* Amusing Trial
|LIFE OF CARDINAL MEZZOFANTI|
Home > Mezzofanti > Biography > 1831 to 1833 > Amusing Trial
"One day," says M. Manavit, "Gregory XVI. provided an agreeable surprise for the polyglot prelate, and a rare treat for himself, in an improvised conversation in various tongues—a regular linguistic tournament. Among the mazy alleys of the Vatican gardens, behind one of the massive walls of verdure which form its peculiar glory, the Pope placed a certain number of the Propaganda students in ambuscade. When the time came for his ordinary walk, he invited Mezzofanti to accompany him ; and, as they were proceeding gravely and solemnly, on a sudden, at a given signal, these youths grouped themselves for a moment on their knees before his Holiness, and then, quickly rising, addressed themselves to Mezzofanti, each in his own tongue, with such an abundance of words and such a volubility of tone, that, in the jargon of dialects, it was almost impossible to hear, much less to understand them. But Mezzofanti did
not shrink from the conflict. With the promptness and address which were peculiar to him, he took them up singly, and replied to each in his own language, with such spirit and elegance as to amaze them
|Copyright 2009 - All rights reserved|
No part of this website may be copied by any means without my written authorization.
Printed from http://how-to-learn-any-language.com/e/mezzofanti/biography/10.8-trial-of-skill.html