There was a red lantern at the iron gate to the area way, inside of which the Chinaman's name was printed.
Many of the things I have seen too much in a hurry to form accurate ideas and judgment thereon; most of what we see here is shewn to us like the figures in a lanterna magica, for in the various palazzi and villas the servants who exhibit them hurry you from room to room, impatient to receive your fee and to get rid of you.
In later times, between the Germans and the French, was invented the lantern,--a feature so often and so superbly used, not only on the Continent, but more lately in England, that we must needs glance at it.
So when PROMETHEUS braved the Thunderer's ire, 370 Stole from his blazing throne etherial fire, And, lantern'd in his breast, from realms of day Bore the bright treasure to his Man of clay;-- High on cold Caucasus by VULCAN bound, The lean impatient Vulture fluttering round, 375 His writhing limbs in vain he twists and strains To break or loose the adamantine chains.
Dispensing thus some of his strength in such pieces as the Vieillesse de Brididi, the Foire aux Grotesques, and Un Monsieur Bien-Mis, in 1868 he founded the Lanterne, and thenceforth became the most ardent champion of the revolutionary party; and in the brilliant articles we all know, he cast its light on the follies of others under the pretext that they were his own.
I dreaded that Argus Portitor, who doubtless lanterned me out on that prodigious night.
We have the Mariage au tambour, the Mariage aux olives, the Mariage aux lanternes--well, this will be the Mariage en railway, or the Marriage by Steam!
About half an hour ago, or scarcely so much, I was awakened by the opening of the door of the southern transept, and peeping out, I saw three persons--a young man in the dress of a watchman, but evidently disguised, and a very beautiful young woman, conducted by Judith Malmayns, bearing a lantern,--pass through the doorway leading to Saint Faith's.
"Then we lit the lanterns and went upstairs.
"Yes--have ye any lanterns?--I demand it!"
A lady must not be escorted home from an evening party by a gentleman, but by a servant with a lantern; and as the streets have no lamps, I never could see the breaking-up of any such entertainment without recalling Retzsch's quaint pictures of the little German towns, and the burghers plodding home with their lanterns,--unless, perchance, what a foreign friend of ours called a "sit-down chair" came rattling by, and transferred our associations to Cranford and Mr. Winkle.
Messer Giovanni shares with Cavaliere Salvestro the undying fame of having raised, upon the excellent foundation laid by their ancestors, the massive supporting walls of that superb edifice, of which his son, Cosimo, formed the cupola, and his great-grandson, Lorenzo--the lantern--"the Light of Italy."
The moon came up into a pretty cloudless sky, and she was bright, but not bright enough to out-shine the enlightened flight of the ocean, which that night was one continuous swamp of Jack-o'-lantern phosphorescence, a wild but faint luminosity mingled with stars and flashes of brilliance, the whole trooping unanimously eastward, as if in haste with elfin momentous purpose, a boundless congregation, in the sweep of a strong oceanic current.
At noon the air was muddy brown, with a bitter taste like watered smoke; at night it was a blinding pall; and though, after mid-December, by order of the Council, every alderman and burgess hung a light before his door, torches, links, and candles only sputtered feebly in the gloom, of no more use than jack-o'-lanterns gone astray, and none but blind men knew the roads.