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La Madelaine: it is about 600 or 700 feet across. This lake is supposed to be the source also of the Ubayette a stream on the side of France; for, at a short distance from the col on that side, and a little below the level of the lake, a springthe source of the Ubayette-gushes out: this spring, it is believed, communicates with the lake.

From the summit the view is very extensive, especially towards France, looking down the course of the Ubayette towards L'Arche, the frontier station of the French douane. Below L'Arche there is little interest in the scenery. The road descends through the villages of Certamusa and Meyronne to the junction of the Ubayette with the Ubaye, where two roads lead into the Embrunnais, the principal following the course of the Ubaye to Barcelonnette, the other leading by the camp of Tournoux, the village of St. Paul, and the Col de Vars, to Guillestre and the valley of the Durance.

The scene is fine from where these roads separate. Châtelard, in a well-cultivated little plain, is left on the right, and the road passes on through Jausier. There is not much interest generally in the scenery except at Pont de Cluse, near Jausier, where the rocky defile through which the Úbaye struggles offers some fine points of view.

Barcelonnette has 2200 inhabitants, and a very decent inn. The town is larger and better built than one would expect to find in a valley so sequestered, and having so little communication with the rest of the world.

It is chiefly inhabited by the proprietors, of the Alps and pasturages of the valley. More than 100,000 sheep are pastured in its communes from their wool, some coarse goods, consumed chiefly by the inhabitants, are made; there is much corn also grown in the valley; but for almost every thing else they are indebted to strangers, in other valleys or other countries; it is not long that the cultivation of potatoes has been practised among them.

This valley was known to the Romans, but there is little of its history to be relied upon, except in connection with that of Embrun, which has been better preserved. It is known that it was subjected to irruptions by Saxons and by Saracens, who made their way from Marseilles; these were defeated by Charles Martel. Under Charlemagne France had the benefit of a protecting government. In the sixth century, a convent of Benedictines established here did much to ameliorate the condition of the inhabitants of the valley; but all the wars in which Provence has been engaged have extended their horrors in this valley, and it was often liable to the irruptions of the Saracens, particularly in the tenth century. From the fourteenth century, it was alternately subjected to Savoy or France: Amadeus conquered it in 1388. It was reattached

to Provence by René of Anjou in 1447; it was again taken by the duke of Savoy, Charles III., in 1537. In the middle of the sixteenth century, the inhabitants adopted the reformed doctrines, but they were shortly after either forced to abjure them, or were expelled their country.

Napoleon contemplated the construction of a new road through the valley of Barcelonnette to pass the Col d'Argentière and enter Piedmont, by the Val de Stura. Since his abdication the idea seems to have been abandoned; but its benefits to 20,000 inhabitants of the valley, by the greater development of their energies and the increased prosperity of Barcelonnette, ought to have some weight with the government of France.

There are many communications with the neighbouring valleys, by passes in the mountains; as with Embrun by the Col de la Vacherie, and with Colmar and Allos by the valleys of the Tinea and the Varo, which discharge their streams, near Nice.

Soon after leaving Barcelonnette near the village of St. Pons, the ruins of an old castle are seen in a fine situation.

The roads down the valley of Barcelonnette are in so wretched a state, that the want of embankments exposes the inhabitants of the valley to the frequent loss of communication, from the destructive effects of the torrents. Not far below Barcelonnette, it is necessary to ford the beds of the Bachelar, the Rio Bourdon, and other torrents, for want of bridges.

The first large village below Barcelonnette is La Thuiles, and the next after crossing the Ubaye by a wooden bridge, Méolans, thence down the valley, there is a tolerable char road. Amidst dreary and wild scenes, the general character of the valley of Barcelonnette, there is, however, a striking exception in a village beautifully situated, called

La Lauzette, the Goshen of the valley. It is agreeably wooded: near it is a little lake which abounds in fine trout, and in the immediate neighbourhood are fruit trees and a fertile soil. A little way, however, below the village, the scene changes again to sterility. After crossing a ridge, a series of tourniquets leads down the pass of La Tour, or, as it is called, the Chemin Royal: a part of the road in the valley admirably made; but, unconnected as it is with the country above or below by any road so good, it is worthless.

Below these tourniquets the valley offers some of its most wild and grand scenes. On looking back from the path carried along the brink of the precipices high above the torrent, the Ubaye is seen in its deep course issuing from the defile of La Tour, and beyond, the grand forms of the mountain of Cugulion des Trois Evêques, which divides the valley of

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Barcelonnette from that of the Var, the scene is one of savage dreariness.

The road continues on the left bank of the river high above its bed; until, leaving the side of the hill upon which the fort of St. Vincent is placed, a very difficult path leads down to the river, which is crossed to arrive at the little village of Ubaye.

From this place, one road passes down by the river to its confluence with the Durance at La Brioule; and another, up the side of the mountain to the Col de Pontis, which leads to Savines on the Durance, in the high road from Gap to Embrun, which is distant from Savines, 8 miles (Route 185.).

From the ascent to the Col de Pontis, on looking back towards the valley of the Ubaye, the hill of St. Vincent is a strikingly fine object, surmounted by forts which formerly guarded the entrance to the valley of Barcelonnette, when it was under the dominion of Sardinia. By a wise arrangement, it was ceded to France in exchange for the valleys of Pragelas and Exilles, when the states of France and Sardinia prudently agreed upon the chain of the high Alps as their line of demarcation.

ROUTE 135.


27 1/2 Posts, about 115 English Miles.

The road quits Turin by the Porto Nuovo, and continues by the side of the river Po, to

2 1/4 Carignano. This town, of 7200 inhabitants on its left bank, has long been an appanage to the younger branch of the royal family of Sardinia, who purchased it from the Marquises of Romagnano; the son of the king bears the title of Prince of Carignan. The objects best worth notice here are, the Church, the marble tomb of Blanche of Montferrat, and the equestrian statue of Jacques Provana.

The Po is crossed a mile or two after quitting the town. 2 1/4 Racconigi, a town of 10,000 inhabitants, on the banks of the Maira. The Palace of the Prince of Carignan, recently fitted up, and the park attached to it, merit notice.

1 1/2 Savigliano, a town of 15,000 inhabitants, still retaining its ancient fortifications, though no longer a place of strength. At the end of the principal street is a Triumphal Arch, erected in honour of the marriage of Victor Amadeus with the Princess Christine of France.

2 1/4 Centallo.

1 1/2 Coni, or Cuneo. Inn: La Posta, a good sleeping place. An episcopal city, with a population of 18,000 souls, and once a strong fortress, of which conspicuous mention is

made in all the campaigns of Italy, down to the time of the battle of Marengo; after which its fortifications were demolished by the French, and converted into agreeable promenades (Route 134.).

The fatality of the cholera at Coni, in 1835, was greater than in any other part of Europe.

About 6 miles beyond this city, the road quits the great plain of the Po and its tributaries, to dive into the recesses of the mountains. The ascent thus far from Turin is scarcely perceptible. Near San Dalmazzo, distinguished by its ancient Benedictine abbey, the Monte Viso is seen in clear weather towering over the intervening Alps, and the general line of the range in colossal elevation. Its snow-clad peakrising more than 12,000 feet above the sea level, is a truly magnificent object.

From San Dalmazzo a road turnsoff on the west to the Col d'Argentière, and to Barcelonnette in France. See Route 135. 1 3/4 Robillante.

1 Limone, the station of the douaniers, who annoy travellers coming from Nice, though it is under the same government, as much as if they came from France or the Milanese. Here a bridge of nine arches was built by Victor Amadeus, to carry the road over the torrent of the Vermenagno.

The next stage comprises the ascent of the col which is surmounted by skilfully constructed terraces, forming a series of zigzags. About halfway from the summit, an attempt was made by the former princes of Savoy, and continued down to the French occupation in 1794, to bore a tunnel through the mountain, and thus avoid altogether the tedious passage over its crest. If completed, it would have been more than a mile and a half long, and would have surpassed every similar work in the Alps.

The culminating point is a narrow ridge, 6162 feet above the sea. On the north and west it commands a fine view of the Alps from Monte Viso to Monte Rosa; while, on the south, the Mediterranean may be faintly discerned. Near the top there is a house of refuge: a succession of more than fifty zigzags conducts the road down to

4 Tende (Inn, Hôtel Royal, good), a little town on the Roya. Here are the picturesque ruins of a castle, the residence formerly of the counts of Tende.

The narrow defile of the Roya presents some striking scenes, especially near Saorgio, where a fort perched on a rocky knoll commands the passage of the gorge. It was taken by the French in the campaign of 1791. Below Saorgio there is a very savage defile, through which the road passes on the banks of the Roya to

2 1/4 Ghiandola. At the little inn on the Roya here, excellent trout may be procured. This is the best sleeping quarters between Coni and Nice. This village is very pretty, and most beautifully situated in the vale of the Roya, though overhung by abrupt and barren peaks.

The road now crosses the Col de Brovis, a spur or off-set from the main chain of Alps, 4277 feet high. At its south base, close under the hill, lies

2 1/2 Sospello, deep sunk in the little vale of the Bevera, I which abounds in thick woods, in olives, and figs. The Bevera forms a junction with the Roya about 12 miles below Ghiandola, and thence flows 4 miles further into the Mediterranean at Ventimiglia. Inn detestable; musquitoes in myriads.

Another minor ridge, called the Col de Braus, 3845 feet above the sea, remains to be surmounted before the traveller descends into the valley of the river Paglione, to reach 2 1/4 La Scarena.

The sudden transition from the bleak and bare ridges of limestone, traversed by the road, to the luxuriant vegetation and high cultivation of the Riviera, is very striking. 2 1/2 NICE, in Route 136.

ROUTE 136.


35 3/4 Posts, about 130 Eng. Miles.

This road, commonly called the Riviera, is decidedly one of the most interesting routes into Italy. It is less a pass of the Alps than a road by which they may be avoided, as it is carried all along the shores or on slopes of the subalpine chain, just before it dips into the sea. It is not liable, like other passes into Italy, to be obstructed by snow, on which account it is to be preferred to all other roads to or from that country in the winter season.

This route along the Maritime Alps, was the earliest passage frequented by the Romans it was called the Via Aurelia, and was the first which they carried out of Italy beyond the Alps. Cæsar entered Italy, this way when about to encounter Pompey, and cross the Rubicon,—a circumstance alluded to by Virgil:

Aggeribus socer Alpinis, atque arce Monœci,
Descendens, gener adversis instructus Eois,

The Cornice is, as its name implies, a ledge cut in the sides of the mountains which overhang the sea in this route, and combines the advantage of alpine scenery possessing all

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