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-here a row of columns, the only remains of a grand temple, there a broken statue of some god or goddess, long lost to sight, and all the earth about so filled with these treasures that one had only to dig to find some hidden work of art. The Roman people, too, were awake to the fact that they were not only living out a marvelous present, but that they were likewise, in their every day life, walking ever in the presence of a still more wonderful past. I wish, while you are thinking about this, that you would get a picture of the Roman Forum and notice its groups of columns, its triumphal arches, its ruined walls. You will then certainly appreciate more fully what Raphael felt as he went about this city of historic ruins.
[Illustration: MADONNA OF THE FISH. Raphael.]
The Pope received the young artist cordially and at once gave him the vast commission of painting in fresco three large rooms, or stanze, of the Vatican. In addition, he was to decorate the gallery, or corridor, cal