"Skizzen aus England. II"

Name of traveller

Johann Jakob Honegger (1825-1896)

Reason for travel

  • leisurely travel

Date of travel

August 1883

Die Mondnacht, eine große Jubelfeier der Natur, wird mir unvergeßlich bleiben; das Wellengemurmel mit seinen traulichen Tönen hat sich in meine Seele geschlichen; noch hör' ich's am Riff abprallen; und noch stehen die sylphenartig auf dem Sande dahinschwebenden Frauengestalten wie lichte Feen vor dem Auge, ein süßer Traum. (Honegger 557)


  • architecture:
    • reference to St Giles' Church in Wrexham as one of the Seven Wonders of Wales
    • use of natural stone gives houses a dark character; mood lightened by small, colourful gardens
  • customs:
    • perceives a distinct, gritty Celticness in Welsh folk culture in contrast to characterless Englishness
    • encounter with children in Dolgellau and fishermen in Barmouth who sing folk songs in exchange for money
    • finds the indomitable character of the Welsh nation fully expressed and preserved in folk songs and tunes
  • history: ancient ruins reflect pre-modern history of Roman and Norman rule in Wales
  • industry: slate mining industry as one of the most important sectors of employment in north Wales
  • language:
    • sketches composition and meaning of Welsh place names
    • notes the retreat of the Welsh language
  • literature:
    • contains a situational poem by the author
    • character of ancient myths in Wales is indebted to the geographical properties of the land
  • people:
    • evaluates the physiognomy of the Welsh as a sign of their distinction as an ancient people
    • brief reference to the Ladies of Llangollen, Eleanor Charlotte Butler (1739-1829) and Sarah Ponsonby (1755-1831)
  • recreation:
    • pedestrian tour of north Wales
    • Dolgellau is perfectly situated for undertaking numerous pedestrian excursions
    • describes a day's excursion to Aberystwyth; not impressed by the town and makes a quick escape
  • territory:
    • geography of north Wales noted for its picturesque landscapes
    • many romaticised, emotional descriptions of towns and villages and the surrounding landscape which varies between woodland and mountains free of vegetation
    • strictly speaking, the mountains of north Wales are hills, but share many characteristics with the Alps of Switzerland and Tyrol
    • Llangollen and surroundings described as the most ideal place for retreating into retirement
    • north Wales as a predominantly rural and sparsely inhabited area
    • the summer weather has a great influence on the character of the landscape; fog increases the romantic atmosphere
    • character of the Mawddach valley similar to the Rhine valley
    • greatly impressed by views of the sea
  • transport: travels on foot and by train

Nationality of traveller


Language of publication


Gender of traveller


Type of publication

serialised travelogue


Honegger, J[ohann] J[akob]. "Skizzen aus England. II." Unsere Zeit. Deutsche Revue der Gegenwart 21.1 (1885): 551-559.