it had grounds, and to spare. It is, in fact, a large park, though whether larger than the Villa Borghese I cannot say. But it has not been taken by the state, and it is so far off on its hills that it is safe from the overrunning of city feet. It is safe even from city wheels, unless they are those of livery carriages, for numbered cabs are not suffered in its proud precincts. You partake of this pride when you come in your rubber-tired remise, and have the consolation of being part of the beautiful exclusiveness. It costs you fifteen francs, but one must suffer for being patrician, even for a single afternoon. Outside we had the satisfaction of seeing innumerable numbered cabs drawn up, and within the villa gates of meeting or passing the plebeians who had come in them, and were now walking while we were smoothly rolling in our victoria. The day was everything we could ask, very warm and bright below the Janiculum, on which we had mounted, and here on the summit delicious with cool currents of air. There had been beggars, on the way up, at every point where our horses must be walked, and we had paid our way handsomely, so that when we went back they bowed without asking again; this is a convention at Rome which no self-respecting beggar will violate; they all touch their hats in recognition of it.

The beautiful prospect from a certain curve of the drive after yon have passed the formal sunken garden, at which you pause, is the greatest beauty of the Villa Pamfili Doria. You stop to look at it by the impulse of your coachman, and then you keep on driving round, in the long ellipse which the road describes, through grassy and woody slopes and levels, watered by a pleasant stream, and through long aisles of pine and ilex. We thought twice round was enough, and told the driver so, to his evident surprise and to our own regret, so far as the long aisle of ilex was concerned, for I do not suppose there is a more perfect thing of its kind in the world. The shade under the thick sun-proof roofing of horizontal boughs was practically as old as night, and on our second passage of its dim length it had some Capuchin monks walking down it, who formed the fittest possible human interest in the perspective. Off on the grass at one side some Ursuline nuns were sitting with their pupils, laughing and talking, and one nun was playing ball with the smaller girls, and mingling with their shouts her own gay, innocent cries of joy as she romped among them. Nothing could have been prettier, sweeter, or better suited to the place; all was very simple, and apparently the whole place was hospitably free to the poor women who ranged over it, digging chiccory for salad out of the meadows. The daisies were thick as white clover, and the harsh purple of the anemones showed everywhere.

The casino is plainer than the casino of the Villa Borghese, and is not public like that; its sculptures have been taken to the Doria palace in the city; and there is no longer any excuse for curiosity even to try penetrating it. It stands on the left of the road by which you leave the villa, and to the right on the grassy incline in full view of the casino was something that puzzled us at first. It did not seem probable that the gigantic capital letters grown in box should be spelling the English name Mary, but it proved that they were, and later it proved that this was the name of the noble English lady whom the late Prince Pamfill Doria had married. Whether they marked her grave or merely commemorated her, it was easy to impute a pathos to the fancy of having them there, which it might not have been so easy to verify. You cannot attempt to pass over any ground in Rome without danger of sinking into historical depths from which it will be hard to extricate yourself, and it is best to heed one's steps and keep them to the day's activities. But one could not well visit the Villa Pamfili Doria without at least wishing to remember that in 1849 Garibaldi held it for weeks against the whole French army, in his defence of republican Rome. A votive temple within the villa grounds commemorates the invaders who fell in this struggle; on a neighboring height the Italian leader triumphs in the monument his adoring country has raised to him.

If we are to believe the censorious Hare, the love of the hero's countrymen went rather far when the Roman municipality, to please him, tried to change the course of the Tiber in conformity with a scheme of his, and so spoiled the beauty of the Farnesina garden Avithout effecting a too-difficult piece of engineering. The less passionate Murray says merely that "a large slice of this garden was cut off to widen the river for the Tiber embankment," and let us hope that it was no worse. I suppose we must have seen the villa in its glory when we went, in 1864, to see the Raphael frescos in the casino there, but in the touching melancholy of the wasted and neglected grounds we easily accepted the present as an image of the past. For all we remembered, the weed-grown, green-mossed gravel-paths of the sort of bewildered garden that remained, with its quenched fountain, its vases of dead or dying plants, and its dishevelled shrubbery, were what had always been; and it was of such a charm that we were gratefully content with it. The truth is, one cannot do much with beauty in perfect repair; the splendor that belongs to somebody else, unless it belongs also to everybody else, wounds one's vulgar pride and inspires envious doubts of the owner's rightful possession. But when the blight of ruin has fallen upon it, when dilapidation and disintegration have begun their work of atonement and exculpation, then our hearts melt in compassion of the waning magnificence and in a soft pity for the expropriated possessor, to whom we attribute every fine and endearing quality. It is this which makes us such friends of the past and such critics of the present, and enables us to enjoy the adversity of others without a pang of the jealousy which their prosperity excites.

There was much to please a somewhat peculiar taste in our visit to the Farnesina. The gateman, being an Italian official, had not been at the gate when we arrived, but came running and smiling from his gossip with the door-keeper of the casino, and this was a good deal in itself; but the door-keeper, amiably obese, was better still in her acceptance of the joke with which the hand-mirror for the easier study of the roof frescos was accepted. "It is more convenient," she suggested, and at the counter-suggestion, "Yes, especially for people with short necks," she shook with gelatinous laughter, and burst into the generous cry, "Oh, how delightful!" Perhaps this was because she, too, had experienced the advantage of perusing the frescos in the hand-mirror's reversal. At any rate, she would not be satisfied till she had returned a Roland for that easy Oliver. Her chance came in showing a Rubens in one of the rooms, with the master's usual assortment of billowy beauties, when she could say - and she ought to have known - that they had eaten too much macaroni. It was not much of a joke; but one hears so few jokes in Rome.

Do I linger in this study of simple character because I feel myself unequal to the ecstasies which the frescos of Raphael and his school in that pleasure dome demanded of me? Something like that, I suppose, but I do not pride myself on my inability. It seemed to me that the coloring of the frescos had lost whatever tenderness it once had; and that what was never meant to be matter of conscious perception, but only of the vague sense which it is the office of decoration to impart, had grown less pleasing with the passage of time. There in the first hall was the story of Cupid and Psyche in the literal illustration of Apuleius, and there in another hall was Galatea on her shell with her Nymphs and Tritons and Amorini; and there were Perseus and Medusa and Icarus and Phaeton and the rest of them. But, if I gave way to all the frankness of my nature, I should own the subjects fallen sillv through the old age of an outworn life and redeemed only by the wonderful skill with which they are rendered. At the same time, I will say in self-defence that, if I had a very long summer in which to keep coming and dwelling long hours in the company of these frescos, I think I might live back into the spirit which invented the fables, and enjoy even more the amusing taste that was never tired of their repetition. Masterly conception and incomparable execution are there in histories which are the dreams of worlds almost as extinct as the dead planets whose last rays still reach us and in whose death-glimmer we can fancy, if we will, a unity of life with our own not impossible nor improbable. But more than some such appeal the Raphaels and the Giulio Romanos of the Farnesina hardly make to the eye untrained in the art which created them, or unversed in the technique by which they will live till the last line moulders and the last tint fades.

We came out and stood a long time looking up in the pale afternoon light at the beautiful face of the tenderly aging but not yet decrepit casino. It was utterly charming, and it prompted many vagaries which I might easily have mistaken for ideas. This is perhaps the best of such experiences, and, after you have been with famous works of art and have got them well over and done with, it is natural and it is not unjust that you should wish to make them some return, if not in kind, then in quantity. You will try to believe that you have thought about them, and you should not too strictly inquire as to the fact. It is some such forbearance that accounts for a good deal of the appreciation and even the criticism of works of art.