Diary Comparison

Tuesday 29th July 1834

Ann Walker’s Entry

Anne Lister’s Entry

At 9 – off to Aix, saw waterfall of Gresy, where in 182513. Madame de Bourc [de Broc] – maid of honor to [gap] met her death by falling into one of the crevices; in the endeavour to extricate her, her gown gave way, which made her head bound against the side of the rock & the blow killed her; her husband was killed in Napoleon’s campaign in Russia that day twelvemonths preceding – then to Lake Bourget which we crossed in a boat with a french lady & gent[leman] & their little girl from Lyons, to the Monastery of Hautecombe, where the Sardinia Kings, till the last 5 generations were buried – all the tombs are of Seyssel stone which is quite white, but the whiteness has more the hue of plaster of Paris then of marble – there are four large [word crossed out] paintings, one of Christ in the Temple & the Magi very good, & two others, one of Christ healing the young man at the pool of Bethesda & [gap] saw a small brick chapel near, & the sculptor’s studio – as well as the apartments for the king & queen – waterfall of & intermittent fountain, but no water in it at the time we were there: on return to boat. french gent[leman] very cross said we had kept him waiting ¾ hour – conversation about Grande Chartreuse gent[leman] said no ladies were never admitted – at Aix went to château only just in time for their carriage broke down – Temple of Diana converted into a Theatre, the walls are composed of very large stones, regularly compacted one above another without cement. close to it is a new building, containing ball rooms library &c. – balls every night in small salon, & on thursdays & sunday every week in the large salon – L’Arc de Campanus. An hour in getting carriage repaired walked in Mademoiselle de Verney’s garden – & went to a bookseller’s, dark soon after we left Aix, at Chambery at 10 o’clock – house quite full, very poor dinner.

Courtesy of West Yorkshire Archive Service, Calderdale WYC:1525/7/1/5/1/20

[up at] 7
[to bed at] 12 1/4

no kiss very fine morning – Fahrenheit 71° at 8 – breakfast at 8 1/2 – Off in caleche (taking both the servants) at 9 3/4 – fine drive – the valley of Chambery enclosed by fine Salève-like but wooded mountains very fine – the Dent de Nivolet a bare hoary limestone head a striking object on our right – Enter Aix at 11 10/.. – at the roadside near Gressy at 11 38/.. walked down a little way to the corn and rape oil mill in whose premises is the famous cascade – very little water – the limestone rock left bare so that we could well see the holes into which it is water worn – 10 June, 1813, there was merely a plank over the hole (14 feet deep) in which Madame la baronne de Broc was lost – now there is a good step-ladder over it with a rail on each side, and no danger at all – merely a cottage near the roadside where we alighted and a swarm of children tormenting us with who should shew us to the cascade – the clefts down which the water falls into a sort of basin below the mill very pretty now – must be very much so, and fine when the water is abundant, foaming and gushing in on all sides – off from Gressy at 12 and at Port Puer on the lake de Bourget in 22 minutes – a boat just putting with a Lyons tradesman and his wife and child and bonne, so that we were embarked and off at 12 25/.. – in 36 minutes 1/2 way, and landed at Hautecombe at 1 53/.. – Lake 4 lieues by 1 – 466 feet deep about the middle over against St. Innocent which belongs or did formerly to the Marquis de St. Innocent – the fishermen of all the towns on the lake take it of government at 4500 francs a year paid quarterly – 2 trout caugh[t] the other day weighing 25 pounds each, worth 5 francs a pound! the dead to be buried at Hautecombe are embarked at a village above St. Innocent, at Brison a village of 26 houses – the lake shut in East and West by high calcareous, hoary, wooded mountains in the style of Annecy, and North by the castle topped conical mountain of Châtillon, and South by the distant snow-striped mountains of Montmélian and Dauphiné – Hautecombe about 2/3 up the lake on the west is a fine large building – on the same side seeming about midway between there and Aix is the vaunted dent du chat – the wind a little against in going but the water very smooth – Adney rather frightened but behaved very well – the water was smooth as glass both ways particularly in returning – on landing, wanted to buy some fish from one of the boats – Lavarets (salmo Lavaretus, Linnaeus) weighing 1 pound each, asked 4 francs a piece and would only come down to 3/75 so did not buy any – the boatman said they would sell them at 3/. each at Aix – many strangers at the convent – 10 white monks of St. Bernard or Benoit – went immediately to the church several people there – a monk explaining – found him very civil – the church will be done in November – all the sculpture done in pierre de Seyssel (the quarry in France part of the territory of Savoy, said the monk) which looked so exactly as if it had been white-washed that we thought it was till convinced to the contrary – the fine fresco-paintings in the church and palace done by Vacca of Turin, the sculpture very good by Caracciatori /Cacciatori/ of Carrara – went into his atelier – said there were 60 ateliers in Carrara – they themselves had a good deal of sculpture there ready done – the natural size whole length figures 3000 francs each – the church very handsome – the palace merely a good house but remarkable for its fine fresco plafonds by Vacca – the view from our windows over the lake to the south very fine – beautiful lake – the last 5 generations of the House of Savoy (except the last King Charles Felix by his especial desire) all buried in the Superga at Turin – about 25 of this house buried at Hautecombe – saw the little Chapel of St. Andre with its modern thin octagon? red brick tower, to serve as a sort of pharos to the lake – the windows of this tower painted (beautifully) by a German artist of Berne in Switzerland – about 2 years ago some political letters or papers found in his possession that he was threatened with prison, and went to Lyons leaving his brother behind him to fulfil his engagements as an artist – but the matter is now likely to be settled, and the artist to return to Berne – he has still 3 windows to paint for the chapel – at 4 35/.. went to the house of the concierge de palais and begged the favour of being to take our luncheon there – all the other people dined sur l’herbe – off to the Fountain at 4 1/4 and there in 7 minutes dragging on Adney after me, tho’ they said we should be 20 minutes in going – hardly any water – too little to shew the intermittent nature of the spring – but glad to have gone on account of the view of the head of the lake – by the canal from there to the Rhone said we could go to Lyons in 3 days – walked some little distance beyond the fountain and sauntered back in 1/4 hour – the Lyons people had waited 1/2 hour for us – reembarked and off at 4 47/.. – cooler – merely a nice breath of air – the beautiful blue lake smooth as glass – landed at Port Puer at 5 49/.. single house merely an auberge there, and little landing place – paid 3/. par personne for our voyage, and off again in our caleche (the man had taken his horses and dined at Aix) for Aix at 5 58/.. – alighted at the chateau at 6 13/.. just in time – the fore bed of the carriage was broken that another instant and the horses and fore wheels would have left us in the lurch – saw the handsome new Salle de Danse joined on to the chateau – and the library one wall of which is left in its old state to shew the large uncemented stones of the Roman temple of Diana – the adjoining building (now converted into a theatre) was the temple – we went behind and underneath the scenes and saw the old Roman style of building – then not knowing what to do with ourselves turned into the court of the house of les demoiselles de Vernay, let to several families – walked in the nice garden – should be very well there and living from a traiteur – at last thought of the bookseller’s shop in the Place – amused there looking at prints and books – bought two different Aix guides – off from Aix at 7 3/4 and home at 9 1/4 – dinner at 9 50/.. – very fine day and evening – Fahrenheit 73° at 11 p.m. –

Courtesy of West Yorkshire Archive Service, Calderdale SH:7/ML/E/17/0065

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