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Monte Carlo

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The readers of the Cociuer who liave visited the beautiful shores of the Mediterranean, will recall the rocky promontory of Monaco, pushiug its liigh, bold almost circular formation farout iuto tlu blue waters. The climate is one of the most delightful in Europe, and oranges, lemoiip, limes, and other tropical fruits grow tliere in abundance all the year round. The principality of Monaco is governed by a sovereign prince, and his empire extends over au area of about slx square miles. The town, which is built upon the promontory, contains aboul 2,700 inhabitants, and here in a large, old-fashioned, somewhnt extensive pal ace, lives the ruler of this vast domain in wealtli and luxury. Hls standing army eonsistsof a brilliant company of seventyfive men, the officers of which are gentlemen whose plumage compares favorabl}' with tho most showy birds of the forest. The entire number of subjects over whom thls prince sways the scepter is less t han 7,000. They are apparently a contented people, living in pleasant homes, and the entire territory has a thrifty air of prosperity and unusual cultivation. The roads are kept wlth a ncutness and care uuknown in this country, and the whole land seeins smiling and in sympathy with the blue skies and balmy air lliat liave won for the Itallan climate the envy atid the praise of all the world. It is said that the people of this favored land pay no taxes, repair no roads, build no bridges, have no public expenses, and scarcely appreciate that they live under a government that protects and provides for their welfare without calling upon them to share any of its burdens. The secret of this wonderful .pheuonienon lies in the fact that about a mile away trom the town of Monaco islocuted the famous gumbling resort of Monte Cario. For the privilege of carrying on, unobstructed and protected by law, this vast gambling establishment, lts owners pay a large annual sum to the'l'iiucc, pay the taxes of the people, keep the brldgM in order, and, in short, like a falrr, MW the peoplo fiom the avance of the Prince as well as the visits of the tax-gatherer. Monte Cario mn.-t bo seen to be appreriaicd. Itcannntbe tidy Oeserlbea it oectlpleg a slielr of tabfe-land of a few acres, pushed out at the base of the mountain, diiectly upon the shore of the Mediterranean. Here everything that art and nature combined can do has heen done to makc this spot one of surpassing loveliness. The sea front is protected by a noble wall, and upon its top is a white marble fence of great beauty, with broad marble balustrade, which protects uil visitors from accident in that quarter. The imposing stairways which at several pointg are provided for guests are made of white marble, ampie enougti In -svuitli lui a duAO poopln ta xxrüllf fthrfiaSt. The sides are carefully protected by balustrades of marble, while the grand entrance, flfty feet in width, sweeps in graceful curves from the sea to the gardens, the steps only a few inehes in height, laid in Moeaic work of white pebbles and fortilied each side with the sanie marble banisters of architectural dlgnlty and grace. On reaching the gardens the visitor finds himself confronted wlth visions of tropical beauty. Before liim lie the beautlful waters of the Alediterranean. If the day is clear, the air is so pure the visitor can see, sixty or seventy miles in the distance, the island of Corsica, wherc Napoleon was bom. Overhead au Italian sky spreads its heavenly covering. In the background the great mountain rungo of the Alps can be seen for miles away lifting their lofty sumniita to the clouds. The garelen themse'.ves are picturesque, resplendent uit h tropical llowers, plants, and fruits. The tall palms, the flowerlng cactus, the orange and lenion trees, the beds of varlagfltéd flowers of every hue, tlie air ladea with perfume, the luxuriant foliage of trees artistically arranged to secare privacy and retirement, tho invitiug walks and still more nviting rural seats protected from the sun, all go to make what may be called without extravagance an earthly paradise. At the head of the chief avenuo stands the Casino, the Mecca of the ganibling fraternity of the world. It is a larce, bandtome palace, two stories in height. lts interior is finished with costly eleIjancc and contuins, on the ground floor, % largo theatre or concert room, library, drawlng-room, and the magnifleent ■l ainhling saloons for the players. Heru, Trom morning until midnight, a surglng crowd is ever present. The tables ar covered with gold and bank notes, and no sound Is heard save the voices of the croupiers, who c:ill upon the players to make their game, declare the resul t, and then rake the profiis to the bank and pay the winners with extraordinary rapidity. In these rooms humlreds of thousauds of dollars are lost and won in a day. The prniHs ol the Imnk last year were said to be i:t. 000,000. In these rooms every Batían is daily represented. Tlie people of Monaco are not allowed to enter the building, nor in any manner gainble with the bank. The place r Baored to strangers. TIn' Uussians, Poles, Euglish, Ameiicans, Spanish, Italians, Germans, French, nll jostle againsteach other here, and the visitor can almost any time have polnted out to hini tome of the wealthiest nobles and most distingiiished statesmen of Euiope. The noted gamblers, tlie tyro at ganiine, and the veteran of a lifetime, oíd age and hopeful youth, all bent on trying the hazards of the tables, are tiere to be seen. The scène Is most attractive in the evening, when amid blazIng chandellers, tlie decoratlons and gpTendorj of the saloons are more clearly visiblo, and well-lresied men and brilliantly arrayeil women 1111 the gorgemis apartmeiits, and make a picture dazzllhg and bewildering. It Is a study worthy of Hogarth'a pencil. Some lose their money almost with agony, or win with supreme satisfactiou. Others school themselves to win or lose without emotion. The samo women occupy the same chairs season after senson. They btïgan at Baden Baden, then followed the game to Hamburgh, and linallv to Monaco. The sums they have wou and lost in all these years are snmething startllng, but the excitement of gaming is necessary to their existence, and so long as their fortunes last they will play to the end. The broken-hearted, ruined player is ahvays too well bred to show nny sign of his miiciy. lie loses his last Napoleon, bows quietly and pleasantly to the croupiers, walks tlignilied through the brilliant tlirong, goes over to the hotel and takes his parting drink of brandy or cordial, calmly retires to a sheltered part of the grounds away from observation, puts the pistol to his head, and in a moment tho chcrished son, the brother, husband, or the father, is no more. Duriug a single winter as many as two or three dozen such cases occur, sorae of tberu of the most painful, patlietic character. Among the players at Monte Cario one BUtnuier, was a young, bright Englishman, accompanied by his mother. He was sciircely more than a boy, with a fresh, fair face, evidently enjoying the freedom of his manhood with unusua relish. 1 1 is passion lor play was absorbi;, andat times his luck phenomenal. Kor a long time fortune favored him, and he would often sweep from the tables into his soft bat a pocket full of Napoleous. These he would gleefully show to his mother, exchange them for notes with the manager, put the büls carelessly in hls pocket, and then go out to ride or walk with his companlon. After two or three months it was evident frorn the careworn look and somewhat neglected appearance of the young man that luck was against him. His jaunty air was gone. He was no longer confident, played with great caution, and with smaller sums. At last he eonfined himself wholly to risking a few francs at a time. .It was quite evident fortune had abandoned him, and he was battling with ruin. No entreaty or infliience of his mother could entice him away from the fatal spot, and she wascorapelled to watch day by i'ay his dowuward career of recklessness and folly. One evening she mi9sed him from the hall. He had evidently stolen out without her knowledjre. She waited for a time qnietly for his return, and then selzed with sudden fear, sought eagerly it his room and about his umal haunts. A nnmeless terror crept over her, and she claimed the aid of a pólice detective to help iiml her son. It was late when they began their search. The night wasone of uncommon beauty. The full moon shone with dazïHng whiteneM upon the slecping sea, making it one great sparkling crystal. Every lenf and shrub and tree stood clearly detlned In the mellow lifiht, and the whole earth whs bnthed in new and inatcliless beauty. It seemed alinost impossible that sorrow could lind place in a World so appiirt-ntly pure and perfect. Tlie desolate MTOBBan and her guille moved quietly through the shaded walks and Mclnded spot. The soft air stirrcd thcgraccful palm leaves and breathed a talmy f ragrance over the place. Itcropt Ni and out ol the orange groves, liuu'.iol üboiit the roses, stole softly into the shaded nooks and rural bowers, and genlly caressed with pltylQg touch the silken hair of a pale-f;iced boy lying with his face toward the sky, calm, cold and dead. The mother had fouml her een.


Ann Arbor Courier
Old News