Wednesday, 21 December 1864

Cornigliano. 21 December 1864. (70) Watercolor and sepia ink over graphite on cream paper. 17.3 x 56 cm.

Cornigliano. 21 December 1864. (70) Watercolor and sepia ink over graphite on cream paper. 17.3 x 56 cm.

Refreshed by a long night’s sleep. But, the morning being very heavy & gray, G. did not call me till 7.15. As I rose, it grew more hopeful, so, coffee not being visible so early, we set off at 7.45 ― & had coffee in the shop below. Verily ― magnificent as is Genova, walking in nailed shoes on its pavements, delights not. At the Rail, found there was no train to Voltri till 9.46, so it was cheaper to walk than wait from 8.15. Whereby we walked ― the road to the Lanterna is painful ― cars ― omnibuses, & slipperiness. Beyond, the whole line of hill to C. delle Mele, & the 1000 houses in town & village is a “marvel.” ― S. Pier d’Aréna is compoged [sic] of vast warehouses ― a tramway in one street ― but 2 or 3 parallel streets form the town. To make a short cut, we went askew, but only came to a vast foundry, whence issued 1000 or more men to breakfast: a sight. Next, a broad ruin; but intelligent small boys directed us along it to the high road & a big (Durazzo,) bridge, wh. led to Conegliáno. Here again, a most obliging man went out of his way to show me the station. We were there by 9.30. ― At 9.50 train ― & 2nd class very comfortable places to Voltri by 10.20. Hence I walked thro’ the town, on 2 tours, ― & drew quietly: no one bothers: ― & then returned, repassing the Voltri station at 11.40. ― & drawing beyond it near Prà. All these places are nearly one shore=town. The infinite drying of all the lines out of all the windows is a chief characteristic, ― but the extreme [loveliness of general color, arising mainly from the][1] beauty of many of the villas, ― coloured & brilliant, ― can’t be given, tho’ it is one of the very first characteristics of Genoa Contorni.[2] At Pra, drew the coast, ^[12.30] now very clear, & then on to Pegli ― more of a town than Pra: ― draw again near Pegli till 1.30 ― & then go on, till we reach the Trattoria della Marina, where we have good fish, & a sort of Irish Stew, olives, & a bottle of really good wine for 4fr. This half hour, the bright sun & ships beyond, & quiet within, with G, gravely moderately eating & saying “ὡραία εἷναι,”[3]made a pleasant memory. At 2. away: & walked on through Lestri,[4] wh. contains many beautiful & superb villas, but I drew none ― since none would combine with the coast, & could only be drawn as elevations. At 3.45 ― went off to the beach at Cornigliáno, & drew the outline of Genoa, & then on again, & by 4.30 were at Sampierd’arena, & then & thus to the Lanterna ― after which noise & misery abounded till at 6 we reached the Hotel de Grande Bretagne. “Cleaned” & a most excellent dinner, μόνος.[5]

(The Marine Trattoria is by Francesco Gorgillo. ―)

Τώρα εἶναι ὀχτὼ, καὶ ἒγραψα τοῦτο.[6]

The weather has been lovely, ὡραίος καὶ καθαρός καὶ ὁ ἥλιος ἐκατέβη καλῶς.[7]


[1] Added I na note at the bottom of the page.

[2] Lear probably meant “dintorni,” i.e. “the surrounding area.”

[3] It’s nice.

[4] This must be “Sestri Ponente.”

[5] Alone.

[6] It is now 8 o’clock, and I wrote this (NB).

[7] Nice and clear and the sun set well (NB).


[Transcribed by Marco Graziosi from Houghton Library, Harvard University, MS Eng. 797.3. Image.]

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