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' - ! fCoutinued fi-oiri p ^ 6 *) ' ' « Cf pop F $ Jii > 4 Yj . When I went 16 St . Vetec ' 3 this morning , the body of oqr $ avj p ur was still lying in sftstte in t ^ e tan > b i » jthe Pauline Chapel , which was 1 iltummited , as before * with an infinity of candles , the light of day being exQjud ef l . jhe pope was at this moment in theSistine Chapel , and there was another service going on in the chapel of the choir attached to the cathedral . In the afternoon I repaired again to the latter , and heard some really fine music—much superior , to my ear , to what I had heard on the Wednesday . As the service was tedious , I strolled out into the body of the
cathedral , where I witnessed a niost singular sight . There was a Cardinal placed on a high seat , and with a golden wand in his hand , with which he touched the heads of a number of persons who came and kneeled down before him . I inquired what was the meaning of this , and was told that it was the giving of absolution for venial sins ; and on inquiring again what these were , I was answered , that they were such as do not endanger the safety of the soul—such as incur purgatory , but not hell . I was astonished at the credulity of the people who could put faith in any such absolution as
this , and could not help suspecting that the very Reverend Cardinal and the priests , his assessors , must see through the farce which they were acting . But there was something more ridiculous immediately after ; for , in returning to the chapel of the choir , I met three processions of penitents , black , white , and red . Each of these men was clothed in a long robe which covered him entirely from head to foot , there being only two little holes near the top for him to see through , and each carried in his hand an immense
wax candle . Their ridiculous appearance was a burlesque upon all religion . The offices of the day were finished by the Pope coming in state into the cathedral and performing some ceremony before the high altar , but I could not get near enough to see what it was , for there was a great crowd and soldiers to keep guard . The relics were also brought out , as on the preceding day : I was not in the nave at the tirne , and if I had been , I could not have seen them very distinctly , as the little gallery from which they are
exhibited is at a great height . Saturday . I went soon after nine in the morning to the fchurch of St . John de Lateran . Just as I arrived , there was a grand procession of priests from the church to the baptistery , which is a separate building . When the whole procession had entered , the officiating Cardinal began by reading what I suppose was the baptismal service , after which he blew upon the water in the font , and put into it three portions of salt and one of oil . The element being thus rendered worthy of its office , the work of baptism was begun with a converted Jew . A cup-full of the water was poured upon his
head , and when this had been well wiped off , a small quantity of oil ; the towel was then applied a second time , and when the form of words was eoneluded , he was presented with a long wax candle , to light him back to his seat , I suppose , though it was all in broad day-light . After him came a Negro boy and two Jewesses , on whom precisely the same ceremony was performed as on the Jew . Some of the noly water was sprinkled on the congregation , and the whole assembly then returned to the church . Here the Cardinal held a grand ordination , the particulars of which , though somewhat tedious , were very singular . I was fortunate in obtaining a good place for seeing , and still more so in having for my next neighbour in the crowd a
( 7431 . )
t ^ dtmNA ^ o& a Totto . ow iGOWr&i ^ W .
Monthly Repository (1806-1838) and Unitarian Chronicle (1832-1833), Nov. 2, 1828, page 743, in the Nineteenth-Century Serials Edition (2008; 2018) ncse.ac.uk/periodicals/mruc/issues/vm2-ncseproduct2566/page/15/