It is appropriate that the poet Shelley, also, should be buried here, for of this cemetery he had written, "It might make one in love with death to think that one should be buried in so sweet a place." In fact, less than a year had elapsed after the death of Keats, when Shelley's heart (the only portion of his body unconsumed upon the funeral pyre) was brought hither by Lord Byron for its final resting-place. Upon the tombstone, therefore, are inscribed the words, "Cor Cordiam" - A heart of hearts. I cannot think of any spot on earth more suitable for a poet's grave than this; not only from its natural beauty, but from the fact that when a flood of sunset glory turns these paths to gold, and one looks upward from them to Rome's seven hills, the solemn and unrivaled memories of the place suggest repose and peace, and sad, poetic dreams of days that are no more.
A little distant from the Appian Way are the enormous ruins of the Baths of Car-acalla. There is nothing now in the world that corresponds to the magnificent establishments of ancient Rome which her Emperors founded to contribute to the cleanliness, pleasures, and luxuries of the people. They were not merely baths on a lavish and prodigious scale, but, also, formed the meeting places of literary men, where lectures were delivered, poems read, and philosophical themes debated. Athletes gave exhibitions there of skill and strength. Musicians showed their talents, and every form of physical improvement was competently taught and sedulously cultivated in their various halls. It has been calculated that sixty-two thousand people could have bathed at any hour in the public baths of Rome, not to mention the smaller establishments in private houses. Some of the noblest works of art which had been brought to Rome from Greece and other conquered countries were placed in these resorts. One statue, by Lysippus, which now stands in the Vatican and represents an athlete scraping the oil from his arm, was such a favorite with the public that when Tiberius removed it to his palace, popular indignation compelled him to return it to its former position in the Baths of Agrippa. Whatever may be said of the moral delinquencies of the old Romans, they certainly were physically clean. The Emperor Commodus used to bathe eight times a day, and even took his meals in a bath.
The Baths Of Caracalla.
It was customary for wealthy Romans to bathe at least twice a day, the baths being followed by sprinkling with perfumed water, anointing with fine lubricant oil, and massage. An enormous number of slaves were always in attendance at the Roman baths, thoroughly skilled in administering to the physical requirements of the bathers. Among them were tailors who cleaned and pressed clothes, barbers, masseurs, shampoo-ers, anointers, chiropodists, manicures, and men who extracted superfluous hairs.
The Baths of Caracalla were enclosed by porticos nearly a mile in length, where those who had bathed could take gentle exercise while conversing with their friends. Within the limits of this establishment were, also, luxuriant gardens and a courtyard for gymnastic exercises. Here, too, was a reservoir surrounded by sixteen hundred seats of sculptured marble, and in its largest pool three thousand people could bathe at one time. The ruins of the Baths of Caracalla are now carefully preserved under the supervision of the Government; but, alas! both time and man have injured them so greatly that it is difficult to form more than a vague idea of what their stupendous arches and enormous areas signify. We know, however, that they contained a theatre, a museum, a library, and halls for conversation, study, and oratory, all of them decorated with the choicest works of art, fine marble, and beautiful mosaics. It is not strange, therefore, that the Romans who had leisure for such occupations passed many hours every day at the baths. They were the most luxurious of clubs, where, in addition to every personal attention, could be enjoyed the society of friends, together with amusements, concerts, recitations, and gymnastic exercises. Excavations have, also, revealed the fact that beneath this vast establishment were subterranean passages with frequent entrances to the main floor above, so that the servants of the place could go from one part of the building to another without crossing the rooms and mingling with the assembled crowds of patricians.