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St. Patrick, having a drawing-room, “ but so few company that the queen sent for us into the bed-chamber, where we made our bows, and stood about twenty of us round the room, while she looked at us round, with her fan in her mouth, and once a minute said about three words to some that were nearest her, and then she was told dinner was ready, and went out.” The first two Georges left Windsor to decay. The third had the good taste to know where an English king should have his chief palace ; but the Castle was deemed uninhabitable for a growing family : so the king lived for years in a white-washed house at the foot of his palace, and only used the Castle on great occasions-always except for morning prayers in the Private Chapel. About 1804 the king and his family migrated to the Castle ; and the lath and plaster of Sir William Chambers was abandoned to the equerries and chance visitors of the Court. A few years of excitement, such as the spirit of the country lighted up in the heart of the brave old man, when invasion was talked of, and the Castle became to George III. a prison, under the most painful circumstances that can attend the loss of liberty. After his death Windsor Castle was remodelled. Here in these splendid chambers, have two kings held their state, and here twice has the lesson been taught, that,

“ The glories of our blood and state

Are shadows, not substantial things.” The Court routine of Windsor is now hallowed by duty. It is not for us to attempt to unveil the inner life of a Queen and a Mother.

A peep from the bay window of the Ball-room will have indicated the magnificent prospect which is obtainable from the Terrace below; and the stranger will do well to direct his steps to this North Terrace, when he quits the State Apartments. You pass under an arch, through which you see Eton and the distant country. The effect is magical. Of its kind, this view from the North Terrace has scarcely a rival. At your feet are the tops of trees of giant stature, screening the meaner houses of the town, and guiding the eye to the distant spires' and 'antique towers' of Eton; and the “expanse below of grove, of lawn, of mead,”

“Whose turf, whose shade, whose flowers among,
Wanders the hoary Thames along

His silver winding way!" And over the richest variety of cultivated country through which the Thames wanders, the glorious prospect extends right away to the metropolis !

The visitor will not of course rest content with admiring the exterior of St. George's Chapel. He can at any time obtain admission, and the interior is far more remarkable than the outside. The architecture is inferior to that of the other two great examples of the perpendicular style—King's College Chapel, at Cambridge, and Henry VII.'s Chapel, at Westminster. Yet it is both grand and impressive; while the chancel, from the array of flags and helmets, the insignia of the Knights of the Order of the Garter, suspended over their stalls, has a very remarkable appearance. In the vaults under the Chapel are interred the builder of it, Edward IV., Henry VI., IIenry VIII., and Charles I. The remains of George III. with those of George IV., William IV., and other members of his family, lie in a vault under the Wolsey or Beaufort Chapel, which is attached to the cast end of St. George's Chapel.

The interior of St. George's Chapel has been recently the object of judicious improvement, arising out of the more accurate taste of our day in minute points of ecclesiastical architecture. When, some seventy or cighty years ago, George III. rescued this Chapel from the neglect of a century, it is remarkable how much was

effected in harmony with the general character of the building. The organ-screen, for example, which was then erected, though defective in some particulars, is not incongruous. Of the painted windows then produced in the historical style, we are scarcely competent to speak. Although we may doubt their strict propriety, we should not patiently endure their destruction to make way for modern imitative ornaments of stained glass-saints, kings, and bishops, row upon row. The west window has recently been thoroughly refitted. It was formed, at the great reparation of the Chapel, out of glass collected from various parts of the building. Much, however, of the old glass was carried off; some may still be found in the fine Church of Saint Cross, at Winchester. This window is now made perfect and secure. The changes in the choir are also most judicious; and the clustered columns, cleansed of their atrocious white-wash, are now as fresh as when they came from under the tool of the sculptor.

To the east of St. George's Chapel, as we said, is the Royal Dormitory-a building erected by Wolsey for his own tomb; desecrated and neglected for more than a century, and then applied to the purpose of mausoleum by George III. The interior has been completely repaired only within a few years. The royal tombs were long beneath a floor of rubbish. Within the last few months the exterior has been begun to be repaired. The turrets and pinnacles have been restored, and the whole will soon look as when the king-cardinal erected it.

Before we quit the Castle precincts, we may mention that the visitor who is “an admirer of horse-flesh” may, if he pleases, go over the Royal Stables. Tickets are readily given upon application to Mr. Cocum, the clerk of the stables. The stables are very extensive, and complete in all their arrangements. They were, it will be remembered, erected a few years back at a cost of £70,000. In them may be seen the royal stud, including the Arabian horses presented to Her Majesty by the Pacha of Egypt, and the ponies of the royal children, as well as the horses of Prince Albert. The carriages are of course of a superior description: the most curious ones are the char-à-banc, presented to the Queen by Louis Philippe, a specimen of Parisian skill ; and the sledges and awkward droschkis, presents from the Emperor of Russia.

On leaving the Castle, the improvements which are in progress in the town will not fail to be observed. The mean houses about the entrance and under the west wall of the Castle are being swept away: the erections which are to occupy their site have not yet been commenced. But, besides that houses are being pulled down, it will be seen that the road is being pulled up. In fact, the town is under the hands of the authorities for a thorough renovation, in pursuance of an Act obtained for the purpose a year or two back. The provisions of the Public Health Act are also to bo applied to it, and its sanitary condition is being thoroughly amended. One of the most important changes is the construction of a new bridge over the Thames, instead of the old half-ruinous Datchet bridge, at some distance above it. Roads from the new bridge are being made across a corner of the Lower Park, beneath the North Terrace, and outside the Royal Gardens ; while the old footpath from Datchet across the park, by Herne's oak, is stopped; and the road to Old Windsor by Frogmore is to be turned, and cross the Long Walk some half mile from the town. Frogmore, and the Long Walk, and the Crown properties lying between them, will then be the natural and proper domain of the Castle. We shall then, we trust, have an undisturbed view of the Castle; and we may still, though shut out from Herne's Oak, cherish our Shaksperian associations, for the part of the Park through which the new Datchet road will run, was formerly known as 'Datchet Mead ;' and there, among the whitsters, vas Falstaff slighted into the river,' where 'the shore was shelvy and shallow.'

THE GREAT PARK. The changes which take place in the mere face of a country subjected to rapid improvements, even during the short period between the boyhood and the mature age of an individual, were never more strikingly exemplified than in that beautiful district into which we are about to conduct our readers. In the year 1813 an Act of Parliament was passed for the inclosure of Windsor Forest. This was perhaps one of the largest inclosures that was ever effected under the power of one Act. There is a survey of this forest by Norden, taken in 1607, which makes its circuit seventy-seven miles and a half. This great extent was somewhat diminished in later years; for in a subsequent map by Rocque the circuit is given as fifty-six miles. At the time of the inclosure it comprised the whole of eleven parishes, and parts of six other parishes. The portion which was previously inclosed, and known as Windsor Great Park, was of small extent compared with the whole range of the Forest. The area of the Park was less than four thousand acres, of which two thousand acres were under cultivation; while the open, uninclosed Forest amounted to twenty-four thousand acres. With a few exceptions, such as part of the irreclaimable tract of Bagshot Heath, the whole face of this country is now utterly changed.

It appears to us that, until a comparatively modern period, the proud keep of Windsor stood in solitary magnificence, with this vast extent of hunting-ground lying for miles before it, extending from the south bank of the Thames. There were then no distinctions of park or forest. The great oaks grew up to the Castle walls, and stretched away till they reached the sandy deserts of Surrey, and the chalk hills beyond the Kennet. But we must not consider that Windsor Forest, even three or four centuries ago, was nothing but heath and woodland. In all such districts, in spite of feudal domination, whether of king or noble, man has asserted his claim that the earth should yield him sustenance: the more fertile spots have been inclosed; solitary farms have grown into villages, and villages into towns. This was the character of the Windsor Forest which Pope described.

Windsor, as a royal residence, was subject to alternations of favour and neglect. Pope, contrasting the depopulation ascribed to the Norman kings, with the subsequent encouragement of industry, says :

'Succeeding monarchs heard the subjects' cries,

Nor saw displeased the peaceful cottage rise.' In Windsor Forest, we apprehend, the peaceful cottage' sprung up when the monarch's eyes were turned in another direction. It is impossible to look at the topography of such a district without seeing that a vast number of occupiers without legitimate titles had, from generation to generation, squatted upon the land. During the lapse of four or five centuries, individual and manorial proprietors came to share with the Crown the right over its royal forest; and in the reign of Anne, the connection between the Castle and its forestal domain was made by the avenue now known as the Long Walk, which was then inclosed, and compensation given to the town for so much of the loss of its common fields. The Great Park was gradually separated from the larger district known as Windsor Forest ; but in many points this was an imaginary separation. After the Battle of Culloden, Duke William of Cumberland had the office of Ranger to the Park bestowed upon him ; and in the immediate neighbourhood of the Ranger's Lodge, since called Cumberland Lodge, he planted the barren hills, and turned the swampy levels into a vast artificial lake. George III, had different notions of the use of a park. He ploughed up all the land that was capable of culture ; and there carried forward those systems of experimental husbandry which won for him the honourable name of · Farmer George.' George IV. neither planted nor farmed; but he spent two hundred thousand pounds upon a thatched cottage near his great uncle's Lodge, which cottage was swept away as a nuisance in the succeeding reign. During the last quarter of a century, the great principle of utility has been asserting its irresistible claims to this large district. The Crown obtained a fourth of the uninclosed land which was allotted by the Inclosure Act, and some six thousand acres have been thus added to the former bounds of Windsor Great Park. The office of Woods and Forests has not let these lands lie neglected. Vast plantations have been formed of oak and fir; plains, where a large army might have manæuvred thirty years ago, are covered with hundreds of thousands of vigorous saplings ; heaths, where a few straggling hawthorns used to be the landmark of the traveller, are now one sea of pine. Satisfactory as this may be as an accession to the national riches, we cannot help lamenting that utility went about its work in such a rough-shod fashion. Earthworks, which unquestionably showed where the Roman had encamped, have been planted over or levelled. Old giants of the wood, beautiful and almost sublime in their decay, have been ruthlessly cut down. Many an old tree, with a thirty-foot girth, into whose hollow we have crept from the passing shower, and thought of the Norman hunters, is gone. We will not say with the querulous old man in Crabbe,

'Here's nothing left of ancient pride,

Of what was grand, of what was gay:

But all is changed, is lost, is sold.' It is not so. There was some rash innovation some twenty or thirty years ago; but we see that it is repented of. Some of the old oaks are now duly honoured, and have pleasant grassy spots cleared around them, so that the crowd of youngsters, with their slight and shivering stems, may keep at a respectful distance from their venerable progenitors. There are pleasant walks, too, among these new plantations; and what is pleasanter than even the pleasant walks themselves, the rude voice of authority does not scare the wanderer as in the days of the first gentleman of Europe.'

In truth, although the Forest is so different from what it was, it is yet a place of rare delight—only a fragment of it, it is true, but a noble one. Once in the forest district, and you are at no loss for scenery or objects of beauty or interest. Rough paths lead on every side to some wild woodland solitude or broad sterile heath, or marsh, green with a few osiers, or hilly ridge, commanding a rich and various prospect. And then there are traces of roads and camps, the work of the conquerors of the earth, and of spots where poets have lived, and scenes which they have celebrated, where the names of Pope and Shelley will recur to every one's memory; of lonely heronries, and rustic villages, and outlying old English farm-houses.

But we cannot now wander at will over the Forest ; we must content ourselves with a stroll over that corner of it which now forms the Great Park:-let us proceed by way of the Long Walk, to VIRGINIA WATER. This Long Walk is certainly one of the grand features of Windsor. It is three miles long, and consists of a broad central avenue of lofty elms, with a narrow avenue on each side. At the termination of it is Westmacott's statue of George III. ;-an equestrian figure, twenty-six feet in height, raised upon a rocky pedestal of the same elevation, and placed upon a considerable hill, is no common object. But to a stranger the statue is an inconsiderable thing, when he looks from its site down the magnificent avenue which now leads to the Castle gates, at a distance of more than three miles. It is, indeed, a wondrous

approach to a noble pile. Five and twenty years ago the avenue was without an object. Shabby houses interposed between its commencement at Windsor and the Castle. Now it leads direct to the gateway called after George IV., and thence to the grand entrance of the State apartments.

From the Statue we pass by Cumberland Lodge and the Great Lake and Norfolk Farm, where Prince Albert carries on his agricultural experiments, and soon enter the precincts of Virginia Water.

Shenstone has said, with great truth, “ The works of a person that builds begin immediately to decay; while those of him who plants begin directly to improve. In this, planting promises a more lasting pleasure than building." Shenstone's own Leasowes is a striking example of the truth of this maxim. His temples and urns are gone to ruin : his sapling oaks and beeches have grown into magnificent trees. It is the same at Virginia Water. In 1746, Duke William of Cumberland was rewarded, for his services at Culloden, by the Rangership of Windsor Great Park, and the official residence since known as Cumberland Lodge. Not far from this residence was a wild, swampy district, whose waters drained into a basin of considerable dimensions, and then flowed on to the Thames at Chertsey. The Duke wanted occupation in this his solitude. Tradition says that some of his amusements were not of the most creditable kind, and that a paltry Chinese temple, which still stands at the head of the lake, was not wholly dedicated to “ Contemplation, heavenly maid !” The royal butcher, however, was not entirely sensual or cruel. His vices were, probably, as much exaggerated by political hostility and popular scandal as his personal appearance. He had the merit of seeing the genius of Paul Sandby, whom he patronized as a draughtsman when he was a mere boy. Sandby was the landscapegardener of Virginia Water. He had large materials to deal with, and he used them with a bold and masterly hand. The name of the place was an ambitious one. The little lake and the gentle fir-clad banks have no real associations with the boundless forests where the first adventurers of the Anglo-Saxon stock carried the power of civilization. We receive the name simply as expressive of silence and solitude, amidst woods and waters. If we surrender ourselves to the genial influence of nature, we may find as deep enjoyment on the margin of this artificial lake and the “alleys green” of these woods, as the wandering traveller experiences on the banks of the Potomac, or in the passes of the Apalachian hills.

“Great princes have great playthings." We recollect Virginia Water before George IV. and William IV. here amused themselves with little playthings. That Chinese fishing-temple, which the genius of incongruity stuck up here in the very prettiest nook of this water, is out of place in these solitudes. The baby brig which the Sailor King built to guard this miniature sea, is another inharmonious toy. And last of all, the ruins! Grecian capitals on Egyptian shafts! the spoils of the Nile and the Ilyssus huddled together in a forced companionship! Real ruins, removed from the sites to which they belong, are the worst species of exotics. The tale which they tell of their ancient grandeur is quite out of harmony with their modern appropriation. We can look with an antiquarian pleasure upon a capital in a museum; but a shaft or two perched up in a modern pleasure-ground produce a ludicrous struggle between the feeling of the true and the artificial, and a sort of pitiable scorn of the petty vanity of the living, which snatches the ruins of the dead from the hallowed spot where time or the barbarian had crumbled them into nothingness, to administer to a sense of what is pretty and merely picturesque. A real ruin is a solemn thing, when it stands upon the site where it has defied the elements for centuries in its pomp and glory; but a mock ruin—a fiction of plaster and paint—or a collection of

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