Home
  By Author [ A  B  C  D  E  F  G  H  I  J  K  L  M  N  O  P  Q  R  S  T  U  V  W  X  Y  Z |  Other Symbols ]
  By Title [ A  B  C  D  E  F  G  H  I  J  K  L  M  N  O  P  Q  R  S  T  U  V  W  X  Y  Z |  Other Symbols ]
  By Language
all Classics books content using ISYS

Download this book: [ ASCII | HTML | PDF ]

Look for this book on Amazon


We have new books nearly every day.
If you would like a news letter once a week or once a month
fill out this form and we will give you a summary of the books for that week or month by email.

Title: Journal of a Residence in America
Author: Kemble, Fanny
Language: English
As this book started as an ASCII text book there are no pictures available.
Copyright Status: Not copyrighted in the United States. If you live elsewhere check the laws of your country before downloading this ebook. See comments about copyright issues at end of book.

*** Start of this Doctrine Publishing Corporation Digital Book "Journal of a Residence in America" ***

This book is indexed by ISYS Web Indexing system to allow the reader find any word or number within the document.

AMERICA***


generously made available by Internet Archive/American Libraries
(https://archive.org/details/americana)



Note: Images of the original pages are available through
      Internet Archive/American Libraries. See
      https://archive.org/details/journalaresiden01kembgoog



JOURNAL OF A RESIDENCE IN AMERICA.

by

FRANCES ANNE BUTLER

(MISS FANNY KEMBLE).

In One Volume.



Paris,
Published by A. and W. Galignani and Co,
Rue Vivienne, No 18.

1835.



PREFACE.


A preface appears to me necessary to this book, in order that the
expectation with which the English reader might open it should not be
disappointed.

Some curiosity has of late been excited in England with regard to
America: its political existence is a momentous experiment, upon which
many eyes are fixed, in anxious watching of the result; and such
accounts as have been published of the customs and manners of its
societies, and the natural wonders and beauties of its scenery, have
been received and read with considerable interest in Europe. This being
the case, I should be loth to present these volumes to the English
public without disclaiming both the intention and the capability of
adding the slightest detail of any interest to those which other
travellers have already furnished upon these subjects.

This book is, what it professes to be, my personal journal, and not a
history or a description of men and manners in the United States.

Engaged in an arduous profession, and travelling from city to city in
its exercise, my leisure and my opportunities would have been alike
inadequate to such a task. The portion of America which I have visited
has been a very small one, and, I imagine, by no means that from which
the most interesting details are to be drawn. I have been neither to the
south nor to the west; consequently have had no opportunity of seeing
two large portions of the population of this country,--the enterprising
explorers of the late wildernesses on the shores of the
Mississippi,--and the black race of the slave slates,--both classes of
men presenting peculiarities of infinite interest to the traveller: the
one, a source of energy and growing strength, the other, of disease and
decay, in this vast political body.

My sphere of observation has been confined to the Atlantic cities, whose
astonishing mercantile prosperity, and motley mongrel societies, though
curious under many aspects, are interesting but under few.

What I registered were my immediate impressions of what I saw and heard;
of course, liable to all the errors attendant upon first perceptions,
and want of time and occasion for maturer investigation. The notes I
have added while preparing the text for the press; and such opinions and
details as they contain are the result of a longer residence in this
country, and a somewhat better acquaintance with the people of it.

Written, as my journal was, day by day, and often after the fatigues of
a laborious evening's duty at the theatre, it has infinite sins of
carelessness to answer for; and but that it would have taken less time
and trouble to re-write the whole book, or rather write a better, I
would have endeavoured to correct them,--though, indeed, I was something
of Alfieri's mind about it:--"Quanto poi allo stile, io penso di lasciar
fare alla penna, e di pochissimo lasciarlo scostarsi da quella triviale
e spontanea naturalezza, con cui ho scritto quest' opera, dettata dal
cuore e non dall' ingegno; e che sola puo convenire a così umile tema."

However, my purpose is not to write an apology for my book, or its
defects, but simply to warn the English reader, before he is betrayed
into its perusal, that it is a purely egotistical record, and by no
means a history of America.



JOURNAL.


_Wednesday, August 1st, 1832._

Another break in my journal, and here I am on board the Pacific, bound
for America, having left home and all the world behind.--Well!

       *       *       *       *       *

We reached the quay just as the ship was being pulled, and pushed, and
levered to the entrance of the dock;--the quays were lined with people;
among them were several known faces,--Mr. ----, Mr. ----. M---- came on
board to take my letters, and bid me good-by.

       *       *       *       *       *

I had a bunch of carnations in my hand, which I had snatched from our
drawing-room chimney;--English flowers! dear English flowers! they will
be withered long before I again see land; but I will keep them until I
once more stand upon the soil on which they grew.

       *       *       *       *       *

The sky had become clouded, and the wind blew cold.

       *       *       *       *       *

Came down and put our narrow room to rights.

       *       *       *       *       *

Worked at my Bible-cover till dinner-time. We dined at half-past
three.--The table was excellent--cold dinner, because it was the first
day--but every thing was good; and champagne, and dessert, and every
luxury imaginable, rendered it as little like a ship-dinner as might be.
The man who sat by me was an American; very good-natured, and talkative.
Our passengers are all men, with the exception of three; a nice
pretty-looking girl, who is going out with her brother; a fat old
woman, and a fat young one. I cried almost the whole of dinner-time.

       *       *       *       *       *

After dinner the ladies adjourned to their own cabin, and the gentlemen
began to debate about regulating the meal hours. They adopted the
debating society tone, called my poor dear father to the chair, and
presently I heard, oh horror! (what I had not thought to hear again for
six weeks) the clapping of hands. They sent him in to consult us about
the dinner-hour: and we having decided four o'clock, the debate
continued with considerable merriment. Presently my father, Colonel
----, and Mr. ----, came into our cabin:--the former read us Washington
Irving's speech at the New-York dinner. Some of it is very beautiful;
all of it is in good feeling--it made me cry. Oh my home, my land,
England, glorious little England! from which this bragging big baby was
born, how my heart yearns towards your earth! I sat working till the
gentlemen left us, and then wrote journal.

       *       *       *       *       *

I am weary and sad, and will try to go and sleep.--It rains: I cannot
see the moon.


_Thursday, 2d._

It rained all night, and in the morning the wind had died away, and we
lay rocking, becalmed on the waveless waters. At eight o'clock they
brought me some breakfast, after which I got up; while dressing, I could
not help being amused at hearing the cocks crowing, and the cow lowing,
and geese and ducks gabbling, as though we were in the midst of a
farm-yard. At half-past ten, having finished my toilet, I emerged; and
Miss ---- and I walked upon deck. The sea lay still, and grey, without
ridge or sparkle, a sheet of lead; the sky was of the same dull colour.
The deck was wet and comfortless. We were but just off Holyhead: two or
three ships stood against the horizon, still as ourselves. The whole was
melancholy:--and, sadder than all, sat a poor woman, dressed in
mourning, in a corner of the deck; she was a steerage passenger, and I
never saw so much sorrow in any face. Poor thing! poor thing! was her
heart aching for home, and kindred left behind her? It made mine ach to
look at her. We walked up and down for an hour. I like my companion
well; she is a nice young quiet thing, just come from a country home.
Came down, and began getting out books for my German lesson, but,
turning rather awful, left my learning on the floor, and betook myself
to my berth. Slept nearly till dinner-time. At dinner I took my place at
table, but presently the misery returned; and getting up, while I had
sufficient steadiness left to walk becomingly down the room, I came to
my cabin; my dinner followed me thither, and, lying on my back, I very
comfortably discussed it. Got up, devoured some raspberry-tart and
grapes, and, being altogether delightful again, sat working and singing
till tea-time: after which, wrote journal, and now to bed. How strange
it seems to hear these Americans speaking in English of _the
English_!--"Oh, hame, hame, hame wad I be,"--but it is not time to sing
that yet.


_Friday, 3d._

Breakfasted at eight; got up, and dressed, and came upon deck. The day
was lovely, the sea one deep dark sapphire, the sky bright and
cloudless, the wind mild and soft, too mild to fill our sails, which
hung lazily against the masts,--but enough to refresh the warm summer's
sky, and temper the bright sun of August that shone above us. Walked
upon deck with Miss ---- and Captain Whaite: the latter is a very
intelligent good-natured person; rough and bluff, and only
seven-and-twenty; which makes his having the command of a ship rather an
awful consideration. At half-past eleven got my German, and worked at it
till half-past one, then got my work; and presently we were summoned on
deck by sound of bell, and oyes! oyes! oyes!--and a society was
established for the good demeanour and sociability of the passengers. My
father was in the chair. Mr. ---- was voted secretary, Dr. ----
attorney-general; a badge was established, rules and regulations laid
down, a code framed, and much laughing and merriment thence ensued.
Worked till dinner-time. After dinner, went on deck, took a brisk walk
for half an hour with Captain Whaite. Established myself to work, and
presently we were all summoned to attend a mock trial of Colonel ----,
which made us all laugh most exceedingly. We adopted titles--I chose my
family appellation of Puddledock: many of the names were very absurd,
and as a penalty ensued upon not giving every body their proper
designation, much amusement arose from it. When the trial was over, we
played at dumb crambo, and earth, air, and water, with infinite zeal,
till tea-time. After tea, we were summoned on deck to see the ship make
a tack. The wind was against us, the sea inky black, the pale clear moon
stood high against the sail--presently, with a whooping and yaw-awling
that mocks description, the fair ship was turned away from the wind, the
sails veered round, and she set in another course. We remained on deck,
the gentlemen gathered round us, and singing began:--it went round and
round by turns; some of our voices were very sweet, and, upon the whole,
'twas time pleasantly spent. Came to bed at ten.


_Wednesday, 15th._

Here's a lapse! thanks to head winds, a rolling sea, and their result,
sickness, sadness, sorrow. I've been better for the last two days, thank
God! and take to my book again. Rose at eight, dawdled about, and then
came up stairs. Breakfasted, sat working at my Bible-cover till
lunch-time. Somebody asked me if I had any of Mrs. Siddons's hair; I
sent for my dressing-box, and forthwith it was overhauled, to use the
appropriate phrase, by half the company, whom a rainy day had reduced to
a state of worse than usual want of occupation. The rain continued all
day; we ladies dined in the round-house, the room down stairs being too
close. The Captain and Colonel ---- joined us afterwards, and began
drinking champagne, and induced us to do the same. As evening came on,
the whole of the passengers collected in the round-house. Mr. ----, Mr.
D----, and I wrote a rhapsody; afterwards they fell to singing; while
they did so, the sky darkened tremendously, the rain came pelting down,
the black sea swelled, and rose, and broke upon the ship's sides into
boiling furrows of foam, that fled like ghosts along the inky face of
the ocean. The ship scudded before the blast, and we managed to keep
ourselves warm by singing. After tea, for the first time since I have
been on board, got hold of a pack of cards, (oh me, that it ever should
come to this!) and initiated Miss ---- in the mysteries of the
intellectual game. Mercy! how my home rose before me as I did so. Played
till I was tired; dozed, and finally came to bed. Bed! quotha! 'tis a
frightful misapplication of terms. Oh for a bed! a real bed; any manner
of bed but a bed on shipboard! And yet I have seen some fair things: I
have seen a universe of air and water; I have seen the glorious sun come
and look down upon this rolling sapphire; I have seen the moon throw
her silver columns along the watery waste; I have seen one lonely ship
in her silent walk across this wilderness, meet another, greet her, and
pass her, like a dream, on the wide deep; I have seen the dark world of
waters at midnight open its mysterious mantle beneath our ship's prow,
and show below another dazzling world of light. I have seen, what I
would not but have seen, though I have left my very soul behind me.
England, dear, dear England! oh, for a handful of your earth!


_Thursday, 16th._

Another day, another day! the old fellow posts as well over water as
over land! Rose at about half-past eight, went up to the round-house;
breakfasted, and worked at my Bible-cover. As soon as our tent was
spread, went out on deck: took a longish walk with Mr. ----. I like him
very much; his face would enchant Lavater, and his skull ecstacise the
Combes. Lay down under our rough pavilion, and heard the gentlemen
descant very learnedly upon freemasonry. A book called "Adventures of an
Irish Gentleman," suggested the conversation; in which are detailed some
of the initiatory ceremonies, which appear to me so incredibly foolish,
that I can scarce believe them, even making mankind a handsome allowance
for absurdity. I soon perceived that the discussion was likely to prove
a serious one, for in America, it seems, 'tis made a political question;
and our Boston friend, and the Jacksonite, fell to rather sharply about
it. The temperance of the former, however, by retreating from the field,
spared us further argumentation. One thing I marvel at:--are the
institutions of men stronger to bind men, than those of God; and does
masonry effect good, which Christianity does not?--a silly query, by the
way; for doubtless men act the good, but forbear to act the evil, before
each other's eyes; which they think nothing of doing, or leaving undone,
under those of God.

Gossiped till lunch-time; afterwards took up Childe Harold,--commend me
to that! I thought of dear H----. She admires Byron more than I do; and
yet how wildly I did, how deeply I do still, worship his might, majesty,
and loveliness. We dined up stairs, and after dinner, I and Mr. ----
look a long walk on deck; talking flimsy morality, and philosophy, the
text of which were generalities, but all the points individualities: I
was amused in my heart at him and myself. He'd a good miss of me at
----: Heaven knows, I was odious enough! and therein his informer was
right. The day was bright, and bitter cold,--the sea blue, and
transparent as that loveliest line in Dante,


     "Dolce color di oriental zaffiro,"


with a lining of pearly foam, and glittering spray, that enchanted me.
Came and sat down again:--wrote doggerel for the captain's album, about
the captain's ship, which, when once I am out of her, I'll swear I love
infinitely. Read aloud to them some of Byron's short poems, and that
glorious hymn to the sea, in Childe Harold:--mercy, how fine it is! Lay
under our canvass shed till nine o'clock:--the stars were brilliant in
the intense blue sky, the wind had dropped, the ship lay still--we sang
a song or two, supped, and came in; where, after inditing two
rhapsodies, we came to bed.


_Friday, 17th._

On my back all day: mercy, how it ached too! the ship reeled about like
a drunken thing. I lay down, and began reading Byron's life. As far as I
have gone (which is to his leaving England) there is nothing in it but
what I expected to find,--the fairly-sown seeds of the after-harvest he
bore. Had he been less of an egotist, would he have been so great a
poet?--I question it. His fury and wrath at the severe injustice of his
critics reminds me, by the by, of those few lines in the Athenæum, which
I read the other day, about poetical shoemakers, dairy-maids, ploughmen,
and myself. After all, what matters it?--"If this thing be of God," the
devil can't overthrow it; if it be not, why the printer's devil may.
What can it signify what is said? If truth be truth to the end of
reckoning, why, that share of her, if any, which I possess, must endure
when recorded as long as truth endures. I almost wonder Byron was moved
by criticism: I should have thought him at once too highly armed, and
too self-wrapped, to care for it;--however, if a wasp's sting have such
virtue in it, 'tis as well it should have been felt as keenly as it
was.--Ate nothing but figs and raisins; in the evening some of our
gentlemen came into our cabin, and sat with us; I, in very desperation
and sea-sickness, began embroidering one of my old nightcaps, wherein I
persevered till sleep overtook me.


_Saturday, 18th._

Rose at about half-past eight, dawdled about as usual, breakfasted in
the round-house--by the by, before I got out of bed, read a few more
pages of Byron's life. I don't exactly understand the species of
sentimental _galimatias_ Moore talks about Byron's writing with the same
penfull of ink, "Adieu, adieu, my native land!" and "Hurra! Hodgson, we
are going." It proves nothing except what I firmly believe, that we must
not look for the real feelings of writers in their works--or rather,
that what they give us, and what we take for heart feeling, is head
weaving--a species of emotion engendered somewhere betwixt the bosom and
the brain, and bearing the same proportion of resemblance to reality
that a picture does; that is--like feeling, but not feeling--like
sadness, but not sadness--like what it appears, but not indeed that very
thing: and the greater a man's power of thus producing _sham realities_,
the greater his main qualification for being a poet. After breakfast,
sat, like Lady Alice in the old song, embroidering my midnight coif. Got
Colonel ---- to read Quentin Durward to us as we sat working under our
canvass pavilion.

       *       *       *       *       *

Our company consists chiefly of traders in cloth and hardware, clerks,
and counting-house men--a species with but few peculiarities of interest
to me, who cannot talk pounds, shillings, and pence, as glibly as less
substantial trash. Most of them have crossed this trifling ditch half a
dozen times in their various avocations. But though they belong to the
same sort generally, they differ enough individually for the amusement
of observation. That poor widower, whose remarks on the starry inside of
the sea attracted my attention the other evening, put into my hands
to-day a couple of pretty little books enough; a sort of hotch-potch,
or, to speak more sweetly, pot-pourri praise of women--passages selected
from various authors who have done us the honour to remember us in their
good commendations. There were one or two most eloquent and exquisite
passages from Jeremy Taylor--one on love that enchanted me. I should
like to copy it. What a contrast to that exquisite thing of Shelley's,
"What is Love?" and yet they are both beautiful, powerful, and true. I
could have helped them to sundry more passages on this subject,
particularly from my oracle. Mr. ---- read to us after lunch, and we sat
very happily under our _yawning_ till the rain drove us in. No wind, the
sea one rippleless sheet of lead, and the sky just such another. Our
main-top gallant-mast had been split in one of our late blows, and I
went out in the rain to see them restore the spar. Towards evening the
wind faired and freshened, in consequence of which our gentlemen's
spirits rose; and presently, in spite of the rain, they were dancing,
singing, and romping like mad things on the quarter-deck. It was
Saturday--holiday on board ship--the men were all dismissed to their
grog. Mr. ---- and I sang through a whole volume of Moore's melodies;
and at ten o'clock (for the first time since our second day on board) we
of the petticoats adjourned to the gentlemen's cabin to drink
"sweethearts and wives," according to the approved sailors' practice. It
made me sad to hear them, as they lifted their glasses to their lips,
pass round the toast, "Sweethearts and wives!" I drank in my
heart--"Home and dear H----." One thing amused me a good deal:--the
Captain proposed as a toast, "The Ladies--God bless them," which
accordingly was being duly drunk, when I heard, close to my elbow, a
devout, half audible--"and the Lord deliver us!" This, from a man with a
face like one of Retsch's most grotesque etchings, and an expression
half humorous, half terrified, sent me into fits of laughter. They sang
a song or two, and at twelve we left them to their meditations, which
presently reached our ears in the sound, not shape, of "Health to
Bacchus," in full chorus, to which tune I said my prayers.


_Sunday, 19th._

Did not rise till late--dressed and came on deck. The morning was
brilliant; the sea, bold, bright, dashing its snowy crests against our
ship's sides, and flinging up a cloud of glittering spray round the
prow. I breakfasted--and then amused myself with finding the lessons,
collects, and psalms for the whole ship's company. After lunch, they
spread our tent; a chair was placed for my father, and, the little bell
being rung, we collected in our rude church. It affected me much, this
praying on the lonely sea, in the words that at the same hour were being
uttered by millions of kindred tongues in our dear home. There was
something, too, impressive and touching in this momentary union of
strangers, met but for a passing day, to part, perhaps, never to behold
each other's faces again, in the holiest of all unions, that of
Christian worship. Here I felt how close, how strong that wondrous tie
of common faith that thus gathered our company, unknown and unconnected
by any one worldly interest or bond, to utter the same words of praise
and supplication, to think perhaps the same thoughts of humble and
trustful dependence on God's great goodness in this our pilgrimage to
foreign lands, to yearn perhaps with the same affection and earnest
imploring of blessings towards our native soil and its beloved ones left
behind.--Oh, how I felt all this, as we spoke aloud that touching
invocation, which is always one of my most earnest prayers, "Almighty
God, who hast promised when two or three are gathered together in thy
name," etc. * * * The bright cloudless sky and glorious sea seemed to
respond, in their silent magnificence, to our _Te Deum_.--I felt more of
the excitement of prayer than I have known for many a day, and 'twas
good--oh! very, very good!

       *       *       *       *       *

'Tis good to behold this new universe, this mighty sea which he hath
made, this glorious cloudless sky, where hang, like dew drops, his
scattered worlds of light--to see all this, and say,--


     "These are thy glorious works, parent of good!"


After prayers, wrote journal. Some sea-weed floated by the ship to-day,
borne from the gulf stream; I longed to have it, for it told of land:
gulls too came wheeling about, and the little petterels like
sea-swallows skimmed round and round, now resting on the still bosom of
the sunny sea, now flickering away in rapid circles like black
butterflies. They got a gun, to my horror, and wasted a deal of time in
trying to shoot these feathered mariners; but they did not even succeed
in scaring them. We went and sat on the forecastle to see the sun set:
he did not go down cloudless, but dusky ridges of vapour stretched into
ruddy streaks along the horizon, as his disk dipped into the burnished
sea. The foam round the prow, as the ship made way with all sail set
before a fair wind, was the most lovely thing I ever saw. Purity,
strength, glee, and wondrous beauty were in those showers of snowy spray
that sprang up above the black' ship's sides, and fell like a cataract
of rubies under the red sunlight. We sat there till evening came down:
the sea, from brilliant azure, grew black as unknown things, the wind
freshened, and we left our cold stand to walk, or rather run, up and
down the deck to warm ourselves. This we continued till, one by one, the
stars had lit their lamps in heaven: their wondrous brilliancy, together
with the Aurora Borealis, which rushed like sheeted ghosts along the
sky, and the stream of fire that shone round the ship's way, made heaven
and sea appear like one vast world of flame, as though the thin blue
veil of air and the dark curtain of the waters were but drawn across a
universe of light. Mercy, how strange it was! We stood at the stern,
watching the milky wake the ship left as she stole through the eddying
waters. Came back to our gipsy encampment, where, by the light of a
lantern, we supped and sang sundry scraps of old songs. At ten came to
bed.

       *       *       *       *       *

Took an observation of the sun's altitude at noon, and saw them hoist a
main-top-royal sail, which looked very pretty as it was unreefed against
the clear sky.


_Monday, 20th._

Calm--utter calm--a roasting August sun, a waveless sea, the sails
flapping idly against the mast, and our black cradle rocking to and fro
without progressing a step. They lowered the boat, and went out
rowing--I wanted to go, but they would not let me! A brig was standing
some four miles off us, which, by the by, I was the first to see, except
our mate, in my morning watch, which began at five o'clock, when I saw
the moon set and the sun rise, and feel more than ever convinced that
absolute reality is away from the purpose of works of art. The sky this
morning was as like the sea shore as ever sand and shingle were, the
clouds lying along the horizon in pale dusky yellow layers, and higher
up, floating in light brown ribbed masses, like the sands which grow
wrinkled under the eternal smiling of the sea. Against the dim horizon,
which blended with the violet-coloured sky, the mate then showed me,
through the glass, the brig standing on the sea's edge, for all the
world like one of the tiny birds who were wheeling and chirping round
our ship's stern. I have done more in the shape of work to-day than any
since the two first I spent on board; translated a German fable without
much trouble, read a canto in Dante, ending with a valuation of fame. "O
spirito gentil!" how lived fair wisdom in your soul--how shines she in
your lays!--Wrote journal, walked about, worked at my cap, in the
evening danced merrily enough, quadrilles, country dances, La
Boulangère, and the monaco; fairly danced myself tired. Came to bed. But
oh! not to sleep--mercy, what a night! The wind blowing like mad, the
sea rolling, the ship pitching, bouncing, shuddering, and reeling, like
a thing possessed. I lay awake, listening to her creaking and groaning,
till two o'clock, when, sick of my sleepless berth, I got up and was
going up stairs, to see, at least, how near drowning we were, when
D----, who was lying awake too, implored me to lie down again. I did so
for the hundred and eleventh time, complaining bitterly that I should be
stuffed down in a loathsome berth, cabined, cribbed, confined, while the
sea was boiling below, and the wind bellowing above us. Lay till
daylight, the gale increasing furiously; boxes, chairs, beds, and their
contents, wooden valuables, and human invaluables, rolling about and
clinging to one another in glorious confusion. At about eight o'clock, a
tremendous sea took the ship in the waist, and, rushing over the deck,
banged against our sky-light, and bounced into our cabin. Three women
were immediately apparent from their respective cribs, and poor H----
appeared in all her lengthy full-length, and came and took refuge with
me. As I held her in my arms, and put my cloak round her, she shook from
head to foot, poor child!--I was not the least frightened, but rather
excited by this invasion of Dan Neptune's; but I wish to goodness I had
been on deck.--Oh, how I wish I had seen that spoonful of salt water
flung from the sea's boiling bowl! I heard afterwards, that it had
nearly washed away poor Mr. ----, besides handsomely ducking and
frightening our military man. Lay all day on my back, most wretched, the
ship heaving like any earthquake; in fact, there is something
irresistibly funny in the way in which people seem dispossessed of their
power of volition by this motion, rushing hither and thither in all
directions but the one they purpose going, and making as many angles,
fetches, and sidelong deviations from the point they aim at, as if the
devil had tied a string to their legs and jerked it every now and then
in spite--by the by, not a bad illustration of our mental and moral
struggles towards their legitimate aims. Another horrible night! oh
horror!


_Wednesday, 22d._

A fair wind--a fine day--though very very cold and damp. It seems, in
our squall last night, we had also a small piece of mutiny. During the
mate's watch, and while the storm was at the worst, the man who was
steering left the helm, and refused to obey orders; whereupon Mr. Curtis
took up a hatchet, and assured him he would knock his brains out,--which
the captain said, had it been his watch, he should have done on the
spot, and without further warning. We are upon the Newfoundland banks,
though not yet on soundings. Stitched my gown--worked at my
nightcap--walked about:--Mr. ---- read Quentin Durward to us while we
worked. The extreme cold made us take refuge in our cabin, where I sat
working and singing till dinner-time. Dined at table again; afterwards
came back to our cabin--began writing journal, and was interrupted by
hearing a bustle in the dinner-room. The gentlemen were all standing up,
and presently I heard Walter Scott's name passed round:--it made me lay
down my pen. Oh! how pleasant it sounded--that unanimous blessing of
strangers upon a great and good man, thus far from him--from all but our
own small community. The genuine and spontaneous tribute to moral worth
and mental power! Poor, poor Sir Walter! And yet no prayer that can be
breathed to bless, no grateful and soul felt invocation, can snatch him
from the common doom of earth-born flesh, or buy away one hour's anguish
and prostration of body and spirit, before the triumphant infirmities of
our miserable nature. I thought of Dante's lines, that I read but a day
ago; and yet--and yet--fame is something. His fame is good--is great--is
glorious. To be enshrined in the hearts of all virtuous and wise men, as
the friend of virtue and the teacher of wisdom; to have freely given
pleasure, happiness, forgetfulness, to millions of his fellow-creatures;
to have made excellence lovely, and enjoyment pure and salutary; to have
taught none but lessons of honour and integrity; to have surrounded his
memory, and filled the minds of all men with images fair, and bright,
and wonderful, yet left around his name no halo, and in the hearts of
others no slightest cloud to blot these enchanting creations; to have
done nothing but good with God's good gifts--is not this fame worth
something? 'Tis worth man's love, and God's approval--'tis worth
toiling for, living for, and dying for. He has earned it fairly--he is a
great and good man--peace be with him in his hour of mortal sorrow, and
eternal peace hereafter in the heaven to which he surely goes. They then
drank Washington Irving,--a gentle spirit, too. After working for some
time more, came on deck, where we danced with infinite glee, disturbed
only by the surpassing uproar of Colonel ----.

       *       *       *       *       *

       *       *       *       *       *

The only of our crew whom I cotton to fairly, are the ----, and that
good-natured lad, Mr. ----: though the former rather distress me by
their abundant admiration, and the latter by his inveterate Yorkshire,
and never opening his mouth when he sings, which, as he has a very sweet
voice, is a cruel piece of selfishness, keeping half his tones, and all
his words, for his own private satisfaction.


_Thursday, 23d._

On soundings, and nearly off them again--a fine day;--worked at my
nightcap--another, by the by, having finished one--exemplary!--Walked
about, ate, drank, wrote journal--read some of it to the ----, who
seemed much gratified by my doing so. I go on with Byron's life. He is
loo much of an egotist. I do not like him a bit the better for knowing
his prose mind;--far from thinking it redeems any of the errors of his
poetical man, I think I never read any thing professing to be a person's
undisguised feelings and opinions, with so much heartlessness--so little
goodness in it. His views of society are like his views of human nature;
or rather, by the by, reverse the sentence, to prove the fallacy in
judgment; and though his satire is keen and true, yet he is nothing but
satirical--never, never serious and earnest, even with himself. Oh! I
have a horror of that sneering devil of Goethe's; and he seems to me to
have possessed Byron utterly. A curious thought, or rather a fantastical
shadow of a thought, occurred to me to-day in reading a chapter in the
Corinthians about the resurrection. I mean to be buried with H----'s
ring on my finger; will it be there when I rise again?--What a question
for the discussers of the needle's point controversy! My father read to
us, this afternoon, part of one of Webster's speeches. It was very
eloquent, but yet it did not fulfil my idea of perfect oratory--inasmuch
as I thought it too pictorial:--there was too much scenery and
decoration about it, to use the cant of my own trade;--there was too
much effect, theatrical effect in it, from which Heaven defend me, for I
do loathe it _in_ its place, and fifty times worse out of it. Perhaps
Webster's speaking is a good sample, in its own line, of the leaven
wherewith these times are leavened. I mean only in its defects--for its
merits are sterling, and therefore of all time.

But this oil and canvass style of thinking, writing, and speaking, is
bad. I wish our age were more sculptural in its genius--though I have
not the power in any thing to conform thereto, I have the grace to
perceive its higher excellence: yet Milton was a sculptor, Shakspeare a
painter. How do we get through that?--My reason for objecting to
Webster's style--though the tears were in my eyes several times while my
father read--is precisely the same as my reason for not altogether
liking my father's reading--'tis slightly theatrical--something too much
of passion, something too much of effect--but perhaps I am mistaken; for
I do so abhor the slightest approach to the lamps and orange peel, that
I had almost rather hear a "brazen candlestick turned on a wheel," than
all the music of due emphasis and inflection, if allied to a theatrical
manner.--Dined at table again. They abound in toasts, and, among others,
gave "The friends we have left, and those we are going to!" My heart
sank. I am going to no friend; and the "stranger," with which the
Americans salute wayfarers through their land, is the only title I can
claim amongst them. After dinner, walked about--danced--saw the sun sink
in a bed of gorgeous stormy clouds;--worked and walked till bed-time.--I
was considerably amused, and my English blood a little roused at a very
good-natured and well-meant caution of Mr. ----, to avoid making an
enemy of Colonel ----. He is, they say, a party man, having influence
which he may exert to our detriment.


_Friday, 24th._

Rose late after a fair night's sleep--came up to the round-house. After
breakfast, worked and walked for an immense time. Read a canto in Dante:
just as I had finished it, "A sail! a sail!" was cried from all
quarters. Remembering my promise to dear H----, I got together my
writing-materials, and scrawled her a few incoherent lines full of my
very heart. The vessel bore rapidly down upon us, but as there was no
prospect of either her or our lying-to, Mr. ---- tied my missive,
together with one Mr. ---- had just scribbled, to a lump of lead, and
presently we all rushed on deck to see the ship pass us. She was an
English packet, from Valparaiso, bound to London; her foremast had been
carried away, but she was going gallantly before the wind. As she passed
us, Mr. ---- got up into the boat, to have a better chance of throwing.
I saw him fling powerfully,--the little packet whizzed through the air,
but the distance was impossible, and the dark waters received it within
twenty feet of the ship, which sailed rapidly on, and had soon left us
far behind. I believe I screamed, as the black sea closed over my poor
letter.

       *       *       *       *       *

       *       *       *       *       *

       *       *       *       *       *

Came down to my cabin and cried like a wretch--came up again, and found
them all at lunch. Went and lay on the bowsprit, watching the fair ship
courtesying through the bright sea with all her sail set, a gallant and
graceful sight. Came in--wrote journal--translated a German fable.
Worked at my cap, while my father went on with Webster's speech. I am
still of the same mind about it, though some of the passages he read
to-day were finer than any I had heard before. He gets over a shallow
descent with admirable plausibility--and yet I think I would rather be
descended from a half heathen Saxon giant, than from William Penn
himself. We dined at table again; D---- could not: she was ill. After
dinner, sat working for some time;--I had a horrid sick headach,--walked
on deck. The wind and sea were both rising; we stood by the side of the
ship, and watched the inky waters swelling themselves, and rolling
sullenly towards us, till they broke in silver clouds against the ship,
and sprang above her sides, covering us with spray. The sky had grown
mirk as midnight, and the wind that came rushing over the sea was hot
from the south. We staid out till it grew dark. At ten, the crazy old
ship, in one of her headlong bounces, flung my whole supper in my lap;
the wind and water were riotous; the ship plunged and shuddered. After
screwing my courage to a game of speculation, I was obliged to leave it,
and my companions. Came down and went to bed.--Oh horror! loathsome
life!--


_Saturday and Sunday._

Towards evening got up and came on deck:--tremendous head wind, going
off our course; pray Heaven we don't make an impromptu landing on Sable
Island! Sat on the ship's side, watching the huge ocean gathering itself
up into pitchy mountains, and rolling its vast ridges, one after
another, against the good ship, who dipped, and dipped, and dived down
into the black chasm, and then sprang up again, and rode over the
swelling surges like an empress. The sky was a mass of stormy black,
here and there edged with a copper-looking cloud, and breaking in one or
two directions into pale silvery strata, that had an unhealthy lightning
look: a heavy black squall lay ahead of us, like a dusky curtain, whence
we saw the rain, fringe-like, pouring down against the horizon. The wind
blew furiously. I got cradled among the ropes, so as not to be pitched
off when the ship lurched, and enjoyed it all amazingly. It was sad and
solemn, and, but for the excitement of the savage-looking waves, that
every now and then lifted their overwhelming sides against us, it would
have made me melancholy: but it stirred my spirits to ride over these
huge sea-horses, that came bounding and bellowing round us. Remained
till I was chilled with the bitter wind, and wet through with
spray;--walked up and down the deck for some time,--had scarce set foot
within the round-house, when a sea took her in midships, and soused the
loiterers. Sat up, or rather slept up, till ten o'clock, and then went
down to bed. I took up Pelham to-day for a second--'t is amazingly
clever, and like the thing it means to be, to boot. Heard something
funny that I wish to remember--at a Methodist meeting, the singer who
led the Psalm tune, finding that his concluding word, which was Jacob,
had not syllables enough to fill up the music adequately, ended
thus--Ja-a-a-a--Ja-a-a-a--fol-de-riddle--cob!--


_Monday, 26th._

Read Byron's life;--defend me from my friends! Rose tolerably late;
after breakfast, took a walk on deck--lay and slept under our sea-tent;
read on until lunch-time--dined on deck. After dinner walked about with
H---- and the captain; we had seated ourselves on the ship's side, but
he being called away, we rushed off to the forecastle to enjoy the
starlight by ourselves. We sat for a little time, but were soon found
out; Mr. ---- and Mr. ---- joined us, and we sat till near twelve
o'clock, singing and rocking under the stars. Venus--"The star of love,
all stars above,"--threw a silver column down the sea, like the younger
sister of the moon's reflection. By the by, I saw to-day, and with
delight, an American sunset. The glorious god strode down heaven's hill,
without a cloud to dim his downward path;--as his golden disk touched
the panting sea, I turned my head away, and in less than a minute he had
fallen beneath the horizon--leapt down into the warm waves, and left one
glow of amber round half the sky; upon whose verge, where the violet
curtain of twilight came spreading down to meet its golden fringe,


         "The maiden,
     With white fire laden,
     Whom mortals call the moon,"


stood, with her silver lamp in her hand, and her pale misty robes
casting their wan lustre faintly around her. Oh me, how glorious it was!
how sad, how very very sad I was!

       *       *       *       *       *

       *       *       *       *       *

       *       *       *       *       *


     Dear, yet forbidden thoughts, that from my soul,
     While shines the weary sun, with stern control
     I drive away; why, when my spirits lie
     Shrouded in the cold sleep of misery,
     Do ye return, to mock me with false dreaming,
     Where love, and all life's happiness is beaming?
     Oh visions fair! that one by one have gone
     Down, 'neath the dark horizon of my days,
     Let not your pale reflection linger on
     In the bleak sky, where live no more your rays.
     Night! silent nurse, that with thy solemn eyes
     Hang'st o'er the rocking cradle of the world,
     Oh! be thou darker to my dreaming eyes,
     Nor, in my slumbers, be the past unfurl'd.
     Haunt me no more with whisperings from the dead.
     The dead in heart, the changed, the withered:
     Bring me no more sweet blossoms from my spring,
     Which round my soul their early fragrance fling,
     And, when the morning, with chill icy start,
     Wakes me, hang blighted round my aching heart:
     Oh night, and slumber, be ye visionless,
     Dark as the grave, deep as forgetfulness!

            *       *       *       *       *

            *       *       *       *       *

     Night, thou shalt nurse me, but be sure, good nurse,
     While sitting by my bed, that thou art silent;
     I will not let thee sing me to my slumbers
     With the sweet lullabies of former times,
     Nor tell me tales, as other gossips wont,
     Of the strange fairy days, that are all gone.


_Wednesday, 28th._

Skipped writing on Tuesday--so much the better--a miserable day spent
between heart-ach and side-ach.

       *       *       *       *       *

Rose late, breakfasted with H----, afterwards went and sat on the
forecastle, where I worked the whole morning, woman's work, stitching.
It was intensely hot till about two o'clock, when a full east wind came
on, which the sailors all blessed, but which shook from its cold wings a
heavy, clammy, chilly dew, that presently pierced all our clothes, and
lay on the deck like rain. At dinner we were very near having a scene:
the Bostonian and the Jacksonite falling out again about the President;
and a sharp, quick, snapping conversation, which degenerated into a
snarl on one side, and a growl on the other, for a short time rather
damped the spirits of the table. Here, at least, General Jackson seems
very unpopular, and half the company echoed in earnest what I said in
jest to end the dispute, "Oh hang General Jackson!" After dinner,
returned to the forecastle with H---- to see the sun set; her brother
followed us thither.

       *       *       *       *       *

Finished my work, and then, tying on sundry veils and handkerchiefs,
danced on deck for some time;--I then walked about with ----, by the
light of the prettiest young moon imaginable.

       *       *       *       *       *

Afterwards sat working and stifling in the round-house till near ten,
and then, being no longer able to endure the heat, came down, undressed,
and sat luxuriously on the ground in my dressing-gown drinking lemonade.
At twelve went to bed; the men kept up a horrible row on deck half the
night; singing, dancing, whooping, and running over our heads.

       *       *       *       *       *

       *       *       *       *       *

The captain brought me to-day a land-swallow, which, having flown out so
far, came hovering exhausted over the ship, and suffered itself to be
caught. Poor little creature! how very much more I do love all things
than men and women! I felt sad to death for its weary little wings and
frightened heart, which beat against my hand, without its having
strength to struggle. I made a cage in a basket for it, and gave it some
seed, which it will not eat--little carnivorous wretch! I must catch
some flies for it.


_Thursday, 29th._

My poor little bird is dead. I am sorry! I could mourn almost as much
over the death of a soulless animal, as I would rejoice at that of a
brute with a soul. Life is to these winged things a pure enjoyment; and
to see the rapid pinions folded, and the bright eye filmed, conveys
sadness to the heart, for 'tis almost like looking on--what indeed is
not--utter cessation of existence. Poor little creature! I wished it had
not died--I would but have borne it tenderly and carefully to shore, and
given it back to the air again!

       *       *       *       *       *

I sat down stairs in my cabin all day; the very spirit of doggerel
possessed me, and I poured forth rhymes as rapidly as possible, and they
were as bad as possible.--Wrote journal; in looking over my papers, fell
in with the Star of Seville--some of it is very good. I'll write an
English tragedy next. Dined at table--our heroes have drunk wine, and
are amicable. After dinner, went on deck, and took a short walk; saw the
sun set, which he did like a god, as he is, leaving the sky like a
geranium curtain, which overshadowed the sea with rosy light--beautiful!
Came down and sat on the floor like a Turkish woman, stitching, singing,
and talking, till midnight; supped--and to bed. My appetite seems like
the Danaïdes' tub, of credible memory.

       *       *       *       *       *

       *       *       *       *       *


_Friday, 30th._

On soundings. A fog and a calm. Sky yellow, sea grey, dripping, damp,
dingy, dark, and very disagreeable. Sat working, reading, and talking in
our own cabin all day. Read part of a book called Adventures of a
Younger Son. The gentlemen amused themselves with fishing, and brought
up sundry hake and dog-fish. I examined the heart of one of the fish,
and was surprised at the long continuance of pulsation after the
cessation of existence. In the evening, sang, talked, and played French
blind man's buff;--sat working till near one o'clock, and reading
Moore's Fudge Family,--which is good fun. It's too hard to be becalmed
within thirty hours of our destination.

       *       *       *       *       *

       *       *       *       *       *


     Why art thou weeping
     Over the happy, happy dead,
     Who are gone away
     From this life of clay,
     From this fount of tears,
     From this burthen of years,
     From sin, from sorrow,
     From sad "to-morrow,"
     From struggling and creeping:
     Why art thou weeping,
     Oh fool, for the dead?

     Why art thou weeping
     Over the steadfast faithful dead,
     Who can never change,
     Nor grow cold and strange,

         Nor turn away,
         In a single day,
         From the love they bore,
         And the faith they swore;
         Who are true for ever,
         Will slight thee never,
         But love thee still,
         Through good and ill,
         With the constancy
         Of eternity:
         Why art thou weeping,
         Oh fool, for the dead?

     They are your only friends;
     For where this foul life ends,
     Alone beginneth truth, and love, and faith;
     All which sweet blossoms are preserved by death.


_Saturday, 31st._

Becalmed again till about two o'clock, when a fair wind sprang up, and
we set to rolling before it like mad. How curious it is to see the ship,
like a drunken man, reel through the waters, pursued by that shrill
scold the wind! Worked at my handkerchief, and read aloud to them Mrs.
Jameson's book.

       *       *       *       *       *

       *       *       *       *       *

Set my foot half into a discussion about Portia, but withdrew it in
time. Lord bless us! what foul nonsense people do talk, and what much
fouler nonsense it is to answer them. Got very sick, and lay on the
ground till dinner-time; went to table, but withdrew again while it was
yet in my power to do so gracefully. Lay on the floor all the evening,
singing for very sea-sickness; suddenly it occurred to me, that it was
our last Saturday night on board; whereupon I indited a song to the tune
of "To Ladies' eyes a round, boys,"--and having duly instructed Mr. ----
how to "speak the speech," we went to supper. _Last_--_last_--dear, what
is there in that word! I don't know one of this ship's company, don't
care for some of them--I have led a loathsome life in it for a month
past, and yet the _last_ Saturday night seemed half sad to me. Mr. ----
sang my song and kept my secret: the song was encored, and my father
innocently demanded the author; I gave him a tremendous pinch, and
looked very silly. Merit, like murder, will out; so I fancy that when
they drank the health of the author, the whole table was aware of the
genius that sat among them. They afterwards sang a clever parody of "To
all ye ladies now on land," by Mr. ----, the "canny Scot," who has kept
himself so quiet all the way. Came to bed at about half-past twelve:
while undressing, I heard the captain come down stairs, and announce
that we were clear of Nantucket shoal, and within one hundred and fifty
miles of New York, which intelligence was received with three cheers.
They continued to sing and shout till very late.


SATURDAY NIGHT SONG.

     Come, fill the can again, boys,
       One parting glass, one parting glass;
     Ere we shall meet again, boys,
       Long years may pass, long years may pass.
     We'll drink the gallant bark, boys,
       That's borne us through, that's borne us through,
     Bright waves and billows dark, boys,
       Our ship and crew, our ship and crew.

     We'll drink those eyes that bright, boys,
       With smiling ray, with smiling ray,
     Have shone like stars to light, boys,
       Our watery way, our watery way.
     We'll drink our English home, boys,
       Our father land, our father land,
     And the shores to which we're come, boys,
       A sister strand, a sister strand.


_Sunday, September 2d._

Rose at half-past six: the sun was shining brilliantly; woke H---- and
went on deck with her. The morning was glorious, the sun had risen two
hours in the sky, the sea was cut by a strong breeze, and curled into
ridges that came like emerald banks crowned with golden spray round our
ship; she was going through the water at nine knots an hour. I sat and
watched the line of light that lay like a fairy road to the
east--towards my country, my dear dear home.

       *       *       *       *       *

Breakfasted at table for the first time since I've been on board the
ship--I did hope, the last. After breakfast, put my things to rights,
tidied our cabin for prayers, and began looking out the lessons; while
doing so, the joyful sound, "Land, land!" was heard aloft. I rushed on
deck, and between the blue waveless sea, and the bright unclouded sky,
lay the wished-for line of darker element. 'Twas Long Island: through a
glass I descried the undulations of the coast, and even the trees that
stood relieved against the sky. Hail, strange land! my heart greets you
coldly and sadly! Oh, how I thought of Columbus, as with eyes strained
and on tiptoe our water-weary passengers stood, after a summer's sail of
thirty days, welcoming their mother earth! The day was heavenly, though
intensely hot, the sky utterly cloudless, and, by that same token, I do
not love a cloudless sky. They tell me that this is their American
weather almost till Christmas; that's nice, for those who like frying.
Commend me to dear England's soft, rich, sad, harmonious skies and
foliage--commend me to the misty curtain of silver vapour that hangs
over her September woods at morning, and shrouds them at night;--in
short, I am home-sick before touching land. After lunch, my father read
prayers to us, and that excellent sermon of dear Mr. Thurstone's on
taking the sacrament. After prayers, came on deck; there were two or
three sails in sight--hailed a schooner which passed us--bad news of the
cholera--pleasant this--walked about, collected goods and chattels,
wrote journal, spent some time in seeing a couple of geese take a
sea-swim with strings tied to their legs. After dinner, sat in my cabin
some time--walked on deck; when the gentlemen joined us, we danced the
sun down, and the moon up. The sky was like the jewel-shop of angels; I
never saw such brilliant stars, nor so deep an azure to hang them in.
The moon was grown powerful, and flooded the deck, where we sat playing
at blind man's buff, magic music, and singing, and talking of shore till
midnight, when we came to bed. I must not forget how happy an omen
greeted us this morning. As we stood watching the "_dolce color di
oriental zaffiro_," one of the wild wood pigeons of America flew round
our mizen-mast, and alighted on the top-sail yard;--this was the first
living creature which welcomed us to the New World, and it pleased my
superstitious fancy. I would have given any thing to have caught the
bird, but, after resting itself awhile, it took flight again and left
us. We were talking to-day to one of our steerage passengers, a
Huddersfield manufacturer, going out in quest of a living, with five
children of his own to take care of, and two nephews. The father of the
latter, said our Yorkshireman, having married a second time, and these
poor children being as it were "_thristen_ (thrust) out into the world
loike--whoy oi jist took care of them." Verily, verily, he will have his
reward--these tender mercies of the poor to one another are beautiful,
and most touching.


_Monday, September 3d._

I had desired the mate to call me by sunrise, and accordingly, in the
midst of a very sound and satisfactory sleep, Mr. Curtis shook me
roughly by the arm, informing me that the sun was just about to rise.
The glorious god was quicker at his toilet than I at mine; for though I
did but put on a dressing-gown and cloak, I found him come out of his
eastern chamber, arrayed like a bridegroom, without a single beam
missing. I called H----, and we remained on deck watching the clouds
like visions of brightness and beauty, enchanted creations of some
strange spell-land--at every moment assuming more fantastic shapes and
gorgeous tints. Dark rocks seemed to rise, with dazzling summits of
light pale lakes of purest blue spread here and there between--the sun
now shining through a white wreath of floating silver, now firing, with
a splendour that the eye shrank from, the edges of some black cloudy
mass. Oh, it was surpassing!--We were becalmed, however, which rather
damped all our spirits, and half made the captain swear. Towards mid-day
we had to thank Heaven for an incident. A brig had been standing aft
against the horizon for some hours past, and we presently descried a
boat rowing from her towards us. The distance was some five miles, the
sun broiling; we telescoped and stood on tiptoe; they rowed stoutly, and
in due time boarded us. She was an English brig from Bristol, had been
out eleven weeks, distressed by contrary winds, and was in want of
provisions. The boat's crew was presently surrounded, grog was given the
men, porter to the captain and his companion. Our dear captain supplied
them with every thing they wanted, and our poor steerage passengers sent
their mite to the distressed crew in the shape of a sack of potatoes;
they remained half an hour on board, we clustering round them,
questioning and answering might and main. As H---- said, they were new
faces at least, and, though two of the most ill-favoured physiognomies I
ever set eyes on, there was something refreshing even in their ugly
novelty. After this the whole day was one of continual excitement,
nearing the various points of land, greeting vessels passing us, and
watching those bound on the same course. At about four o'clock a
schooner came alongside with a news-collector; he was half devoured with
queries; news of the cholera, reports of the tariff and bank questions,
were loudly demanded: poor people, how anxiously they looked for replies
to the first! Mr. ----, upon whose arm I leant, turned pale as death
while asking how it had visited Boston. Poor fellow! poor people all! my
heart ached with their anxiety. As the evening darkened, the horizon
became studded with sails; at about eight o'clock we discovered the
Highlands of Neversink, the entrance to New York harbour, and presently
the twin lights of Sandy Hook glimmered against the sky. We were all in
high spirits; a fresh breeze had sprung up, we were making rapidly to
land; the lovely ship, with all sail set, courtesying along the smooth
waters. The captain alone seemed anxious, and was eagerly looking out
for the pilot. Some had gathered to the ship's side, to watch the
progress of Colonel ----, who had left us and gone into the news-boat,
which was dancing like a fairy by the side of our dark vessel. Cheering
resounded on all sides, rockets were fired from the ship's stern, we
were all dancing, when suddenly a cry was echoed round of "A pilot, a
pilot!" and close under the ship's side a light graceful little schooner
shot like an arrow through the dim twilight, followed by a universal
huzza; she tacked, and lay to, but proved only a news-boat: while,
however, all were gathered round the collector, the pilot-boat came
alongside, and the pilot on board; the captain gave up the cares and
glories of command, and we danced an interminable country dance. All was
excitement and joyous confusion; poor Mr. ---- alone seemed smitten with
sudden anxiety; the cholera reports had filled him with alarm, lest his
agent should have died, and his affairs on his arrival be in confusion
and ruin--poor fellow! I was very sorry for him. We went down to supper
at ten, and were very merry, in spite of the ship's bumping twice or
thrice upon the sands. Came up and dawdled upon deck--saw them cast
anchor; away went the chain, down dropped the heavy stay, the fair ship
swung round, and there lay New York before us, with its clustered lights
shining like a distant constellation against the dark outline of land.
Remained on deck till very late--were going to bed, when the gentlemen
entreated us to join their party once more; we did so, sang all the old
songs, laughed at all the old jokes, drank our own and each other's
health, wealth, and prosperity, and came to bed at two o'clock. Our
cradle rocks no longer, but lies still on the still waters; we have
reached our destination; I thank God! I did so with all my soul.


_Tuesday, September 4th,
New York, America._

It is true, by my faith! it is true; there it is written, here I sit, I
am myself and no other, this is New York and nowhere else--Oh!
"singular, strange!" Our passengers were all stirring and about at peep
of day, and I got up myself at half past six. Trunks lay scattered in
every direction around, and all were busily preparing to leave the good
ship Pacific. Mercy on us! it made me sad to leave her and my shipmates.
I feel like a wretch swept down a river to the open sea, and catch at
the last boughs that hang over the banks to stay me from that wide
loneliness. The morning was real Manchester. I believe some of the
passengers had brought the fog and rain in their English clothes, which
they were all putting on, together with best hats, dandy cravats,
etc.--to make a _sensation_. A fog hung over the shores of Staten Island
and Long Island, in spite of which, and a dreary, heavy, thick rain, I
thought the hilly outline of the former very beautiful; the trees and
grass were rather sunburnt, but in a fair spring day I should think it
must be lovely. We breakfasted, and packed ourselves into our shawls and
bonnets, and at half-past nine the steam-boat came alongside to take us
to shore: it was different from any English steam-boat I ever saw,
having three decks, and being consequently a vessel of very considerable
size. We got on board her all in the rain and misery, and, as we drifted
on, our passengers collected to the side of the boat, and gave "The dear
old Lady" three cheers. Poor ship! there she lay--all sails reefed,
rocking in melancholy inaction, deserted by her merry inmates, lonely
and idle--poor Pacific! I should like to return in that ship; I would
willingly skip a passage in order to do so. All were looking at the
shores; some wondering and admiring, others recognising through the rain
and mist, as best they might; I could not endure to lift my eyes to the
strange land, and, even had I done so, was crying too bitterly to see
any thing. Mr. ---- and Mr. ---- went to secure apartments for us at the
American Hotel; and, after bidding good-by to the sea, we packed
ourselves into a hackney coach, and progressed. The houses are almost
all painted glaring white or red; the other favourite colours appear to
be pale straw colour and grey. They have all green Venetian shutters,
which give an idea of coolness, and almost every house has a tree or
trees in its vicinity, which looks pretty and garden-like. We reached
our inn,--the gentlemen were waiting for us, and led us to our
drawing-room. I had been choking for the last three hours, and could
endure no more, but sobbed like a wretch aloud.

       *       *       *       *       *

       *       *       *       *       *

There was a piano in the room, to which I flew with the appetite of one
who has lived on the music of the speaking-trumpet for a month; that,
and some iced lemonade and cake, presently restored my spirits. I went
on playing and singing till I was exhausted, and then sat down and wrote
journal. Mr. ---- went out and got me Sir Humphry Davy's Salmonia, which
I had been desiring, and he had been speaking of on board ship.

At five o'clock we all met once more together to dinner. Our
drawing-room being large and pleasant, the table was laid in it. 'Tis
curious how an acquaintanceship of thirty days has contrived to bind
together in one common feeling of kindness and good-fellowship persons
who never met before, who may never meet again. To-morrow we all
separate, to betake ourselves each to our several path; and, as if loath
to part company, they all agreed to meet once more on the eve of doing
so, probably for ever. How strongly this clinging principle is inherent
in our nature! These men have no fine sympathies of artificial creation,
and this exhibition of _adhesiveness_ is in them a real and heart-sprung
feeling. It touched me--indeed it may well do so; for friends of thirty
days are better than utter strangers, and when these my shipmates shall
be scattered abroad, there will be no human being left near us whose
face we know, or whose voice is familiar to us. Our dinner was a
favourable specimen of eating as practised in this new world; every
thing good, only in too great a profusion; the wine drinkable, and the
fruit beautiful to look at: in point of flavour it was infinitely
inferior to English hothouse fruit, or even fine espalier fruit raised
in a good aspect. Every thing was wrapped in ice, which is a most
luxurious necessary in this hot climate; but the things were put on the
table in a slovenly outlandish fashion; fish, soup, and meat, at once,
and puddings, and tarts, and cheese, at another once; no finger-glasses,
and a patched table-cloth,--in short, a want of that style and neatness
which is found in every hotel in England. The waiters, too, reminded us
of the half-savage Highland lads that used to torment us under that
denomination in Glasgow--only that they were wild Irish instead of wild
Scotch. The day had cleared, and become intensely hot, towards evening
softening and cooling under the serene influences of the loveliest moon
imaginable. The streets were brilliantly lighted, the shops through the
trees, and the people parading between them, reminded me very much of
the Boulevards. We left the gentlemen, and went down stairs, where I
played and sang for three hours. On opening the door, I found a junta of
men sitting on the hall floor, round it, and smoking. Came up for
coffee; most of the gentlemen were rather elated,--we sang, and danced,
and talked, and seemed exceeding loath to say good-by. I sat listening
to the dear Doctor's theory of the nature of the soul, which savoured
infinitely more of the spirituality of the bottle than of immaterial
existences. I heard him descant very tipsily upon the vital principle,
until my fatigue getting fairly the better of my affection for him, I
bade our remaining guests good night, and came to bed.


_Wednesday, 5th._

I have been in a sulky fit half the day, because people will keep
walking in and out of our room, without leave or license, which is
coming a great deal too soon to Hope's idea of Heaven. I am delighted to
see my friends, but I like to tell them so, and not that they should
take it for granted. When I made my appearance in my dressing-gown (my
clothes not being come, and the day too hot for a silk pelisse), great
was my amazement to find our whole ship's company assembled at the
table. After breakfast they dispersed, and I sat writing journal, and
playing, and singing. Colonel ---- and Mr. ---- called. Our Boston
friends leave us to-day for their homes. I am sorry to lose them, though
I think H---- will be the better for rest. Mrs. ---- called to see D----
to-day. I remember her name, as one of the first things I do remember. A
visit from a Mr. ----, one of the directors of the Custom-House, and
W---- P----, brother to the proprietor of the Park theatre, who is a
lawyer of considerable reputation here. The face of the first was good,
the other's clever. I said nothing, as usual, and let them depart in
peace. We dined at half-past two, with the H----s and Mr. ----. At
half-past three we walked down to the quay to convoy them to their
steam-boat, which looked indeed like a "castle on the main." We saw them
on board, went down and looked at the state cabin, which was a
magnificent room, and would have done charmingly for a gallopade. We
bade our new friends, whom I like better than some old ones, good-by,
and walked briskly on to the Battery, to see them as they passed it. The
sun was intensely hot; and as I struggled forward, hooked up to this
young Sheffield giant, I thought we were the living illustration of
Hood's "Long and Short" of it. We gained the battery, and saw the
steam-boat round; our travellers kept the deck with "hat and glove and
handkerchief," as long as we could see them. This Battery is a beautiful
marine parade, commanding the harbour and entrance of the bay, with
Governor's Island, and its dusky red fort, and the woody shores of New
Jersey and Long Island. A sort of public promenade, formed of grass
plots, planted with a variety of trees, affords a very agreeable
position from whence to enjoy the lovely view. My companion informed me
that this was a fashionable resort some time ago; but owing to its
being frequented by the lowest and dirtiest of the rabble, who in this
land of liberty roll themselves on the grass, and otherwise annoy the
more respectable portion of the promenaders, it has been much deserted
lately, and is now only traversed by the higher classes as a
thoroughfare. The trees and grass were vividly and luxuriantly green;
but the latter grew rank and long, unshorn and untidy. "Oh," thought I,
"for a pair of English shears, to make these green carpets as smooth and
soft and thick as the close-piled Genoa velvet." It looked neglected and
slovenly. Came home up Broadway, which is a long street of tolerable
width, full of shops, in short the American Oxford Road, where all
people go to exhibit themselves and examine others. The women that I
have seen hitherto have all been very gaily dressed, with a pretension
to French style, and a more than English exaggeration of it. They all
appear to me to walk with a French shuffle, which, as their pavements
are flat, I can only account for by their wearing shoes made in the
French fashion, which are enough in themselves to make a waddler of the
best walker that ever set foot to earth. Two or three were pretty girls;
but the town being quite empty, these are probably bad specimens of the
graces and charms that adorn Broadway in its season of shining. Came
home and had tea; after which my father, I, and Mr. ---- crossed the
Park (a small bit of grass enclosed in white palings, in plain English,
a green) to the theatre. Wallack was to act in the Rent Day. Mercy, how
strange I felt as I once more set foot in a theatre; the sound of the
applause set my teeth on edge. The house is pretty, though rather
gloomy, well formed, about the size of the Haymarket, with plenty of
gold carving, and red silk about it, looking rich and warm. The audience
was considerable, but all men; scarce, I should think, twenty women in
the dress circle, where, by the by, as well as in the private boxes, I
saw men sitting with their hats on. The Rent Day is a thorough
melodrama, only the German monster has put on a red waistcoat and top
boots. Nathless this is a good thing of a bad sort: the incidents,
though not all probable, or even as skilfully tacked together as they
might be, are striking and dramatically effective, and the whole piece
turns on those home feelings, those bitterest realities of every-day
life, that wring one's heart, beyond the pain that one allows works of
fiction to excite. As for the imitation of Wilkie's pictures, the first
was very pretty, but the second I did not see, my face being buried in
my handkerchief, besides having a quarter less seven fathom of tears
over it, at the time. I cried most bitterly during the whole piece; for
as in his very first scene Wallack asks his wife if she will go with him
to America, and she replies, "What! leave the farm?" I set off from
thence and ceased no more. The manager's wife and another woman were in
the box, which was his, and I thought we should have carried away the
front of it with our tears. Wallack played admirably: I had never seen
him before, and was greatly delighted with his acting. I thought him
handsome of a rustic kind, the very thing for the part he played, a fine
English yeoman: he reminded me of ----. At the end of the play, came
home with a tremendous headach: sat gossiping and drinking lemonade.
Presently a tap at the door came, and through the door came Mr. ----. I
shook hands with him, and began expatiating on the impertinence of
people's not enquiring down stairs whether we were at home or not before
they came up--I don't believe he took my idea. Mr. ---- came in to bid
us good-by: he starts to-morrow for Baltimore. He is a nice
good-tempered young Irishman, with more tongue than brains, but still
clever enough: I am sorry he is going. Came to bed-room at eleven,
remained up till one, unpacking goods and chattels. Mercy on me, what a
cargo it is! They have treated us like ambassadors, and not one of our
one-and-twenty huge boxes have been touched.


_Thursday, 6th._

Rose at eight. After breakfast, began writing to my brother; while doing
so they brought up Captain ----'s and Mr. ----'s cards. I was delighted
to see our dear Captain again, who, in spite of his glorious slip-slop,
is a glorious fellow. They sat some time. Colonel ---- called--he walks
my father off his legs. When they were all gone, finished letter and
wrote journal. Unpacked and sorted things. Opened with a trembling heart
my bonnet-box, and found my precious _Dévy_ squeezed to a crush--I
pulled it out, rebowed, and reblonded, and reflowered it, and now it
looks good enough "pour les _tha_uvages, mam_the_lle Fannie." Worked at
my muslin gown; in short, did a deal. A cheating German woman came here
this morning with some bewitching canezous and pelerines: I chose two
that I wanted, and one very pretty one that I didn't; but as she asked a
heathen price for 'em, I took only the former;--dear good little me![1]
We dined at five. After dinner, sang and played to my father, "all by
the light of the moon." The evening was, as the day had been, lovely;
and as I stood by his side near the open window, and saw him inhaling
the pure fresh air, which he said invigorated and revived him, and heard
him exclaim upon the beauty of our surroundings, half of my regret for
this exile melted away.

       *       *       *       *       *

       *       *       *       *       *

He said to me, "Is there not reason to be grateful to God, when we look
at these fair things?"--and indeed, indeed, there is: yet these things
are not to me what they were. He told me that he had begun a song on
board ship for the last Saturday night, but that, not feeling well, he
had given it up, but the very same ideas I had made use of had occurred
to him.

       *       *       *       *       *

       *       *       *       *       *

This is not surprising; the ideas were so obvious that there was no
escaping them. My father is ten years younger since he came here,
already.

       *       *       *       *       *

       *       *       *       *       *

Colonel ---- came in after tea, and took my father off to the Bowery
theatre. I remained with D----, singing and stitching, and gossiping
till twelve o'clock. My father has been introduced to half the town, and
tells me that far from the democratic _Mister_, which he expected to be
every man's title here, he had made the acquaintance of a score of
municipal dignitaries, and some sixty colonels and major generals--of
militia. Their omnibuses are vehicles of rank, and the _Ladies_
Washington, Clinton, and Van Rensalear,[2] rattle their crazy bones
along the pavement for all the world like any other old women of
quality.

These democrats are as title-sick as a banker's wife in England. My
father told me to-day, that Mr. ----, talking about the state of the
country, spoke of the lower orders finding their level: now this
enchants me, because a republic is a natural anomaly; there is nothing
republican in the construction of the material universe; there be
highlands and lowlands, lordly mountains as barren as any aristocracy,
and lowly valleys as productive as any labouring classes. The feeling of
rank, of inequality, is inherent in us, a part of the veneration of our
natures; and like most of our properties seldom finds its right
channels--in place of which it has created artificial ones suited to the
frame of society into which the civilised world has formed itself. I
believe in my heart that a republic is the noblest, highest, and purest
form of government; but I believe that, according to the present
disposition of human creatures, 'tis a mere beau ideal, totally
incapable of realisation. What the world may be fit for six hundred
years hence, I cannot exactly perceive; but in the mean time, 'tis my
conviction that America will be a monarchy before I am a skeleton.

One of the curses of living at an inn in this unceremonious land:--Dr.
---- walked in this evening accompanied by a gentleman, whom he
forthwith introduced to us. I behaved very _ill_, as I always do on
these occasions; but 'tis an impertinence, and I shall take good care to
certify such to be my opinion of these free-and-easy proceedings. The
man had a silly manner, but he may be a genius for all that. He abused
General Jackson, and said the cholera was owing to his presidency; for
that Clay had predicted that when he came into power, battle,
pestilence, and famine, would come upon the land: which prophecy finds
its accomplishment thus: they have had a war with the Indians, the
cholera has raged, and the people, flying from the infected cities to
the country, have eaten half the farmers out of house and home. This
hotel reminds me most extremely of our "iligant" and untidy apartments
in dear nasty Dublin, at the Shelbourne. The paper in our bed-room is
half peeling from the walls, our beds are without curtains: then to be
sure there are pier looking-glasses, and one or two pieces of showy
French furniture in it. 'Tis customary, too, here, I find, for men to
sleep three or four in a room: conceive an Englishman shown into a
dormitory for half-a-dozen! I can't think how they endure it; but,
however, I have a fever at all those things. My father asked me, this
evening, to write a sonnet about the wild pigeons welcoming us to
America; I had thought of it with scribbling intent before, but he wants
me to get it up here, and that sickened me.


_Friday, 7th._

Rose at eight: after breakfast tidied my dressing-box, mended and tucked
my white muslin gown--wrote journal: while doing so, Colonel ---- came
to take leave of us for a few days: he is going to join his wife in the
country. Mr. ---- called and remained some time; while he was here, the
waiter brought me word that a Mr. ---- wanted to see me. I sent word
down that my father was out, knowing no such person, and supposing the
waiter had mistaken whom he asked for; but the gentleman persisted in
seeing me, and presently in walked a good-looking elderly man, who
introduced himself as Mr. ----, to whom my father had letters of
introduction. He sat himself down, and pottered a little, and then went
away. When he was gone, Mr. ---- informed me that this was one of _the_
men of New York, in point of wealth, influence, and consideration. He
had been a great auctioneer, but had retired from business, having,
among his other honours, filled the office of Mayor of New York. My
father and Mr. ---- went to put our letters in the post: I practised and
needle-worked till dinner-time; after dinner, as I stood at the window
looking at the lovely sky and the brilliant earth, a curious effect of
light struck me. Within a hundred yards of each other, the Town-Hall
lay, with its white walls glowing in the sunset, while the tall grey
church-steeple was turning pale in the clear moonlight. That Town Hall
is a white-washed anomaly, and yet its effect is not altogether bad. I
took a bath at the house behind it, which is very conveniently arranged
for that purpose, with a French sort of gallery, all papered with the
story of Psyche in lead-coloured paper, that reminded me of the doughy
immortals I used to admire so much, at the inns at Abbeville and
Montreuil. The house was kept by a foreigner--I knew it. My father
proposed to us a walk, and we accordingly sallied forth. We walked to
the end of Broadway, a distance of two miles, I should think, and then
back again. The evening was most lovely. The moon was lighting the whole
upper sky, but every now and then, as we crossed the streets that led to
the river, we caught glimpses of the water, and woody banks, and the sky
that hung over them; which all were of that deep orange tint, that I
never saw but in Claude's pictures. After walking nearly a mile up
Broadway, we came to Canal Street: it is broader and finer than any I
have yet seen in New York; and at one end of it, a Christian church,
copied from some Pagan temple or other, looked exceedingly well, in the
full flood of silver light that streamed from heaven. There were many
temptations to look around, but the flags were so horribly broken and
out of order, that to do so was to run the risk of breaking one's
neck:--this is very bad.[3] The street was very much thronged, and I
thought the crowd a more civil and orderly one than an English crowd.
The men did not jostle or push one another, or tread upon one's feet, or
kick down one's shoe heels, or crush one's bonnet into one's face, or
turn it round upon one's head, all which I have seen done in London
streets. There is this to be said: this crowd was abroad merely for
pleasure, sauntering along, which is a thing never seen in London; the
proportion of idle loungers who frequent the streets there being very
inconsiderable, when compared with the number of people going on
business through the town. I observed that the young men to-night
invariably made room for women to pass, and many of them, as they drew
near us, took the cigar from their mouth, which I thought especially
courteous.[4] They were all smoking, to a man, except those who were
spitting, which helped to remind me of Paris, to which the whole place
bore a slight resemblance. The shops appear to me to make no show
whatever, and will not bear a comparison with the brilliant display of
the Parisian streets, or the rich magnificence of our own, in that
respect. The women dress very much, and very much like French women gone
mad; they all of them seem to me to walk horribly ill, as if they wore
tight shoes. Came in rather tired, took tea, sang an immensity, wrote
journal, looked at the peerless moon, and now will go to bed.


_Saturday 8th._

Stitching the whole blessed day; and as I have now no maid to look after
them, my clothes run some chance of being decently taken care of, and
kept in order. Mr. ---- and his daughter called; I like him; he appears
very intelligent; and the expression of his countenance is clever and
agreeable. His daughter was dressed up in French clothes, and looked
very stiff; but, however, a first visit is an awkward thing, and nothing
that isn't thorough-bred ever does it quite well. When they were gone,
Mr. ---- called. By the by, of Mr. ----, while he was speaking, he came
to the word _calculate_, and stopping half way, substituted another for
it, which made me laugh internally. Mercy on me! how sore all these
people are about Mrs. Trollope's book, and how glad I am I did not read
it. She must have spoken the truth though, for lies do not rankle so.


     "Qui ne nous touche point ne nous fait pas rougir."


Worked till dinner-time. ---- dined with us: what a handsome man he is;
but oh, what a within-and-without actor! I wonder whether I carry such a
brand in every limb and look of me; if I thought so, I'd strangle
myself. An actor shall be self-convicted, in five hundred. There is a
ceaseless striving at effect, a straining after points in talking, and
a lamp and orange-peel twist in every action. How odious it is to me!
Absolute and unmitigated vulgarity I can put up with, and welcome; but
good Heaven defend me from the genteel version of vulgarity! to see
which in perfection, a country actor, particularly if he is also
manager, and sees occasionally people who bespeak plays, is your best
occasion. My dear father, who was a little elated, made me sing to him,
which I greatly gulped at. When he was gone, went on playing and
singing. Wrote journal, and now to bed. I'm dead of the side-ach.[5]


_Sunday, 9th._

Rose at eight. While I was dressing, D---- went out of the room, and
presently I heard sundry exclamations: "Good God, is it you! How are
you? How have you been?" I opened the door, and saw my uncle.

       *       *       *       *       *

After breakfast, went to church with my father: on our way thither-ward
met the Doctor, and the Doctor's friend, and Mr. ----, to whom I have
taken an especial fancy. The church we went to is situated half way
between the Battery and our hotel. It is like a chapel in the exterior,
being quite plain, and standing close in among the houses; the interior
was large and perfectly simple. The town is filling, and the church was
well attended. 'Tis long since I have heard the church service so well
read; with so few vices of pronunciation, or vulgarisms of emphasis. Our
own clergy are shamefully negligent in this point; and if Chesterfield's
maxim be a good one in all cases, which it is, surely in the matter of
the service of God's house 'tis doubly so; they lose an immense
advantage, too, by their slovenly and careless way of delivering the
prayers, which are in themselves so beautiful, so eloquent, so full of
the very spirit of devotion; that whereas, now, a congregation seems but
to follow their leader, in gabbling them over as they do, were they
solemnly, devoutly, and impressively read, many would feel and
understand, what they now repeat mechanically, without attaching one
idea to the words they utter. There was no clerk to assist in the
service, and the congregation were as neglectful of the directions in
the prayer-book, and as indolent and remiss in uttering the responses,
as they are in our own churches; indeed, the absence of the clerk made
the inaudibility of the congregation's portion of the service more
palpable than it is with us. The organ and chanting were very good;
infinitely superior to the performances of those blessed little parish
cherubim, who monopolise the praises of God in our churches, so much to
the suffering of all good Christians not favoured with deafness. The
service is a little altered--all prayers for our King, Queen, House of
Lords, Parliament, etc., of course omitted: in lieu of which, they pray
for the President and all existing authorities. Sundry repetitions of
the Lord's Prayer, and other passages, were left out; they correct our
English, too, substituting the more modern phraseology of _those_, for
the dear old-fashioned _them_, which our prayer-book uses: as, "spare
thou _those_, O God," instead of "spare thou _them_, O God, which
confess their faults." Wherever the word wealth occurs, too, these
zealous purists, connecting that word with no idea but dollars and
cents, have replaced it by a term more acceptable to their
comprehension,--prosperity,--therefore they say, "In all time of our
prosperity (_i. e._ wealth), in all time of our tribulation," etc. I
wonder how these gentlemen interpret the word commonwealth, or whether,
in the course of their reading, they ever met with the word deprived of
the final _th_; and if so, what they imagined it meant.[6] Our prayers
were desired for some one putting out to sea; and a very touching
supplication to that effect was read, in which I joined with all my
heart. The sermon would have been good, if it had been squeezed into
half the compass it occupied; it was upon the subject of the late
terrible visitations with which God has tried the world, and was
sensibly and well delivered, only it had "damnable iteration." The day
was like an oven; after church, came home. Mr. ---- called, also Mr.
----, the Boston manager, who is longer than any human being I ever saw.
Presently after, a visit from "his honour the Recorder," a twaddling old
lawyer by the name of ----, and a silent young gentleman, his son. They
were very droll. The lawyer talked the most; at every half sentence,
however, quoting, complimenting, or appealing to "his honour the
Recorder," a little, good-tempered, turnippy-looking man, who called me
a female; and who, the other assured me, was the _Chesterfieldian_ of
New York (I don't know precisely what that means): what fun! Again I had
an opportunity of perceiving how thorough a chimera the equality is,
that we talk of as American. "There's no such thing," with a vengeance!
Here they were, talking of their aristocracy and democracy; and I'm
sure, if nothing else bore testimony to the inherent love of _higher
things_ which I believe exists in every human creature, the way in which
the lawyer dwelt upon the Duke of Montrose, lo whom, in Scotch kindred,
he is allied at the distance of some miles, and Lady Loughborough, whom
Heaven knows how he got hold of, would have satisfied me, that a my
Lord, or my Lady, are just as precious in the eyes of these levellers,
as in those of Lord and Lady-loving John Bull himself. They staid
pottering a long time. One thing his "honour the Recorder" told me,
which I wish lo remember: that the only way of preserving universal
suffrage from becoming the worst of abuses, was of course to educate the
people,[7] for which purpose a provision is made by government. Thus: a
grant of land is given, the revenue of which being estimated, the
population of the State are taxed to precisely the same amount; thus
furnishing, between the government and the people, an equal sum for the
education of all classes.[8] I do nothing but look out of window all the
blessed day long: I did not think in my old age to acquire so Jezebel a
trick; but the park (as they entitle the green opposite our windows) is
so very pretty, and the streets so gay, with their throngs of
smartly-dressed women, and so amusing with their abundant proportion of
black and white caricatures, that I find my window the most entertaining
station in the world. Read Salmonia: the natural-history part of it is
curious and interesting; but the local descriptions are beyond measure
tantalising; and the "bites," five thousand times more so. Our
ship-mate, Mr. ----, called: I was glad to see him. Poor man! how we did
_reel_ him off his legs to be sure,--what fun it was! My father dined
out: D---- and I dined _tête-à-tête_. Poor D---- has not been well
to-day: she is dreadfully bitten by the musquitoes, which, I thank their
discrimination, have a thorough contempt for me, and have not come near
me: the only things that bother me are little black ants, which I find
in my wash-hand basin, and running about in all directions. I think the
quantity of fruit brings them into the houses. After dinner, sat looking
at the blacks parading up and down; most of them in the height of the
fashion, with every colour in the rainbow about them. Several of the
black women I saw pass had very fine figures (the women here appear to
me to be remarkably small, my own being, I should think, the average
height); but the contrast of a bright blue or pink crape bonnet, with
the black face, white teeth, and glaring blue whites of the eyes, is
beyond description grotesque. The carriages here are all, to my taste,
very ugly; hung very high from the ground, and of all manner of ungainly
old-fashioned shapes. Now this is where, I think, the Americans are to
be quarrelled with: they are beginning at a time when all other nations
are arrived at the highest point of perfection, in all matters conducive
to the comfort and elegance of life: they go into these countries; into
France, into our own dear little snuggery, from whence they might bring
models of whatever was most excellent, and give them to their own
manufacturers, to imitate or improve upon. When I see these awkward
uncomfortable vehicles swinging through the streets, and think of the
beauty, the comfort, the strength, and lightness of our English-built
carriages and cabs, I am much surprised at the want of emulation and
enterprise, which can be satisfied with inferiority, when equality, if
not superiority, would be so easy.[9] At seven o'clock, D---- and I
walked out together. The evening was very beautiful, and we walked as
far as Canal Street and back. During our promenade, two fire-engines
passed us, attended by the usual retinue of shouting children; this is
about the sixth fire since yesterday evening. They are so frequent here,
that the cry "Fire, fire!" seems to excite neither alarm nor curiosity,
and except the above-mentioned pains-taking juveniles, none of the
inhabitants seem in the least disturbed by it.[10] We prosecuted our
walk down to the Battery, but just as we reached it we had to return, as
'twas tea-time. I was sorry: the whole scene was most lovely. The moon
shone full upon the trees and intersecting walks of the promenade, and
threw a bright belt of silver along the water's edge. The fresh night
wind came over the broad estuary, rippling it, and stirring the boughs
with its delicious breath. A building, which was once a fort from whence
the Americans fired upon our ships, is now turned into a sort of _café_,
and was brilliantly lighted with coloured lamps, shining among the
trees, and reflected in the water. The whole effect was pretty, and very
Parisian. We came home, and had tea, after which Mr. ---- came in. He
told us, that we must not walk alone at night, for that we might get
spoken to; and that a friend of his, seeing us go out without a man, had
followed us the whole way, in order to see that nothing happened to us:
this was very civil. Played and sang, and strove to make that stupid lad
sing, but he was shy, and would not open his mouth even the accustomed
hair's-breadth. At about eleven he went away; and we came to bed at
twelve.


_Monday, 10th._

Rose at eight. After breakfast wrote journal, and practised for an hour.
---- called. I remember taking a great fancy to him about eight years
ago, when I was a little girl in Paris; but, mercy, how he is aged! I
wonder whether I am beginning to look old yet, for it seems to me that
all the world's in wrinkles. My father went out with him. Read a canto
in Dante; also read through a volume of Bryant's poetry, which Mr. ----
had lent us, to introduce us to the American Parnassus. I liked a great
deal of it very well; and I liked the pervading spirit of it much more,
which appears to me hopeful and bright, and what the spirit of a poet
should be; for in spite of all De Staël's sayings, and Byron's doings, I
hold that melancholy is _not_ essentially the nature of a poet. Though
instances may be adduced of great poets whose Helicon has been but a
bitter well of tears, yet, in itself, the spirit of poetry appears to me
to be too strong, too bright, too full of the elements of beauty and of
excellence, too full of God's own nature, to be dark or desponding; and
though from the very fineness of his mental constitution a poet shall
suffer more intensely from the baseness and the bitterness which are the
leaven of life, yet he, of all men, the most possesses the power to
discover truth, and beauty, and goodness, where they do exist; and where
they exist not, to create them. If the clouds of existence are darker,
its sunshine is also brighter to him; and while others, less gifted,
lose themselves in the labyrinth of life, his spirit should throw light
upon the darkness, and he should walk in peace and faith over the stormy
waters, and through the uncertain night; standing as 'twere above the
earth, he views with clearer eyes its mysteries; he finds in apparent
discord glorious harmony, and to him the sum of all is good; for, in
God's works, good still abounds to the subjection of evil. 'Tis this
trustful spirit that seems to inspire Bryant, and to me, therefore, his
poetry appears essentially good. There is not much originality in it. I
scarce think there can be, in poems so entirely descriptive: his
descriptions are very beautiful, but there is some sameness in them, and
he does not escape self-repetition; but I am a bad critic, for which I
thank God! I know the tears rolled down my cheeks more than once as I
read; I know that agreeable sensations and good thoughts were suggested
by what I read; I thought some of it beautiful, and all of it wholesome
(in contradistinction to the literature of this age), and I was well
pleased with it altogether. Afterwards read a sort of satirical
burlesque, called "Fanny," by Hallek: the wit being chiefly confined to
local allusions and descriptions of New York manners, I could not derive
much amusement from it.

       *       *       *       *       *

       *       *       *       *       *

When my father came home, went with him to call on Mrs. ----. What I saw
of the house appeared to me very pretty, and well adapted to the heat of
the season. A large and lofty room, paved with India matting, and
furnished with white divans, and chairs, no other furniture encumbering
or cramming it up; it looked very airy and cool. Our hostess did not put
herself much out of the way to entertain us, but after the first "how do
you do," continued conversing with another visiter, leaving us to the
mercy of a very pretty young lady, who carried on the conversation at an
average of a word every three minutes. Neither Mr. ---- nor his eldest
daughter were at home; the latter, however, presently came in, and
relieved her sister and me greatly. We sat the proper time, and then
came away.

       *       *       *       *       *

This is a species of intercourse I love not any where. I never practised
it in my own blessed land, neither will I here. We dined at six: after
dinner played and sang till eight, and then walked out with D---- and my
father, by the most brilliant moonlight in the world. We went down to
the Battery; the aquatic Vauxhall was lighted up very gaily, and they
were sending up rockets every few minutes, which, shooting athwart the
sky, threw a bright stream of light over the water, and, falling back in
showers of red stars, seemed to sink away before the steadfast shining
of the moon, who held high supremacy in heaven. The bay lay like molten
silver under her light, and every now and then a tiny skiff, emerging
from the shade, crossed the bright waters, its dark hull and white sails
relieved between the shining sea and radiant sky. Came home at nine,
tea'd and sat embroidering till twelve o'clock, industrious little me.


_Tuesday, 11th._

This day week we landed in New York; and this day was its prototype,
rainy, dull, and dreary; with occasional fits of sunshine, and light
delicious air, as capricious as a fine lady. After breakfast, Colonel
---- called. Wrote journal, and practised till one o'clock. My father
then set off with Colonel ---- for Hoboken, a place across the water,
famous once for duelling, but now the favourite resort of a
turtle-eating club, who go there every Tuesday to cook and swallow
turtle. The day was as bad as a party of pleasure could expect, (and
when were their expectations of bad weather disappointed?) nathless, my
father, at the Colonel's instigation, _persevered_, and went forth,
leaving me his card of invitation, which made me scream for half an
hour; the wording as follows:--"Sir, the Hoboken Turtle Club will meet
at the grove, for _spoon exercise_, on Tuesday, the 11th inst., by order
of the President." Mr. ---- and the Doctor paid us a visit of some
length.

       *       *       *       *       *

When they were gone, read a canto in Dante, and sketched till four
o'clock. I wish I could make myself draw. I want to do every thing in
the world that can be done, and, by the by, that reminds me of my
German, which I must _persecute_. At four o'clock sent for a
hair-dresser, that I might in good time see that I am not made an object
on my first night. He was a Frenchman, and after listening profoundly to
my description of the head-dress I wanted, replied, as none but a
Frenchman could, "_Madame, la difficulté n'est pas d'exécuter votre
coiffure, mais de la bien concevoir_." However, he conceived and
executed sundry very smooth-looking bows, and, upon the whole, dressed
my hair very nicely, but charged a dollar for so doing; O nefarious!
D---- and I dined _tête-à-tête_; the evening was sulky--I was in
miserable spirits.

       *       *       *       *       *

Sat working till my father came home, which he did at about half past
six. His account of his dinner was any thing but delightful; to be sure
he has no taste for rainy ruralities, and his feeling description of the
damp ground, damp trees, damp clothes, and damp atmosphere, gave me the
_rheumatiz_, letting alone that they had nothing to eat but turtle, and
that out of iron spoons.--"Ah, you vill go a pleasuring."

       *       *       *       *       *

       *       *       *       *       *

He had a cold before, and I fear this will make him very ill. He went
like wisdom to take a vapour bath directly. ---- came, and sat with us
till he returned. Had tea at eight, and embroidered till midnight. The
wind is rioting over the earth. I should like to see the Hudson now. The
black clouds, like masses of dark hair, are driven over the moon's pale
face; the red lights and fire engines are dancing up and down; the
streets, the church bells are all tolling--'tis sad and strange.


     'Tis all in vain, it may not last,
     The sickly sunlight dies away,
     And the thick clouds that veil the past
     Roll darkly o'er my present day.

     Have I not flung them off, and striven
     To seek some dawning hope in vain?
     Have I not been for ever driven
     Back to the bitter past again?

     What though a brighter sky bends o'er
     Scenes where no former image greets me?
     Though lost in paths untrod before,
     Here, even here, pale Memory meets me.

     Oh life--oh blighted bloomless tree!
     Why cling thy fibres to the earth?
     Summer can bring no flower to thee,
     Autumn no bearing, spring no birth.

     Bid me not strive, I'll strive no more,
     To win from pain my joyless breast;
     Sorrow has plough'd too deeply o'er
     Life's Eden--let it take the rest!


_Wednesday, 12th._

Rose at eight. After breakfast, heard my father say Hamlet. How
beautiful his whole conception of that part is! and yet it is but an
actor's conception too.

       *       *       *       *       *

       *       *       *       *       *

I am surprised at any body's ever questioning the real madness of
Hamlet: I know but one passage in the play which tells against it, and
there are a thousand that go to prove it. But leaving all isolated parts
out of the question, the entire colour of the character is the proper
ground from which to draw the right deduction. Gloomy, desponding,
ambitious, and disappointed in his ambition, full of sorrow for a dead
father, of shame for a living mother, of indignation for his ill-filled
inheritance, of impatience at his own dependent position; of a
thoughtful, doubtful, questioning spirit, looking with timid boldness
from the riddles of earth and life, to those of death and the mysterious
land beyond it; weary of existence upon its very threshold, and withheld
alone from self-destruction by religious awe, and that pervading
uncertainty of mind which stands on the brink, brooding over the unseen
may-be of another world; in love, moreover, and sad and dreamy in his
affection, as in every other sentiment; for there is not enough of
absolute passion in his love to make it a powerful and engrossing
interest; had it been such, the entireness and truth of Hamlet's
character would have been destroyed. 'Tis love indeed, but a pulseless
powerless love; gentle, refined, and tender, but without ardour or
energy; such are the various elements of Hamlet's character, at the very
beginning of the play: then see what follows. A frightful and unnatural
visitation from the dead; a horrible and sudden revelation of the murder
of the father for whom his soul is in mourning; thence burning hatred
and thirst of vengeance against his uncle; double loathing of his
mother's frailty; above all, that heaviest burden that a human creature
can have put upon him, an imperative duty calling for fulfilment, and a
want of resolution and activity to meet the demand; thence an unceasing
struggle between the sluggish nature and the upbraiding soul; an eternal
self-spurring and self-accusing: from which mental conflict, alone
sufficient to unseat a stronger mind, he finds relief in fits of
desponding musing, the exhaustion of overwrought powers. Then comes the
vigilant and circumspect guard he is forced to keep upon every word,
look, and action, lest they reveal his terrible secret; the suspicion
and mistrust of all that surround him, authorised by his knowledge of
his uncle's nature: his constant watchfulness over the spies that are
set to watch him; then come, in the course of events, Polonius's death,
the unintentional work of his own sword, the second apparition of his
father's ghost, his banishment to England, still haunted by his
treacherous friends, the miserable death of poor Ophelia, together with
the unexpected manner of his first hearing of it--if all these--the
man's own nature, sad and desponding--his educated nature (at a German
university), reasoning and metaphysical--and the nature he acquires from
the tutelage of events, bitter, dark, amazed, and uncertain; if these do
not make up as complete a madman as ever walked between heaven and
earth, I know not what does.[11] Wrote journal, and began to practise;
while doing so, ---- called; he said that he was accompanied by some
friends who wished to see me, and were at the door. I've heard of men's
shutting the door in the face of a dun, and going out the back way to
escape a bailiff--but how to get rid of such an attack as this I knew
not, and was therefore fain to beg the gentlemen would walk in, and
accordingly in they walked, four as fine-grown men as you would wish to
see on a summer's day. I was introduced to this regiment man by man, and
thought, as my Sheffield friend would say, "If _them_ be American
manners, defend me from them." They are traders, to be sure; but I never
heard of such wholesale introduction in my life. They sat a little
while, behaved very like Christians, and then departed. Captain ---- and
---- called,--the former to ask us to come down and see the Pacific,
poor old lady! When they were gone, practised, read a canto in Dante,
and translated verbatim a German fable, which kept me till dinner-time.
After dinner, walked out towards the Battery. ---- joined us. It was
between sunset and moonrise, and a lovelier light never lay upon sea,
earth, and sky. The horizon was bright orange colour, fading as it rose
to pale amber, which died away again into the modest violet colour of
twilight; this possessed the main sky wholly, except where two or three
masses of soft dark purple clouds floated, from behind which the stars
presently winked at us with their bright eyes. The river lay as still as
death, though there was a delicious fresh air: tiny boats were stealing
like shadows over the water; and every now and then against the orange
edge of the sky moved the masts of some schooner, whose hull was hidden
in the deep shadow thrown over it by the Jersey coast. A band was
playing in the Castle garden, and not a creature but ourselves seemed
abroad to see all this loveliness. Fashion makes the same fools all the
world over; and Broadway, with its crowded dusty pavement, and in the
full glare of day, is preferable, in the eyes of the New York
promenaders, to this cool and beautiful walk. Came home at about nine.
On the stairs met that odious Dr. ----, who came into the drawing-room
without asking or being asked, sat himself down, and called me "Miss
Fanny." I should like to have thrown my tea at him! ---- sent up his
name and presently followed it. I like to see any of our
fellow-passengers, however little such society would have pleased me
under any other circumstances; but necessity "makes us acquainted with
strange bedfellows;" and these my ship-mates will, to the end of time,
be my very good friends and boon companions. My father went to the Park
theatre, to see a man of the name of Hacket give an American
entertainment after Matthews's at-home fashion. I would not go, but
staid at home looking at the moon, which was glorious.

       *       *       *       *       *

       *       *       *       *       *

To-night, as I stood watching that surpassing sunset, I would have given
it all--gold, and purple, and all--for a wreath of English fog stealing
over the water.


_Thursday, 13th._

Rose late: there was music in the night, which is always a strange
enchantment to me. After breakfast, wrote journal. At eleven, Captain
---- and ---- called for us; and my uncle having joined us, we proceeded
to the slip, as they call the places where the ships lie, and which
answer to our docks. Poor dear Pacific! I ran up her side with great
glee, and was introduced to Captain ----, her old commander; rushed down
into my berth, and was actually growing pathetic over the scene of my
sea-sorrows, when Mr. ---- clapped his hands close to me, and startled
me out of my reverie. Certainly my _adhesiveness_ must either be very
large, or uncommonly active just now, for my heart yearned towards the
old timbers with exceeding affection. The old ship was all drest out in
her best, and after sitting for some time in our cabin, we adjourned to
the larger one and lunched. Mr. ---- joined our party; and we had one or
two of our old ship songs, with their ridiculous burdens, with due
solemnity. Saw Mr. ----, but not dear M. ----. Visited the forecastle,
whence I have watched such glorious sunsets, such fair uprisings of the
starry sisterhood; now it looked upon the dusty quay and dirty dock
water, and the graceful sails were all stripped away, and the bare masts
and rigging shone in the intense sunlight. Poor good ship! I wish to
Heaven my feet were on her deck, and her prow turned to the east. I
would not care if the devil himself drove a hurricane at our backs.
Visited the fish and fruit markets:[12] it was too late in the day to
see either to advantage, but the latter reminded me of Aladdin's
treasure: the heaps of peaches, filling with their rich downy balls high
baskets ranged in endless rows, and painted of a bright vermilion
colour, which threw a ruddy ripeness over the fruit. The enormous
baskets (such as are used in England to carry linen) piled with melons,
the wild grapes, the pears, and apples, all so plenteous, so fragrant,
so beautiful in form and colour, leading the mind to the wondrous
bounteousness which has dowered this land with every natural
treasure--the whole enchanted me. ----, to my horror, bought a couple of
beautiful live wild-pigeons, which he carried home, head downwards, one
in each coat pocket. We parted from him at the Park gate, and proceeded
to Murray Street, to look at the furnished house my father wishes to
take. Upon enquiry, however, we found that it was already let. The day
was bright and beautiful, and my father proposed crossing the river to
Hoboken, the scene of the turtle-eating expedition. We did so
accordingly: himself, D----, Mr. ----, and I. Steamers go across every
five minutes, conveying passengers on foot and horseback, gigs,
carriages, carts, any thing and every thing. The day was lovely--the
broad bright river was gemmed with a thousand sails. Away to the right
it stretched between richly-wooded banks, placid and blue as a lake; to
the left, in the rocky doorway of the narrows, two or three ships stood
revealed against the cloudless sky. We reached the opposite coast, and
walked. It was nearly three miles from where we landed to the scene of
the "_spoon-exercise_." The whole of our route lay through a beautiful
wild plantation, or rather strip of wood, I should say, for 'tis
nature's own gardening which crowns the high bank of the river; through
which trellis-work of varied foliage we caught exquisite glimpses of the
glorious waters, the glittering city, and the opposite banks, decked out
in all the loveliest contrast of sunshine and shade. As we stood in our
leafy colonnade looking out upon this fair scene, the rippling water
made sweet music far down below us, striking with its tiny silver waves
the smooth sand and dark-coloured rocks from which they were ebbing.
Many of the trees were quite new to me, and delighted me with their
graceful forms and vivid foliage. The broad-leaved catalpa, and the
hickory with its bright coral-coloured berries. Many lovely lowly
things, too, grew by our pathside, which we gathered as we passed, to
bring away, but which withered in our hands ere we returned. Gorgeous
butterflies were zigzagging through the air, and for the first time I
longed to imprison them. In pursuing one, I ran into the midst of a slip
of clover land, but presently jumped out again, on hearing the swarms
of grasshoppers round me. Mr. ---- caught one; it was larger and thicker
than the English grasshopper, and of a dim mottled brown colour, like
the plumage of our common moth; but presently, on his opening his hand
to let it escape, it spread out a pair of dark purple wings, tipped with
pale primrose colour, and flew away a beautiful butterfly, such as the
one I had been seduced by. The slips of grass ground on the left of our
path were the only things that annoyed me: they were ragged, and rank,
and high,--they wanted mowing; and if they had been mowed soft, and
thick, and smooth, like an English lawn, how gloriously the lights and
shadows of this lovely sky would fall through the green roof of this
wood upon them! There is nothing in nature that, to my fancy, receives
light and shade with as rich an effect as sloping lawn land. Oh!
England, England! how I have seen your fresh emerald mantle deepen and
brighten in a summer's day. About a hundred yards from the place where
they dined on Tuesday, with no floor but the damp earth, no roof but the
dripping trees, stands a sort of _café_; a long, low, pretty
Italianish-looking building. The wood is cleared away in front of it,
and it commands a lovely view of the Hudson and its opposite shores: and
here they might have been sheltered and comfortable, but I suppose it
was not yet the appointed day of the month with them for eating their
dinner within walls; and, rather than infringe on an established rule,
they preferred catching a cold apiece. The place where they met in the
open air is extremely beautiful, except, of course, on a rainy day. The
shore is lower just here; and though there are trees enough to make
shade all round, and a thick screen of wood and young undergrowth
behind, the front is open to the river, which makes a bend just below,
forming a lake-like bay, round which again the coast rises into rocky
walls covered with rich foliage. Upon one of these promontories, in the
midst of a high open knoll, surrounded and overhung by higher grounds
covered with wood, stood the dwelling of the owner of the land, high
above the river, overlooking its downward course to the sea, perched
like an eagle's aërie, half-way between heaven and the level earth, but
beautifully encircled with waving forests, a shade in summer and a
shelter in winter. My father, D----, and my bonnet sat down in the
shade. Mr. ---- and I clambered upon some pieces of rock at the water's
edge, whence we looked out over river and land--a fair sight. "Oh!" I
exclaimed, pointing to the highlands on our left, through whose rich
foliage the rifted granite looked cold and grey, "what a place for a
scramble! there must be lovely walks there." "Ay," returned my
companion, "and a few rattle-snakes too."[13] We found D----, my father,
and my bonnet buffeting with a swarm of musquitoes; this is a great
nuisance. We turned our steps homeward. I picked up a nut enclosed like
a walnut in a green case. I opened it; it was not ripe; but in
construction exactly like a walnut, with the same bitter filmy skin over
the fruit, which is sweet and oily, and like a walnut in flavour also.
Mr. ---- told me it was called a marrow-nut. The tree on which it grew
had foliage of the acacia kind. We had to rush to meet the steam-boat,
which was just going across. The whole walk reminded me of that part of
Oatlands which, from its wild and tangled woodland, they call America.

       *       *       *       *       *

       *       *       *       *       *

There must have been something surpassingly beautiful in our
surroundings, for even Mr. ----, into whose composition I suspect much
of the poetical element does not enter, began expatiating on the
happiness of the original possessors of these fair lands and waters, the
Indians--the Red Children of the soil, who followed the chase through
these lovely wildernesses, and drove their light canoes over these broad
streams--"great nature's happy commoners,"--till the predestined curse
came on them, till the white sails of the invaders threw their shadow
over these seas, and the work of extermination began in these wild
fastnesses of freedom. The destruction of the original inhabitants of a
country by its discoverers, always attended, as it is, with injustice
and cruelty, appears to me one of the most mysterious dispensations of
Providence.

The chasing, enslaving, and destroying creatures, whose existence,
however inferior, is as justly theirs as that of the most refined
European is his; who for the most part, too, receive their enemies with
open-handed hospitality, until taught treachery by being betrayed, and
cruelty by fear; the driving the child of the soil off it, or, what is
fifty times worse, chaining him to till it; all the various forms of
desolation which have ever followed the landing of civilised men upon
uncivilised shores; in short, the theory and practice of discovery and
conquest, as recorded in all history, is a very singular and painful
subject of contemplation.

'Tis true that cultivation and civilisation, the arts and sciences that
render life useful, the knowledge that ennobles, the adornments that
refine existence, above all, the religion that is the most sacred trust
and dear reward, all these, like pure sunshine and healthful airs
following a hurricane, succeed the devastation of the invader; but the
sufferings of those who are swept away are not the less; and though I
believe that good alone is God's result, it seems a fearful proof of the
evil wherewith this earth is cursed, that good cannot progress but over
such a path. No one beholding the prosperous and promising state of this
fine country, could wish it again untenanted of its enterprising and
industrious possessors; yet even while looking with admiration at all
that they have achieved, with expectation amounting to certainty to all
that they will yet accomplish, 'tis difficult to refrain from bestowing
some thoughts of pity and of sadness upon those whose homes have been
overturned, whose language has passed away, and whose feet are daily
driven further from those territories of which they were once sole and
sovereign lords. How strange it is to think, that less than one hundred
years ago, these shores, resounding with the voice of populous
cities,--these waters, laden with the commerce of the wide world,--were
silent wildernesses, where sprang and fell the forest leaves, where
ebbed and flowed the ocean tides from day to day, and from year to year,
in uninterrupted stillness; where the great sun, who looked on the vast
empires of the East, its mouldering kingdoms, its lordly palaces, its
ancient temples, its swarming cities, came and looked down upon the
still dwelling of utter loneliness, where nature sat enthroned in
everlasting beauty, undisturbed by the far off din of worlds "beyond the
flood."[14]

Came home rather tired: my father asked Mr. ---- to dine with us, but he
could not. After dinner, sat working till ten o'clock, when ---- came to
take leave of us. He is going off to-morrow morning to Philadelphia, but
will be back for our Tuesday's dinner. The people here are all up and
about very early in the morning. I went out at half-past eight, and
found all Broadway abroad.


_Friday, 14th._

Forget all about it, except that I went about the town with Colonel
----.

       *       *       *       *       *

went to see his Quaker wife, whom I liked very much.

       *       *       *       *       *

Drove all about New-York, which more than ever reminded me of the towns
in France: passed the Bowery theatre, which is a handsome
finely-proportioned building, with a large brazen eagle plastered on the
pediment, for all the world like an insurance mark, or the sign of the
spread eagle: this is nefarious! We passed a pretty house, which Colonel
---- called an old mansion; mercy on me, him, and it! Old! I thought of
Warwick Castle, of Hatfield, of Chequers, of Hopwood--old! and there it
stood, with its white pillars and Italian-looking portico, for all the
world like one of our own cit's yesterday-grown boxes. Old, quotha! the
woods and waters and hills and skies alone are old here; the works of
men are in the very greenness and unmellowed imperfection of youth:
true, 'tis a youth full of vigorous sap and glorious promise; spring,
laden with blossoms, foretelling abundant and rich produce, and so let
them be proud of it. But the worst of it is, the Americans are not
satisfied with glorying in what they are,--which, considering the time
and opportunities they have had, is matter of glory quite
sufficient,--they are never happy without comparing this their sapling
to the giant oaks of the old world,--and what can one say to that? _Is_
New-York like London? No, by my two troths it is not; but the oak was an
acorn once, and New York will surely, if the world holds together long
enough, become a lordly city, such as we know of beyond the sea.

Went in the evening to see Wallack act the Brigand; it was his benefit,
and the house was very good. He is perfection in this sort of thing, yet
there were one or two blunders even in his melo-dramatic acting of this
piece; however, he looks very like the thing, and it is very nice to
see--once.


_Saturday, 15th._

Sat stitching all the blessed day. So we are to go to _Philadelphia_
before _Boston_. I'm sorry. The H----s will be disappointed, and I shall
get no riding, _che seccatura!_ At five dressed, and went to the ----,
where we were to dine. This is one of the first houses here, so I
conclude that I am to consider what I see as a tolerable sample of the
ways and manners of being, doing, and suffering of the _best society_ in
New York. There were about twenty people; the women were in a sort of
French demi-toilette, with bare necks, and long sleeves, heads frizzed
out after the very last _Petit Courier_, and thread net handkerchiefs
and capes; the whole of which, to my English eye, appeared a strange
marrying of incongruities. The younger daughter of our host is
beautiful; a young and brilliant likeness of Ellen Tree, with more
refinement, and a smile that was, not to say a ray, but a whole focus of
sun rays, a perfect blaze of light; she was much taken up with a youth,
to whom, my neighbour at dinner informed me, she was engaged.

       *       *       *       *       *

The women here, like those of most warm climates, ripen very early, and
decay proportionably soon. They are, generally speaking, pretty, with
good complexions, and an air of freshness and brilliancy, but this, I am
told, is very evanescent; and whereas, in England, a woman is in the
full bloom of health and beauty from twenty to five-and-thirty, here
they scarcely reach the first period without being faded and looking
old.[15] They marry very young, and this is another reason why age comes
prematurely upon them. There was a fair young thing at dinner to-day who
did not look above seventeen, and she was a wife. As for their figures,
like those of French women, they are too well dressed for one to judge
exactly what they are really like: they are, for the most part, short
and slight, with remarkably pretty feet and ankles; but there's too much
pelerine and petticoat, and "de quoi" of every sort, to guess any thing
more.

       *       *       *       *       *

       *       *       *       *       *

There was a Mr. ----, the Magnus Apollo of New York, who is a musical
genius: sings as well as any gentleman need sing, pronounces Italian
well, and accompanies himself without false chords; all which renders
him _the_ man round whom (as round H----, G----, Lord C----, and that
pretty Lord O----, in our own country) the women listen and languish. He
sang the Phantom Bark: the last time I heard it was from the lips of
Moore, with two of the loveliest faces in all the world hanging over
him, Mrs. N----, and Mrs. B----. By the by, the man who sat next me at
dinner was asking me all manner of questions about Mrs. N----: among
others, whether she was "as pale as a poetess ought to be?" Oh! how I
wish Corinne had but heard that herself! what a deal of funny scorn
would have looked beautiful on her rich brown cheek and brilliant lips.
The dinner was plenteous, and tolerably well dressed, but ill served:
there were not half servants enough, and we had neither water-glasses
nor finger-glasses. Now, though I don't eat with my fingers (except
peaches, whereat I think the aborigines, who were paring theirs like so
many potatoes, seemed rather amazed), yet do I hold a finger-glass at
the conclusion of my dinner a requisite to comfort. After dinner we had
coffee, but no tea, whereat my English taste was in high dudgeon. The
gentlemen did not sit long, and when they joined us, Mr. ----, as I said
before, uttered sweet sounds. By the by, I was not a little amused at
Mrs. ---- asking me whether I had heard of his singing, or their musical
soirées, and seeming all but surprised that I had no revelations of
either across the Atlantic. Mercy on me! what fools people are all over
the world! The worst is, they are all fools of the same sort, and there
is no profit whatever in travelling. Mr. B----, who is an Englishman,
happened to ask me if I knew Captain ----, whereupon we immediately
struck up a conversation, and talked over English folks and doings
together, to my entire satisfaction. The ---- were there: he is brother
to that wondrous ruler of the spirits whom I did so dislike in London,
and his lady is a daughter of Lord ----.

       *       *       *       *       *

       *       *       *       *       *

I was very glad to come home. I sang to them two or three things, but
the piano was pitched too high for my voice; by the by, in that large,
lofty, fine room, they had a tiny, old-fashioned, becurtained cabinet
piano stuck right against the wall, unto which the singer's face was
turned, and into which his voice was absorbed. We had hardly regained
our inn and uncloaked, when there came a tap at the door, and in walked
Mr. ---- to ask me if we would not join them (himself and the ----) at
supper. He said that, besides five being a great deal too early to dine,
he had not half dinner enough; and then began the regular English
quizzing of every thing and every body we had left behind. Oh dear, oh
dear! how thoroughly English it was, and how it reminded me of H----; of
course, we did not accept their invitation, but it furnished me matter
of amusement. How we English folks do cling to our own habits, our own
views, our own things, our own people; how, in spite of all our
wanderings and scatterings over the whole face of the earth, like so
many Jews, we never lose our distinct and national individuality; nor
fail to lay hold of one another's skirts, to laugh at and depreciate all
that differs from that country, which we delight in forsaking for any
and all others.


_Sunday, 16th._

Rose at eight. After breakfast, walked to church with the C----s and Mr.
B----. They went to Grace Church for the music; we stopped short to go
to the ---- pew in the Episcopal church. The pew was crammed, I am sorry
to say, owing to our being there, which they had pressed so earnestly,
that we thought ourselves bound to accept the invitation. The sermon was
tolerably good; better than the average sermons one hears in London, and
sufficiently well delivered. After church, I---- called, also two men of
the name of M----, large men, very! also Mr. B---- and Mr. C----: when
they were all gone, wrote journal, and began a letter to J----. Dined at
five; after dinner, went on with my letter to J----, and wrote an
immense one to dear H----, which kept me pen in hand till past twelve. A
tremendous thunderstorm came on, which lasted from nine o'clock till
past two in the morning: I never saw but one such in my life; and that
was our memorable Weybridge storm, which only exceeded this in the
circumstance of my having seen a thunderbolt fall during that paroxysm
of the elements. But this was very glorious, awful, beautiful, and
tremendous. The lightning played without the intermission of a second,
in wide sheets of purple glaring flame, that trembled over the earth for
nearly two or three seconds at a time; making the whole world, river,
sky, trees, and buildings, look like a ghostly universe cut out in
chalk. The light over the water, which absolutely illumined the shore on
the other side with the broad glare of full day, was of a magnificent
purple colour. The night was pitchy dark, too; so that between each of
these ghastly smiles of the devil, the various pale steeples and
buildings, which seemed at every moment to leap from nothing into
existence, after standing out in fearful relief against a back-ground of
fire, were hidden like so many dreams in deep and total darkness. God's
music rolled along the heavens; the forked lightnings now dived from the
clouds into the very bosom of the city, now ran like tangled threads of
fire all round the blazing sky. "The big bright rain came dancing to the
earth," the wind clapped its huge wings, and swept through the dazzling
glare; and as I stood, with eyes half veiled (for the light was too
intense even upon the ground to be looked at with unshaded eyes), gazing
at this fierce holiday of the elements--at the mad lightning--at
the brilliant shower, through which the flashes shone like
daylight--listening to the huge thunder, as its voice resounded, and its
heavy feet rebounded along the clouds--and the swift spirit-like wind
rushing triumphantly along, uttering its wild pæan over the amazed
earth;--I felt more intensely than I ever did before the wondrous might
of these God's powerful and beautiful creatures; the wondrous might,
majesty, and awfulness of him their Lord, beneath whose footstool they
lie chained, by his great goodness made the ministers of good to this
our lowly dwelling-place. I did not go to bed till two; the storm
continued to rage long after that.


_Monday, 17th._

Rose at eight. At twelve, went to rehearsal. The weather is intolerable;
I am in a state of perpetual fusion. The theatre is the coolest place I
have yet been in, I mean at rehearsal; when the front is empty, and the
doors open, and the stage is so dark that we are obliged to rehearse by
candlelight. That washed-out man, who failed in London when he acted
Romeo with me, is to be my Fazio; let us hope he will know some of his
words to-morrow night, for he is at present most innocent of any such
knowledge. After rehearsal, walked into a shop to buy some gauze: the
shopmen called me by my name, entered into conversation with us; and one
of them, after showing me a variety of things which I did not want,
said, that they were most anxious to show me every attention, and render
my stay in this country agreeable. A Christian, I suppose, would have
met these benevolent advances with an infinitude of thankfulness, and an
outpouring of grateful pleasure; but for my own part, though I had the
grace to smile and say, "Thank you," I longed to add, "but be so good as
to measure your ribands, and hold your tongue." I have no idea of
holding parley with clerks behind a counter, still less of their doing
so with me. So much for my first impression of the courtesy of this land
of liberty. I should have been much better pleased if they had called me
"Ma'am," which they did not. We dined at three. V---- and Colonel ----
called after dinner. At seven, went to the theatre. It was my dear
father's first appearance in this new world, and my heart ached with
anxiety. The weather was intensely hot, yet the theatre was crowded:
when he came on, they gave him what every body here calls an immense
reception; but they should see our London audience get up, and wave
hats and handkerchiefs, and shout welcome as they do to us. The tears
were in my eyes, and all I could say was, "They might as well get up, I
think." My father looked well, and acted beyond all praise; but oh, what
a fine and delicate piece of work this is! There is not one sentence,
line, or word of this part which my father has not sifted grain by
grain; there is not one scene or passage to which he does not give its
fullest and most entire substance, together with a variety that relieves
the intense study of the whole with wonderful effect.

       *       *       *       *       *

       *       *       *       *       *

I think that it is impossible to conceive Hamlet more truly, or execute
it more exquisitely, than he does. The refinement, the tenderness, the
grace, dignity, and princely courtesy with which he invests it from
beginning to end, are most lovely; and some of the slighter passages,
which, like fine tints to the incapable eyes of blindness, must always
pass unnoticed, and, of course, utterly uncomprehended, by the
discriminating public, enchanted me.

       *       *       *       *       *

       *       *       *       *       *

His voice was weak, from nervousness and the intolerable heat of the
weather, and he was not well dressed, which was a pity.

       *       *       *       *       *

       *       *       *       *       *

The play was well got up, and went off very well. The ---- were there, a
regiment of them; also Colonel ---- and Captain ----. After the play,
came home to supper.


_Tuesday, 18th._

Rose at eight. At eleven, went to rehearsal. Mr. Keppel is just as
nervous and as imperfect as ever: what on earth will he, or shall I, do
to-night! Came home, got things out for the theatre, and sat like any
stroller stitching for dear life at my head-dress. Mr. H---- and his
nephew called: the latter asked me if I was at all apprehensive? No, by
my troth, I am not; and that not because I feel sure of success, for I
think it very probable the Yankees may like to show their critical
judgment and independence by damning me; but because, thank God, I do
not care whether they do or not: the whole thing is too loathsome to me,
for either failure or success to affect me in the least, and therefore
I feel neither nervous nor anxious about it. We dined at three: after
dinner, J---- came; he sat some time. When he was gone, I came into the
drawing-room, and found a man sitting with my father, who presented him
to me by some inaudible name. I sat down, and the gentleman pursued his
conversation as follows:--"When Clara Fisher came over, Barry wrote to
me about her, and I wrote him back word: 'My dear fellow, if your bella
donna is such as you describe, why, we'll see what we can do; we will
take her by the hand.'" This was enough for me. I jumped up, and ran out
of the room; because a newspaper writer is my aversion. At half-past
six, went to the theatre. They acted the farce of Popping the Question
first, in order, I suppose, to get the people to their places before the
play began. Poor Mr. Keppel was gasping for breath; he moved my
compassion infinitely; I consoled and comforted him all I could, gave
him some of my lemonade to swallow, for he was choking with fright; sat
myself down with my back to the audience, and up went the curtain. Owing
to the position in which I was sitting, and my plain dress, most
unheroine-like in its make and colour, the people did not know me, and
would not have known me for some time, if that stupid man had done as I
kept bidding him, gone on; but instead of doing so, he stood stock
still, looked at me, and then at the audience, whereupon the latter
caught an inkling of the truth, and gave me such a reception as I get in
Covent Garden theatre every time I act a new part. The house was very
full; all the ---- were there, and Colonel ----. Mr. Keppel was
frightened to death, and in the very second speech was quite out: it was
in vain that I prompted him; he was too nervous to take the word, and
made a complete mess of it. This happened more than once in the first
scene; and at the end of the first act, as I left the stage, I said to
D----, "It's all up with me, I can't do any thing now;" for, having to
prompt my Fazio, frightened by his fright, annoyed by his forgetting his
crossings and positions, utterly unable to work myself into any thing
like excitement, I thought the whole thing must necessarily go to
pieces. However, once rid of my encumbrance, which I am at the end of
the second act, I began to move a little more freely, gathered up my
strength, and set to work comfortably by myself; whereupon, the people
applauded, I warmed (warmed, quotha! the air was steam), and got through
very satisfactorily, at least so it seems. My dresses were very
beautiful; but oh, but oh, the musquitoes had made dreadful havoc with
my arms, which were covered with hills as large and red as Vesuvius in
an eruption. After the play, my father introduced me to Mr. B----, Lord
S----'s brother, who was behind the scenes; his brother's place, by the
by. Came home, supped.

       *       *       *       *       *

       *       *       *       *       *

Came to bed at half past twelve; weary, and half melted away. The ants
swarm on the floors, on the tables, in the beds, about one's clothes;
the plagues of Egypt were a joke to them: horrible! it makes one's life
absolutely burdensome, to have creatures creeping about one, and all
over one, night and day, this fashion; to say nothing of those
cantankerous stinging things, the musquitoes.


_Wednesday, 19th._

D---- did not call me till ten o'clock, whereat I was in furious
dudgeon. Got up, breakfasted, and off to rehearsal; Romeo and Juliet.
Mr. Keppel has been dismissed, poor man! I'm sorry for him: my father is
to play Romeo with me, I'm sorrier still for that. After rehearsal, came
home, dawdled about my room: Mr. ---- called: he is particularly fond of
music. My father asked him to try the piano, which he accordingly did,
and was playing most delightfully, when in walked Mr. ----, and by and
by Colonel ----, with his honour the Recorder, and General ---- of the
militia. I amused myself with looking over some exquisite brown silk
stockings, wherewith I mean to match my gown. When they were all gone,
dawdled about till time to dress. So poor dear H---- can't come from
Philadelphia for our dinner--dear, I'm quite sorry! At five our party
assembled; we were but thin in numbers, and the half empty table,
together with the old ship faces, made it look, as some one observed, as
if it was blowing hard. Our dinner was neither good nor well served, the
wine not half iced. At the end of it, my father gave Captain ---- his
claret-jug, wherewith that worthy seemed much satisfied.

       *       *       *       *       *

We left the table soon; came and wrote journal. When the gentlemen
joined us, they were all more or less "how com'd you so indeed?" Mr.
---- and Mr. ---- particularly. They put me down to the piano, and once
or twice I thought I must have screamed. On one side _vibrated_ dear
Mr. ----, threatening my new gown with a cup of coffee, which he held at
an awful angle from the horizontal line; singing with every body who
opened their lips, and uttering such dreadfully discordant little
squeals and squeaks, that I thought I should have died of suppressed
laughter. On the other side, rather _concerned_, but not quite so much
so, stood the Irishman; who, though warbling a little out of tune, and
flourishing somewhat luxuriantly, still retained enough of his right
senses to discriminate between Mr. ----'s yelps and singing, properly so
called; and accordingly pished!--and pshawed!--and oh Lorded!--and good
heavened! away,-- staring at the perpetrator with indignant horror
through his spectacles, while his terrified wig stood on end in every
direction, each particular hair appearing vehemently possessed with the
centrifugal force. They all went away in good time, and we came to bed.


                             ----To bed--to sleep--
     To sleep!--perchance to be bitten! ay--there's the scratch:
     And in that sleep of ours what bugs may come,
     Must give us pause.


_Thursday, 20th._

Rose at eight. After breakfast, went to rehearse Romeo and Juliet. Poor
Mr. Keppel is fairly laid on the shelf; I'm sorry for him! What a funny
passion he had, by the by, for going down upon his knees. In Fazio, at
the end of the judgment scene, when I was upon mine, down he went upon
his, making the most absurd devout-looking _vis-à-vis_ I ever beheld: in
the last scene, too, when he ought to have been going off to execution,
down he went again upon his knees, and no power on earth could get him
up again, for Lord knows how long. Poor fellow, he bothered me a good
deal, yet I'm sincerely sorry for him. At the end of our rehearsal, came
home. The weather is sunny, sultry, scorching, suffocating. Ah! Mr. ----
called. This is an indifferent imitation of bad fine manners amongst us;
"he speaks small, too, like a gentleman." He sat for a long time,
talking over the opera, and all the prima donnas in the world. When he
was gone, Mr. ---- and Mr. ---- called.

       *       *       *       *       *

       *       *       *       *       *

The latter asked us to dinner to-morrow, to meet Dr. ----, who, poor
man, dares neither go to the play nor call upon us, so strict are the
good people here about the behaviour of their pastors and masters. By
the by, Essex called this morning to fetch away the Captain's
claret-jug: he asked my father for an order; adding, with some
hesitation, "It must be for the gallery, if you please, sir, for people
of colour are not allowed to go to the pit, or any other part of the
house." I believe I turned black myself, I was so indignant. Here's
aristocracy with a vengeance! ---- called with Forrest, the American
actor. Mr. Forrest has rather a fine face, I think. We dined at three:
after dinner, wrote journal, played on the piano, and frittered away my
time till half-past six. Went to the theatre: the house was very full,
and dreadfully hot. My father acted Romeo beautifully: I looked very
nice, and the people applauded my _gown_ abundantly. At the end of the
play I was half dead with heat and fatigue: came home and supped, lay
down on the floor in absolute meltiness away, and then came to bed.


_Friday, 21st._

Rose at eight. After breakfast went to rehearsal. The School for
Scandal; Sir Peter, I see, keeps his effects to himself; what a bore
this is, to be sure! Got out things for the theatre. While eating my
lunch, Mr. ---- and his cousin, a Mr. ---- (one of the cleverest lawyers
here), called.

       *       *       *       *       *

       *       *       *       *       *

       *       *       *       *       *

They were talking of Mr. Keppel. By the by, of that gentleman; Mr.
Simpson sent me this morning, for my decision, a letter from Mr. Keppel,
soliciting another trial, and urging the hardness of his case, in being
condemned upon a part which he had had no time to study. My own opinion
of poor Mr. Keppel is, that no power on earth or in heaven can make him
act decently; however, of course, I did not object to his trying again;
he did not swamp me the first night, so I don't suppose he will the
fifth. We dined at five. Just before dinner, received a most delicious
bouquet, which gladdened my very heart with its sweet smell and lovely
colours: some of the flowers were strangers to me. After dinner, Colonel
---- called, and began pulling out heaps of newspapers, and telling us a
long story about Mr. Keppel, who, it seems, has been writing to the
papers, to convince them and the public that he is a good actor; at the
same time throwing out sundry hints, which seem aimed our way, of
injustice, oppression, hard usage, and the rest on't.

       *       *       *       *       *

       *       *       *       *       *

Mr. ---- called to offer to ride with me; when, however, the question of
a horse was canvassed, he knew of none, and Colonel ----'s whole
regiment of "beautiful ladies' horses" had also neither a local
habitation nor a name.

       *       *       *       *       *

       *       *       *       *       *

When they were gone, went to the theatre; the house was very good, the
play the School for Scandal. I played pretty fairly, and looked very
nice. The people were stupid to a degree, to be sure; poor things! it
was very hot. Indeed, I scarce understand how they should be amused with
the School for Scandal; for though the dramatic situations are so
exquisite, yet the wit is far above the generality of even our own
audiences, and the tone and manners altogether are so thoroughly
English, that I should think it must be for the most part
incomprehensible to the good people here. After the play, came home.
Colonel S---- supped with us, and renewed the subject of Mr. Keppel and
the theatre. My father happened to say, referring to a passage in that
worthy's letter to the public, "I shall certainly inquire of Mr. Keppel
why he has so used my name;" to which Colonel S---- replied, as usual,
"No, now let me advise, let me beg you, Mr. Kemble, just to remain
quiet, and leave all this to me." This was too much for mortal woman to
bear. I immediately said, "Not at all: it is my father's affair, if any
body's; and he alone has the right to demand any explanation, or make
any observation on the subject; and were I he, I certainly should do so,
and that forthwith." I could hold no longer.

       *       *       *       *       *

       *       *       *       *       *

Came to bed in tremendous dudgeon. The few _critiques_ that I have seen
upon our acting have been, upon the whole, laudatory. One was sent to me
from a paper called The Mirror, which pleased me very much; not because
the praise in it was excessive, and far beyond my deserts, but that it
was written with great taste and feeling, and was evidently not the
produce of a common press-hack. There appeared to me in all the others
the true provincial dread of praising too much, and being _led_ into
approbation by previous opinions; a sort of jealousy of critical
freedom, which, together with the established _nil admirari_ of the
press, seems to keep them in a constant dread of being thought
enthusiastic. They need not be afraid: enthusiasm may belong to such
analyses as Schlegel's or Channing's, but has nothing in common with the
paragraphs of a newspaper; the inditers of which, in my poor judgment,
seldom go beyond the very threshold of criticism, _i. e._ the discovery
of faults. I am infinitely amused at the extreme curiosity which appears
to me to be the besetting sin of the people here. A gentleman whom you
know (as for instance, in my case,) very slightly, will sit down by your
table during a morning visit, turn over every article upon it, look at
the cards of the various people who have called upon you, ask
half-a-dozen questions about each of them, as many about your own
private concerns; and all this, as though it were a matter of course
that you should answer him, which I feel greatly inclined occasionally
not to do.


_Saturday, 22d._

Rose at eight. After breakfast, dawdled about till near one o'clock: got
into a hackney coach[16] with D----, and returned all manner of cards.

       *       *       *       *       *

       *       *       *       *       *

       *       *       *       *       *

Went into a shop to order a pair of shoes. The shopkeepers in this
place, with whom I have hitherto had to deal, are either condescendingly
familiar, or insolently indifferent in their manner. Your washer woman
sits down before you, while you are _standing_ speaking to her; and a
shop-boy bringing things for your inspection not only sits down, but
keeps his hat on in your drawing-room. The worthy man to whom I went for
my shoes was so amazingly ungracious, that at first I thought I would
go out of the shop; but recollecting that I should probably only go
farther and fare worse, I gulped, sat down, and was measured. All this
is bad: it has its origin in a vulgar misapprehension, which confounds
ill-breeding with independence, and leads people to fancy that they
elevate themselves above their condition by discharging its duties and
obligations discourteously.[17]

       *       *       *       *       *

Came home: wrote journal, practised, dressed for dinner. At five, went
into our neighbour's: Dr. ----, the rector of Grace Church, was the only
stranger. I liked him extremely: he sat by me at dinner, and I thought
his conversation sufficiently clever, with an abundance of goodness, and
liberal benevolent feeling shining through it. We retired to our room,
where Mrs. ---- made me laugh extremely with sundry passages of her
American experiences. I was particularly amused with her account of
their stopping, after a long day's journey, at an inn somewhere, when
the hostess, who remained in the room the whole time, addressed her as
follows: "D'ye play?" pointing to an open piano-forte. Mrs. ---- replied
that she did so sometimes; whereupon the free-and-easy landlady ordered
candles, and added, "Come, sit down and give us a tune, then;" to which
courteous and becoming invitation Mrs. ---- replied by taking up her
candle, and walking out of the room. The pendant to this is Mr. ----'s
story. He sent a die of his crest to a manufacturer, to have it put upon
his gig harness. The man sent home the harness, when it was finished,
but without the die; after sending for which sundry times, Mr. ----
called to enquire after it himself, when the reply was:--

"Lord! why I didn't know you wanted it."

"I tell you, I wish to have it back."

"Oh, pooh! you can't want it much, now--do you?"

"I tell you, sir, I desire to have the die back immediately."

"Ah well, come now, what'll you take for it?"

"D'ye think I mean to sell my crest? why you might as well ask me to
sell my name."

"Why, you see, a good many folks have seen it, and want to have it on
their harness, as it's a pretty looking concern enough."

So much for their ideas of a crest. This though, by the by, happened
some years ago.

After the gentlemen joined us, my father made me sing to them, which I
did with rather a bad grace, as I don't think any body wished to hear me
but himself.

       *       *       *       *       *

       *       *       *       *       *

       *       *       *       *       *

Dr. ---- is perfectly enchanting. They left us at about eleven. Came to
bed.


_Sunday, 23d._

Rose at eight. After breakfast, went to church with D----. There is no
such thing, I perceive, as a pew-opener; so, after standing sufficiently
long in the middle of the church, we established ourselves very
comfortably in a pew, where we remained unmolested. The day was most
lovely, and my eyes were constantly attracted to the church windows,
through which the magnificent willows of the burial-ground looked like
golden green fountains rising into the sky.

       *       *       *       *       *

       *       *       *       *       *

The singing in church was excellent, and Dr. ----'s sermon very good,
too: he wants sternness; but that is my particular fancy about a
clergyman, and by most people would be accounted no want. It was not
sacrament Sunday; D---- was disappointed; and I mistaken. Mr. ----
walked home with us. After church, wrote journal. ---- called, and sat
with us during dinner, telling us stories of the flogging of slaves, as
he himself had witnessed it in the south, that forced the colour into my
face, the tears into my eyes, and strained every muscle in my body with
positive rage and indignation: he made me perfectly sick with it. When
he was gone, my father went to Colonel ----'s. I played all through Mr.
----'s edition of Cinderella, and then wrote three long letters, which
kept me up till nearly one o'clock. Oh, bugs, fleas, flies, ants, and
musquitoes, great is the misery you inflict upon me! I sit slapping my
own face all day, and lie thumping my pillow all night: 'tis a perfect
nuisance to be devoured of creatures _before_ one's in the ground; it
isn't fair. Wrote to Mr. ----, to ask if he would ride with me on
Tuesday. I am dying to be on horseback again.

       *       *       *       *       *

       *       *       *       *       *

       *       *       *       *       *


_Monday, 24th._

Rose at eight: went and took a bath. After breakfast, went to rehearsal:
Venice Preserved, with Mr. Keppel, who did not appear to me to know the
words even, and seemed perfectly bewildered at being asked to do the
common business of the piece. "Mercy on me! what will he do to-night?"
thought I. Came home and got things ready for the theatre. Received a
visit from poor Mr. ----, who has got the lumbago, as Sir Peter would
say, "on purpose," I believe, to prevent my riding out to-morrow. Dined
at three: after dinner, played and sang through Cinderella; wrote
journal: at six, went to the theatre. My gown was horribly ill-plaited,
and I looked like a blue bag. The house was very full, and they received
Mr. K---- with acclamations and shouts of applause. When I went on, I
was all but tumbling down at the sight of my Jaffier, who looked like
the apothecary in Romeo and Juliet, with the addition of some devilish
red slashes along his thighs and arms. The first scene passed well and
so: but, oh, the next, and the next, and the next to that! Whenever he
was not glued to my side (and that was seldom), he stood three yards
behind me; he did nothing but seize my hand, and grapple to it so hard,
that unless I had knocked him down (which I felt much inclined to try),
I could not disengage myself. In the senate scene, when I was entreating
for mercy, and _struggling_, as Otway has it, for my life, he was
prancing round the stage in every direction, flourishing his dagger in
the air: I wish to Heaven I had got up and run away: it would but have
been natural, and have served him extremely right. In the parting
scene,--oh what a scene it was!--instead of going away from me when he
said "farewell for ever," he stuck to my skirts, though in the same
breath that I adjured him, in the words of my part, not to leave me, I
added, aside, "Get away from me, oh _do_!" When I exclaimed, "Not one
kiss at parting," he kept embracing and kissing me like mad: and when I
ought to have been pursuing him, and calling after him, "Leave thy
dagger with me," he hung himself up against the wing, and remained
dangling there for five minutes. I was half crazy! and the good people
sat and swallowed it all: they deserved it, by my troth, they did. I
prompted him constantly; and once, after struggling in vain to free
myself from him, was obliged, in the middle of my part, to exclaim, "You
hurt me dreadfully, Mr. Keppel!" He clung to me, cramped me, crumpled
me,--dreadful! I never experienced any thing like this before, and made
up my mind that I never would again. I played of course like a wretch,
finished my part as well as I could, and, as soon as the play was over,
went to my father and Mr. Simpson, and declared to them both my
determination not to go upon the stage again, with that gentleman for a
hero. Three trials are as many as, in reason, any body can demand, and,
come what come may, _I_ will not be subjected to this sort of experiment
again. At the end of the play, the clever New Yorkians actually called
for Mr. Keppel! and this most worthless clapping of hands, most
worthlessly bestowed upon such a worthless object, is what, by the
nature of my craft, I am bound to care for; I spit at it from the bottom
of my soul! Talking of applause, the man who acted Bedamar to-night
thought fit to be two hours dragging me off the stage; in consequence of
which I had to scream, "Jaffier, Jaffier," till I thought I should have
broken a blood-vessel. On my remonstrating with him upon this, he said,
"Well, you are rewarded, listen:" the people were clapping and shouting
vehemently: this is the whole history of acting and actors. We came home
tired, and thoroughly disgusted, and found no supper. The cooks, who do
not live in the house, but come and do their work, and depart home
whenever it suits their convenience, had not thought proper to stay to
prepare any supper for us: so we had to wait for the readiest things
that could be procured out of doors for us--this was pleasant[18]--very!
At last appeared a cold boiled fowl, and some monstrous oysters, that
looked for all the world like an antediluvian race of oysters, "for in
those days there were giants." Six mouthfuls each: they were
well-flavoured; but their size displeased my eye, and I swallowed but
one, and came to bed.


_Friday, 28th._

A letter from England, the first from dear ----. D---- brought it me
while I was dressing, and oh, how welcome, how welcome it was!

       *       *       *       *       *

After breakfast went to rehearsal: Much Ado about Nothing. Came home,
wrote journal, put out things for the theatre, dined at three. After
dinner, ---- called.

       *       *       *       *       *

       *       *       *       *       *

Mr. ---- called, and sat with us till six o'clock.

       *       *       *       *       *

       *       *       *       *       *

I constantly sit thunderstruck at the amazing number of unceremonious
questions which people here think fit to ask one, and, moreover, expect
one to answer. Went to the theatre; the house was not good. The Italians
were expected to sing for the first time; they did not, however, but in
the mean time thinned our house.

I would give the world to see Mr. ---- directing the public taste, by an
oeillade, and leading the public approbation, by a gracious tapping of
his supreme hand upon his ineffable snuff-box; he reminds me of high
life below stairs. The play went off very well; I played well, and my
dresses looked beautiful; my father acted to perfection. I never saw any
thing so gallant, gay, so like a gentlemen, so full of brilliant,
buoyant, refined spirit; he looked admirably, too. Mr. ---- was behind
the scenes; speaking to me of my father's appearance in Pierre, he said
he reminded him of Lord ----. I could not forbear asking him how long he
had been away from England? he replied, four years. Truly, four years
will furnish him matter of astonishment when he returns. Swallow Street
is grown into a line of palaces; the Strand is a broad magnificent
avenue, where all the wealth of the world seems gathered together; and
Lord ----, the "observed of all observers," is become a red-faced fat
old man. "Och, Time! can't ye be aisy now!"


_Sunday, 30th._

Rose late, did not go to church; sat writing letters all the morning.
Mr. ---- and Mr. ---- called. What a character that Mr. ---- is! Colonel
---- called, and wanted to take my father out; but we were all inditing
espistles to go to-morrow by the dear old Pacific. At three o'clock,
went to church with Mrs. ---- and Mr. ----. I like Dr. ---- most
extremely. His mild, benevolent, Christian view of the duties and
blessings of life is very delightful; and the sound practical doctrine
he preaches "good for edification."

       *       *       *       *       *

It poured with rain, but they sent a coach for us from the inn; came
home, dressed for dinner. D---- and I dined _tête-à-tête_. After dinner,
sat writing letters for Mr. ----'s bag till ten o'clock: came to my own
room, undressed, and began a volume to dear ----.

       *       *       *       *       *

       *       *       *       *       *

I did not get to bed till three o'clock: in spite of all which I am as
fat as an overstuffed pincushion.

       *       *       *       *       *

       *       *       *       *       *

Select specimens of American pronunciation:--


     vaggaries,       vagaries.
     ad infinnitum,   ad infinitum.
     vitupperate,     vituperate.


_Monday, October 1st._

While I was out, Captain ---- called for our letters. Saw Mr. ----, and
bade him good-by: they are going away to-day to Havre, to Europe; I wish
I was a nail in one of their trunks. After breakfast, went to rehearse
King John: what a lovely mess they will make of it, to be sure! When my
sorrows were ended, my father brought me home: found a most lovely
nosegay from Mr. ---- awaiting me. Bless it! how sweet it smelt, and how
pretty it looked. Spent an hour delightfully in putting it into water.
Got things ready for to-night, practised till dinner, and wrote journal.
My father received a letter to-day, informing him that a cabal was
forming by the friends of Miss Vincent and Miss Clifton (native talent!)
to hiss us off the New York stage, if possible; if not, to send people
in every night to create a disturbance during our best scenes: the
letter is anonymous, and therefore little deserving of attention. After
dinner, practised till time to go to the theatre. The house was very
full; but what a cast! what a play! what botchers! what butchers! In his
very first scene, the most christian king stuck fast; and there he
stood, shifting his truncheon from hand to hand, rolling his eyes,
gasping for breath, and struggling for words, like a man in the
night-mare. I thought of Hamlet--"Leave thy damnable faces"--and was
obliged to turn away. In the scene before Angiers, when the French and
English heralds summon the citizens to the walls, the Frenchman applied
his instrument to his mouth, uplifted his chest, distended his cheeks,
and appeared to blow furiously; not a sound! he dropped his arm, and
looked off the stage in discomfiture and indignation, when the perverse
trumpet set up a blast fit to waken the dead,--the audience roared: it
reminded me of the harp in the old ballad, that "began to play alone."
Chatillon, on his return from England, begged to assure us that with
King John was come the mother queen, an _Anty_ stirring him to blood and
war. When Cardinal Pandulph came on, the people set up a shout, as
usual: he was dreadfully terrified, poor thing; and all the time he
spoke kept giving little nervous twitches to his sacred petticoat, in a
fashion that was enough to make one die of laughter. He was as
obstinate, too, in his bewilderment as a stuttering man in his
incoherency; for once, when he stuck fast, having twitched his skirts,
and thumped his breast in vain for some time, I thought it best, having
to speak next, to go on; when, lo and behold! in the middle of my
speech, the "scarlet sin" recovers his memory, and shouts forth the end
of his own, to the utter confusion of my august self and the audience. I
thought they never would have got through my last scene: king gazed at
cardinal, and cardinal gazed at king; king nodded and winked at the
prompter, spread out his hands, and remained with his mouth open:
cardinal nodded and winked at the prompter, crossed his hands on his
breast, and remained with his mouth open; neither of them uttering a
syllable! What a scene! O, what a glorious scene! Came home as soon as
my part was over. Supped, and sat up for my father. Heard his account of
the end, and came to bed.[19]


_Wednesday, 3d._

Rose late. After breakfast, went to rehearsal: what a mess I do make of
Bizarre! Ellen Tree and Mrs. Chatterly were angels to what I shall be,
yet I remember thinking them both bad enough. After all, if people
generally did but know the difficulty of doing well, they would be less
damnatory upon those who do ill. It is not easy to act well. After
rehearsal, went to Stewart's with D----. As we were proceeding up
Broadway to Bonfanti's,[20] I saw a man in the strangest attitude
imaginable, absolutely setting at us: presently he pounced, and who
should it be but ----. He came into Bonfanti's with us, and afterwards
insisted on escorting us to our various destinations; not, however,
without manifold and deep lamentations on his slovenly appearance and
dirty gloves. The latter, however, he managed to exchange, _chemin
faisant_, for a pair of new ones, which he extracted from his pocket and
drew on, without letting go our arms, which he squeezed most
unmercifully during the operation. We went through a part of the town
which I had never seen before. The shops have all a strange fair-like
appearance, and exhibit a spectacle of heterogeneous disorder, which
greatly amazes the eye of a Londoner. The comparative infancy in which
most of the adornments of life are yet in this country, renders it
impossible for the number of distinct trades to exist that do among us,
where the population is so much denser, and where the luxurious
indulgences of the few find ample occupation for the penurious industry
of the many. But here, one man drives several trades; and in every shop
you meet with a strange incongruous mixture of articles for sale, which
would be found nowhere in England, but in the veriest village
huckster's. Comparatively few of the objects for sale can be exposed in
the windows, which are, unlike our shop windows, narrow and ill adapted
for the display of goods: but piles of them lie outside the doors,
choking up the pathway, and coloured cloths, flannels, shawls, etc., are
suspended about in long draperies, whose vivid colours flying over the
face of the houses give them an untidy, but at the same time a gay,
flaunting appearance. We went into a shop to buy some stockings, and
missing our _preux chevalier_, I turned round to look for him; when I
perceived him beautifying most busily before a glass in a further corner
of the shop. He had seized on a sort of house brush, and began brooming
his hat: the next operation was to produce a small pocket-comb and
arrange his disordered locks; lastly, he transferred the services of the
brush of all work from his head to his feet, and having dusted his
boots, drawn himself up in his surtout, buttoned its two lower buttons,
and given a reforming grasp to his neckcloth, he approached us,
evidently much advanced in his own good graces. We went to the
furrier's, and brought away my dark boa. Came home, put out things for
packing up, and remained so engaged till time to dress for dinner. Mr.
and Mrs. ---- and Mr. ---- dined with us.

       *       *       *       *       *

       *       *       *       *       *

Mr. ---- is an Englishman of the high breed, and sufficiently pleasant.
After dinner we had to withdraw into our bed-room, for the house is so
full that they can't cram any thing more into an inch of it.

Joined the gentlemen at tea. Mr. ---- had gone to the theatre: Mr. ----
and I had some music. He plays delightfully, and knows every note of
music that ever was written; but he had the barbarity to make me sing a
song of his own composing to him, which is a cruel thing in a man to do.
He went away at about eleven, and we then came to bed. My father went to
see Miss Clifton, at the Bowery theatre.


_Thursday, 4th._

Rose late. After breakfast, went to rehearsal: my Bizarre is getting a
little more into shape. After rehearsal, came home. Mr. ---- and Mr.
---- called, and sat some time with me. The former is tolerably
pleasant, but a little too fond of telling good stories that he has told
before. Put out things for the theatre: dined at three. Colonel
---- called. Wrote journal: while doing so, was called out to look at my
gown, which the worthy milliner had sent home.


     I am, I am an angel! Witness it, heaven!
     Witness it earth, and every being witness it!
     The gown was spoil'd! Yet by immortal patience
     I did not even fly into a passion.


She took it back to alter it. Presently arrived my wreath, and that had
also to be taken back; for 't was nothing like what I had ordered. Now
all this does not provoke me; but the thing that does, is the dreadful
want of manners of the tradespeople here. They bolt into your room
without knocking, nod to you, sit down, and without the preface of
either Sir, Ma'am, or Miss, start off into "Well now, I'm come to speak
about so and so." At six, went to the theatre; play, the Hunchback: the
house was crammed from floor to ceiling. I had an intense headach, but
played tolerably well. I wore my red satin, and looked like a bonfire.
Came home and found Smith's Virginia, and two volumes of Graham's
America, which I want to read. They charge twelve dollars for these:
every thing is horribly dear here. Came to bed with my head splitting.


_Friday, 5th._

Played Bizarre for the first time. Acted so-so, looked very pretty, the
house was very fine, and my father incomparable: they called for him
after the play. Colonel ---- and Mr. ---- called in while we were at
supper.


_Saturday, 6th._

Rose late: when I came in to breakfast, found Colonel ---- sitting in
the parlour. He remained for a long time, and we had sundry discussions
on topics manifold. It seems that the blessed people here were shocked
at my having to hear the coarseness of Farquhar's
Inconstant--humbug![21]

       *       *       *       *       *

       *       *       *       *       *

At twelve, went out shopping, and paying bills; called upon Mrs. ----,
and sat some time with her and Mrs. ----; left a card at Mrs. ----'s,
and came home, prepared things for our journey, and dressed for dinner.
On our way to Mr. ----'s, my father told me he had been seeing Miss
Clifton, the girl they want him to teach to act; (to _teach_ to act,
quotha!!!) He says, she is very pretty indeed, with fine eyes, a fair
delicate skin, and a handsome mouth; moreover, a tall woman, and yet
from the front of the house her effect is nought. What a pity, and a
provoking! A pleasant dinner, very. Mr. ---- the poet, one Dr. ----,
Colonel ----, and Mr. ----: the only woman was a Miss ----.

       *       *       *       *       *

       *       *       *       *       *

----'s face reminded me of young ----: the countenance was not quite so
good, but there was the same radiant look about the eyes and forehead.
His expression was strongly sarcastic; I liked him very much
notwithstanding. When we left the men, we had the pleasure of the
children's society, and that of an unhappy kitten, whom a little
pitiless urchin of three years old was carrying crumpled under her arm
like a pincushion. The people here make me mad by abusing Lawrence's
drawing of me. If ever there was a refined and intellectual work, where
the might of genius triumphing over every material impediment has
enshrined and embodied spirit itself, it is that. Talking of Lawrence,
(poor Lawrence!) Mrs. ---- said, "Ah, yes! your picture
by--a--Sir--something--Lawrence!" Oh, fame! oh, fame! Oh, vanity and
vexation of spirit! does your eternity and your infinitude amount to
this? There are lands where Shakspeare's name was never heard, where
Raphael and Handel are unknown; to be sure, for the matter of that,
there are regions (and those wide ones too) where Jesus Christ is
unknown. At nine o'clock, went to the Richmond Hill theatre, to see the
opening of the Italian company. The house itself is a pretty little box
enough, but as bad as a box to sing in. We went to Mr. ----'s box, where
he was kind enough to give us seats. The first act was over, but we had
all the benefit of the second. I had much ado not to laugh: and when Mr.
----, that everlasting giggler, came and sat down beside me, I gave
myself up for lost. However, I did behave, in spite of two blue-bottles
of women, who by way of the sisters buzzed about the stage, singing
enough to set one's teeth on edge. Then came a very tall Dandini; by the
by, that man had a good bass voice, but Mr. ---- said it was the finest
he had heard since _Zucchelli_. O tempora! O mores! Zucchelli, that
prince of delicious baritones! However, as I said, the man has a good
bass voice; there was also a sufficiently good Pompolino. Montresor
banged himself about, broke his time, and made some execrable flourishes
in the Prince, whereat the enlightened New Yorkians applauded mightily.
But the Prima Donna! but the Cenerentola! Cospetto di Venere, what a
figure, and what a face! Indeed she was the very thing for a lower
housemaid, and I think the Prince was highly to blame for removing her
from the station nature had evidently intended her for. She was old and
ugly, and worse than ugly, unpardonably common-looking, with a cast in
her eye, and a foot that, as Mr. ---- observed, it would require a
_pretty considerable_ large glass slipper to fit. Then she
sang--discords and dismay, how she did sing! I could not forbear
stealing a glance at ----: he applauded the sestett vehemently; but when
it came to that most touching "_nacqui al' affanno_," he wisely
interposed his handkerchief between the stage and his gracious
countenance. I thought of poor dear ----, and her sweet voice, and her
refined taste, and shuddered to hear this favourite of hers bedevilled
by such a Squalini. Now is it possible that people can be such fools as
to fancy this good in spite of their senses, or such earless asses
(that's a bull I suppose), as to suffer themselves to be persuaded that
it is? Though why do I ask it? Oh yes, "very easily possible." Do not
half the people in London spend money and time without end, enduring
nightly penances--listening to what they can't understand, and couldn't
appreciate if they did? I suppose if I shall allow a hundred out of the
whole King's Theatre audience to know any thing whatever about music, I
am wide in my grant of comprehension. There was that virtuous youth, Mr.
----, who evidently ranks as one of the cognoscenti here, who exclaimed
triumphantly at the end of one of the perpetrations, "Well, after all,
there's nothing like Rossini." Handel, Haydn, Mozart, Beethoven, and
Weber, are _not_, that is certain.[22] I wish I could have seen Mr. ----
during that finale. Coming out, were joined by Mr. ----: brought him
home in the carriage with us. Gave him "Ye mariners of Spain," and some
cold tongue, to take the taste of the Cenerentola out of his mouth. He
stayed some time. I like him enough: he is evidently a clever man,
though he does murder the King's English. (By the by, does _English_,
the tongue, belong, in America, to the King or the President--I wonder?
I should rather think, from my limited observations, that it was the
individual property of every freeborn citizen of the United States.)
Now, what on earth can I say to the worthy citizens, if they ask me what
I thought of the Italian opera? That it was very amusing--yes, that will
do nicely; that will be true, and not too direct a condemnation of their
good taste.


_Sunday, 7th._

Rose late. Young ---- breakfasted with us. How unfortunately plain he
is! His voice is marvellously like his father's, and it pleased me to
hear him speak therefore. He was talking to my father about the various
southern and western theatres, and bidding us expect to meet strange
coadjutors in those lost lands beyond the world. On one occasion, he
said, when he was acting Richard the Third, some of the underlings kept
their hats on while he was on the stage, whereat ---- remonstrated,
requesting them in a whisper to uncover, as they were in the presence of
a king; to which admonition he received the following characteristic
reply: "Fiddlestick! I guess we know nothing about kings in this
country." Colonel ---- called too; but D---- and I went off to church,
and left my father to entertain them. Met Mr. ---- and Mr. ----, who
were coming to fetch us: went to Mr. ----'s pew. The music was very
delightful; but decidedly I do not like music in church. The less my
senses are appealed to in the house of prayer, the better for me and my
devotions. Although I have experienced excitement of a stern and
martial, and sometimes of a solemn, nature, from music, yet these melt
away, and its abiding influence with me is of a much softer kind:
therefore, in church, I had rather dispense with it, particularly when
they sing psalms, as they did to-day, to the tune of "Come dwell with
me, and be my love." I did not like the sermon much; there was effect in
it, painting, which I dislike. Staid the sacrament, the first I have
taken in this strange land. Mr. ---- walked home with us: when he was
gone, Mr. ---- and Mr. ---- called. When they had all taken their
departure, settled accounts, wrote journal, wrote to my mother, came and
put away sundry things, and dressed for dinner. My father dined with
Mr. ----: D---- and I dined _tête-à-tête_. Colonel ---- came twice
through the pouring rain to look after our baggage for to-morrow; such
charity is unexampled.


_Monday, 8th._

Rose (oh, horror!) at a quarter to five. Night was still brooding over
the earth. Long before I was dressed, the first voice I heard was that
of Colonel ----, come to look after our luggage, and see us off. To lend
my friend a thousand pounds (if I had it) I could--to lend him my horse,
perhaps I might; but to get up in the middle of the night, and come
dawdling in the grey cold hour of the morning upon damp quays, and among
dusty packages, except for my own flesh and blood, I could not. Yet this
worthy man did it for us; whence I pronounce that he must be half a
Quaker himself, for no common episcopal benevolence could stretch this
pitch. Dressed, and gathered together my things, and at six o'clock,
just as the night was folding its soft black wings, and rising slowly
from the earth, we took our departure from that mansion of little ease,
the American, and our fellow-lodgers the ants, and proceeded to the
Philadelphia steam-boat, which started from the bottom of Barclay
Street. We were recommended to this American Hotel as the best and most
comfortable in New York; and truly the charges were as high as one could
have paid at the Clarendon, in the land of comfort and taxation. The
wine was exorbitantly dear; champagne and claret about eleven shillings
sterling a bottle; sherry, port, and madeira, from nine to thirteen. The
rooms were a mixture of French finery and Irish disorder and dirt; the
living was by no means good; the whole house being conducted on a close
scraping system of inferior accommodations and extravagant charges. On a
sudden influx of visiters, sitting-rooms were converted into bed-rooms,
containing four and five beds. The number of servants was totally
inadequate to the work; and the articles of common use, such as knives
and spoons, were so scantily provided, that when the public table was
very full one day, the knives and forks for our dinner were obliged to
be washed from theirs; and the luxury of a carving-knife was not to be
procured at all on that occasion: it is true that they had sometimes as
many as two hundred and fifty guests at the ordinary. The servants, who,
as I said before, were just a quarter as many as the house required, had
no bed-rooms allotted to them, but slept _about_ any where, in the
public rooms, or on sofas in drawing-rooms, let to private families. In
short, nothing can exceed the want of order, propriety, and comfort in
this establishment, except the enormity of the tribute it levies upon
pilgrims and wayfarers through the land.[23] And so, as I said, we
departed therefrom nothing loath.

The morning was dull, dreary, and damp, which I regretted very much. The
steam-boat was very large and commodious, as all these conveyances are.
I enquired of one of the passengers what the power of the engine was: he
replied that he did not exactly know, but that he thought it was about
forty-horse power; and that, when going at speed, the engine struck
thirty times in a minute: this appeared to me a great number in so short
a time; but the weather shortly became wet and drizzly, and I did not
remain on deck to observe. My early rising had made me very sleepy, so I
came down to the third deck to sleep. These steam-boats have three
stories; the upper one is, as it were, a roofing or terrace on the leads
of the second, a very desirable station when the weather is neither too
foul nor too fair; a burning sun being, I should think, as little
desirable there as a shower of rain. The second floor or deck has the
advantage of the ceiling above, and yet, the sides being completely
open, it is airy, and allows free sight of the shores on either hand.
Chairs, stools, and benches, are the furniture of these two decks. The
one below, or third floor downwards, in fact, the _ground floor_, being
the one near the water, is a spacious room completely roofed and walled
in, where the passengers take their meals, and resort if the weather is
unfavourable. At the end of this room is a smaller cabin for the use of
the ladies, with beds and a sofa, and all the conveniences necessary, if
they should like to be sick; whither I came and slept till breakfast
time. Vigne's account of the pushing, thrusting, rushing, and devouring
on board a western steam-boat at meal times had prepared me for rather
an awful spectacle; but this, I find, is by no means the case in these
more civilised parts, and every thing was conducted with perfect order,
propriety, and civility. The breakfast was good, and served and eaten
with decency enough. Came up on the upper deck, and walked about with my
father. The width of the river struck me as remarkable; but the shores
were flat, and for the most part uninteresting, except for the rich and
various tints which the thickets of wood presented, and which are as
superior in brilliancy and intenseness to our autumnal colouring as
their gorgeous skies are to ours. Opposite the town of Amboy, the
Raritan opens into a magnificent lake-like expanse round the extreme
point of Staten Island.[24] As the shores on either side, however, were
not very interesting, I finished reading Combe's book. There is much
sound philosophy in it; but I do not think it altogether establishes the
main point that he wishes to make good--the truth of phrenology, and the
necessity of its being adopted as the only science of the human mind.
His general assertions admit of strong individual exceptions, which, I
think, go far towards invalidating the generality. However, 'tis not a
full development of his own system, but, as it were, only an
introduction to it; and his own admissions of the obscurity and
uncertainty in which that system is still involved necessarily enforces
a suspension of judgment, until its practical results have become more
manifest, and in some measure borne witness to the truth of his theory.
At about half-past ten we reached the place where we leave the river, to
proceed across a part of the State of New Jersey to the Delaware. The
landing was beyond measure wretched: the shore shelved down to the
water's edge; and its marshy, clayey, sticky soil, rendered doubly soft
and squashy by the damp weather, was strewn over with broken potsherds,
stones, and bricks, by way of pathway; these, however, presently failed,
and some slippery planks half immersed in mud were the only roads to the
coaches that stood ready to receive the passengers of the steam-boat.
Oh, these coaches! English eye hath not seen, English ear hath not
heard, nor hath it entered into the heart of Englishmen to conceive the
surpassing clumsiness and wretchedness of these leathern inconveniences.
They are shaped something like boats, the sides being merely leathern
pieces, removable at pleasure, but which, in bad weather, are buttoned
down, to protect the inmates from the wet. There are three seats in this
machine; the middle one, having a movable leathern strap, by way of a
dossier, runs between the carriage doors, and lifts away to permit the
egress and ingress of the occupants of the other seats. Into the one
facing the horses D---- and I put ourselves; presently two young ladies
occupied the opposite one; a third lady, and a gentleman of the same
party, sat in the middle seat, into which my father's huge bulk was also
squeezed; finally, another man belonging to the same party ensconced
himself between the two young ladies. Thus the two seats were filled,
each with three persons, and there should by rights have been a third on
ours; for this nefarious black hole on wheels is intended to carry nine.
However, we profited little by the space, for, letting alone that there
is not really and truly room for more than two human beings of common
growth and proportions on each of these seats, the third place was amply
filled up with baskets and packages of ours, and huge _undoubleableup_
coats and cloaks of my father's.

For the first few minutes I thought I must have fainted from the
intolerable sensation of smothering which I experienced. However, the
leathers having been removed, and a little more air obtained, I took
heart of grace, and resigned myself to my fate. Away wallopped the four
horses, trotting with their front and galloping with their hind legs;
and away went we after them, bumping, thumping, jumping, jolting,
shaking, tossing, and tumbling, over the wickedest road, I do think the
cruellest hard-heartedest road, that ever wheel rumbled upon. Thorough
bog and marsh, and ruts wider and deeper than any christian ruts I ever
saw, with the roots of trees protruding across our path; their boughs
every now and then giving us an affectionate scratch through the
windows; and, more than once, a half-demolished trunk or stump lying in
the middle of the road lifting us up, and letting us down again, with
most awful variations of our poor coach body from its natural position.
Bones of me! what a road![25] Even my father's solid proportions could
not keep their level, but were jerked up to the roof and down again
every three minutes. Our companions seemed nothing dismayed by these
wondrous performances of a coach and four, but laughed and talked
incessantly, the young ladies, at the very top of their voices, and with
the national nasal twang.[26] The conversation was much of the _genteel_
shopkeeper kind; the wit of the ladies, and the gallantry of the
gentlemen, savouring strongly of tapes and yard measures, and the
shrieks of laughter of the whole set enough to drive one into a frenzy.
The ladies were all pretty; two of them particularly so, with delicate
fair complexions, and beautiful grey eyes: how I wish they could have
held their tongues for two minutes! We had not long been in the coach
before one of them complained of being dreadfully sick.[27] This, in
such a space, and with seven near neighbours! Fortunately she was near
the window; and during our whole fourteen miles of purgatory she
alternately leaned from it overcome with sickness, then reclined
languishingly in the arms of her next neighbour, and then, starting up
with amazing vivacity, joined her voice to the treble duet of her two
pretty companions, with a superiority of shrillness that might have been
the pride and envy of Billingsgate. 'Twas enough to bother a rookery!
The country through which we passed was woodland, flat, and without
variety, save what it derived from the wondrous richness and brilliancy
of the autumnal foliage. Here indeed decay is beautiful; and nature
appears more gorgeously clad in this her fading mantle, than in all the
summer's flush of bloom in our less-favoured climates.[28] I noted
several beautiful wild flowers growing among the underwood; some of
which I have seen adorning with great dignity our most cultivated
gardens.[29] None of the trees had any size or appearance of age: they
are the second growth, which have sprung from the soil once possessed by
a mightier race of vegetables. The quantity of mere underwood, and the
number of huge black stumps rising in every direction a foot or two from
the soil, bear witness to the existence of fine forest timber. The few
cottages and farm-houses which we passed reminded me of similar
dwellings in France and Ireland; yet the peasantry here have not the
same excuse for disorder and dilapidation as either the Irish or French.
The farms had the same desolate, untidy, untended look: the gates
broken, the fences carelessly put up, or ill repaired; the
farming-utensils sluttishly scattered about a littered yard, where the
pigs seemed to preside by undisputed right; house-windows broken, and
stuffed with paper or clothes; dishevelled women, and barefooted
anomalous-looking human young things; none of the stirring life and
activity which such places present in England and Scotland; above all,
none of the enchanting mixture of neatness, order, and rustic elegance
and comfort, which render so picturesque the surroundings of a farm, and
the various belongings of agricultural labour in my own dear
country.[30] The fences struck me as peculiar; I never saw any such in
England. They are made of rails of wood placed horizontally, and meeting
at obtuse angles, so forming a zig-zag wall of wood, which runs over the
country like the herring-bone seams of a flannel petticoat. At each of
the angles two slanting stakes, considerably higher than the rest of the
fence, were driven into the ground, crossing each other at the top, so
as to secure the horizontal rails in their position.[31]

There was every now and then a soft vivid strip of turf, along the
road-side, that made me long for a horse. Indeed the whole road would
have been a delightful ride, and was a most bitter drive. At the end of
fourteen miles we turned into a swampy field, the whole fourteen
coachfuls of us, and, by the help of Heaven, bag and baggage were packed
into the coaches which stood on the rail-way ready to receive us. The
carriages were not drawn by steam, like those on the Liverpool rail-way,
but by horses, with the mere advantage in speed afforded by the iron
ledges, which, to be sure, compared with our previous progress through
the ruts, was considerable. Our coachful got into the first carriage of
the train, escaping, by way of especial grace, the dust which one's
predecessors occasion. This vehicle had but two seats, in the usual
fashion; each of which held four of us. The whole inside was lined with
blazing scarlet leather, and the windows _shaded_ with stuff curtains of
the same refreshing colour; which, with full complement of passengers,
on a fine, sunny, American summer's day, must make as pretty a little
miniature hell as may be, I should think. The baggage-waggon, which went
before us, a little obstructed the view. The road was neither pretty nor
picturesque; but still fringed on each side with the many-coloured
woods, whose rich tints made variety even in sameness. This rail-road is
an infinite blessing; 'tis not yet finished, but shortly will be so, and
then the whole of that horrible fourteen miles will be performed in
comfort and decency in less than half the time. In about an hour and a
half we reached the end of our rail-road part of the journey, and found
another steam-boat waiting for us, when we all embarked on the
Delaware. Again, the enormous width of the river struck me with
astonishment and admiration. Such huge bodies of water mark out the
country through which they run, as the future abode of the most
extensive commerce and greatest maritime power in the universe. The
banks presented much the same features as those of the Raritan, though
they were not quite so flat, and more diversified with scattered
dwellings, villages, and towns. We passed Bristol and Burlington,
stopping at each of them to take up passengers.[32] I sat working,
having finished my book, not a little discomfited by the pertinacious
staring of some of my fellow-travellers. One woman, in particular, after
wandering round me in every direction, at last came and sat down
opposite me, and literally gazed me out of countenance. One improvement
they have adopted on board these boats is to forbid smoking, except in
the fore part of the vessel. I wish they would suggest that, if the
gentlemen would refrain from spitting about too, it would be highly
agreeable to the female part of the community. The universal practice
here of this disgusting trick makes me absolutely sick: every place is
made a perfect piggery of--street, stairs, steam-boat, everywhere--and
behind the scenes; on the stage at rehearsal I have been shocked and
annoyed beyond expression by this horrible custom. To-day, on board the
boat, it was a perfect shower of saliva all the time; and I longed to be
released from my fellowship with these very obnoxious chewers of
tobacco.[33] At about four o'clock we reached Philadelphia, having
performed the journey between that and New York (a distance of a hundred
miles) in less than ten hours, in spite of bogs, ruts, and all other
impediments. The manager came to look after us and our goods; and we
were presently stowed into a coach, which conveyed us to the Mansion
House, the best-reputed inn in Philadelphia. On asking for our
bed-rooms, they showed D---- and myself into a double-bedded room. On my
remonstrating against this, the chambermaid replied, that they were not
accustomed to allow lodgers so _much room_ as a room apiece. However,
upon my insisting, they gave me a little nest just big enough to turn
about in, but where, at least, I can be by myself. Dressed, and dined at
five; after dinner, wrote journal till tea-time, and then came to bed.


_Tuesday, 9th._

Rose at half-past eight. Went and took a bath. On my way thither, drove
through two melancholy-looking squares, which reminded me a little of
poor old Queen Square in Bristol. The ladies' baths were closed, but, as
I was not particular, they gave me one in the part of the house usually
allotted to the men's use. I was much surprised to find two baths in one
room, but it seems to me that the people of this country have an
aversion to solitude, whether eating, sleeping, or under any other
circumstances.

       *       *       *       *       *

       *       *       *       *       *

I made acquaintance with a bewitching Newfoundland puppy, whom I greatly
coveted. Came home, dressed, and breakfasted. After breakfast, righted
my things, and wrote journal. Took a walk with my father through some of
the principal streets. The town is perfect silence and solitude,
compared with New York; there is a greater air of age about it too,
which pleases me. The red houses are not so fiercely red, nor the white
facings so glaringly white; in short, it has not so new and flaunting a
look, which is a great recommendation to me. The city is regularly
built, the streets intersecting each other at right angles. We passed
one or two pretty buildings in pure white marble, and the Bank in
Chestnut Street, which is a beautiful little copy of the Parthenon. The
pure, cold, clear-looking marble suits well with the severe and
unadorned style of architecture; and is in harmony, too, with the
extreme brilliancy of the sky, and clearness of the atmosphere of this
country.[34] We passed another larger building, also a bank, in the
Corinthian style, which did not please me so much. The shops here are
much better looking than those at New York: the windows are larger, and
more advantageously constructed for the display of goods; and there did
not appear to be the same anomalous mixture of vendibles, as in the New
York shops. The streets were very full of men hurrying to the
town-house, to give their votes. It is election time, and much
excitement subsists with regard to the choice of the future
President.[35] The democrats or radicals are for the re-election of
General Jackson, but the aristocratic party, which here at all events is
the strongest, are in favour of Henry Clay. Here is the usual quantity
of shouting and breaking windows that we are accustomed to on these
occasions. I saw a caricature of Jackson and Van Buren, his chief
supporter, which was entitled "The King and his Minister." Van Buren
held a crown in his hand, and the devil was approaching Jackson with a
sceptre.--Came in at half-past four, dressed for dinner: they gave us an
excellent one. The master of this house was, it seems, once a man of
independent fortune, and a great _bon vivant_. He has retained from
thence a fellow-feeling for his guests, and does by them as he would be
done by. After dinner, worked till tea-time; after tea, wrote journal,
and now I'll go to bed. We are attended here by a fat old lively negro,
by name Henry, who canters about in our behalf with great alacrity, and
seems wrapt in much wonderment at many of our proceedings. By the by,
the black who protected our baggage from the steam-boat was ycleped
_Oliver Cromwell_. I have begun Grahame's History of America, and like
it "mainly," as the old plays say.


_Wednesday, 10th._

Rose at eight. After breakfast, trimmed a cap, and wrote to dear ----.
The streets were in an uproar all night, people shouting and bonfires
blazing; in short, electioneering fun, which seems to be pretty much the
same all the world over. Clay has it hollow here, they say: I wonder
what Colonel ---- will say to that. At twelve o'clock, sallied forth
with D---- to rehearsal. The theatre is very pretty; not large but well
sized, and, I should think, favourably constructed for the voice.

       *       *       *       *       *

       *       *       *       *       *

       *       *       *       *       *

Unless Aldabella is irresistibly lovely, as well as wicked, there is no
accounting for the conduct of Fazio. My own idea of her, as well as
Milman's description, is every thing that can be conceived of splendid
in beauty, sparkling in wit, graceful in deportment, gorgeous in
apparel, and deep and dangerous in crafty wiliness; in short, the old
serpent in the shape of Mrs. ----. I wish Mrs. ---- would act that part:
I could act it well enough, but she would both act and look it, to the
very life. After rehearsal, walked about the town in quest of some
_coques de perle_ for my Bianca dress: could not procure any. I like
this town extremely: there is a look of comfort and cleanliness, and
withal of age about it, which pleases me. It is quieter, too, than New
York, and though not so gay, for that very reason is more to my fancy;
the shops, too, have a far better appearance. New York always gave me
the idea of an irregular collection of temporary buildings, erected for
some casual purpose, full of life, animation, and variety, but not meant
to endure for any length of time; a fair, in short. This place has a
much more substantial, sober, and city-like appearance. Came home at
half-past two. In the hall met Mr. ----, who is grown ten years younger
since I saw him last: it always delights me to see one of my
fellow-passengers, and I am much disappointed in not finding ---- here.
Dined at three; after dinner, read my father some of my journal; went on
with letter to ----, and then went and dressed myself. Took coffee, and
adjourned to the theatre. The house was very full, but not so full as
the Park on the first night of his acting in New York, which accounts
for the greater stillness of the audience. I watched my father narrowly
through his part to-night with great attention and some consequent
fatigue, and the conclusion I have come to is this: that though his
workmanship may be, and is, far finer _in the hand_ than that of any
other artist I ever saw, yet its very minute accuracy and refinement
renders it unfit for the frame in which it is exhibited. Whoever should
paint a scene calculated for so large a space as a theatre, and destined
to be viewed at the distance from which an audience beholds it, with the
laborious finish and fine detail of a miniature, would commit a great
error in judgment. Nor would he have the least right to complain,
although the public should prefer the coarser yet far more effective
work of a painter, who, neglecting all refinement and niceness of
execution, should merely paint with such full colouring, and breadth and
boldness of touch, as to produce in the wide space he is called upon to
fill, and upon the remote senses he appeals to, the _effect_ of that
which he intends to represent. Indeed he is the better artist of the
two, though probably not the most intellectual man. For it is the part
of such a one to know exactly what will best convey to the mass of mind
and feeling to which he addresses himself the emotions and passions
which he wishes them to experience.[36] Now the great beauty of all my
father's performances, but particularly of Hamlet, is a wonderful
accuracy in the detail of the character which he represents; an accuracy
which modulates the emphasis of every word, the nature of every gesture,
the expression of every look; and which renders the whole a most
laborious and minute study, toilsome in the conception and acquirement,
and most toilsome in the execution. But the result, though the natural
one, is not such as he expects, as the reward of so much labour. Few
persons are able to follow such a performance with the necessary
attention, and it is almost as great an exertion to see it
_understandingly_, as to act it. The amazing study of it requires a
study in those who are to appreciate it, and, as I take it, this is far
from being what the majority of spectators are either capable or
desirous of doing; the actor loses his pains, and they have but little
pleasure. Those who perform, and those who behold a play, have but a
certain proportion of power of exciting, and capability of being
excited. If, therefore, the actor expends his power of exciting, and his
audience's power of being excited, upon the detail of the piece, and
continues through five whole acts to draw from both, the main and
striking points, those of strongest appeal, those calculated most to
rouse at once, and gratify the emotions of the spectator, have not the
same intensity or vigour that they would have had, if the powers of both
actor and audience had been reserved to give them their fullest effect.
A picture requires light and shadow; and the very relief that throws
some of the figures in a fine painting into apparent obscurity, in
reality enhances the effect produced by those over which the artist has
shed a stronger light. Every note in the most expressive song does not
require a peculiar expression; and an air sung with individual emphasis
on each note would be utterly unproductive of the desired effect. All
things cannot have all their component parts equal, and "nothing
pleaseth but rare accidents." This being so, I think that acting the
best which skilfully husbands the actor's and spectator's powers, and
puts forth the whole of the one, to call forth the whole of the other,
occasionally only; leaving the intermediate parts sufficiently level, to
allow him and them to recover the capability of again producing, and
again receiving, such impressions. It is constant that our finest nerves
deaden and dull from over-excitement, and require repose, before they
regain their acute power of sensation. At the same time, I am far from
advocating that most imperfect conception and embodying of a part which
Kean allows himself: literally acting detached passages alone, and
leaving all the others, and the entire character, indeed, utterly
destitute of unity, or the semblance of any consistency whatever. But
Kean and my father are immediately each other's antipodes, and, in
adopting their different styles of acting, it is evident that each has
been guided as much by his own physical and intellectual individuality,
as by any fixed principle of art. The one, Kean, possesses particular
physical qualifications; an eye like an orb of light, a voice,
exquisitely touching and melodious in its tenderness, and in the harsh
dissonance of vehement passion terribly true; to these he adds the
intellectual ones of vigour, intensity, amazing power of concentrating
effect; these give him an entire mastery over his audience in all
striking, sudden, impassioned passages, in fulfilling which he has
contented himself, leaving unheeded what he probably could not compass,
the unity of conception, the refinement of detail, and evenness of
execution.[37] My father possesses certain physical defects, a faintness
of colouring in the face and eye, a weakness of voice; and the
corresponding intellectual deficiencies, a want of intensity, vigour,
and concentrating power: these circumstances have led him (probably
unconsciously) to give his attention and study to the finer and more
fleeting shades of character, the more graceful and delicate
manifestations of feeling, the exquisite variety of all minor parts, the
classic keeping of a highly-wrought whole; to all these, polished and
refined tastes, an acute sense of the beauty of harmonious proportions,
and a native grace, gentleness, and refinement of mind and manner, have
been his prompters; but they cannot inspire those startling and
tremendous bursts of passion, which belong to the highest walks of
tragedy, and to which he never gave their fullest expression. I fancy my
aunt Siddons united the excellences of both these styles. But to return
to my father's Hamlet: every time I see it, something strikes me afresh
in the detail. Nothing in my mind can exceed the exquisite beauty of his
last "Go on--I follow thee," to the ghost. The full gush of deep and
tender faith, in spite of the awful mystery, to whose unfolding he is
committing his life, is beautiful beyond measure. It is distinct, and
wholly different from the noble, rational, philosophic conviction, "And
for my soul, what can it do to that?" It is full of the unutterable
fondness of a believing heart, and brought to my mind, last night, those
holy and lovely words of scripture, "Perfect love casteth out fear:" it
enchanted me.[38] There is one thing in which I do not believe my father
ever has been, or ever will be, excelled; his high and noble bearing,
his gallant, graceful, courteous deportment; his perfect good-breeding
on the stage; unmarked alike by any peculiarity of time, place, or self
(except peculiar grace and beauty). He appears to me the beau ideal of
the courtly, thorough-bred, chivalrous gentleman, from the days of the
admirable Crichton down to those of George the Fourth. Coming home after
the play, the marble buildings in the full moonlight reminded me of the
Ghost in Hamlet: they looked like pale majestic spirits, cold, calm, and
colourless.


_Thursday, 11th._

Rose rather late. After breakfast, wrote journal; at twelve, went to
rehearsal.

       *       *       *       *       *

       *       *       *       *       *

After rehearsal, came home, habited, and went to the riding-school to
try some horses. _Merci de moi!_ what quadrupeds! How they did wallop
and shamble about; poor half-broken dumb brutes! they know no better;
and as the natives here are quite satisfied with their shuffling,
rollicking, mongrel pace, half trot, half canter, why it is not worth
while to break horses in a christian-like fashion for them.[39] I found
something that I think my father can ride with tolerable comfort, but
must go again to-morrow and see after something for myself. Came home:
the enchanting Mr. Head has allowed me a piano-forte; but in bringing it
into the room, the stupid slave broke one of its legs off, whereat I was
like to faint, for I thought Mr. Head would wish me hanged therefor.
Nothing can exceed the civility of the people here, and the house is
extremely well kept, quiet, and comfortable. Came home in high delight
with this Quaker city, which is indeed very pretty and pleasant. Played
on the piano: dressed for dinner. After dinner, practised till tea-time,
finished journal, discussed metaphysics with D----, for which I am a
fool; wrote to-day's journal, and now to bed. I have a dreadful cold and
cough, and have done nothing but hack and snivel the whole day long:
this is a bad preparation for to-morrow's work. Howsoever----


_Friday, 12th._

Rose at eight. After breakfast, sat writing journal and letter to ----.
At half-past eleven, went to rehearsal. Afterwards walked down to the
riding-school with my father. The horse I was to look at had not
arrived; but my father saw the grey. We were there for some time; and
during that whole some time a tall, thin, unhappy-looking gentleman, who
had gotten up upon a great hulking rawboned horse, kept trotting round
and round, with his legs dangling down, _sans_ stirrups, at the rate of
a mile and a quarter an hour; occasionally ejaculating in the mildest of
tones, "keome--keome up;" whereat the lively brute, nothing persuaded,
proceeded in the very same pace, at the very same rate; and this went on
till I wondered at the man and the beast. Came home and put out things
for the theatre. My cold and cough are dreadful. After dinner,
practised: invented and executed a substitute for the _coques de perle_
in my Bianca dress; and lay down to rest a little before my work. At
six, went to the theatre: the house was very full; and D---- and my
father say that I was extremely ungracious in my acknowledgment of their
greeting. I cannot tell; I did not mean to be so; I made them three
courtesies, and what could woman do more? Of course, I can neither feel
nor look so glad to see them as I am to see my own dear London people:
neither can I be as profound in my obeisance, as when my audience is
civil enough to rise to me: "there is differences, look you."

       *       *       *       *       *

       *       *       *       *       *

       *       *       *       *       *

My Fazio had a pair of false black whiskers on, which distilled a black
stripe of trickling cement down his cheeks, and kept me in agony every
time he had to embrace me. My voice was horrible to hear; alternately
like Mrs. ---- and ----, and every now and then it was all I could do to
utter at all. This audience is the most unapplausive I ever acted to,
not excepting my _excitable_ friends north of the Tweed. They were very
attentive, certainly, but how they did make me work! 'Tis amazing how
much an audience loses by this species of hanging back, even where the
silence proceeds from unwillingness to interrupt a good performance:
though in reality it is the greatest compliment an actor can receive,
yet he is deprived by that very stillness of half his power. Excitement
is reciprocal between the performer and the audience: he creates it in
them, and receives it back again from them; and in that last scene in
Fazio, half the effect that I produce is derived from the applause
which I receive, the very noise and tumult of which tends to heighten
the nervous energy which the scene itself begets. I know that my aunt
Siddons has frequently said the same thing. And besides the above reason
for applause, the physical powers of an actor require, after any
tremendous exertion, the rest and regathering of breath and strength,
which the interruption of the audience affords him; moreover, as 'tis
the conventional mode of expressing approbation in a theatre, it is
chilling and uncomfortable to go toiling on, without knowing whether, as
the maidservants say, "one gives satisfaction or no." They made noise
enough, however, at the end of the play. Came home, supped, and to bed;
weary to death, and with a voice like a cracked bagpipe.


_Saturday, 13th._

Rose at half-past eight. After breakfast, wrote journal; practised for
an hour; got things ready for to-morrow; put on my habit, which I had no
sooner done than the perverse clouds began to rain. The horses came at
two, but the weather was so bad that I sent them away again. Practised
for another hour, read a canto in Dante, and dressed for dinner. After
dinner, worked and practised. Came to my own room, and tried to scribble
something for the Mirror, at my father's request; the editors having
made an especial entreaty to him that I might write something for them,
and also sit to some artist for them. I could not accomplish any thing,
and they must just take something that I have by me: as for my
physiognomy, that they shall certainly not have with my own good leave.
I will never expend so much useless time again as to sit for my picture;
nor will I let any unhappy painter again get abused for painting me as I
am, which is any thing but what I look like. Lawrence alone could do it:
there is no other that could see my spirit through my face; and as for
the face without that, the less that is seen of it the better. Came down
to tea, and found a young gentleman sitting with my father; one Mr.
----.

       *       *       *       *       *

       *       *       *       *       *

       *       *       *       *       *

He was a pretty-spoken _genteel_ youth enough: he drank tea with us, and
offered to ride with me. He is, it seems, a great fortune; consequently,
I suppose (in spite of his inches), a great man. Now I'll go to bed: my
cough's enough to kill a horse.


_Sunday, 14th._

Rose late; so late that, by the time I had breakfasted, it was no longer
time to go to church.

       *       *       *       *       *

       *       *       *       *       *

       *       *       *       *       *

Finished my first letter to ----. Mr. ---- called, and told us that he
was going about _agitating_, and that Jackson was certainly to be
re-elected.

       *       *       *       *       *

       *       *       *       *       *

       *       *       *       *       *

At three o'clock D---- and I sallied forth to go to church. Following
the silver voices of the Sabbath bells, as they called the worshippers
to the house of prayer, we entered a church with a fine simple façade,
and found ourselves in the midst of a Presbyterian congregation. 'Tis
now upwards of eight years since, a school girl, I used to attend a
dissenters' chapel. The form of worship, though displeasing to me in
itself, borrowed a charm to-day from old association. How much of the
past it did recall!

       *       *       *       *       *

       *       *       *       *       *

       *       *       *       *       *

Came home and dressed for dinner. After dinner, half-killed myself with
laughter over an Irish version of Fazio, ycleped Grimaldi, from which
the author swears Milman has shamefully filched the plot, characters,
and even the language, I believe, of his drama. A gentleman of the
press, by name ----, paid us an evening visit. He seems an intelligent
young man enough; and when he spoke of the autumnal woods, by the Oneida
lake, his expressions were poetical and enthusiastic; and he pleased
me.[40] He seems to think much of having had the honour of
corresponding with sundry of the small literati of London. _Je lui en
fais mon compliment._ When he was gone, wrote another letter to ----;
journal, and now to bed.


_Monday, 15th._

Rose at eight; took a hot bath. The more I read of Grahame, the better I
like him and his history. Those early settlers in Massachusetts were
fine fellows, indeed; and Cotton, one of the finest samples of a
Christian priest imaginable. After breakfast, went to rehearsal. The day
was cold, but beautifully bright and clear. The pure, fresh,
invigorating air, and gay sunlight, together with the delightfully clean
streets, and pretty mixture of trees and buildings in this nice town,
caused me to rejoice, as I walked along.[41] After rehearsal, saw
Sinclair and his wife. So--we are to act the Gamester here. Went and
ordered a dress for that same, my own being at New York. Came home, put
out things for the theatre, practised an hour; dined at three. After
dinner, read a canto in Dante: he is my admiration!--great, great
master!--a philosopher profound, as all poets should be; a glorious
poet, as I wish all philosophers were. Sketched till dark. Chose a
beautiful claret-coloured velvet for Mrs. Beverley, which will cost Miss
Kemble eleven guineas, by this living light. At six, went to the
theatre. I never beheld any thing more gorgeous than the sky at sunset.
Autumn is an emperor here, clothed in crimson and gold, and canopied
with ruddy glowing skies. Yet I like the sad russet cloak of our own
autumnal woods; I like the sighing voice of his lament through the
vaporous curtain that rises round his steps; I like the music of the
withered leaves that rustle in his path; and oh, above all, the solemn
thoughts that wait upon him, as he goes stripping the trees of their
bright foliage, leaving them like the ungarlanded columns of a deserted
palace. The play was Romeo and Juliet. My father was the "youngest of
that name," for want of a better, or, rather, of a worse. How beautiful
this performance must have been, when the youthful form made that appear
natural which now seems the triumph of art over nature. Garrick said,
that to act Romeo required a grey head upon green shoulders. Indeed,
'tis difficult! Oh, that our sapient judges did but know half how
difficult. It is delightful to act with my father. One's imagination
need toil but little, to see in him the very thing he represents;
whereas, with all other Romeos, although they were much younger men, I
have had to do double work with that useful engine, my fancy: first, to
get rid of the material obstacle staring me in the face, and then to
substitute some more congenial representative of that sweetest vision of
youth and love. Once, only, this was not necessary.

       *       *       *       *       *

       *       *       *       *       *

The audience here are, without exception, the most disagreeable I ever
played to. Not a single hand did they give the balcony scene, or my
father's scene with the friar: they are literally immovable. They
applauded vehemently at the end of my draught scene, and a great deal at
the end of the play; but they are, nevertheless, intolerably dull; and
it is all but impossible to act to them.

       *       *       *       *       *

       *       *       *       *       *

The man who acted Capulet did it better than any Capulet I ever acted
with; and the nurse, besides looking admirably, acted her part very
well: and 'tis hard to please me, after poor dear old Mrs. Davenport.
The house was literally crammed from floor to ceiling. Came home tired
and hoarse; though my voice was a good deal better to-day. Mr.
---- supped with us. My father expected a visit from the haggling Boston
manager, and chose to have a witness to the conference.


_Tuesday, 16th._

Rose at nine. After breakfast, read a canto in Dante; wrote journal;
practised for an hour. The Boston manager, it seems, does not approve of
our terms; and after bargaining till past two o'clock last night with my
father, the latter, wearied out with his illiberal trafficking, and
coarse vulgarity of manner, declined the thing altogether: so, unless
the gentleman thinks better of the matter, we shall not go to Boston
this winter.[42] At one o'clock, habited; and at two, rode out with my
father. The day was most enchanting, mild, bright, and sunny; but the
roads were deplorable, and the country utterly dull. My horse was a
hard-mouthed half broken beast, without pace of any christian kind
soever; a perfect rack on hoofs: how it did jog and jumble me! However,
my bones are young, and my courage good, and I don't mind a little hard
work; but the road was so villanously bad, and the surrounding country
so weary, dull, stale, and unprofitable, that I was heartily sick of my
ride, when we turned towards Fairmount, the site of some large
water-works on the Schuylkill, by which Philadelphia is supplied with
water. On our right I descried, over some heights, a castellated
building of some extent, whose formidable appearance at least bespoke an
arsenal; but it was the entrance to the Penitentiary instead: and
presently the river, bright, and broad, and placid as a lake, with its
beautiful banks, and rainbow-tinted woods, opened upon us. We crossed a
covered wooden bridge, and followed the water's edge. The rich colours
of the foliage cast a warm light over the transparent face of the
mirror-like stream; and, far along the winding shores, a mingled mantle
of gorgeous glowing tints lay over the woody banks, and was reflected in
the still sunny river. Indeed, it was lovely! But our time was growing
short, and we had to turn home; which we did by a pleasant and more
direct path. My horse, towards the end of the ride, got more manageable;
and I doubt whether it would not be wiser to continue to ride it than
try another, which may be just as bad, and, moreover, a _stranger_. My
riding-cap seemed to excite universal marvel wherever we passed. We came
in at five o'clock; dressed, and dined. Just as I had finished dinner, a
most beautiful, fragrant, and delicious nosegay was brought to me, with
a very laconic note from a Philadelphia "_friend_," dashed under, as
though from a Quaker. Whoever 'tis from, Jew or Gentile, Puritan or
Pagan, he, she, or it hath my most unbounded gratitude. Spent an
ecstatic half hour in arranging my flowers in glasses; gave orders about
my Mrs. Beverley's gown, and began marking journal; while doing so, a
card was brought up.

       *       *       *       *       *

       *       *       *       *       *

       *       *       *       *       *

Presently Mr. ---- came in, another of our Pacific fellow-sailors. It
pleases me to see them: they seem to bring me nearer to England. He gave
a dreadful account of his arrival in Baltimore, and of the state to
which the cholera had reduced that city. Mr. ---- amused me, by telling
me that he had heard my behaviour canvassed with much censure by some
man or other, who met me at Mr. ----'s, and who was horrified at my
taking up a book, and then a newspaper, and, in short, being neither
tragical nor comical, at a dinner-party. Of course, I must seem a very
strange animal to them all; but they seem just as strange to me.

       *       *       *       *       *

       *       *       *       *       *


_Wednesday, 17th._

Rose at eight. After breakfast, put out things for the theatre. At
eleven, went to rehearsal. It seems there has been fighting, and
rushing, and tearing of coats at the box-office; and one man has made
forty dollars by purchasing and reselling tickets at an increased price.
After rehearsal, came home. Mr. ---- called, and sat some time: he sails
for England on the twenty-fourth. England, oh England!--yet, after all,
what is there in that name? It is not my home; it is not those beloved
ones' whose fellowship is half the time what we call _home_. Is it
really and truly the yearning of the roots for the soil in which they
grew? Perhaps it is only the restless roving spirit, that still would be
where it is not. I know not. His description of American life and
manners (and he knows both, for he has lived constantly in this country,
and his particularities are, I believe, fairly divided between it and
his own,) is any thing but agreeable.

       *       *       *       *       *

       *       *       *       *       *

The dignified and graceful influence which married women, among us,
exercise over the tone of manners, uniting the duties of home to the
charms of social life, and bearing, at once, like the orange-tree, the
fair fruits of maturity with the blossoms of their spring, is utterly
unknown here. Married women are either house-drudges and nursery-maids,
or, if they appear in society, comparative ciphers; and the retiring,
modest, youthful bearing, which among us distinguishes girls of fifteen
or sixteen, is equally unknown. Society is entirely led by chits, who in
England would be sitting behind a pinafore; the consequence is, that it
has neither the elegance, refinement, nor the propriety which belongs to
ours; but is a noisy, rackety, vulgar congregation of flirting boys and
girls, alike without style or decorum.[43] When Mr. ---- was gone,
practised till dinner-time. After dinner, practised for half an hour;
marked journal, till time to go to the theatre; took coffee, and away.
The house was crammed again, and the play better acted than I have ever
seen it out of London, though Mrs. Candour had stuck upon her head a
bunch of feathers which threatened the gods; and Lady Sneerwell had
dragged all her hair off her face, which needed to be as pretty as it
was, to endure such an exposure. I do not wonder the New Yorkians did
not approve of my Lady Teazle. If, as ---- tells me, Mrs. ---- is their
idea of the perfection of good-breeding, well may my delineation of a
lady be condemned as "nothing particular." Yet I am sorry I must
continue to lie under their censure, for I, unfortunately for myself,
have seen ladies, "ripe and real," who, from all I can see, hear, and
understand, differ widely from the good manners of their "beau ideal."
The fact is, I am not "_genteel_" enough, and I am conscious of it. The
play went off remarkably well. Came to bed at half-past eleven.

       *       *       *       *       *


_Thursday, 18th._

Here is the end of October, the very mourning-time of the year with us,
and my room is full of flowers, and the sun is so bright and powerful,
that it is impossible to go out with a shawl, or without a parasol. Went
to rehearsal at twelve; at two, came in and habited; and at half-past
two, rode out with my father. We took the road to the Schuylkill at
once, through Arch Street, which is a fine, broad, long street, running
parallel with Chestnut Street. We walked along the road under the
intense sunlight that made all things look sleepy around. Turning
between some rising banks, through a defile where the road wound up a
hill, we caught a glimpse of a white house standing on the sunny slope
of a green rise. The undulating grounds around were all bathed in warm
light, relieved only by the massy shadows of the thick woods that
sheltered them. It was a bit of England.

       *       *       *       *       *

Some good farming and tidy out-houses, and dependencies, completed the
resemblance, and made me think that this must be the dwelling of some of
my own country people. How can they live here? Here, even in the midst
of what is fair and peaceful in nature, I think my home would haunt me,
and the far-off chiming of the waves against her white shores resound in
my ears through the smooth flowing of the Schuylkill.[44] After pursuing
a level uninteresting road for some time, we turned off to the right,
and, standing on the brow of a considerable declivity, had a most
enchanting glimpse of the Schuylkill and its woody shores. The river
makes a bend just above the water-works, and the curving banks scooping
themselves form a lovely little sunny bay. It was more like a lake, just
here, than a flowing stream. The sky was so blessedly serene, and the
air so still, that the pure deep-looking water appeared to sleep, while
the bright hues of the heavens, and the glowing lints of the woody
shores, were mirrored with wondrous vividness on its bosom. I never saw
such gorgeousness, and withal such perfect harmony of colouring. The
golden sky, the mingled green, brown, yellow, crimson, and dark maroon,
that clothed the thickets; the masses of grey granite, with the vivid
mossy green that clung round them; the sunny purple waters; the warm red
colour of the road itself, as it wound down below, with a border of
fresh-looking turf on either side of it; the radiant atmosphere of rosy
light that hung over all; all combined to present a picture of perfect
enchantment. The eye was drunk with beauty.[45] How I though t of Mr.
----. Indeed a painter would have gone crazy over it, and I, who am not
a painter, was half crazy that I was not. Though if I had been, what
would it have availed? Such colours are from God's pallet, and mortal
hand may no more copy, than it could mingle them. We rode on through
scenery of the same description, passing in our way a farm and dairy,
where the cattle were standing, not in open pastureland, but in a corner
of forest-ground, all bright with the golden shedding of the trees; it
was very picturesque. A little runlet of water, too, that held the
middle of a tangled ravine, ran glittering like a golden snake through
the underwood, while the stems of the trees, and the light foliage on
the edge of the thick woody screens, were bathed in yellow sunshine. All
around was beautiful, and rich, and harmonious to the eye, and should
have been so to the spirit.

       *       *       *       *       *

Returned home at about half-past five, dined at six; found another
beautiful nosegay waiting for me, from my unknown furnisher of sweets.
This is almost as tantalising as it is civil; and I would give half my
lovely flowers to find out who sends them to me. Distributed them all
over the room, and was as happy as a queen. Mr. ---- called. My father
was obliged to go out upon business, so D---- and I had to entertain
that worthy youth. He seems to have a wonderful veneration for a parcel
of scribblers, whose names were never heard of in England, beyond the
limits of their own narrow coteries. But he speaks like an enthusiast of
the woods and waters of his glorious country, and I excuse his taste in
poetry. Now isn't this strange, that a man who can feel the amazing
might, majesty, and loveliness of nature, can endure for a moment the
mawkish scribbling of these poetasters? Verily, we be anomalous beasts.

       *       *       *       *       *


AUTUMN.

     Thou comest not in sober guise,
       In mellow cloak of russet clad--
     Thine are no melancholy skies,
       Nor hueless flowers pale and sad;
     But, like an emperor, triumphing,
       With gorgeous robes of Tyrian dyes,
     Full flush of fragrant blossoming,
       And glowing purple canopies.
     How call ye this the season's fall,
       That seems the pageant of the year,
     Richer and brighter far than all
       The pomp that spring and summer wear?
     Red falls the westering light of day
       On rock and stream and winding shore;
     Soft woody banks and granite grey
       With amber clouds are curtain'd o'er;
     The wide clear waters sleeping lie
       Beneath the evening's wings of gold,
     And on their glassy breast the sky
       And banks their mingled hues unfold.
     Far in the tangled woods, the ground
       Is strewn with fallen leaves, that lie
     Like crimson carpets all around
       Beneath a crimson canopy.
     The sloping sun with arrows bright
       Pierces the forest's waving maze;
     The universe seems wrapt in light,--
       A floating robe of rosy haze.
     Oh, Autumn! thou art here a king;
       And round thy throne the smiling Hours
     A thousand fragrant tributes bring
       Of golden fruits and blushing flowers.

     Oh, not upon thy fading fields and fells
       In such rich garb doth Autumn come to thee,
     My home!--but o'er thy mountains and thy dells
       His footsteps fall slowly and solemnly.
     Nor flower nor bud remaineth there to him,
       Save the faint-breathing rose, that, round the year
     Its crimson buds and pale soft blossoms dim
       In lowly beauty constantly doth wear.
     O'er yellow stubble lands, in mantle brown,
       He wanders through the wan October light;
     Still, as he goeth, slowly stripping down
       The garlands green that were the Spring's delight.
     At morn and eve thin silver vapours rise
       Around his path; but sometimes at mid-day
     He looks along the hills with gentle eyes,
       That make the sallow woods and fields seem gay.
     Yet something of sad sovereignty he hath--
       A sceptre crown'd with berries ruby red;
     And the cold sobbing wind bestrews his path
       With wither'd leaves that rustle 'neath his tread;
     And round him still, in melancholy state,
       Sweet solemn thoughts of death and of decay,
     In slow and hush'd attendance, ever wait,
       Telling how all things fair must pass away.


_Tuesday, 23d._

At ten o'clock, went to rehearsal. Rehearsed the Hunchback, and then
Fazio: this is tolerably hard work, with acting every night: we don't
steal our money, that's one comfort. Came home, found a letter for me in
a strange hand.

       *       *       *       *       *

       *       *       *       *       *

Went on with my letter to ----: while doing so, was interrupted by the
entrance of a strange woman, who sat herself down, apparently in much
confusion. She told me a story of great distress, and claimed my
assistance as a fellow-countrywoman. I had not a farthing of money:
D---- and my father were out; so I took the reference she gave me, and
promised to enquire into her condition. The greatest evil arising from
the many claims of this sort which are made upon us, wherever we go, is
the feeling of distrust and suspicion which they engender, and the sort
of excuse which they teach us to apply plausibly to our unwillingness to
answer such demands. "Oh, ten to one, an impostor," is soon said, and
instances enough may unfortunately be found to prove the probability of
such a conclusion. Yet in this sweeping condemnation one real case of
misery may be included, and that possibility should make us pause, for
'tis one that, if afterwards detected, may be the source of heavy
condemnation, and bitter regret to ourselves.[46]

       *       *       *       *       *

       *       *       *       *       *

The fact is, that, to give well, one should give equally one's trouble
with one's money: the one in all cases, the other where one's enquiries
are satisfactorily answered.--Received a purple-bound gilt-edged
periodical, published at Boston, from Mr. ----.

       *       *       *       *       *

       *       *       *       *       *

The literary part of the book seems much on a par with that of similar
works in England, but there was a wide difference in the excellence of
the engravings. There was one from that pretty picture, the
Bride's-Maid; a coarse bad engraving, but yet how much of the sadness of
the original it recalled to me! It is a painful thing to look at: it
brings before one too much of the sorrow of life, of the anguish that
has been endured, that is daily, hourly, endured, in this prison-house
of torments. After dinner, went on writing to ----, till time to go to
the theatre. The house was not as full as I had expected, though a good
one enough. My father looked wonderfully well and young: there is
certainly some difference in acting with him; but this part fatigues me
horribly.


_Wednesday, 24th._

Went to rehearsal at eleven; at half-past one, went with D---- to find
out something about my yesterday's poor woman. The worst of it is, that
my trouble involves necessarily the trouble of somebody else, as I
cannot go trotting and exploring about by myself. The references were
sufficiently satisfactory, that is, they proved that she was poor, and
in distress, and willing to work. I gave her what I could, and the man
by whom she is employed seems anxious to afford her work: so I hope she
will get on a little. The "God bless you," of gratitude, even if uttered
by guileful and unworthy lips, is surely yet a blessing if it alights on
those who are seeking to do good. And if I were assured that that woman
was the veriest impostor under the sun, I still should hope her prayer
might descend with profit on my head; for I was sincere in my desire to
do well by her. Came home, wrote a letter to ----, finished one to ----;
and went to the theatre. It seems there have been


     "Bloody noses and crack'd crowns,
     And all the currents of a heady fight,"


at the box-office, and truly the house bore witness thereto; for it was
crammed from floor to ceiling. The play was the Hunchback. I played very
well, in spite of no green carpet, and no letter in the letter scene,
which lost one of my favourite points; one, by the by, that I am fond
of, because it is all my own.

       *       *       *       *       *

       *       *       *       *       *


_Thursday, 25th._

After breakfast, went to rehearsal. Came home, put out things for the
theatre, made myself a belt; received a whole bundle of smart annuals
from Mr. ----; spent some time in looking over their engravings. My gown
looked very handsome, but my belt was too small; had to make another.
The house was good, but not great. I played only so-so: the fact is, it
is utterly impossible to play to this audience at all. They are so
immovable, such very stocks and stones, that one is fairly exhausted
with labouring to excite them, before half one's work is done.

       *       *       *       *       *

       *       *       *       *       *


AUTUMN SONG.

     The merriest time of all the year
       Is the time when the leaves begin to fall,
     When the chestnut-trees turn yellow and sear,
       And the flowers are withering one and all;

     When the thick green sward is growing brown,
       And the honeysuckle berries are red,
     And the oak is shaking its acorns down,
       And the dry twigs snap' neath the woodman's tread.

     The merriest dance that e'er was seen
       Is the headlong dance of the whirling leaves,
     And the rattling stubble that flies between
       The yellow ranks of the barley sheaves.

     The merriest song that e'er was heard
       Is the song of the sobbing autumn wind;
     When the thin bare boughs of the elm are stirr'd,
       And shake the black ivy round them twined.

     The merriest time of all the year
       Is the time when all things fade and fall,
     When the sky is bleak, and the earth is drear,
       Oh, that's the merriest month of all.


_Friday, 26th._

While I was dressing, D----, like a good angel, came in with three
letters from England in her hand.

       *       *       *       *       *

The love of excellent friends is one of God's greatest blessings, and
deserves our utmost thankfulness. The counsel of sound heads and the
affection of Christian spirits is a staff of support, and a spring of
rejoicing through life.

       *       *       *       *       *

       *       *       *       *       *

A Mr., Mrs., and young Mr. ----, called upon us: they are the only
inhabitants of this good city who have done us that honour.

       *       *       *       *       *

As soon as my father came in, we sallied forth to see the giantess of a
ship the Americans have been building, to thresh us withal. I hooked
myself up to ----, and away we strode; D---- and my father struggling
after us, as best they might. The day was most beautiful; bright, sunny,
and fresh. After walking at an immense pace for some time, we bethought
us of looking for our _poursuivants_; but neither sign nor vestige
appeared of them. We stood still and waited, and went on, and stood
still again. ---- looked foolish at me, and I foolish at him: at length
we wisely agreed that they had probably made the best of their way to
the Navy-yard, and thither we proceeded. We found them, according to our
expectations, waiting for us, and proceeded to enter the building where
this lady of the seas was propped upon a hundred stays, surrounded with
scaffolding, with galleries running round from the floor to the ceiling.
We went on deck; in fact, the Pennsylvania has been boarded by the
English in our person, before she sets foot on the sea. How I should
like to see that ship launched; how she will sweep down from her
holdings, and settle to the water, as a swan before swimming out! How
the shores will resound with living voices, applauding her like a living
creature; how much of national pride, of anticipated triumph, will be
roused in every heart, as her huge wings first unfold their shadow over
the sea, and she moves abroad, the glory and the wonder of the deep!
How, if this ship should ever lie in an English harbour! If I were an
American on board of her, I would sooner blow her up, with all the
"precious freighting souls" within her, than see such a consummation.
When my wonderment had a little subsided, it occurred to me that she
would not, perhaps, be so available a battle-ship as one of a smaller
size: it must be impossible to manoeuvre her with any promptitude.

       *       *       *       *       *

My father and ---- indulged in sundry right English bits of bragging, as
they stood at her stern, looking down the enormous deck. I wish I knew
her exact measurements: she is the largest ship ever built, larger than
any East Indiaman; the largest ship in the world. How the sea will groan
under her; nathless in a storm I would rather be in the veriest nutshell
that ever was flung from wave-top to wave-top. How she would sink! she
would go down like another Atlantis, poor ship! I have an amazing horror
of drowning. Came home just in time to dine. After dinner, wrote
letters; at six, went to the theatre; play, Hunchback; played so-so: the
audience are detestable. The majority are so silent that they not only
do not applaud the acting, but most religiously forbear to notice all
noises in the house, in consequence of which some impudent women amused
themselves with talking during the whole play, much "louder than the
players." At one time their impertinent racket so bewildered me, that I
was all but out, and this without the audience once interfering to
silence them; perhaps, however, that would have been an unwarrantable
interference with the sacred liberties of the people. I indulged them
with a very significant glance; and at one moment was most strongly
tempted to request them to hold their tongues.


_Saturday, 27th._

The poor sick lady, whose pretty children I met running about the
stairs, sent to say she should be very glad if I would go in and see
her: I had had sundry inward promptings to this effect before, but was
withheld by the real English dread of intruding. At eleven, went to
rehearsal: on my return, called on Mrs. ----.

       *       *       *       *       *

       *       *       *       *       *

She interested me most extremely: I would have stayed long with her,
but feared she might exhaust herself by the exertion of conversing. On
my return to my own room, I sent her Mr. ----'s annuals, and the volume
of Mrs. Hemans's poetry he lent me. Began practising, when in walked
that interesting youth, Mr. ----, with a nosegay, as big as himself, in
his hand. Flowers,--sweet blooming, fresh, delicious flowers,--in the
last days of October; the very sackcloth season of the year. How they do
rejoice my spirit. He sat some time, making most excessively fine
speeches to me: while he was here, arrived another bouquet from my
unknown friend; how nice, to be sure! all but not knowing who they come
from. When my visiter was gone, wrote to ---- till dinner-time. After
dinner, spent nearly the whole afternoon in dressing my pretty flowers.
Sent some of them in to Mrs. ----. I don't know why, but it seemed a sad
present to make to her; for I almost fear she will never see the
blossoms of another year. Yet why do I say that?--is not heaven brighter
than even this flowery earth?

       *       *       *       *       *

       *       *       *       *       *

Finished my letter to ----; went to the theatre. My benefit: the
Provoked Husband. The house was very good. I played so-so, and looked
very nice. What fine breeding this play is, to be sure: it is quite
refreshing to act it; but it must be heathen Greek to the American
_exclusives_, I should think.


_Sunday, 28th._

Had only time to swallow a mouthful of breakfast, and off to church. I
must say it requires a deal of fortitude to go into an American church:
there are no pew-openers, and the people appear to rush indifferently
into any seats that are vacant. We went into a pew where there were two
women and a man, who did not take up one half of it; but who,
nevertheless, looked most ungracious at our coming into it. They did not
move to make way or accommodate us, but remained, with very discourteous
unchristian-like sulkiness, spread over twice as much space as they
required. The spirit of independence seems to preside paramount, even in
the house of God. This congregation, by frequenting an Episcopalian
temple, evidently professed the form of faith of the English church; yet
they neither uttered the responses, nor observed any one of the
directions in the Common Prayer-book. Thus, during portions of the
worship where kneeling is enjoined, they sat or stood; and while the
Creed was being read, half the auditors were reclining comfortably in
their pews: the same thing with the Psalms, and all parts of the
service. I suppose their love of freedom will not suffer them to be
amenable to forms, or wear the exterior of humbleness and homage, even
in the house of the Most High God.[47] The whole appearance of the
congregation was that of indifference, indolence, and irreverence, and
was highly displeasing to my eye. After church, came home, and began
writing to ----. ---- called. He sat some time mending pens for me; and
at half-past one D----, he, and I packed ourselves into a coach, and
proceeded on to Fair Mount, where we got out, and left the coach to wait
for us. The day was bright and bitter cold: the keen spirit-like wind
came careering over the crisping waters of the broad river, and carried
across the cloudless blue sky the golden showers from the shivering
woods. They had not lost their beauty yet; though some of their crimson
robes were turned to palest yellow, and through the thin foliage the
dark boughs and rugged barks showed distinctly, yet the sun shone
joyfully on them, and they looked beautiful still; and so did the water,
curled into a thousand mimic billows, that came breaking their crystal
heads along the curving shore, which, with its shady indentings and
bright granite promontories, seemed to lock the river in, and gave it
the appearance of a lovely lake. We took the tow-path, by D----'s
desire; but found (alas, that it is ever so!) that it was distance lent
enchantment to the view. For, though it was very pretty, it had lost
some of the beauty it seemed to wear, when we looked down upon it from
the woody heights that skirt the road.

On we went, ---- and I moderating our strides to keep pace with D----;
and she, puffing, panting, and struggling on to keep pace with us; yet I
was perished, and she was half melted: like all compromises, it was but
a botched business. The wind was deliciously fresh; and I think, as we
buffeted along in its very face, we should have made an admirable
subject for Bunbury. I, with my bonnet off, my combs out, and all my
hair flying about, hooked up to ----, who, willow-like, bent over me, to
facilitate my reaching his arm. D---- following in the rear, her cap and
hair half over her face, her shawl and clothes fluttering in the blast,
her cheeks the colour of crimson, which, relieved by her green bonnet,
whose sides she grappled tightly down to balk the wind, had much the
effect of a fine carnation bursting its verdant sheath. I never saw any
thing half so absurd in my life, as we all looked. Yet it was very
pleasant and wholesome, good for soul and body. After walking for some
time, I asked D---- the hour. It was three, and we were to dine at four,
in order to accommodate the servants, who, in this land of liberty, make
complete slaves of their masters. Horror took possession of us,--how
were we ever to get back in time? To turn back was hopeless: the endless
curvings of the shore, however much we had admired their graceful
sinuosities before, would now have appeared abominable to our
straight-forward designs of home, so we agreed to climb the hill and
take the upper road--and what a hill it was!--the sun poured his intense
rays down upon it; and, what with the heat and the wind, and the steep
path-way, I thought poor D---- would have died. We turned once as we
reached the summit, and I never saw any thing more lovely than the scene
we were leaving behind us. The beautiful blue water winding far away
between its woody shores; close below the hill, a small reed-crowned
island lying like a gem on the bright river, and a little beyond, the
unfinished arches of a white bridge: the opposite shores were bathed
with the evening light, and far away the varied colours of the autumnal
woods were tinged with the golden glory of sunset. But we were pursued
by the thought of four o'clock, and paused but a moment. On we
struggled, and at last my frozen blood began to warm; and by the time we
reached the carriage, I was in a fine glow. Certainly exercise is, in
itself, very delightful, but in scenes like these it is doubly so: the
spirit is roused to activity by the natural beauties around, and the
fancy and feelings seem to acquire vigour from the quick circulation of
the blood, and the muscular energy of the limbs; it is highly
excellent.[48] We jumped into the coach, adjured the man by all the
saints in the calendar to put wings to his chariot wheels, and sat
concocting plausible lies, by way of excuses, all the way home. At last
we hit upon an admirable invention. The cause of our being so late was
to be, that we stopped to render our assistance in reviving an
unfortunate young woman (a lovely creature, of course), who had thrown
herself into the Schuylkill, in consequence of some love disappointment,
and who was withdrawn just in time to be preserved. ---- was to tell
this story with the gravest face he could summon for the occasion, while
we went up to dress, and when we came down we were to corroborate his
statement as correctly as good chance might enable us. We dressed in
half a minute, and found Mr. ---- sitting with my father, and ----
looking amazingly demure. It seemed, however, that no remark had been
made, nor question asked, about our protracted perambulations, so that
we had actually thrown away all our ingenuity. This vexed me so much,
that in the middle of dinner I introduced the topic of drowning, and,
with a lamentable face, related the circumstance; but, alas! one of my
auditors was occupied with a _matelotte d'anguilles_, another with an
oyster _vol-au-vent_, and all the pretty girls in creation might have
been drowned, without the loss in any degree affecting the evident
satisfaction which the above subjects of meditation seemed to afford the
gentlemen: what selfish brutes men are! shocking. Our invention was thus
twice thrown away: one said "Humph!" and the other "Ha!" and that was
the extent of their sympathy. After dinner, came up to my own room, lay
down, and fairly slept till coffee was announced. Came down with half an
eye open, and found the circle augmented by the delectable presence of
Mr. ----. What an original that youth is! They talked politics, abused
republicanism, lauded aristocracy, drank tea, took snuff, ate cakes, and
pottered a deal. My father was going fast asleep, ---- was making a
thousand signs to me to go to the piano, when Mr. ---- rose to depart:
the other gentlemen took the hint, and left us at half-past ten.


_Tuesday, 30th._

At eleven o'clock, went to rehearsal: came home, began letter to ----.
Called with my father upon Mrs. ----: the servant committed that
awfullest of blunders, letting one into the house, and then finding out
that nobody was at home.[49] Came home, practised for some time: all of
a sudden the door opened, and in walked Colonel ---- with my father. He
had just arrived from New York. He dined with us. After dinner, finished
letter to ----. At six, went to the theatre. The house was very good;
play, Much Ado about Nothing. I played well; but what an audience it is!
I have been often recommended, in cases of nervousness on the stage, to
consider the audience as just so many cabbages, and, indeed, a small
stretch of fancy would enable me to do so here. Colonel ---- supped with
us. Found an invitation to dinner from the ----. "One exception makes a
rule," say the scholars; by that same token, therefore, the
Philadelphians are about the most inhospitable set of people it ever was
my good fortune to fall in with.[50]

Towards the end of supper, we fell into a strange discussion as to the
nature of existence. A vain and fruitless talk, after all; for life
shall be happy or sad, not, indeed, according to its events, but
according to the nature of the individuals to whom these events befall.
Colonel ---- maintained that life was in itself desirable; abounding in
blessings, replete with comforts, a fertile land, where still, as one
joy decays, another springs up to flourish in its place. He said that he
felt thankful every day, and every hour of the day, for his existence;
that he feared death, only because life was an absolute enjoyment, and
that he would willingly, to-morrow, accept the power of beginning his
again, even though he should be placed on the world's threshold, a
lonely friendless beggar: so sure was he that his prospects would
brighten, and friends spring up to him, and plenty reward labour, and
life become pleasant, ere it had grown many years old. How widely human
beings differ! It was but an hour before, that I, in counting how many
stars I had already seen go down below the horizon of existence,--Weber,
Lawrence, Scott, all of whom I have known,--was saying to D----, "How
sad a thing, and strange, life is!" adding, what I repent me for, "I
wish that I were dead!" Oh, how can any human being, who looks abroad
into the world, and within upon himself, who sees the wondrous mystery
of all things, the unabidingness which waits on all matter, the
imperfection which clogs all spirit; who notes the sovereignty of change
over the inanimate creation, of disease, decay, and death over man's
body, of blindness and delusion over his mind, of sin over his soul; who
beholds the frailty of good men; who feels the miserable inconsistency
of his own nature; the dust and ashes of which our love, and what we
love, is made; the evil that, like an unwholesome corpse, still clings
to our good; the sorrow that, like its shadow, still walks behind our
joy;--oh, who that sees all this can say that this life is other than
sad--most sad? Yet, while I write this, God forbid that I should
therefore want eyes to see, or sense to feel, the blessings wherewith he
has blessed it; the rewards with which he sweetens our task, the flowers
wherewith he cheers our journey's road, the many props wherewith he
supports our feet in it. Yet of all these, the sweetest, the brightest,
the strongest, are those which our soul draws from him, the end of its
desire, not those it finds here. And how should not that spirit yearn
for its accomplishment? If we seek knowledge here, a thousand mists
arise between our incapable senses and the truth, how, then, should we
not wish to cast away this darkness, and soar to the fountains of all
light? If we strive to employ those faculties which, being of our soul,
have the strength and enduring of immortality, the objects whereon we
expend them here are vague, evanescent, disappointing; how then should
we not desire to find food for our capacities, abiding as themselves? If
we long to love--ah, are not the creatures in whom we centre our
affections frail, capable of change; perishable, born to decay? How then
should we not look with unutterable yearning for that life where
affection is unchangeable, eternal? Surely, if all the hopes, the fears,
the aims, the tendings of our soul, have but their beginning here, it is
most natural, it is most fitting, to turn to that future where they
shall be fulfilled. But there lies a road between.

       *       *       *       *       *

       *       *       *       *       *

A break--a break--a break! So much the better; for the two last days
have been nothing but annoyance, hard work, and heartach.

       *       *       *       *       *

       *       *       *       *       *


_Friday, November 2d._

A bright sunny day; too hot for a fire; windows open, shutters closed,
and the room full of flowers. How the sweet summer-time stays lingering
here. Found Colonel ---- in the drawing-room. After breakfast, began
writing to ----. Mr. ---- called: he stayed but a short time, and went
out with Colonel ----. My father went out soon after, and I began to
practise. Mrs. ---- came in and sat with me: she played to me, and sang
"Should those fond hopes ever leave thee." Her voice was as thin as her
pale transparent hands. She appeared to me much better than when last I
saw her; but presently told me she had just been swallowing eighty drops
of laudanum, poor thing! When she was gone, went on practising, and
writing, till my father came home. Walked with him and D---- to call on
old Lady ----. The day was so hot that I could scarcely endure my boa.
The election was going on; the streets full of rabblement, the air full
of huzzaing, and the sky obscured with star-spangled banners, and
villanous transparencies of "Old Hickory,"[51] hung out in all
directions. We went round the Town-House, and looked at the window out
of which Jefferson read the Act of Independence, that proclaimed the
separation between England and America.[52] Called at a music-shop,
tossed over heaps of music, bought some, and ordered some to be sent
home for me to look over. Came home, put out things for the theatre.
Dined at three.

       *       *       *       *       *

       *       *       *       *       *

Received another beautiful nosegay. After dinner, went on with letter to
----; tried over my music; Heber's song that I wanted is not among them.
At six, went to the theatre. The sunset was glorious, the uprising of
the moon most beautiful. There is an intensity, an earnestness, about
the colour of the sky, and the light of its bright inhabitants here,
that is lovely and solemn, beyond any thing I ever saw. Can Italy have
brighter heavens than these? surely nothing can exceed the beauty of
these days and nights. We were obliged to go all manner of roundabouts
to the play-house, in order to avoid the rabble that choked up the
principal streets. I, by way of striking salutary awe into the hearts of
all rioters who might come across our path, brandished my father's sword
out of the coach window the whole way along. The play was Venice
Preserved; my father played Jaffier.

       *       *       *       *       *

       *       *       *       *       *

I played pretty well. The house was very good; but at the end I really
was half dead.

       *       *       *       *       *

On our return home, met a procession of electioneerers carrying
triangular paper lanterns upon poles, with "sentiments" political
scribbled thereon, which, however, I could not distinguish. Found a most
exquisite nosegay waiting for me at home, so sweet, so brilliant, so
fragrant and fresh.

       *       *       *       *       *

Found nothing for supper that I could fancy. Drank some tea, wrote
journal. Colonel ---- came in after supper, and wondered that I had
played better to my father's Jaffier than to Mr. Keppel's. Heaven bless
the world, for a _conglomerated amalgamation_ of fools!


_Monday, 5th._

Guy Fawkes' day, and no squibs, no firing of pistols, no bonfires, nor
parading about of ferocious-looking straw men. Ah! these poor people
never had a king and two houses of parliament, and don't know what a
mercy it is they weren't blown up before they passed the reform bill.
Now if such an accident should occur to them, they'd all be sure to be
blown straight into heaven, and hang there. Rose at half-past five. Oh,
I quite agree with the Scotch song,


     "Up in the morning's na for me,
       Up in the morning early;
     I'd rather watch a winter's night,
       Than rise in the morning early."


Dressed myself by candlelight. Mrs. ---- sent in to ask me if I would
see her, but I had not time. Sent her a note, and received, in exchange,
the seed of what I suspect is the wood laurel, common in this country,
but unknown in ours. Started from the Mansion House (which is a very
nice inn, kept by the civilest of people,) at six, and reached the quay
just in time to meet the first rosy breaking of the clouds over the
Delaware.

       *       *       *       *       *

       *       *       *       *       *

I am sorry to leave Philadelphia. I like the town, and the little I have
seen of its inhabitants, very much; I mean in private, for they are
intolerable audiences. There is an air of stability, of well-to-do, and
occasionally of age, in the town, that reminds me of England. Then, as
far as my yesterday's dinner will allow me to judge, I should say, that
not only the style of living but the society was superior to that which
I saw in New York. Certainly, both the entertainment itself, and the
guests, were irreproachable; the first was in very good taste, the
latter appeared to me well-informed, and very agreeable. The morning, in
spite of all ----'s persuasive prophecies, was beautiful beyond
description. The river like the smoothest glass. The sky was bright and
cloudless, and along the shores, the distinctness with which each
smallest variation of form, or shade of colour, was reflected in the
clear mirror of the Delaware was singularly beautiful and fairy-like.
The tints of the woods were what no words can convey the slightest idea
of. Now, a whole tract of withered oaks, of a red brick hue, like a
forest scorched with fire; now, a fresh thicket of cedars of the
brightest green; then, wide screens of mingled trees, where the foliage
was one gorgeous mixture of vermilion, dark maroon, tender green, golden
yellow, and deep geranium. The whole land at a distance appearing to lie
under an atmosphere of glowing colour, richer than any crimson mantle
that ever clothed the emperors of the olden world; all this illuminated
by a sun, which we should have thought too hot for June. It was very
beautiful. I did not, however, see much of it, for I was overcome with
fatigue, and slept both in the steam-boat and in the stage-coach. When
we embarked on the Raritan, I had intended lying down in the cabin, and
taking my sleep fairly out, but the jolting of those bitter roads had
made every one of the women sick, and the cabin was horrible beyond
expression. Came up on deck, and worked till within a quarter of a mile
of New York, when I went on the upper deck, and walked about with
Colonel ----. I asked Captain Seymour how often the engine would strike
in a minute; he told me, thirty-six times. By the by, we had a race,
coming down the Raritan, with the Union steam-boat. The Water Witch beat
her hollow; but she came so near as to make our water rough, and so
impede our progress, that I thought we should have had a concussion;
there is something very exciting in emulation, certainly. The sun went
down in a watery gloomy sky, though the day had been so fine; and when
we got sight of the Narrows, sky, and sea, and land, were all of a dark
leaden hue. Our second landing at New York was rather melancholy: shall
I ever forget the first? Came up to our comfortless quarters at the
American; dressed, and dined, and began finishing my letter to dear
----, when they brought me in another from her, by the packet that has
just come in.

       *       *       *       *       *

       *       *       *       *       *


_Tuesday, 6th._

It poured with rain. Lucky we did not follow ----'s advice, else we
should have been miserably progressing through rain and wretchedness, or
perhaps sticking fast in the mud. Went and took a warm bath; came home,
breakfasted; after breakfast, practised for an hour; finished letter to
----; wrote to my mother; dined at five. After dinner, Colonel
---- called, and very nearly caused a blow-up between me and my father:
he came preaching to me the necessity of restoring those lines of
Bianca's, in the judgment-scene, which were originally omitted,
afterwards restored by me at Milman's request, and again cut out, on
finding that they only lengthened the scene, without producing the
slightest effect. My father appeared perfectly to agree with me, but
added, that I might as well oblige the people. I straightforth said I
would do no such thing. People sitting before the curtain must not come
and tell me what I am to do behind it. Not one out of a hundred, in the
first place, understand what they are talking about; and why, therefore,
am I to alter my work at their suggestion, when each particular scene
has cost me more consideration than they ever bestowed upon any whole
play in all their lives. Besides, it would be with me and my parts as
with the old man, his son, and his ass, in the fable of old; I should
never have done altering, and yet never satisfy any body; for the most
universal talent I know of is that of finding fault. So, all things
well considered, the New Yorkians must e'en be contented with the
judgment of Miss O'Neill, my father, and their obedient humble servant.
Worked till tea-time; after tea, wrote letters till now, bed-time.


_Wednesday, 7th._

Our breakfast was so bad, none of us could eat any thing. After
breakfast, despatched letters to Mr. ----, for England. Practised for an
hour,--sketched for an hour.

       *       *       *       *       *

       *       *       *       *       *

At half-past one, went out with my father to walk on the Battery, while
Colonel ---- and D---- went to ----, to see if we could get decent
lodgings, and wholesome eatables there. The day was melancholy, grey,
cold; with a full fresh wind, whirling the rattling leaves along, and
rippling the leaden waters of the wide estuary that opens before this
beautiful parade. The Jersey shore and Staten Island, with their
withered woods all clothed in their dark warm autumnal hues, at a
distance reminded me of the heathery hills of Scotland; they had that
dark purple richness of colouring.

       *       *       *       *       *

       *       *       *       *       *

D---- and Colonel ---- joined us, and we walked up Broadway together: my
father left me to go with them, and look at our proposed dwelling. It is
all in vain struggling with one's fate; 'tis clear they haven't the most
distant idea of the comforts of life in these parts. Darkness,
dinginess, and narrowness, were the attributes of the apartments into
which we were shown; then, as the Colonel had never eaten in the house,
he did not know what our food might be--pleasant this! _Resolved_, that
we were better off where we are, and so returned to the American.
Sketched and practised for some time longer. Mr. ---- called to go with
my father to Mrs. ----'s, where they were to dine. He certainly is one
of the handsomest men I ever saw; but he looks half dead, and is working
himself to death, it should seem.

       *       *       *       *       *

       *       *       *       *       *

He told me that Boston was the most charming town in America.

       *       *       *       *       *

Put away things, while D---- unpacked them. Dressed for dinner. Dined
at five; afterwards proceeded in the unpacking and stowing away.

       *       *       *       *       *

I was interrupted by the announcement of an incomprehensible cognomen,
which solved itself in the shape of Mr. ----, who walked in, sat down,
and began talking a deal of nonsense. I worked, that I might not go to
sleep. He was most exceedingly odd and dauldrummish, I think he was a
little "how com'd you so indeed." He sat very near me, spoke exceedingly
drowsily, and talked an amazing quantity of thickish philosophy, and
moral and sentimental potter. I bore it as well as I could, till ten
o'clock, when I asked him how long it was "reckoned" discreet, in this
country, to prolong evening visits; whereupon he arose and took his
departure.

       *       *       *       *       *

       *       *       *       *       *

       *       *       *       *       *

Worked at the ornaments of my Bianca dress, finished one, and wrote
journal.


_Thursday, 8th._

       *       *       *       *       *

After breakfast, worked at my dress till late; Mr. ---- called. Put away
goods and chattels; put out things for the theatre. A brother of Mr.
---- called upon us, and sat some time: when he was gone, came back to
my room to finish the ornaments for my dress. This day has been spent in
the thorough surroundings of my vocation; foil stone, glass beads, and
brass tape! ---- came just before dinner; and at the end of it, Colonel
---- called. He read us a paragraph in one of the Philadelphia papers,
upon me, and all my good parts; there was actually a column of them. It
was well written, for I was absolute perfection; excepting, indeed, in
one respect, the hauteur and disdain with which I had treated the
"_rank_ and fashion of Philadelphia." Now this was not true, for, to
speak candidly, I did not know that there were such things as rank and
fashion in all America. However, the article made me laugh extremely,
for, as I could not help observing, "there are real lords and ladies in
my country."[53]

       *       *       *       *       *

Came to my own room,--refurbished my green velvet bonnet. 'Tis a worthy
old thing that, and looks amazingly well. The cold weather is setting in
very bitterly to-day; we were obliged to have a fire. Heard my father
his part: whilst saying it, he received a subpoena on some business
between Mr. ---- and Mr. ----. At a quarter to six, went to the theatre.
Play, Fazio; house very fine; dress like a bonfire. I played well, but
then my father was the Fazio. The people cried abundantly. Mrs. ---- was
shocked at having to play that naughty woman Aldabella (I wish they
would let me try that part); and when the Duke dismissed her in the
last scene, picked up her train, and flounced off in a way that made the
audience for to laugh. Coming home, Mr. ---- overtook us. My father
asked him in, but he excused himself; before, however, we were well
seated, he had repented the refusal, and came rushing back. Colonel ----
came in, and they both of them supped with us, discussing many matters
of pith. Received a nosegay, as big as myself, of dahlias and other
autumnal flowers.

       *       *       *       *       *

The moon is resplendent! the earth is flooded with her cold
light--beautiful! By the by, _last night_, at three o'clock this
morning, I was awakened by music. It was a military band playing Yankee
Doodle, the national anthem of the Americans, accompanied by the tramp
of a considerable body of men. They took the direction of the Park, and
there halted, when I heard a single voice haranguing for a length of
time, with occasional interruptions of vehement huzzas, and rolling of
drums. And anon, the march struck up again, grew faint, and died into
the stillness of night.

       *       *       *       *       *

I was much bounden to the Jacksonites, who are carrying it by fair means
or foul. One man, I was assured, voted nine times over! He was an
Irishman, and, it is to be presumed, a tailor.


_Saturday, 10th._

Skipped yesterday: so much the better, for though it began, like May,
with flowers and sunshine, it ended, like December, with the sulks, and
a fit of crying. The former were furnished me by my friends and Heaven,
the latter, by myself and the devil.

       *       *       *       *       *

       *       *       *       *       *

At six o'clock, D---- roused me; and grumpily enough I arose. I dressed
myself by candlelight in a hurry. Really, by way of a party of pleasure,
'tis too abominable to get up in the middle of the night this fashion.
At half-past six, Colonel ---- came; and as soon as I could persuade
myself into my clothes, we set off to walk to the quay. Just as we were
nearing the bottom of Barclay Street, the bell rang from the steam-boat,
to summon all loiterers on board; and forthwith we rushed, because in
this country steam and paddles, like wind and tide in others, wait for
no man. We got on board in plenty time, but D---- was nearly killed with
the pace at which we had walked, in order to do so. One of the first
persons we saw was Mr. ----, who was going up to his father's place
beyond West Point, by name Hyde Park, which sounds mighty magnificent. I
did not remain long on the second deck, but ascended to the first with
Colonel ----, and paced to and fro with infinite zeal till
breakfast-time. The morning was grey and sad-looking, and I feared we
should not have a fine day: however, towards eight o'clock, the grey
clouds parted, and the blue serene eyes of heaven looked down upon the
waters; the waves began to sparkle, though the sun had not yet appeared;
the sky was lighter, and faint shadows began to appear beside the
various objects that surrounded us, all which symptoms raised our hopes
of the weather. At eight o'clock, we went down to breakfast. Nobody, who
has not seen it, can conceive the strange aspect of the long room of one
of these fine boats at meal-time. The crowd, the hurry, the confusion of
tongues, like the sound of many waters, the enormous consumption of
eatables, the mingled demands for more, the cloud of black waiters
hovering down the sides of the immense tables, the hungry eager faces
seated at them, form altogether a most amusing subject of contemplation,
and a caricaturist would find ample matter for his vein in almost every
other devouring countenance. As far as regards the speed, safety, and
convenience with which these vessels enable one to perform what would be
in any other conveyance most fatiguing journeys, they are admirable
inventions. The way in which they are conducted, too, deserves the
highest commendation. Nothing can exceed the comfort with which they are
fitted up, the skill with which they are managed, and the order and
alacrity with which passengers are taken up from, or landed at, the
various points along the river. The steamer goes at the rate of fifteen
miles an hour; and in less than two minutes, when approaching any place
of landing, the engine stops, the boat is lowered--the captain always
convoys his passengers himself from the steamer to the shore--away darts
the tiny skiff, held by a rope to the main boat; as soon as it grazes
the land, its freight, animate and inanimate, is bundled out, the boat
hauls itself back in an instant, and immediately the machine is in
motion, and the vessel again bounding over the water like a
race-horse.[54] Doubtless all this has many and great advantages; but to
an English person, the mere circumstance of being the whole day in a
crowd is a nuisance. As to privacy at any time, or under any
circumstances, 'tis a thing that enters not into the imagination of an
American. They do not seem to comprehend that to be from sunrise to
sunset one of a hundred and fifty people confined in a steam-boat is in
itself a great misery, or that to be left by one's self and to one's
self can ever be desirable. They live all the days of their lives in a
throng, eat at ordinaries of two or three hundred, sleep five or six in
a room, take pleasure in droves, and travel by swarms.[55]

       *       *       *       *       *

In spite, therefore, of all its advantages, this mode of journeying has
its drawbacks, and the greatest of all, to me, is the being
_companioned_ by so many strangers, who crowd about you, pursue their
conversation in your very ears, or, if they like it better, listen to
yours, stare you out of all countenance, and squeeze you out of all
comfort. It is perfectly intolerable to me; but then I have more than
even the national English abhorrence of coming in contact with
strangers. There is no moment of my life when I would not rather be
alone than in company; and feeling, as I often do, the society of even
those I love a burden, the being eternally surrounded by indifferent
persons is a positive suffering that interferes with every enjoyment,
and makes pleasure three parts endurance. I think this constant living
in public is one reason why the young women here are much less retiring
and shy than English girls. Instead of the domestic privacy in which
women among us are accustomed to live, and move, and have their being,
here they are incessantly, as Mr. ---- says, "_en évidence_." Accustomed
to the society of strangers, mixing familiarly with persons of whom they
know nothing earthly, subject to the gaze of a crowd from morning till
night, pushing, and pressing, and struggling in self-defence,
conversing, and being conversed with, by the chance companions of a
boarding-house, a steam-boat, or the hotel of a fashionable
watering-place, they must necessarily lose every thing like reserve or
bashfulness of deportment, and become free and familiar in their
manners, and noisy and unrefined in their tone and style of
conversation.[56] An English girl of sixteen, put on board one of these
Noah's arks (for verily there be clean and unclean beasts in them),
would feel and look like a scared thing. To return to our progress.
After losing sight of New York, the river becomes narrower in its bed,
and the banks on either side assume a higher and more rocky appearance.
A fine range of basaltic rock, called the Palisadoes, rising to a height
of some hundred feet (I guess), immediately from the water on the left,
forms a natural rampart, overhanging the river for several miles. The
colour of the basalt was greenish grey, and contrasted finely with the
opposite shore, whose softer undulations were yet clothed with verdure,
and adorned with patches of woodland, robed in the glorious colours of
an American autumn. While despatching breakfast, the reflection of the
sun's rays on the water flickered to and fro upon the cabin ceiling; and
through the loop-hole windows we saw the bright foam round the paddles
sparkling like frothed gold in the morning light. On our return to the
deck, the face of the world had become resplendent with the glorious
sunshine that now poured from the east; and rock and river, earth and
sky, shone in intense and dazzling brilliancy. The broad Hudson curled
into a thousand crisp billows under the fresh north-wester that blew
over it. The vaporous exhalations of night had melted from the horizon,
and the bold rocky range of one shore, and exquisite rolling outline of
the other, stood out in fair relief against the deep serene of the blue
heavens.

       *       *       *       *       *

I remained on deck without my bonnet, walking to and fro, and enjoying
the delicious wind that was as bracing as a shower-bath. Mr. ---- most
civilly offered me, when I returned to New York, the use of a horse, and
himself as escort to a beautiful ride beyond Hoboken, which proffer was
very gratefully received by me. Colonel ---- introduced me to an old man
of the name of ----.

       *       *       *       *       *

       *       *       *       *       *

a jester, and a long story-teller;--a man whom it would be awful to meet
when you were too late for dinner, still more awful on your progress to
a rendezvous;--a man to whom a listener is a Godsend, and a button an
anchor of discoursing for half a day. He made me laugh once or twice
heartily. As we passed the various points of the river, to which any
interest, legendary or historical, attached, each of my three companions
drew my attention to it; and I had, pretty generally, three variations
of the same anecdote at each point of observation. On we boiled past
Spitendevil creek,[57] where the waters of the broad Hudson join those
of the East River, and circle with their silver arms the island of
Manhattan. Past the last stupendous reach of the Palisadoes, which,
stretching out into an endless promontory, seems to grow with the
mariner's onward progress, and bears witness to the justice with which
Hudson, on his exploring voyage up the river, christened it, the "weary
point." Past the thick masses of wood that mark the shadowy site of
Sleepy Hollow.[58] Past the marble prison of Sing Sing; and Tarrytown,
where poor André was taken; and on the opposite shore, saw the
glimmering white buildings, among which his tomb reposes.--By the by,
for a bit of the marvellous, which I dearly love. I am credibly informed
that on the day the traitor Arnold died, in England, a thunderbolt
struck the tree that grew above André's tomb here, on the shores of the
Hudson--nice, that! Crossed the broad, glorious, Tappan Sea, where the
shores, receding, form a huge basin, where the brimming waters roll in
an expanse of lake-like width, yet hold their rapid current to the
ocean, themselves a running sea. The giant shadows of the mountains on
the left, falling on the deep basin at their feet, the triumphant
sunlight that made the restless mirror that reflected it too bright for
the eye to rest upon, the sunny shores to the right, rising and falling
in every exquisite form that hill and dale can wear, the jutting masses
of granite, glittering like the diamond rocks of fairy-land in the sun,
the golden waves flinging themselves up every tiny crevice, the glowing
crimson foliage of the distant woods, the fresh vivid green of the
cedars, that rifted their strong roots in every stony cleft, and threw a
semblance of summer over these November days--all, all was beautiful,
and full of brightness. We passed the lighthouse of Stony Point, now the
peaceful occupant of the territory where the blood in English veins was
poured out by English hands, during the struggle between old-established
tyranny and the infant liberties of this giant world. Over all and each,
the blessed sky bent its blue arch, resplendently clear and bright,
while far away the distant summits of the Highlands rose one above
another, shutting in the world, and almost appearing as though each bend
of the river must find us locked in their shadowy circle, without means
of onward progress.

       *       *       *       *       *

       *       *       *       *       *

       *       *       *       *       *

At every moment, the scene varied; at every moment, new beauty and
grandeur was revealed to us; at every moment, the delicious lights and
shadows fell with richer depth and brightness upon higher openings into
the mountains, and fairer bends of the glorious river. At about a
quarter to eleven, the buildings of West Point were seen, perched upon
the rock side, overhanging the water; above, the woody rise, upon whose
summit stands the large hotel, the favourite resort of visiters during
the summer season; rising again above this, the ruins of Fort Putnam,
poor André's prison-house, overlooking the Hudson and its shores; and,
towering high beyond them all, the giant hills, upon whose brown
shoulders the trees looked like bristles standing up against the sky. We
left the boat, or rather she left us, and presently we saw her holding
her course far up the bright water, and between the hills; where framed
by the dark mountains, with the sapphire stream below and the sapphire
sky above, lay the bright little town of Newburgh, with its white
buildings glittering in the sunshine.

       *       *       *       *       *

       *       *       *       *       *

       *       *       *       *       *

We toiled up the ascent, which, though by comparison with its
over-peering fellows inconsiderable, was a sufficiently fatiguing
undertaking under the unclouded weather and over the unshaded downs that
form the parade-ground for the cadets. West Point is a military
establishment, containing some two hundred and fifty pupils, who are
here educated for the army under the superintendence of experienced
officers.[59] The buildings, in which they reside and pursue their
various studies, stand upon a grassy knoll holding the top of the rocky
bank of the river, and commanding a most enchanting view of its course.
They are not particularly extensive, but commodious and well-ordered. I
am told they have a good library; but on reaching the dwelling of Mr.
Cozzens (proprietor of the hotel, which being at this season shut, he
received us most hospitably and courteously in his own house), I felt so
weary, that I thought it impossible I should stir again for the whole
day, and declined seeing it. I had walked on the deck at an amazing
pace, and without once sitting down, from eight o'clock till eleven; and
I think must nearly have killed Colonel ----, who was my companion
during this march. However, upon finding that it wanted full an hour
till dinner-time, it was agreed that we should go up to the fort, and
we set off under the guidance of one of Mr. Cozzens' servants, who had
orders not to go too fast with us. Before turning into the woods that
cover the foot of the mountain, we followed a bit of road that overhung
the river; and stealing over its sleepy-looking waters, where shone like
stars the white sails of many a tiny skiff, came the delicious notes of
a bugle-horn. The height at which we stood above the water prevented the
ear being satisfied with the complete subject of the musician, but the
sweet broken tones that came rising from the far-down thickets that
skirted the river had more harmony than a distinct and perfect strain. I
stood entranced to listen--the whole was like a dream of fairy-land: but
presently our guide struck into the woods, and the world became screened
from our sight. I had thought that I was tired, and could not stir, even
to follow the leisurely footsteps of our cicerone; but tangled brake and
woodland path, and rocky height, soon roused my curiosity, and my legs
following therewith, I presently outstripped our party, guide and all,
and began pursuing my upward path, through close-growing trees and
shrubs, over pale shining ledges of granite, over which the trickling
mountain springs had taken their silvery course; through swampy grounds,
where the fallen leaves lay like gems under the still pools that here
and there shone dimly in little hollow glens; over the soft starry moss
that told where the moist earth retained the freshening waters, over
sharp hard splinters of rock, and rough masses of stone. Alone, alone, I
was alone and happy, and went on my way rejoicing, climbing and climbing
still, till the green mound of thick turf, and ruined rampart of the
fort arrested my progress. I coasted the broken wall, and, lighting down
on a broad smooth table of granite fringed with young cedar bushes, I
looked down, and for a moment my breath seemed to stop, the pulsation of
my heart to cease--I was filled with awe. The beauty and wild sublimity
of what I beheld seemed almost to crush my faculties,--I felt dizzy as
though my senses were drowning,--I felt as though I had been carried
into the immediate presence of God. Though I were to live a thousand
years, I never can forget it. The first thing that I distinctly saw was
the shadow of a large cloud, which rolled slowly down the side of a huge
mountain, frowning over the height where I stood. The shadow moved down
its steep sunny side, threw a deep blackness over the sparkling river,
and then passed off and climbed the opposite mountain on the other
shore, leaving the world in the full blaze of noon. I could have
stretched out my arms, and shouted aloud--I could have fallen on my
knees, and worshipped--I could have committed any extravagance that
ecstasy could suggest. I stood filled with amazement and delight, till
the footsteps and voices of my companions roused me. I darted away,
unwilling to be interrupted. Colonel ---- was following me, but I
peremptorily forbade his doing so, and was clambering on alone, when the
voice of our guide, assuring me that the path I was pursuing was
impassable, arrested my course. My father beckoned to me from above not
to pursue my track; so I climbed through a break, which the rocky walls
of nature and the broken fortifications of art rendered tolerably
difficult of access, and running round the wall joined my father on his
high stand, where he was holding out his arms to me. For two or three
minutes we mingled exclamations of delight and surprise: he then led me
to the brink of the rampart; and, looking down the opposite angle of the
wall to that which I was previously coasting, I beheld the path I was
then following break suddenly off, on the edge of a precipice several
hunched feet down into the valley: it made me gulp to look at it.
Presently I left my father, and, after going the complete round of the
ruins, found out for myself a grassy knoll commanding a full view of the
scene, sufficiently far from my party not to hear their voices, and
screened from seeing them by some beautiful young cedar bushes; and here
I lay down and cried most abundantly, by which means I recovered my
senses, which else, I think, must have forsaken me. How full of thoughts
I was! Of God's great might, and gracious goodness, of the beauty of
this earth, of the apparent nothingness of man when compared with this
huge inanimate creation, of his wondrous value, for whose delight and
use all these fair things were created! I thought of my distant home;
that handful of earth thrown upon the wide waters, whose genius has led
the kingdoms of the world--whose children have become the possessors of
this new hemisphere. I rejoiced to think that when England shall be, as
all things must be, fallen into the devouring past, her language will
still be spoken among these glorious hills, her name revered, her memory
cherished, her fame preserved here, in this far world beyond the seas,
this country of her children's adoption. Poor old mother! how she would
remain amazed to see the huge earth and waters where her voice is heard,
in the name of every spot where her descendants have rested the soles
of their feet: this giant inheritance of her sons, poor, poor, old
England!

       *       *       *       *       *

Where are the poets of this land? Why, such a world should bring forth
men with minds and souls larger and stronger than any that ever dwelt in
mortal flesh! Where are the poets of this land? They should be giants,
too; Homers and Miltons, and Goethes and Dantes, and Shakspeares. Have
these glorious scenes poured no inspirings into hearts worthy to behold
and praise their beauty? Is there none to come here and worship among
these hills and waters till his heart burns within him, and the hymn of
inspiration flows from his lips, and rises to the sky? Is there not one
among the sons of such a soil to send forth its praises to the universe,
to throw new glory round the mountains, new beauty over the waves? Is
inanimate nature, alone, here "telling the glories of God?" Oh, surely,
surely, there will come a time when this lovely land will be vocal with
the sound of song, when every close-locked valley and waving wood,
rifted rock and flowing stream, shall have their praise. Yet 'tis
strange how marvellously unpoetical these people are! How swallowed up
in life and its daily realities, wants, and cares! How full of toil and
thrift, and money-getting labour! Even the heathen Dutch, among us the
very antipodes of all poetry, have found names such as the Donder Berg
for the hills, whilst the Americans christen them Butter Hill, the
Crow's Nest, and _such like_. Perhaps some hundred years hence, when
wealth has been amassed by individuals, and the face of society begins
to grow checkered, as in the old lands of Europe, when the whole mass of
population shall no longer go running along the level road of toil and
profit, when inequalities of rank shall exist, and the rich man shall be
able to pay for the luxury of poetry, and the poor man who makes verses
no longer be asked, "Why don't you cast up accounts?" when all this
comes to pass, as _perhaps_ some day it may, America will have poets. It
seems strange to me that men, such as the early settlers in
Massachusetts, the Puritan founders of New England, the "Pilgrim
Fathers," should not have had amongst them some men, or at least man, in
whose mind the stern and enduring courage, the fervent enthusiastic
piety, the unbending love of liberty, which animated them all, became
the inspiration to poetic thought, and the suggestion of poetical
utterance. They should have had a Milton or a Klopstock amongst them.
Yet, after all, they had excitement of another sort, and, moreover, the
difficulties and dangers, and distresses of a fate of unparalleled
hardship, to engross all the energies of their minds; and I am half
inclined to believe that poetry is but a hothouse growth, and yet I
don't know: I wish somebody would explain to me every thing in this
world that I can't make out.[60] We came down from the mountain at
about half-past one: our party had been joined by Colonel ----, governor
of the College, who very courteously came toiling up to Fort Putnam, to
pay his compliments to us. I lingered far behind them, returning; and,
when they were out of sight, turned back, and once more ascended the
ruin, to look my last of admiration and delight, and then down, down,
every step bringing me out of the clouds, farther from heaven, and
nearer this work i' day world. I loitered, and loitered, looking back at
every step; but at last the hills were shut out by a bend in the road,
and I came into the house to throw myself down on the floor, and sleep
most seriously for half an hour; at the end of which time we were called
to dinner.

In England, if an innkeeper gives you a good dinner, and places the
first dish on the table himself, you pay him, and he's obliged to you.
Here, an innkeeper is a gentleman, your equal, sits at his table with
you, you pay him, and are obliged to him besides. 'Tis necessary
therefore for a stranger, but especially an Englishman, to understand
the fashions of the land, else he may chance to mistake that for an
impertinent familiarity, which is in fact the received custom of the
country. Mr. Cozzens very considerately gave us our dinner in a private
room, instead of seating us at an ordinary with all the West Point
officers. Moreover, _gave_ in the literal sense, and a very good dinner
it was. He is himself a very intelligent courteous person, and, during
the very short time that we were his guests, showed us every possible
attention and civility. We had scarce finished our dinner, when in
rushed a waiter to tell us that the boat was in sight. Away we trotted,
trailing cloaks, and shawls, any-how fashion, down the hill. The steamer
came puffing up the gorge between the mountains, and in a moment we were
bundled into the boat, hauled alongside, and landed on the deck; and
presently the glorious highlands, all glowing in the rosy sunset, began
to recede from us. Just as we were putting off from shore, a tiny skiff,
with its graceful white sail glittering in the sun, turned the base of
the opposite hill, evidently making to the point whence we embarked. I
have since learned that it contained a messenger to us, from a gentleman
bearing our name, and distantly connected with us, proprietor of some
large iron-works on the shore opposite West Point. However, our kinsman
was too late, and we were already losing sight of West Point, when his
boat reached the shore. Our progress homeward was, if any thing, more
enchanting than our coming out had been, except for leaving all this
loveliness. The sun went down in splendour, leaving the world robed in
glorious beauty. The sky was one glowing geranium curtain, into which
the dark hills rose like shadow-land, stretching beyond, and still
beyond, till they grew like hazy outlines through a dazzling mist of
gold. The glory faded; and a soft violet colour spread downwards to the
horizon, where a faint range of clouds lay floating like scattered rose
leaves. As the day fell, the volumes of smoke from our steam-boat
chimneys became streams of fiery sparks, which glittered over the water
with a strange unearthly effect. I sat on deck watching the world grow
dark, till my father, afraid of the night air, bade me go down; and
there, in spite of the chattering of a score of women, and the squalling
of half as many children, I slept profoundly till we reached New York,
at a quarter to seven.


_Saturday, 17th._

After breakfast, wrote journal: while doing so, Mr. ---- called to know
if I held my mind in spite of the grey look of the morning. A wan
sunbeam just then lighted on the earth, and I said I would go; for I
thought by about twelve it probably would clear.

       *       *       *       *       *

They called for me in the carriage at eleven; and afterwards we mounted
our steeds in Warren Street to escape the crowd in Broadway. We rode
down to the ferry. The creature, _on top_ of which I sat, was the real
_potatuppy_ butcher's horse. However, it did not shake me, or pull my
arms much, so I was content. As to a horse properly broken, either for
man or woman, I have done looking for it in this land. We went into the
steam-boat on our horses. The mist lay thick over the river; but the
opposite shores had that grey distinctness of colour and outline that
invariably foretells rain in England. The wind blew bitterly keen and
cold.

       *       *       *       *       *

Our riding party was Mr. ----, whom I like; Mrs. ----, whom I also like,
in spite of her outlandish riding-habiliments, a brother of his,

       *       *       *       *       *

and a young ---- in white hair and spectacles. The carriage held old Mr.
----, Miss ----, the youngest daughter, and that beautiful youngest boy
of theirs, who is so like his handsome sister; also sundry baskets of
cake, and bottles of champagne. After landing, we set off at a brisk
canter to Weehawk. None of these people know how to ride: they just go
whatever pace their horse likes, sitting as backward as they can in the
saddle, and tugging at the reins as hard as ever they can, to the
infinite detriment of their own hands and their horses' mouths. When we
had reached the height, we dismounted and walked through the woods that
crown the cliffs, which here rise to an elevation of some hundred feet
above the river. Our path lay through tangled brakes, where the withered
trees and fallen red leaves, the bright cedar bushes, and pale slabs of
granite, formed a fine and harmonious contrast of colouring; the whole
blending beautifully together under the grey light, that made it look
like one of Ruysdael's pictures. Our walk terminated at a little rocky
promontory, called the Devil's Pulpit, where, as legends say, Satan was
wont to preach, loud enough to drown the sound of the Sabbath bells in
New York. The Hudson, far below, lay leaden and sullen; the woods along
the shores looked withered and wintry; a thick curtain of vapour
shrouded all the distance: the effect of the whole was very sad and
beautiful; and had I been by myself I should have enjoyed it very much.
But I was in company, and, moreover, in company with two punsters, who
uttered their atrocities without remorse in the midst of all that was
most striking and melancholy in nature. When we mounted our horses
again, Mrs. ---- complained that hers pulled her wrists most dreadfully;
and, as they seemed none of the strongest, I exchanged steeds with her.
The lady proprietress of the grounds over which we had been walking and
riding invited us into the house, but, being mounted, I declined, and we
set off for the pavilion. Just as we arrived there, it began to rain.
Mercy on me and Mrs. ----! how our arms will ach to-morrow! This worthy
animal of hers had a mouth a little worse than a donkey's. Arrived at
the pavilion, we dismounted, and swallowed sundry champagnes and lumps
of plum cake, which were singularly refreshing. We set off again, and
presently it began to pelt with rain. We reached and crossed the ferry
without gelling very wet. Arranged to ride on Wednesday, if fine, and so
home. Upon the whole, rather satisfied than otherwise with my
expedition. Dressed for dinner at once; went on with journal; Colonel
---- called, and sat some time. After dinner, embroidered till eight:
teaed:--my father went over to the theatre: I practised for two hours.


_Sunday, 18th._

The muscles of my arms (for I have such unlady-like things) stand out
like lumps of stone, with the fine exercise they had yesterday. I wonder
how Mrs. ----'s shoulders and elbows feel.

       *       *       *       *       *

It rained so, we hackneyed to church. This is twice Mr. ---- has not
been to church, which is really very wrong, though it leaves us the pew
comfortably to ourselves. Dr. ---- must be an excellent good man--his
sermons are every way delightful; good sense, sound doctrine, and withal
a most winning mildness and gentleness of manner. A benevolent good man,
I am sure, he must be. Came home--copied snuff-box verses for my father;
divided out my story of the Sisters into acts and scenes: began doing
the same by the English tragedy; but in the midst took a fancy to make a
story instead of a play of it--and so I will, I think. Dressed for
dinner. At about half-past five Colonel ---- and his Quaker wife came.
She is a most delightful creature, with the sweetest expression of face
imaginable. She reminded me several times of dear Mrs. ----. Her dress,
too, the rich brown watered silk, made so plainly, recalled Mrs. ---- to
me very forcibly. We had a very comfortable dinner and evening. They
went away at about half-past ten.


_Monday, 19th._

After breakfast, wrote journal. Went out shopping and returning cards;
called on Mrs. ----, and was let in. I like her; she is a nice person,
with agreeable manners. Came home at about half-past two; put out things
for the theatre; dined at three. After dinner, pottered about clothes
till time to go to the theatre. The house was very good. My
benefit--play, Much Ado about Nothing. I played very well. I am much
improved in my comedy acting. Came home in a coach--it poured with rain.
What a stupid day! The accounts of cholera in New Orleans are frightful;
they have the yellow fever there too. Poor people! what an awful
visitation!


_Tuesday, 20th._

After breakfast, wrote journal. At twelve, went and called upon Mrs.
----: the day was bright, but bitter cold, with a keen piercing wind
that half cut one in half, and was delicious. The servant denied Mrs.
----; but we had hardly turned from the door when both the ladies came
rushing after us, with nothing on their heads and necks, and thin summer
gowns on. They brought us into a room where there was a fire fit to
roast an ox. No wonder the women here are delicate and subject to cold,
and die of consumption. Here were these sitting absolutely in an oven,
in clothes fit only for the hottest days in summer, instead of wrapping
themselves up well, and trotting out, and warming their blood
wholesomely with good hard exercise. The pretty Mrs. ---- looks very
sickly, and coughs terribly. Her beauty did not strike me so much
to-day. I do not admire any body who looks as if a puff of wind would
break them in half, or a drop of water soak them through. I greatly
prefer her sister's looks, who certainly is not pretty, but tall and
straight, and healthy-looking, and springy as a young thing ought to be.
Was introduced to a most enchanting young Newfoundland dog, whom I
greatly coveted. Settled to ride to-morrow, if fine. Called at ----'s,
also at a furrier's about cap, and came home. Found ---- and ---- with
my father. What a very bad expression of face the former has; sneering
and false--terrible! I looked at ---- with much respect. I like his
spirit, as it shines through his works, greatly. He was a pale
sickly-looking man, without any thing at all remarkable in the
expression of his countenance. While they were here, Mr. ---- called to
settle about to-morrow. He is a nice person, sensible and civil, and
civil in the right way. Arrangements were made for dear ----'s going,
which I rejoiced in greatly. I do not like at all leaving her behind.
When the folks were gone, put out things for the theatre. While doing
so, Mr. ---- and Mr. and Mrs. ---- called. Great discoursing about
horses and horsemanship. Dined at three. After dinner, put fur upon my
habit. At half-past five, went to the theatre. House very good; play,
Hunchback. By the by, Colonel ---- called to-day, to entreat me to go
and see his "Honour, the Recorder," who had sent me tickets of admission
to the town-hall, to see ---- receive the freedom of the city. I could
not go, because of our horseback expedition--this by the way. I played
so-soish. ---- was at the play; and at the end, somebody in the house
exclaimed, "Three cheers for ----!" whereupon a mingled chorus of
applause and hisses arose. The Vice-president looked rather silly, and
acknowledged neither the one nor the other. How well I remember the Duke
of ---- coming to the orchestra to see this play, the night before it
was expected the Whigs would go out. I dare say he knew little enough
what the Hunchback was about. I do not think the people noticed him,
however; so the feeling of the pulse must have been unsatisfactory. Mr.
---- said to Modus to-night in the play, speaking of me, "a change of
linen will suffice for her." How absurd! we were all dying on the stage.
Came home; supped:--looked at silks; chose a lovely rose-coloured one to
line my Portia dress; with which good deed my day ended.


_Wednesday, 21st._

Looked at the sun, and, satisfied with his promise, went to bed again,
and slept till half-past eight. After breakfast, wrote to his honour,
the Recorder, an humble apology in true Old Bailey style. Wrote journal,
and began practising. Mrs. ---- called before I was out of my bed to
tell us that the ----'s were not going, but that either her husband or
her brother-in-law would be too glad to go in the gig with D----. This,
however, the latter refused, not choosing, as she said, to make any
young man do the penance of keeping her company on a party of pleasure.
Dear good old D----! I was vexed and provoked; but it could not be
helped. At eleven, ---- came for me. I found Mrs. ---- in the carriage
waiting for me. We adjourned to Warren Street, where were assembled all
the party. While we waited for our horses, Neptune, the beautiful
Newfoundland, was admitted, and amused himself by prancing over tables,
and chairs, and sofas, to his own infinite delight, and the visible
benefit of the furniture. Our steeds having arrived, we mounted and
began to progress. Myself, and Mrs. ----, her husband, his brother,
----, and papa ----, Dr. ----, Mrs. ----'s brother, and Mr. ----,
nephew, I believe, of the Irish patriot, were the equestrians of the
party. After, followed Mr. ---- and Mrs. ----, all be-coated and
be-furred, in the stanhope. After, followed the ammunition-waggon,
containing a negro servant, Neptune, and sundry baskets of champagne,
cake, and cherry bounce. Away we rushed down Broadway, to the infinite
edification of its gaping multitudes. Mr. ---- had gotten me an
enchanting horse that trotted like an angel. So, in spite of Major
----'s awful denunciation of "disgusting," I had a delicious hard trot
all through the streets, rising in my saddle like a lady, or rather, a
gentleman. My habit seemed to excite considerable admiration and
approbation, and indeed it was _great_. Crossed the Brooklyn ferry in
the steam-boat, and safely landed on the opposite side. The whole army
defiled; the stanhope taking the van, the horses forming the main body,
and the provisions bringing up the rear. Our party separated constantly,
as we progressed, into various groups, but I remained chiefly with Dr.
----, Mr. ----, and old Mr. ----. By the by, those ----s are a charming
family; for Mrs. ---- sits straight in her saddle, and the Doctor
settled, when we started, that when he had _despatched his patients_, he
would call for D---- in the gig, and come down to meet us at the fort.
Our ride thither was extremely agreeable: the day was clear, cold, and
grey; a delightful day for riding. I trotted to my heart's content; and
kept my blood warm, and my spirits like champagne, till we reached the
fort, when, at sight of the Narrows, and the Sandy Hook lighthouse, they
sank deep, deep down.

       *       *       *       *       *

       *       *       *       *       *

The sea lay grey and still, without a wave or scarce a ripple. A
thousand light skiffs, of various shapes, lay upon the leaden waters.
The sky was a fine heap of heavy purple clouds, from behind which the
sun shot down his rays, which threw a melancholy wan lustre on the sea
beneath them. 'Twas a sad and beautiful scene. The colouring of the
whole was gloomily harmonious; and the dark shores and grey expanse of
water blended solemnly with the violet-coloured curtain of the heavens.
We went over the fort. 'Tis a fortification of no great size, or, I
should think, strength; but its position, which commands the narrow
entrance to the bay of New York, effectually checks the pass, and guards
the watery defile that leads to the city of Mammon. We looked at the
guns and powder-magazine, walked round the walls, and peeped into the
officers' quarters, and then descended to seek where we might eat and be
satisfied. Mrs. ---- is a very nice creature: she looks the picture of
good temper--never stands still a minute; and as we rode along to-day,
when, fearing she might be cold, I asked her how she found herself, she
replied, with perfect innocence and sincerity, "Oh, delightful!" which
made us all scream. We knocked up the quarters of an old woman who kept
a cottage, not exactly young love's humble shed, but good enough for our
purpose. We got sundry logs of wood, and made a blazing fire; moreover,
the baskets were opened, and presently we presented the interesting
spectacle of a dozen people each with a lump of cake in one hand, and a
champagne glass in the other. Mr. ---- and Mrs. ---- stuck to the cherry
bounce, and, as we afterwards heard, drove home accordingly. Having
discussed, we remounted, and set forwards home by another road; a very
lovely one, all along the river side. Ere we had progressed long, we met
D---- and Dr. ---- in the gig. The nice good man had kept his word, and
gone to fetch her. They had met Mr. ----'s equipage going cherry-bounce
pace, it seems, two miles ahead of us. The men here are never happy
unless they are going full speed. 'Tis no wonder their horses are good
for nothing: they would ruin any horses that were good for any
thing.[61] Such unskilful horsemanship I never saw: going full tear;
crossing one another in every direction; knocking up against one
another; splashing through puddles because they have no hand over their
horses, and either overshooting their point, or being half thrown at
every turn of the road, for the same reason. Came home full speed, and
arrived at half-past four, having ridden, I should think, nearly twenty
miles. Found Mrs. ---- at home. They pressed me very much to stay dinner
with them; but my father expected me, and I would not. That worthy
youth, ----, insisted upon my accepting his beautiful large dog,
Neptune, which I did conditionally, in case Mr. ---- should fail me,
which I think a very improbable case indeed. They ordered the carriage,
and Mr. ---- persisted in seeing me home in it, much to my annoyance, as
'twas a very useless ceremony indeed. Did not dishabit, but dined _en
amazone_.

       *       *       *       *       *

Gave D---- her muff and tippet, which are exceedingly magnificent. After
dinner, pottered about, and dressed at once. Played on the piano till
nine, when we adjourned to ----'s. A complete "small party, my dear."
Dr. ---- was there, whom I was glad to see; also Mrs. ----; also Mr. and
Miss ----; also that Mrs. ----, who is utter horror and perturbation of
spirit to me; also ----; also ----; all our riding party, and a world
besides. After a little time, dancing was proposed; and I stood up to
waltz with Mr. ----, who observed that Dr. ---- was gone, as he never
chose to be present while waltzing was going on. I felt shocked to death
that unconsciously I should have been instrumental in driving him away,
and much surprised that those who knew his disapprobation of waltzing
should have proposed it. However, he was gone, and did not return.
Therefore I waltzed myself out of my conscientious remorse. Sang them
Fanny Gray, and Ye Mariners of Spain. Danced sundry quadrilles; and,
finally, what they called a Kentucky reel,--which is nothing more than
Sir Roger de Coverley turned Backwoodsman--and afterwards a "foursome
reel." Played magic music; and, finally, at one o'clock, came home,
having danced myself fairly off my legs.


_Thursday, 22d._

It poured with rain all day. Dr. ---- called, and gave me a sermon about
waltzing. As it was perfectly good sense, to which I could reply
nothing whatever in the shape of objection, I promised him never to
waltz again, except with a woman, or my brother.

       *       *       *       *       *

After all, 'tis not fitting that a man should put his arm round one's
waist, whether one belongs to any one but one's self or not. 'Tis much
against what I have always thought most sacred,--the dignity of a woman
in her own eyes and those of others. I like Dr. ---- most exceedingly.
He spoke every way to my feelings of what was right, to-day. After
saying that he felt convinced, from conversations which he had heard
amongst men, that waltzing was immoral in its tendency, he added, "I am
married, and have been in love, and cannot imagine any thing more
destructive of the deep and devoted respect which love is calculated to
excite in every honourable man's heart, not only for the individual
object of his affections, but for her whole sex, than to see any and
every impertinent coxcomb in a ball-room come up to her, and, without
remorse or hesitation, clasp her waist, imprison her hand, and
absolutely whirl her round in his arms." So spake the Doctor; and my
sense of propriety and conviction of right bore testimony to the truth
of his saying. So, farewell, sweet German waltz!--next to hock, the most
intoxicating growth of the Rheinland. I shall never keep time to your
pleasant measure again!--no matter; after all, any thing is better than
to be lightly spoken of, and to deserve such mention. Mr. ---- called,
and sat some time with me. He is grown monstrously fat, and looks
perfectly radiant. He brought with him a good-looking staring man of the
name of ----. We dined at three. After dinner, received a pretty
anonymous nosegay, with sundry very flattering doggrel. The play was the
Stranger. It poured cats and dogs, and the streets were all grey
pudding. I did not expect to see six people in the house; instead of
which 'twas crowded: a satisfactory proof of our attraction.


_Friday, 23d._

At eleven, went to rehearsal--Isabella. I have forgotten all about it.
They all read their parts; came home; began to practise. The two Mrs.
---- called. I like them mainly, Mrs. ---- particularly. While they were
here, Mr. ---- and a man called; they stayed but a minute. By and by, in
walked Mr. and Mrs. ----; whereupon the ---- departed.

       *       *       *       *       *

       *       *       *       *       *

While they were here, received from ---- the beautiful annual he has
bought for me, which is, indeed, most beautiful; and with it, literally
a copy of verses, which are _not so bad neither_--only think of that!!!
The engravings are from things of Stanfield's, taken on the Rhine; and
made my heart ach to be once more in Europe, in the old land where fairy
tales are told; in the old feudal world, where every rock, and valley,
and stream, are haunted with imaginings wild and beautiful: the hallowed
ground of legend history; the dream-land of fancy and of poetry. Put out
things for the theatre: dined at three. Colonel ---- called: he brought
news of the arrival of a Liverpool packet, and prophesied letters to me.
Went to the theatre. Play, Hunchback--house very fine again. Just as I
was dressing for the second act, three letters were brought into my
room.

       *       *       *       *       *

       *       *       *       *       *

       *       *       *       *       *

I was so much overset by them, that with the strange faculty I have of
pouring one feeling into another, I cried so bitterly in the parting
scene with Clifford, that I could scarcely utter the words of my part.

       *       *       *       *       *

       *       *       *       *       *


_Saturday, 24th._

Our riding expedition having been put off, the day was beautifully
bright and clear. Sat stitching and pottering an infinity. My feet got
so perished that I didn't know what to do. Wrote journal; practised for
an hour; Mr. ---- called. When he was gone, went out with my father.
Called at ----'s to order home my gown for dinner-time. Left a card at
Mrs. ----'s, and then marched down to the tailor's to upbraid him about
my waistcoat, which is infamously ill made.[62] Coming home, met that
very odious Mr. ----, who is the perfection of genteel vulgarity. He
walked home with us. Dressed for dinner. Mme. ---- did not send my gown
home in time: abominable sempstress! so put on my blue, and looked
rather dowdy. Found sundry that we knew: Colonel ----; Mr. ----; my
favourite aversion, Mr. ----; that signal fool, Mr. ----; Miss ----, who
looked like a hair-dresser's wax block; a Miss ----, with lovely feet,
and a terrified Bacchante-looking head, _cum multis aliis_. I sat by one
Mr. ----, who talked without end, and cleverly enough: indeed, it was
rather clever to talk so wonderfully fast and much. After dinner, the
party became much larger: Dr. ----, Mr. ----, the ---- (all but ----),
that entire self-satisfaction, Mr. ----, Mr. ----, and the knight of the
rueful countenance; three singing men, ycleped ----; and a shoal
besides. One of the Mr. ---- and Miss ---- sang the duet in the Didone,
that dear ---- and ---- used to sing so lovelily. They both had good
voices, but the style is but so-soish. Presently, three men sang that
sea glee that I remember Lord and Lady ---- teaching me at ----. What a
strange faculty of our nature this is, this leading back of our minds to
the past, through the agency of our senses, acted upon by present
influences, the renewing life, the magical summoning up of dead time
from its grave, with the very place and circumstance it wore. Wondrous
riddle! what--what are we, that are so curiously made? By and by dancing
was proposed, and I was much entreated and implored to change my
determination about waltzing; but I was inexorable, and waltzed only
with the ladies, who one and all dance extremely well. Mrs. ---- looked
lovely to-night. Dr. ---- says very true, she has a thorough-bred look,
which reminds me a little of our noble English ladies. He says she is
like Lady ----. I think she is prettier: she certainly looks like a gem.
We danced a Kentucky reel, and sundry quadrilles. That long ens, Mr.
----, was tipsy, and went slithering about in a way to kill one; and Mr.
---- was sitting slyly in the corner, pretending to talk to D----, but
in fact dying with laughter at poor ----, who meandered about the room,
to the infinite dismay and confusion of the whole dance. Vain were the
vigorous exertions of his partner, who pulled him this way and that, and
pushed him hither and thither, to all which the unresisting creature
submitted incorrigibly. Remained dancing till half-past twelve, in fact
Sunday morning, and then came home. They made me sing, which I did
abominably. On my return home, found my black satin gown, every atom of
which will have to be unpicked--pleasant! the tradespeople here are
really terrible; they can do nothing, and will take no pains to do any
thing: 'tis a handsome gown spoilt.[63]


_Sunday, 25th._

My dear father's birth-day! also, by the by, a grand occasion here--the
anniversary of the evacuation of the island by the British troops, which
circumstance the worthy burghers have celebrated ever since with due
devotion and thankfulness. Went to church: Dr. ---- did not preach,
which was a disappointment to me. The music was exquisite; and there was
a beautiful graceful willow branch, with its long delicate fibres and
golden leaves, waving against the blue sky and the church window, that
seemed to me like a magical branch in a fairy tale. It struck me as
strange to-day, as I looked from the crowded gloomy church to the bright
unbounded sky, to think that we call the one the house of God; to be
sure, we have other authority for calling the blue heavens his throne;
and oh, how glorious they did look! The day was bright, but bitter cold.
Coming out of church, saw all our last night's party. On my return home
found a perfect levee; Dr. ----, Mr. ----, Mr. ----, Mr. ----, Mr. ----,
a whole regiment. When they were all gone, wrote journal: having
finished that and my lunch, set out with my father to _fetch a walk_;
which we did to the tune of near six miles, through all the outskirts of
the town, an exceedingly low-life ramble indeed--during which we came
across a man who was preaching in the street. He had not a very large
assembly round him, and we stood in the crowd to hear him. By his own
account, he had been imprisoned before for a similar proceeding; and he
was denouncing, most vehemently, signal judgments on the blind and
wicked corporation who had so stopped the work of righteousness. The
man's face was a very fine one, remarkably intelligent and handsome: he
was cleanly and well dressed, and had altogether a respectable
appearance. When we came home, it was past four. Dressed for dinner. My
father dined with Mr. ----; so D---- and I had a _tête-à-tête_ dinner.
After which, played on the piano for some time; after which, began
letter to H----; after which, wrote journal.

       *       *       *       *       *

       *       *       *       *       *


_Monday, 26th._

Yesterday was evacuation day; but as yesterday was the Lord's day also,
the American militia army postponed their yearly exhibition, and,
instead of rushing about the streets in token of their thankfulness at
the departure of the British, they quietly went to church, and praised
God for that same. To-day, however, we have had firing of pop-guns,
waving of star-spangled banners (some of them rather the worse for
wear), infantry marching through the streets, cavalry (oh, Lord, what
delicious objects they were!) and artillery prancing along them, to the
infinite ecstasy and peril of a dense mob. Went to rehearsal at
half-past ten. Was detained full ten minutes on the way thither, by the
defiling of troops, who were progressing down Broadway. After rehearsal,
came home--put out things for the theatre. Mr. ---- called: while he was
here, spent a delightful half hour at the window, which, overlooking the
Park, commanded a full view of the magnanimous military marshalled
there. O, pomp and circumstance of glorious war! They were certainly not
quite so bad as Falstaff's men, of ragged memory; for, for aught I know
to the contrary, they perhaps _all_ of them had shirts to their backs.
But some had gloves, and some had none; some carried their guns one way,
and some another; some had caps of one fashion, and some of another;
some had no caps at all, but "shocking bad hats," with feathers in
them.[64] The infantry were, however, comparatively respectable troops.
They did not march many degrees out of the straight line, or stoop _too
much_, or turn their heads round _too often_. Mr. ---- remarked, that
militia were seldom more steady and orderly in their appearance. But the
cava'ry! oh, the cavalry! what gems without price they were! Apparently
extremely frightened at the shambling _tituppy_ chargers upon whose
backs they clung, straggling in all directions, putting the admiring
crowd in fear of their lives, and proving beyond a doubt how formidable
they must appear to the enemy, when, with the most peaceable intentions
in the world, they thus jeopardied the safety of their enthusiastic
fellow citizens. Bold would have been the man who did not edge backwards
into the crowd, as a flock of these worthies a-horseback came down the
street--some trotting, some galloping, some racking, some ambling; each
and all "witching the world with wondrous horsemanship." If any thing
ever might be properly called wondrous, they, their riders and
accoutrements, deserve the title. Some wore boots, and some wore shoes,
and one independent hero had got on grey stockings and _slippers_! Some
had bright yellow feathers, and some red and black feathers! I
remembered, particularly, a doctor, in a black suit, Hessian boots, a
cocked hat, and bright yellow gauntlets; another fellow was dressed in
the costume of one of the Der Freyschutz's corps: it looked for all the
world like a _fancy_ parade. The officers fulfilled completely my idea
of Macheath's company of gentlemen of the road; only, I strongly suspect
the latter would have been heartily ashamed of the unhappy hacks the
evacuation heroes had gotten up upon. The parade terminated with a full
half hour's _feu de joie_.[65]

       *       *       *       *       *

       *       *       *       *       *

The bands of these worthies were worthy of them; half a dozen fifers
and drummers playing old English jig tunes. In spite of the folly and
injustice of such a comparison, I could not keep out of my head the last
soldiers I had seen, those fine tall fellows, the grenadier guards, that
used to delight us of a Sunday morning in St. James's Park, and their
exquisite band, and dandy-looking officers. Those _looked_ like
soldiers, whatever they may fight like; and allowing these excellent
good folks to be very lions, look you, I can only say their appearance
approached the sublime, by as near as the French critic assures us the
extreme of the ridiculous does. Dined at three; ---- and ---- called
after dinner. My father went with Mr. ---- to Tammany Hall,[66] where
there was a grand democratic dinner, in honour of the triumph of the
Jackson party, the mob men here. I sat writing to ---- till time to go
to the theatre. The play was Isabella; the house crammed; a regular
holiday audience--shrieking, shouting, laughing, and rowing, like one of
our own Christmas audiences. I acted like a wretch. My dresses looked
very handsome, particularly my marriage dress; but my muslin bed-gown
was so long that, I set my feet through it the very first thing; and
those _animaux bêtes_, who dragged me off, tore a beautiful point lace
veil I had on to tatters, a thing that cost three guineas, if a
farthing! My father received a most amusing letter this morning from
Lord ----, asking us to come over to Jamaica and act, offering us
quarters in his house, and plenty of volunteer actors (did he include
himself, I wonder?) to make up a company, if we will come. I should like
it very well: to pass the winter in that nice warm climate would be
delightful, and I dare say we should find our stay there amusing and
agreeable enough. I wish we could do it.


_Tuesday, 27th._

After breakfast, Colonel ---- called. Put out things for to-night. At
half-past twelve, went out with my father and Colonel ----. Called upon
his honour, the Recorder, but he was in court, and not to be seen.
Walked down to the Battery. The day was most lovely, like an early day
in June in England: my merino gown was intolerable, and I was obliged to
take a parasol with me, the sun was so powerful. The Battery was, as
usual, totally deserted, though the sky, and shores, and beautiful
bright bay, were smiling in perfect loveliness. A delicious fresh breeze
came wandering over the wide estuary; and graceful boats, with their
full sails glittering in the sun, glided to and fro, swift and strong,
over the smooth waters, like summer clouds across the blue heavens--as
silently, as rapidly, as tracklessly.[67]

       *       *       *       *       *

       *       *       *       *       *

Came home at half-past one. Found a card from Mrs. ----. I'm sorry I
didn't see her. ---- called, with one Mr. ----, kinsman to the
authoress.

       *       *       *       *       *

       *       *       *       *       *

       *       *       *       *       *

While they were here, Mrs. ---- called to settle about to-morrow's ride.
Mr. and Mrs. ---- arriving, the rest departed. We dined at three. After
dinner, came to my own room; wrote journal; went on with letter to ----.
At half-past five, went to the theatre. Play, the Gamester; my father's
benefit; the house was very good. I played pretty well. Mr. ----
thoroughly bothered me, by standing six yards behind me: what a complete
stroller's trick that is. So we are to act on Saturday. If I can go to
the opera, all the same, I sha'n't mind so much; but I will be in most
horrible dudgeon if it prevents that, for I want to hear this new prima
donna. Mr. ---- was behind the scenes, and ---- _wrapt_, in his usual
seat: he's a delightful bit of audience. Received a bill of the intended
performances for Thursday, Mr. ----'s benefit; and such another farce as
the whole thing is I never heard of; as Mr. ---- says, "the benefit of
humbug," indeed.

       *       *       *       *       *

       *       *       *       *       *

Came home. While we were at supper, my father showed me a note he had
received from ----, which, to use a most admirable vulgarism, struck me
all of a heap. A sort of threatening letter, desiring him, as he valued
his interest, to come forward and offer to act Charles the Second for
the said Mr. ----'s benefit, having already agreed to act in one piece,
for said Mr. ----'s benefit. "O monstrous! monstrous! most unnatural!"
What a vulgar wretch the man must be!


_Wednesday, 28th._

Mary ----'s wedding day! Poor lassie! I looked at the bright morning sun
with pleasure for her sake. After breakfast, sat reading the poems of
Willis, a young man, whose works, young as they evidently are, would
have won him some consideration in any but such a thorough work-day
world as this. I cried a good deal over some of this man's verses. I
thought some of them beautiful; and 'tis the property of beauty to stir
the wells of my soul sadly, rather than cast sunshine over them. I think
all things are sad. 'Tis sad to hear sweet music; 'tis sad to read fine
poetry; 'tis sad to look upon the beautiful face of a fair woman; 'tis
sad to behold the unclouded glory of a summer's sky. There is a deep and
lingering tone in the harmony of all beauty that resounds in our souls
with too full and solemn a vibration for pleasure alone. In fact,
_intensity_, even of joy and delight, is in itself serious; 'tis
impossible to be fulfilled with emotion of any sort, and not feel as
though we were within the shadow of a cloud.[68] I remember when first I
recited Juliet to my mother, she said I spoke the balcony scene almost
sadly. Was not such deep, deep love too strong, too passionate, too
pervading, to be uttered with the light laughing voice of pleasure? Was
not that love, even in its fulness of joy, sad--awful? However, perhaps,
I do but see through my own medium, and fancy it the universal one. My
eyes are dark, and most things look darkly through them. At about twelve
o'clock Mrs. ---- called for me; and, escorted by her husband and Mr.
----, we rode forth to visit the island. We went to a pretty cottage
belonging to Mr. ----'s father-in-law, Dr. ----. The day was still and
grey--a pleasant day; there was no sunshine, but neither were there any
dark shadows. My horse had been ill ridden by somebody or another, and
was mighty disagreeable. Our ride was pleasant enough: there was not
much variety in the country we passed through. Masses of granite and
greenish basalt, wild underwood, and vivid bright-looking cedar bushes.
The Hudson lay leaden and sullen under the wings of the restless wind.
We stood to hear the delicious music of the water plashing against the
rocky shore, which is the pleasantest sound in all the world. We then
rode to a place ycleped Hell-gate,[69] from a dangerous current in the
East river, where ships have been lost--and home through the mellow
sunlight of a warm autumnal afternoon. Came in at a little past four.
Devoured sundry puddings and pies; put out clothes for the evening;
dined at five. My father dined at ----'s: I've an especial fancy for
that man. After dinner, sat making blonde tippet, and strumming on the
piano till eight. Drank tea, dressed, and off to Mrs. ----'s "small
party, my dear."

       *       *       *       *       *

       *       *       *       *       *

       *       *       *       *       *

The people here have no conscience about the questions they ask, and, as
I have one in answering, and always give them "the truth, the whole
truth, and nothing but the truth," it follows that nothing can be more
disagreeable than their queries, except my replies. Mr. ---- was there;
I like him: he has something in him, and is not vulgar or impertinent.
Was introduced to a very handsome French creole woman,[70] whom I liked:
she reminded me of my mother, and her son bore a striking resemblance to
dear ----. We stood up to dance a couple of quadrilles; but as they had
not one distinct idea of what the figures were, the whole was a mess of
running about, explaining, jostling, and awkward blundering.[71] I took
greatly to the governess of the family, a German woman, with a right
German face, a nice person, with quiet simple manners. The women's
voices here distract me; so loud, so rapid, and with such a twang! What
a pity! for they are, almost without an exception, lovely looking
creatures, with an air of refinement in their appearance, which would be
very attractive, but for their style of dress, and those said tremendous
shrill loud voices.[72] Came home at twelve o'clock. My favourite
aversion, Mrs. ----, was there.


_Thursday, 29th._

My birth-day

       *       *       *       *       *

       *       *       *       *       *

       *       *       *       *       *

After breakfast, sat writing to dear ---- for some time. Put out things
for the theatre, and went to rehearsal. My father has received a most
comical note from one ----, a Scotch gardener, florist, and seedsman;
the original, by the by, of Galt's Lawrie Todd,--and original enough he
must be. The note expresses a great desire that my father and myself
will call upon him, for that he wishes very much to _look at us_--that
the hours of the theatre are too late for him, and that besides, he
wants to see us as ourselves, and not as "kings and princesses." I have
entreated my father to go: this man must be worth knowing. I shall
certainly keep his note. After rehearsal, came home. Wrote to ----, to
dear ----. Mr. ---- called; also Colonel ----, who gave an account of
the proceedings of the committee for ----'s benefit, which, added to the
gentleman's own note to my father, thoroughly disgusted me. And here I
do solemnly swear, never again, with my own good will, to become
acquainted with any man in any way connected with the public press. They
are utterly unreliable people, generally; their vocation requires that
they should be so; and the very few exceptions I must forego, for
however I might like them, I can neither respect nor approve of their
trade; for trade it is in the vilest sense of the word. Dined at five.
After dinner Mr. and Mrs. ---- came in.

       *       *       *       *       *

       *       *       *       *       *

At eight, went to the theatre. The house was, in consequence of the
raised prices, only three parts full. I just caught a glimpse of Forrest
in the fourth act of Brutus. What an enormous man he is! After the play
came sundry songs and recitations, and then Katharine and Petruchio. I
did not play well: the actors were very inattentive, as well as stupid,
and annoyed my father very much. The pit was half filled with women,
opera fashion, who, for the greater attraction of the night, and
satisfaction of themselves, were allowed to sit out of their proper
places: to be sure they had the pleasure of the society of the volunteer
heroes, who, for the benefit of Mr. ----, were all in full uniform. What
an absurdity! Swallowed an ice. Saw ----, also Mr. ----, and young ----
behind the scenes. Came home and supped. Colonel ---- called, and
discussed, first, the farce on the boards; then the farce before the
curtain; finally, the farce of life, which, to my mind, is but a
melancholy one.


_Friday, 30th._

How the time goes! Bless the old traveller, how he posts along! After
breakfast, Mrs. ---- and her son, and Mr. ---- called. I like the
latter; his manners are very good, and he is altogether more like a
gentleman than most men here. When they were gone, walked out with my
father to ----'s. The day was grey, and cold, and damp--a real November
day, such as we know them. We held the good man's note, and steered our
course by it, and in process of time entered a garden, passed through a
green-house, and arrived in an immense and most singularly-arranged
seed-shop, with galleries running round it, and the voice of a hundred
canaries resounding through it. I don't know why, but it reminded me of
a place in the Arabian Nights. "Is Mr. ---- within?" shouted forth my
father, seeing no one in this strange-looking abode. "Yes, he is," was
replied from somewhere, by somebody. We looked about, and presently,
with his little grey bullet head, and shrewd piercing eyes, just
appearing above the counter, we detected the master of the house. My
father stepped up to him with an air like the Duke of ----, and,
returning his coarse curiously-folded note to him, said, "I presume I
am addressing Mr. ----: this, sir," drawing me forward, "is Miss Fanny
Kemble." The little man snatched off his spectacles, rushed round the
counter, rubbed his enormous hand upon his blue stuff apron, and held it
out to us with a most hearty welcome. He looked at us for some time, and
then exclaimed, "Ha! ye're her father. Well, ye'll have married pretty
early--ye look very young: I should not have been sae much surprised if
ye had called her ye're wife!" I laughed, and my father smiled at this
compliment, which was recommended by a broad Scotch twang, which always
sounds sweetly in my ears. The little man, whose appearance is that of a
dwarf in some fairy tale, then went on to tell us how Galt had written a
book all about him; how it was, almost word for word, his own story; how
he had come to this country in early life, with three halfpence in his
pocket, and a nail and hammer in his hand, for all worldly substance;
how he had earned his bread by making nails, which was his business in
Scotland; how, one day, passing by some flowers exposed for sale, he had
touched a geranium leaf by accident, and, charmed with its fragrance,
bought it, having never seen one before; how, with fifteen dollars in
his pocket, he commenced the business of a florist and gardener; and how
he had refused as many thousand dollars for his present prosperous
concern; how, when he first came to New York, the place opposite his
garden, where now stands a handsome modern dwelling-house, was the site
of a shed where he did his first bit of work; how, after six-and-twenty
years' absence from Scotland, he returned home; how he came to his
father's house--"'Twas on a bright morning in August--the eighth of
August, just, it was--when I went through the door. I knew all the old
passages so well: I opened the parlour door, and there, according to the
good old Scottish custom, the family were going to prayers afore
breakfast. There was the old Bible on the table, and the old clock
ticking in the corner of the room; there was my father in his own old
chair, exactly just where I had left him six-and-twenty years gone by.
The very shovel and tongs by the fire were the same; I knew them all. I
just sat down, and cried as sweetly as ever a man did in his life."
These were, as nearly as I can recollect, his words; and oh, what a
story! His manner, too, was indescribably vivid and graphic. My father's
eyes filled with tears. He stretched out his hand, and grasped and shook
the Scotchman's hand repeatedly without speaking; I never saw him more
excited. I never was more struck myself with the wonderful strangeness
of this bewildering life. He showed us the foot of a rude rustic-looking
table. "That," he said, "was cut from out the hawthorn hedge that grows
by my father's house; and this," showing us a wooden bowl, "is what I
take my _parritch_ in!" I asked him if he never meant to leave this
country, and return to bonny Scotland. He said, No, never: he might
return, but he never meant to settle any where but here. "For," added
he, "I have grown what I am in it, madam, and 'tis a fine country for
the poor." He had been an early martyr, too, to his political opinions;
and, when only nineteen years of age, had been imprisoned in Edinburgh
for advocating the cause of that very reform which the people are at
this moment crying jubilee over in England. He seemed to rejoice in this
country, as in the wide common land of political freedom, unbounded by
the limits of long-established prejudice, unbroken by the deep trenches
which divide class from class in the cultivated soil of the old world. I
could have listened to this strange oracle for a day; but in the midst
of his discourse he was summoned to dinner; and presenting his son to
us, who presented a nosegay to me, left us to wander about his singular
domain. His father, by the by, is still alive, and residing within six
miles of Edinburgh, a man of ninety years and upwards. We walked about
the shop, visited the birds, who are taken most admirable care of, and
are extremely beautiful. I saw several mocking birds: they should sing
well, for they are not pretty. Their plumage is of a dull grey colour,
and they are clumsy-looking birds.[73] Saw two beautiful African widow
birds, with their jet black hoods and trains. Saw an English blackbird,
and thrush, _in cages_. They made my heart ach. I wonder if they ever
think of the red ripe cracking cherries, the rich orchard lands, and the
hawthorn-hedged lanes in the summer sunsets of dear England? I did for
them. We then went and looked at a tank full of beautiful gold fish, as
they indiscriminately called them. But though the greater number were
the glittering scarlet creatures usually so denominated, some were of
the richest purple, with a soft dark bloom playing over their sides;
others, again, were perfectly brown, with a glancing golden light
shining through their scales; others were palest silver; others, again,
mingled the dazzling scarlet with spots of the most beautiful gloomy
violet, like dark-coloured jewels set in fire. Their tank was planted
with the roots of aquatic vegetables, which, in summer, spread their
cool leaves over the water, which is perpetually renewed by means of an
escape, and a little silvery fountain which keeps bubbling up in the
midst. They seemed very happy, and devoured sundry pieces of wafer
paper, while we admired them at our leisure. Saw an India-rubber tree, a
very young one, which had not attained its full growth. 'Tis a fine
broad-leaved tree, unlike any that I ever saw before. After dawdling
about very satisfactorily for some time, we departed from the dwelling
of Lawrie Todd. Of a verity, "truth is strange, stranger than fiction."
Went to a bookseller's. I bought a Bible for little ----; my father, a
Shakspeare for ----. Came home. Mr. ---- called, and gossiped some time
with me. Told me a bit of scandal, of which I had some slight suspicion
before, _i. e._ that Mr. ---- was pretty Mrs. ----'s very devoted. At
half-past four dressed for dinner. Colonel ---- called just as we were
going to dinner. At five, my father and I went to Mrs. ----'s. A
pleasant dinner. I like him enough, and I like her very much. She is
extremely pretty, and very pleasant. Sat by that tall ninny, Mr. ----,
who uttered inanity the whole of dinner-time. After dinner, the usual
entertaining half hour among the ladies passed in looking over
caricatures. When the men joined us, Mr. ---- came and sat down by me,
and in the course of a few minutes, poor Lord ---- having by chance been
mentioned, we fell into English talk; and it appears that he knows
sundry of my gracious _patrons_; among the rest, the ----s. He had been
at ----; and it pleased me to speak of it again. But what in the name of
all wonders could possess him with the idea that Lady ---- was guilty of
editing the Comic Annual. Was asked to sing, and sang "Ah no ben mio"
pretty well. Mr. ---- sang a thing of his own very well, though it was
not in itself worth much. Discussed all manner of prima donnas with him.
At half-past nine, D---- came for me, and we proceeded to the ----s. The
people here never tell one when they mean to dance; the consequence is,
that one is completely put out about one's toilet. I was in a black
satin dress; and dancing in these hot rooms, might as well have been in
a pall.

       *       *       *       *       *

       *       *       *       *       *

In the middle of the evening, Dr. ---- asked if I would allow him to
introduce to me one Mr. ----, a very delightful man, full of abilities,
_and_ writer in such and such a paper. I immediately called to mind my
resolution, and refused. In the mean time, Mrs. ----, less scrupulous,
and without asking my leave, brought the gentleman up, and introduced
him. I was most ungracious and forbidding, and meant to be so. I am
sorry for this, but I cannot help it: he is ----'s brother, too, which
makes me doubly sorry. As he is an agreeable man, and ----'s brother, I
esteem and reverence him; but, as he belongs to the press gang, I will
not know him. The room was full of pretty women, one prettier than
another. I danced myself half dead, and came home. By the by, was
introduced to young ----, who, at the corner of a street, with a red cap
on his head, might pass for a capital hickory pole. Mrs. ----'s
bed-room, where we left our cloaks, made my heart ach. 'Twas exactly
like my dear little bed-room at home; the bed, the furniture, and the
rose-coloured lining, all the same.


_Saturday, December 1st, 1832._

First day of the last month of the year--go it, old fellow! I'm sick of
the road, and would be at my journey's end. Got two hundred dollars from
my father, and immediately after breakfast sallied forth: paid bills and
visits, and came home. Found my father sitting with our kinsman, Mr.
----, busily discussing the family origin, root, branches, and all. We
are an old family, they say, but the direct line is lost after Charles
the Second's reign. Our kinsman is a nice man, with a remarkably fine
face, with which I was greatly struck. When he was gone, persuaded my
father to come down and take a breathing on the Battery with me. And a
breathing it was with a vengeance. The wind blew tempestuously, the
waters, all troubled and rough, were of a yellow green colour, breaking
into short, strong, angry waves, whose glittering white crests the wind
carried away, as they sank to the level surface again. The shores were
all cold, distinct, sharp-cut, and wintry-looking, the sky was black and
gloomy, with now and then a watery wan sunlight running through it. The
wind was so powerful, we could scarcely keep our legs. My sleeves and
skirts fluttered in the blast, my bonnet was turned front part behind,
my nose was blue, my cheeks were crimson, my hair was all tangled, my
breath was gone, my blood was in a glow: what a walk! Met dear Dr. ----,
whom I love. Came in--dined. After dinner, bethought me that I had not
called upon Mrs. ----, according to promise. Sent for a coach, and set
forth thither; didn't know the number, so drove up Spring Street, and
down Spring Street, and finally stopped at a shop, got a directory, and
found the address. Sat a few minutes with her, and at five o'clock left
her. The day was already gone--the _gloamin_ come. The keen cutting wind
whizzed along the streets; huge masses of dark clouds, with soft brown
edges, lay on the pale delicate blue of the evening sky. The moon was
up, clear, cold, and radiant; the crowd had ebbed away from the busy
thoroughfare, and only a few men in great-coats buttoned up to their
chins, and women wrapped in cloaks, were scudding along in the dim
twilight and the bitter wind towards their several destinations, with a
frozen shuddering look that made me laugh. I had got perished in the
coach, and seeing that the darkness covered me, determined to walk home,
and bade the coach follow me. How pleasant it was! I walked tremendously
fast, enjoying the fresh breath of the north, and looking at the
glittering moon, as she rode high in the evening sky. How I do like
walking alone--being alone; for this alone I wish I were a man. At
half-past five, went to the theatre. The house was crammed; play,
Hunchback. I missed ---- from his accustomed seat, and found that like a
very politician he had changed sides. I played abominably; my voice was
weak and fagged. After the play, Katharine and Petruchio. I played that
better; my father was admirable--it went off delightfully. When it was
over, they called for my father, and with me in his hand he went on. The
pit rose to us like Christians, and shouted and hallooed as I have been
used to hear. I felt sorry to leave them: they are a pleasant audience
to act to, and exceedingly civil to us, and I have got rather attached
to them. New York, too, seems nearer home than any other place, and I
felt sorry to leave it. When we had withdrawn, and were going up stairs,
we heard three distinct and tremendous cheers. On asking what that
meant, we learnt 'twas a compliment to us--thank 'em kindly. Came home:
found Mr. ---- had sent me Contarini Fleming. Began reading it, and
could scarce eat my supper for doing so.

       *       *       *       *       *

       *       *       *       *       *


_Sunday, 2d._

While dressing, received a "sweet note" from Mrs. ----, accompanied with
a volume of Bryant's poetry, which, as I like very much, I am her
obliged. Swallowed two mouthfuls of bread, and away to church. It was
very crowded, and a worthy woman had taken possession of the corner seat
in Mr. ----'s pew, with a fidgetting little child, which she kept
dancing up and down every two minutes: though in church, I wished for
the days of King Herod. What strange thoughts did occur to me to-day
during service! 'Tis the first Sunday in Advent. The lesson for the day
contained the history of the Annunciation. What a mystery our belief is!
how seldom it is that we consider and, as it were, _take hold_ of what
we say we believe, and when we do so, how bewildered and lost we
become,--how lost among a thousand wild imaginations,--how driven to and
fro by a thousand doubts,--how wrecked amidst a thousand fears! Surely
we should be humble: we should indeed remember that we _cannot know_,
and not strive for that knowledge which our souls will lose themselves
in seeking for, and our overstrained minds crack in reaching at.

       *       *       *       *       *

       *       *       *       *       *

At the end of service they sang Luther's hymn. I cried with nervous
excitement, not at that, but at my recollection of Braham's singing it
with that terrible trumpet accompaniment, that used to make my heart
stand still and listen. Stayed and took the sacrament.

       *       *       *       *       *

       *       *       *       *       *

Came home: found a whole regiment of men. His honour the Recorder, who
is my especial delight, Mr. ----, ----, whom I greatly affection; to
these presently entered Mr. ---- and Mr. ----. They one by one bade me
good-by; how disagreeable that is, that good-by! Mr. ---- read me a
passage out of one of Jeffrey's letters, describing an English fine
lady. The picture is admirable, and most faithful; they are, indeed,
polished, brilliant, smooth as ice, as slippery, as treacherous, as
cold. When they were all gone, Colonel ---- gave me to read the
descriptive sketch of the French opera, La Tentation, that has been
setting all Paris wild. What an atrocious piece of blasphemy, indecency,
and folly--what a thoroughly French invention. Mad people! mad people!
mad people! Looked over bills, settled accounts, righted desk, tore up
papers; among others, sundry anonymous love-letters that I had treasured
up as specimens of the purely funny in composition, but which began to
take up too much room. Dressed for dinner. After dinner, sat writing
journal, and reading Contarini Fleming.

       *       *       *       *       *

       *       *       *       *       *


_Monday, 3d._

Rose at half-past four. The sky was black as death, but in the night
winter had chopped his mantle on the earth, and there it lay, cold, and
purely white, against the inky sky. Dressed: crammed away all the
gleanings of the packing, and in thaw, and sleet, and rain, drove down
to the steam-boat. Went directly to the cabin. On my way thither,
managed to fall down half-a-dozen steep steps, and give myself as many
bruises. I was picked up and led to a bed, where I slept profoundly till
breakfast time. Our kinsman, Mr. ----, was our fellow-passenger: I like
him mainly. After breakfast, returned to my crib. As I was removing
Contarini Fleming, in order to lie down, a _lady_ said to me, "Let me
look at one of those books;" and, without further word of question of or
acknowledgment, took it from my hand, and began reading. I was a _little
surprised_, but said nothing, and went to sleep. Presently I was roused
by a pull on the shoulder, and another lady, rather more civil, and
particularly considerate, asked me to do her the favour of lending her
the other. I said, by all manner of means, wished her at the devil, and
turned round to sleep once more. Arrived at Amboy, we disembarked and
bundled ourselves into our coach, ourselves, our namesake, and a pretty
quiet lady, who was going, in much heaviness of heart, to see a sick
child. The roads were unspeakable; the day most delightfully
disagreeable. My bruises made the saltatory movements of our crazy
conveyance doubly torturing; in short, all things were the perfection of
misery. I attempted to read, but found it utterly impossible to do so.
Arrived at the Delaware, we took boat again; and, as I was sitting very
quietly reading Contarini Fleming, with the second volume lying on the
stool at my feet, the same unceremonious lady who had _borrowed_ it
before snatched it up without addressing a single syllable to me, read
as long as she pleased, and threw it down again in the same style when
she went to dinner. Now I know that half the people here, if they were
to read that in Mrs. Trollope, would say, "Oh, but you know she could
not have been a lady, 'tis not fair to judge of our manners by the
vulgar specimens of American society which a steam-boat may afford."
Very true: but granting that she was _not_ a lady (which she certainly
was not), supposing her to have been a housemaid, or any thing else of
equal pretensions to good breeding, the way to judge is by comparing
her, not with ladies in other countries, but with housemaids, persons in
her own condition of life; and 'tis most certain that no person
whatsoever, however ignorant, low, or vulgar, in England, would have
done such a thing as that. But the mixture of the republican feeling of
equality peculiar to this country, and the usual want of refinement
common to the lower classes of most countries, forms a singularly
felicitous union of impudence and vulgarity, to be met with no where but
in America.[74] Arrived at the Mansion House, which I was quite glad to
see again. Installed myself in a room, and, while they brought in the
packages, finished Contarini Fleming. It reminded me of Combes' book: I
wonder whether he is turning phrenologist at all? those physiological
principles were the bosom friends of the Combes' phrenological ones.
Stowed away my things, made a delicious huge wood fire, dressed myself,
and went down to dinner. Our kinsman dined with us. Mr. ---- came in
while we were at dinner. After dinner, came up to my room, continued
unpacking and putting away my things till near nine o'clock. When we
went down to tea, my father was lying on the sofa asleep, and a man was
sitting with his back to the door, reading the newspaper. He looked up
as we came in: it was ----, whom I greatly rejoiced to see again. During
tea, he told us all the Philadelphia gossip. So the ladies are all
getting up upon horses, and wearing the "_Kemble_ cap," as they call
Lady ----'s device. How she would laugh if she could hear it; how I did
laugh when I did hear it. The Kemble cap, forsooth! thus it is that
great originators too often lose the fame of their inventions, and that
the glory of a _new idea_ passes by the head that conceived it, to
encircle, as with a halo, that of some mere imitator; thus it is that
this very big world comes to be called America, and not Columbia, as it
_ought to_; thus it is--etc., etc., etc. He sat for some time. Saw poor
Mrs. ----.

       *       *       *       *       *

       *       *       *       *       *

She is better, poor thing; I like her amazingly.


_Tuesday, 4th._

After breakfast practised for two hours. ---- called and stayed some
time. Came up to my own room; wrote journal: while doing so a note
containing two cards, and an invitation to "tea," from the Miss ----s
was brought to me. Presently I was called down to receive our kinsman,
who sat some time with me, whom I like most especially, who is a
gentleman, and a very nice person. Came up and resumed my journal: was
again summoned down to see young Mr. ----.

       *       *       *       *       *

       *       *       *       *       *

When he was gone, finished journal, wrote to Mrs. ----, to my mother,
read a canto in Dante, and began to write a novel. Dined at five. After
dinner, put out things for this evening, played on the piano, mended
habit shirt, dressed myself, and at a quarter to ten went to the theatre
for my father. I had on the same dress I wore at Devonshire House, the
night of the last ball I was at in England, and looked at myself in
amazement, to think of all the strangenesses that have befallen since
then. We proceeded to Miss ----'s, and this tea-party turned out to be a
very crowded dance, in small rooms upon carpets, and with a roasting
fire. Was introduced to all the world and his wife. Dr. ---- claimed
acquaintance with us, and danced with me: I like his manners very much.
I have beheld Miss ----, and should doubtless now depart in peace.

       *       *       *       *       *

       *       *       *       *       *

Lord! Lord! what fools men and women do make themselves. Was introduced
to one Mr. ----, Mr. ----'s partner, whom I received graciously for the
sake of the good days on board the Pacific. Came away at a little after
twelve. I never felt any thing like the heat of the rooms, or heard any
thing so strange as the questions the people ask one, or saw any thing
more lovely than the full moonlight on the marble buildings of
Philadelphia.


_Wednesday, 5th._

After breakfast, practised: Mr. and Mrs. ---- called, also Dr. ----.
Went and saw poor Mrs. ---- for a little time; she interests me most
extremely--I like her very very much. Came up to my own room; read a
canto of Dante. Was called down to see folk, and found the drawing-room
literally thronged. The first face I made out was Mr. ----'s, for whom I
have taken an especial love: two ladies, a whole load of men, and Mr.
----, who had brought me a curious piece of machinery, in the shape of a
musical box, to look at. It contained a little bird, no larger than a
large fly, with golden and purple wings, and a tiny white beak. On the
box being wound up, this little creature flew out, and, perching itself
on the brink of a gold basin, began fluttering its wings, opening its
beak, and uttering sundry very melodious warblings, in the midst of
which, it sank suddenly down, and disappeared, the lid closed, and there
was an end. What a pity 'tis that we can only realise fairy-land
through the means of machinery. One reason why there is no such thing
left as the believing faculty among men, is because they have themselves
learnt to make magic, and perform miracles. When the coast was once more
clear, I returned to my room, got out things for the theatre, dined
_tête-à-tête_ with D----; my father dined at the public table. After
dinner, came up stairs, read Grahame, wrote journal, began my novel
under another shape. I can't write prose; (query, can I any thing else?)
I don't know how, but my sentences are the comicalest things in the
world; the end forgets the beginning, and the whole is a perfect
labyrinth of parenthesis within parenthesis. Perhaps, by the by, without
other view, it would be just as well if I exercised myself a little in
writing my own language, as the grammar hath it, "with elegance and
propriety." At half-past five, went to the theatre. The play was Romeo
and Juliet; the house not good. Mr. ---- played Romeo.

       *       *       *       *       *

       *       *       *       *       *

I acted like a wretch, of course; how could I do otherwise? Oh, Juliet!
vision of the south! rose of the garden of the earth! was this the
glorious hymn that Shakspeare hallowed to your praise? was this the
mingled strain of Love's sweet going forth, and Death's dark victory,
over which my heart and soul have been poured out in wonder and
ecstasy?--How I do loathe the stage! these wretched, tawdry, glittering
rags, flung over the breathing forms of ideal loveliness; these
miserable, poor, and pitiful substitutes for the glories with which
poetry has invested her magnificent and fair creations--the glories with
which our imagination reflects them back again. What a mass of wretched
mumming mimicry acting is! Pasteboard and paint, for the thick breathing
orange groves of the south; green silk and oiled parchment, for the
solemn splendour of her noon of night; woolen platforms and canvass
curtains, for the solid marble balconies and rich dark draperies of
Juliet's sleeping-chamber, that shrine of love and beauty; rouge, for
the startled life-blood in the cheek of that young passionate woman; an
actress, a mimicker, a sham creature, me, in fact, or any other one, for
that loveliest and most wonderful conception, in which all that is true
in nature, and all that is exquisite in fancy, are moulded into a living
form. To _act_ this! to _act_ Romeo and Juliet! horror! horror! how I do
loathe my most impotent and unpoetical craft!

       *       *       *       *       *

       *       *       *       *       *

In the last scene of the play, I was so mad with the mode in which all
the preceding ones had been perpetrated, that, lying over Mr. ----'s
corpse, and fumbling for his dagger, which I could not find, I, Juliet,
thus apostrophised him,--Romeo being dead--"why, where _the_ devil _is_
your dagger, Mr. ----!" What a disgusting travesty. On my return home, I
expressed my entire determination to my father to perform the farce of
Romeo and Juliet no more. Why, it's an absolute _shame_ that one of
Shakspeare's plays should be thus turned into a mockery. I received a
note from young Mr. ----, accompanied by a very curious nosegay in
shells; a poor substitute for the breathing, fresh, rosy flowers he used
to furnish me with, when I was last here.


_Thursday, 6th._

The morning was beautifully bright and warm, like a May morning in
England. After breakfast, practised for two hours: while doing so, was
interrupted by Mr. ----, who came to bid us good-by. He was going on to
New York, and thence to England.

       *       *       *       *       *

       *       *       *       *       *

He sat some time. When he was gone, and I had finished my practising,
came up to my own room. Was summoned thence to see my kinsman, who sat
some time with me, and whom I like of all things. He makes it out (for
he seems a great meddler in these matters) that we are originally
Italian people, pirates by name, Campo Bello; the same family as the
Scottish Campbells; the same family as the Norman Beauchamps: how I only
wish it were true! I have, and always have had, the greatest love and
veneration for old blood; I would rather by far have some barbarous
Saxon giant to my ancestor, than all the wealth of the earth to my
dower. I parted from my friend with much regret; he has won my heart
fairly. When he was gone, came up to my own room. The day was brilliant
and unclouded; and, as I looked into the serene blue sky, my spirit
longed for wings.

       *       *       *       *       *

       *       *       *       *       *

Dr. ---- called this morning, and interested me by a long account of
Webster; in the course of which, however, he gave me, if possible, a
stronger distaste than I had before to the form of government in this
country, from various results which he enumerated as inevitably
belonging to it. Read a canto in Dante: it consoles me to read my
Italian, and forget for a time all that is.

       *       *       *       *       *

       *       *       *       *       *

I sat watching the glorious sunset, as it came redly streaming into my
room, touching every thing with glory, and shining through my hair upon
my book. It suggested to me a picture; and I wrote one for Mrs. ----,
who had been consulting me about a costume in which to sit for her
portrait. Dined at five: my father dined out. After dinner, sat writing
journal till ten, when he returned. The moon was shining soft and full,
and he asked me if I would take a walk. I bonneted and booted, and we
sallied forth to the Schuylkill. The moon withdrew herself behind a veil
of thin white clouds, but left a grey clear light over the earth, and
through the sky. We reached the Fair Mount bridge at about eleven. The
turnpike was fast, and every body asleep, so we climbed over the gate,
and very deliberately pursued our way through the strange dark-looking
covered bridge, where the glimmering lamps, at distant intervals, threw
the crossing beams and rafters into momentary brightness, that had a
strange effect contrasted with the surrounding gloom.[75] We reached the
other side, and, turning off from the road, began climbing the hill
opposite the breakwater. The road was muddy in the valley with heavy
rains; and unwilling to wade through the dirt, we clambered along a
paling for several yards, and so escaped the mire. My father steered for
the grassy knoll just opposite Fair Mount; and there, screened by a
thicket of young cedar bushes, with the river breaking over the broad
dam far below us, and the shadowy banks on the other side melting away
in the soft grey light, we sat down on a tree trunk. Here we remained
for upwards of a quarter of an hour without uttering a syllable; indeed,
we had not spoken three words since we set out. My father was thinking,
I presume, of ---- something; I, of the day of judgment--when these
thick forests, and wide strong waters, like a shrivelled scroll, are to
burn to ashes before the coming of God's justice. We were disturbed by a
large white spaniel dog, who, coming down from among the cedar bushes,
reminded me of the old witch stories, and Faust. We arose to depart, and
took our way towards the Market Street bridge, along the banks of the
river. The broken notes of a bugle-horn came at intervals across the
sleeping waters from the opposite shore, where shone reflected the few
lingering lights from the houses that had not yet shut up for the night.
The moon, faintly struggling through the clouds, now touched the dark
pyramids of the cedar trees that rose up into the grey sky, and threw
our shadows on the lonely path we were pursuing, now cast a pale gleam
through the rapid clouds that chased one another like dreams across the
sky. The air was soft and balmy as the night air of mid August. The
world was still; and, except our footfalls, as we trudged along, no
sound disturbed the universal repose. We did not reach home till
half-past twelve. As we walked down Market Street, through the long
ranges of casks, the only creatures stirring, except some melancholy
night-loving cat, my father said very calmly, "How I do wish I had a
gimlet."--"What for?"--"What fun it would be to pierce every one of
these barrels." For a gentleman of his years, this appeared to me rather
a juvenile prompting of Satan; and as I laughingly expostulated on the
wickedness of such a proceeding, he replied with much innocence, "I
don't think they'd ever suspect me of having done it;" and truly I don't
think they would. Came home, and to bed. That was a curious fancy of my
father's.


A PICTURE.

     Through the half open'd casement stream'd the light
     Of the departing sun. The golden haze
     Of the red western sky fell warm and bright
     Into that chamber large and lone: the blaze
     Touch'd slantingly curtain and couch, and threw
     A glory over many an antique gem,
     Won from the entombed cities that once grew
     At the volcano's foot. Mingled with them
     Stood crystal bowls, through which the broken ray
     Fell like a shower of precious stones, and lay
     Reflected upon marble; these were crown'd
     With blushing flowers, fresh and glittering yet
     With diamond rain-drops. On the crimson ground
     A shining volume, clasp'd with gold and jet,
     And broken petals of a passion-flower
     Lay by the lady of this silent bower.
     Her rippling hair fell from her pearly round
     That strove to clasp its billowy curls: the light
     Hung like a glory on their waves of gold.
     Her velvet robe, in many a violet fold,
     Like the dark pansy's downy leaf, was bound
     With a gold zone, and clasp'd with jewels bright,
     That glow'd and glanced as with a magic flame
     Whene'er her measured breathing stirr'd her frame.
     Upon her breast and shoulders lay a veil
     Of curious needle-work, as pure and pale
     As a fine web of ivory, wrought with care,
     Through which her snowy skin show'd smooth and fair.
     Upon the hand that propp'd her drooping head,
     A precious emerald, like a fairy well,
     Gleam'd with dark solemn lustre; a rich thread
     Of rare round pearls--such as old legends tell
     The Egyptian queen pledged to her Roman lord,
     When in her cup a kingdom's price she pour'd,--
     Circled each soft white arm. A painter well
     Might have been glad to look upon her face,
     For it was full of beauty, truth, and grace;
     And from her lustrous eyes her spirit shone
     Serene, and strong, and still, as from a throne.


_Friday, 7th._

A break. Found ---- in the breakfast-room. The morning was very
unpropitious; but I settled to ride at one, if it was tolerably fine
then. He remained pottering a long time: when he was gone, practised,
habited, went in, for a few minutes, to Mrs. ----. At one the horses
came; but mine was brought without a stirrup, so we had to wait, Lord
knows how long, till the blundering groom had ridden back for it. At
length we mounted. "Handsome is that handsome does," is verity; and,
therefore, pretty as was my steed, I wished its good looks and itself at
the devil, before I was halfway down Chestnut Street. It pranced, and
danced, and backed me once right upon the pavement. We took the Laurel
Hill road. The day was the perfection of gloom--the road six inches deep
in heavy mud. We walked the whole way out! my father got the cramp, and
lost his temper. At Laurel Hill we dismounted, and walked down to the
river side. How melancholy it all looked! the turbid rhubarby water, the
skeleton woods, the grey sky, and far winding away of the dark rocky
shores; yet it was fine even in this gloom, and wonderfully still. The
clouds did not move,--the water had not the faintest ripple,--the trees
did not stir a branch; the most perfect and profound trance seemed to
have fallen upon every thing. ---- and I scrambled down the rocks
towards the water, expatiating on the capabilities of this place, which
was once a country-seat, and with very little expense might be made a
very enchanting as well as a very comfortable residence; always
excepting, of course, the chance of fever and ague during the summer
months, when the whole of the banks of the Schuylkill, high and rocky as
they are, are considered so unhealthy, that the inhabitants are obliged
to leave their houses until the winter season, when the country
naturally loses half its attractions. At half-past three, we mounted,
and, crossing the river, returned home by a much better road. My horse,
however, was decidedly a brute,--pulled my arms to pieces, cantered with
the wrong leg foremost, trotted in a sort of scuttling fashion, that
rendered it utterly impossible to rise in the stirrup, and, instead of
walking, jogged the breath out of my body. I was fairly done up when we
reached home. Dressed, and dined; ---- dined with us. After dinner, went
and sat with Mrs. ----. So it seems Carolina is in a state of
convulsion. Reports have arrived that the Nullifiers and Unionists have
had a fight in Charleston, and that lives have been lost. "Bide a wee,"
as the Scotchman says; we talk a good deal on the other side the water
of matters that are far enough off; but as for America, the problem is
not yet solved--and this very crisis (a more important one than has yet
occurred in the political existence of this country) is threatening to
slacken the bonds of brotherhood between the states, and shake the
Union to its centre. The interests of the northern states are totally
different from, and in some respects opposite to, those of the southern
ones.

       *       *       *       *       *

       *       *       *       *       *

       *       *       *       *       *

The tariff question is the point in debate; and the Carolinians have, it
seems, threatened to secede from the Union in consequence of the policy
pursued with regard to that. I was horrified at Dr. ----'s account of
the state of the negroes in the south. To teach a slave to read or write
is to incur a penalty either of fine or imprisonment. They form the
larger proportion of the population, by far; and so great is the dread
of insurrection on the part of the white inhabitants, that they are kept
in the most brutish ignorance, and too often treated with the most
brutal barbarity, in order to insure their subjection. Oh! what a
breaking asunder of old manacles there will be, some of these fine days;
what a fearful rising of the black flood; what a sweeping away, as by a
torrent, of oppressions and tyrannies; what a fierce and horrible
retaliation and revenge for wrong so long endured--so wickedly
inflicted. When I came in to tea, at half-past eight, found Dr. ----
there.

       *       *       *       *       *

When he was gone, sang a song or two, like a crow in the quinsy.

       *       *       *       *       *


_Wednesday, 12th._

After breakfast, went to rehearsal; after rehearsal, went to ----'s. It
poured with rain. Came home; put out things for the theatre; practised
for an hour; finished letter to ----; wrote journal; dined at three.
After dinner, went and sat with Mrs. ----. Sang to her all my old Scotch
ballads; read the first act of the Hunchback to her. At half-past five,
went to the theatre. Play, King John; house good: I played horribly. My
voice, too, was tired with my exertions, and cracked most awfully in the
midst of "thunder," which was rather bad.

       *       *       *       *       *

       *       *       *       *       *

I had finished early, and came home in my dress in order to show it to
Mrs. ----. She was just gone to bed, but admitted me.

       *       *       *       *       *

Sat talking to her until my father came home. So "Old Hickory" means to
lick the refractory southerns: why they are coming to a civil war!
However, the grumblers haven't the means of fighting without
emancipating and arming their slaves. That they will not and dare not
do; the consequence will be, I suppose, that they will swallow the
affront, and submit.


_Thursday, 13th._

While dressing, had the pleasure of witnessing from my window a
satisfactory sample of the innate benevolence, gentleness, and humanity
of our nature: a child of about five years old, dragging a cat by a
string tied to its throat round and round a yard, till the poor beast
ceased to use its paws, and suffered itself to be trailed along the
ground, after which the little fiend set his feet upon it, and stamped
and kicked it most brutally. The blood came into my face; and, though
almost too far for hearing, I threw up the sash, and at the top of my
voice apostrophised the little wretch with "Hollo there! wicked, naughty
boy!" He seemed much puzzled to discover whence this appeal proceeded,
but not at all at a loss to apply it; for, after looking about with a
very conscience-stricken visage, he rushed into the house, dragging his
victim with him. I came down, fairly sick, to breakfast. After
despatching it, I put on my bonnet and walked round to the house where
this scene had taken place. I enquired for the child, describing his
appearance, and he was presently brought to me; when I sat down at the
foot of the stairs in the hall, and spent some time in expatiating on
the enormity of such proceedings to the little ruffian, who, it seems,
has frequently been corrected for similar ferocities before. I fear my
preachment will not avail much. Came home, put room to rights, practised
for an hour; got ready, and dawdled about most dreadfully, waiting for
D----, who had gone out with my father. At half-past twelve, set off
with her to the riding-school. It was full of women in long calico
skirts, and gay bonnets with flaunting feathers, riding like wretches;
some cantering, some trotting, some walking--crossing one another,
passing one another in a way that would have filled the soul of Fossard
with grief and amazement. I put on a skirt and my riding-cap, and
mounted a rough, rugged, besweated white-brown beast, that looked like
an old trunk more than any thing else, its coat standing literally on
end, like "quills upon the fretful porcupine," with heat and ill
condition. 'Tis vain attempting to ride like a Christian on these
heathen horses, which are neither broken, bitted, nor bridled properly;
and poor dumb _creturs_ have no more idea of what a horse ought to be,
or how a horse ought to behave, than so many cows. My hair, presently,
with the damp and the shaking, became perfectly straight. As I raised my
head, after putting it up under my cap, I beheld ---- earnestly
discoursing to D----. I asked for Tuesday's charger; and the school
having by degrees got empty, I managed to become a little better
acquainted with its ways and means. 'Tis a pretty little creature, but
'tis not half broken, is horribly ill ridden, and will never be good for
any thing--what a pity! At two o'clock I dismounted: ---- walked home
with us. Went in to see Mrs. ----: she seemed a good deal better, I
thought; sat some time with her. Mr. ---- has sent me back my book of
manuscript music: played and sang half through it. Came to my room;
tried on dresses for Lady Macbeth, and the Wonder, and dressed for
dinner. My father dined out. After dinner, went in to see Mrs. ----. Sat
some time with her mother, her chicks, and her young doctor of a cousin,
who is quite a civilised mortal. Poor Mrs. ---- was too ill to see me.
Came to the drawing-room, wrote journal, played and sang till tea-time.
After tea, read the history of Knickerbocker, whereat I was like to have
died, through the greate merrimente its rare and excellente pleasantries
did cause in me, insomuche that I lay on the sofa screaming, very much
like one lunaticke.


_Friday, 14th._

After breakfast, put out things for the theatre. Practised for an hour;
read and marked the Comedy of Errors, which is really great fun: perhaps
not funnier than Amphytrion, but the subject is more agreeable a good
deal. Read a canto in Dante; got ready for the riding-school; found ----
and Mr. ---- in the drawing-room. As we were going out, the gentlemen
did not remain long. When they were gone, D---- and I set off for the
riding-school. We were hardly there before ---- made his appearance: I
wonder what he'll do for an _interest_, by the by, when we are gone.

       *       *       *       *       *

       *       *       *       *       *

       *       *       *       *       *

The school was quite empty, so we had it all to ourselves. D---- mounted
up upon a detestable shambling brute, that wouldn't go _no how_. I had a
fancy for making my little fiery charger leap over the bar, and made Mr.
---- put it down for me. The beast had no idea of such saltatory
proceedings, and jerked himself over it three times most abominably. The
fourth time I pushed him at it, he jumped, and I jumped too, out of the
saddle on to my feet, having lighted down very comfortably at the
horse's head with the reins in my hand, neither hurt nor frightened.
This is the first time a horse ever had me off. I got on again, but
declined leaping any more. At a quarter to three we returned home.
---- walked with us. At the corner of Sansom Street, met young ----.
Heaven bless ---- from a challenge! Came home; dined: after dinner, went
in and sat with Mrs. ---- till coffee-time. Showed her my dresses, and
read her a scene or two of the Hunchback. Went to the theatre at
half-past five. Play, the Hunchback--the house was literally crammed. I
played very well, except being out in my town scene--an unwonted
occurrence with me. After the play, came home, supped, and read the
Wonder, which I thought wondrous dull.


_Saturday, 15th._

If I were to write a history of Philadelphia, according to the profound
spirit of investigation for which modern tourists are remarkable, I
should say that it was a peculiarity belonging to its climate, that
Saturday is invariably a wet day. At twelve, went to rehearsal, after
putting out things for the theatre. Had a long talk with Mr. ---- about
Pasta, the divine,--the only reality that ever I beheld that was as
fair, as grand, as glorious as an imaginary being. Shall I ever forget
that woman in Medea? I am thankful I have seen her. After rehearsal,
called at Mr. ----'s. Saw and carried off his head of me in Juliet.
Certainly the resemblance between myself and Mrs. Siddons must be very
strong; for this painting might almost have been taken for a copy of
Harlowe's sketch of my aunt in Lady Macbeth: 'tis very strange and
unaccountable. Came home; wrote journal: went and sat with Mrs. ----
till dinner-time. After dinner, went and sat with her again till
coffee-time. Was introduced to Dr. ----, whom I liked very much.

       *       *       *       *       *

       *       *       *       *       *

Showed her my dress and my bracelets. Had a long discussion about the
precedence of one lady before another among the nobility of European
courts, whereat her republican pride seemed highly offended. If Clay
_did_, as Dr. ---- describes, pass before titled men, at a dinner in
England, with his hands in his breeches' pockets, it only follows thence
that he was really ill bred, and would be thought vulgar if he did it
unwittingly, and absurd if he did it intentionally. Went to the theatre
at half-past five. The house was wonderful, considering the weather: the
play was Fazio. I played pretty well: my dress was _splendid_.


_Sunday, 16th._

Had only time to swallow a mouthful of breakfast, and off to church;
where I heard about as thorough a cock and bull sermon as ever I hope to
be edified withal. What shameful nonsense the man talked! and all the
time pretending to tell us what God had done, what he was doing, and
what he intended to do next, as if he went up into heaven and saw what
was going on there, every five minutes. Came home; sat with Mrs. ----
for a long time: I am very fond of her.

       *       *       *       *       *

       *       *       *       *       *

Came to my own room, and studied Violante till dinner-time. How tiresome
this pointless prose is to batter into one's head. After dinner, went
and sat with Mrs. ---- till near tea-time, when I came to the
drawing-room. Presently, Mr. ---- and Mr. ---- called, also Dr. ----. I
went to my father's room to apprise him of this invasion of the Goths,
and found him very unwell, and labouring under a severe cold. He would
not come down; so D---- and I had to entertain these interesting youths
what fashion we best might. She gave them tea, and I gave them music,
till half-past ten, when they departed.


_Monday, 17th._

It poured with rain like the very mischief: a sort of continual
gushing down from the clouds, combining all the vehemence of a
thunder shower with all the pertinacity of one of our own November
drizzles--delightful! Went to rehearse Macbeth. Had a delightful palaver
with Mr. ----, who knows all the music that ever was writ, and all the
singers that ever sang, and worships Pasta as I do. Came home; put out
things for the theatre: dined at three. After dinner, went and sat with
Mrs. ---- till coffee-time. At half-past five, went to the theatre. In
spite of the rain, the house was very full; and in all my life I never
saw so large an assembly of people so perfectly and breathlessly still
as they were during several of our scenes. I played like a very clever
girl as I am; but it was about as much like Lady Macbeth as the Great
Mogul. My father laboured his part too much.


_Tuesday, 18th._

Received letters; one from dear ----, and one from ----. They did as
letters from England always do by me,--threw me into a perfect nervous
fever.

       *       *       *       *       *

       *       *       *       *       *

       *       *       *       *       *

After breakfast, went to rehearse the Wonder. Called in on my way on Mr.
----, who is painting a portrait of my father. Saw one or two lovely
women's pictures. I wish he would go to England: I think it would answer
his purpose very well. At two, went to the riding-school: rode till
half-past three. The day was bitter cold, with a piercing wicked wind
riding through the grey sky. D---- and I walked to pay sundry calls. Met
----, whom we had not seen for two or three days--a most unusual
circumstance. He walked home with us. D---- and I dined _tête-à-tête_.
On returning home, I found a most lovely nosegay of real, delicious,
fragrant flowers. Sweet crimson buds of the faint-breathing monthly
rose; bright vivid dark green myrtle; the honey Daphne Odora, with its
clusters of pinky-white blossoms; and the delicate bells of the tall
white jasmine,--all sweet, and living, and fresh, as at midsummer: I was
blissful! After dinner, I went in to Mrs. ----. Came back to the
drawing-room. ----, who had taken the hint about our being alone in the
evening, came in. I began making him sing, and taught him the Leaf and
the Fountain: his voice sounded like when we were nearer home.

       *       *       *       *       *

       *       *       *       *       *

Presently Mr. ---- was announced. He was the author of the flowers.

       *       *       *       *       *


_Wednesday, 19th._

After breakfast, ---- called.

       *       *       *       *       *

       *       *       *       *       *

Went to rehearsal,--afterwards, to the riding-school. The school was
quite empty, and I alone. The boy brought me my horse, and I mounted by
means of a chair. As I was cantering along, amusing myself with
cogitations various, ---- came in. He stayed the whole time I rode. I
settled with him about riding to-morrow, and came home to dinner. After
dinner, went in to see Mrs. ----: Dr. ---- was there, who is a
remarkably nice man. She is a very delightful person, with a great deal
of intellect, and a wonderful quantity of fortitude and piety, and a
total absence of knowledge of the world, except through books.

       *       *       *       *       *

       *       *       *       *       *

Her children enchant me, and her care of them enchants me too. She is an
excellent person, with a heart overflowing with the very best affections
our nature is capable of, fulfilled, I think, to the uttermost.

       *       *       *       *       *

       *       *       *       *       *

Stayed with her till time to go to the theatre. The house was very full:
the play was the Wonder--my first time of acting Violante. My dress was
not finished till the very last moment,--and then, oh, horror! was so
small that I could not get into it. It had to be pinned upon me; and
thus bebundled, with the dread of cracking my bodice from top to bottom
every time I moved, and the utter impossibility of drawing my breath,
from the narrow dimensions into which it squeezed me, I went on to play
a new part. The consequence was that I acted infamously, and for the
first time in my life was horribly imperfect--out myself and putting
every body else out. Between every scene my unlucky gown had to be
pinned together; and in the laughing scene, it took the hint from my
admirable performance, and facetiously grinned in an ecstasy of
amusement till it was fairly open behind, displaying, I suppose, the
lacing of my stays, like so many teeth, to the admiring gaze of the
audience; for, as I was perfectly ignorant of the circumstance, with my
usual easy _nonchalance_, I persisted in turning my back to the folk,
in spite of all my father's pulls and pushes, which, as I did not
comprehend, I did not by any means second either. ---- was at the play,
also Dr. ----, also Henry Clay, who was received with cheers and
plaudits manifold. Came home in my dress, and went in to show it to Mrs.
---- and her mother, who were both in bed, but marvellously edified by
my appearance.


_Thursday, 20th._

The day was beautifully brilliant, clear, and cold--winter, but winter
in dazzling array of sunshine and crystal; blue skies, with light
feathery streaks of white clouds running through them; dry, crisp, hard
roads, with the delicate rime tipping all the ruts with sparkling
jewellery; and the waters fresh, and bright, and curling under the keen
breath of the arrow-like wind. After breakfast, ---- called. Walked out
with him to get a cap and whip for D----. The latter he insisted on
making her a present of, and a very pretty one indeed it was, with a
delicate ivory handle, and a charming persuading lash. Went in for a
short time to Mrs. ----, who entertained herself with letting all my
hair down about my ears, and pulling it all manner of ways. At twelve
habited, and helped to equip dear D----, who really looked exceedingly
nice in her jockey habiliments. Went to the school, where we found ----
waiting for us. Mounted and set forth. We rode out to Laurel Hill. The
road was not very good, but no mud; and the warm gleesome sunlight fell
mellowly over the lovely undulations of the land, with their patches of
green cedar trees, and threadbare cloak of leafless woods, through which
the little birds were careering merrily, as the reviving sunshine came
glowingly down upon the world, like a warm blessing. Passed that bright
youth, Mr. ----, on the road, riding very like an ass on horseback. When
we reached Laurel Hill, we dismounted, tied up the horses, slacked their
girths, and walked first up to that interesting wooden monument, where I
inscribed my initials on our first ride thither. Afterwards, ---- and I
scrambled down the rocks to the river side, which D---- declined doing,
_'cause vy?_--she'd have had to climb up again. The water was like a
broad dazzling river of light, and had a beautiful effect, winding away
in brightness that the eye could scarce endure, between its banks,
which, contrasted by the sunny stream, and blue transparent sky,
appeared perfectly black. As I bent over a fine _bluff_ (as they here
call any mass of rock standing isolated), I espied below me a natural
rocky arch, overhanging the river, all glittering with pure long diamond
icicles. Thither ---- convoyed me, and broke off one of these wintry
gems for me. It measured about two feet long, and was as thick at the
root as my wrist. I never saw any thing so beautiful as these pendant
adornments of the silver-fingered ice god. Toiled up to the house again,
where, after brushing our habits, we remounted our chargers, and came
home. The river was most beautiful towards the bridge that they are
building: the unfinished piers of which have a very pretty effect,
almost resembling their very opposite, a ruin. The thin pale vapour of
the steam-engine, employed in some of the works, rising from the blue
water, and rolling its graceful waves far along the dark rocky shore,
had a lovely fairy-like look, which even drew forth the admiration of
----, who, from sundry expressions which have occasionally fallen from
him, I suspect to be rather well endowed with ideality. Reached home at
half-past four. My father dined out. It was past ----'s dinner-time; so
we invited him to stay and dine with us. After dinner, we fell somehow
or another into a profound theological discussion; ---- suddenly
proposing for my solution the mysterious doctrine of the inherent sin of
our nature, and its accompanying doom, death,--inherited from one man's
sin, and one man's punishment. I am not fond of discoursing upon these
subjects. 'Tis long since I have arrived at the conviction that the less
we suffer our thoughts to dwell upon what is vague and mysterious in our
most mysterious faith, and the more we confine our attention and our
efforts to that part of it which is practical and clear as the noon-day,
the better it will be for our minds here, and our souls hereafter.
Surely they are not wise who seek to penetrate the unfathomed counsels
of God, whilst their own natures, moral, mental, nay, even physical,
have depths beyond the sounding of their plummet line. ---- spoke in
perfect sincerity and simplicity of the difficulty he found in believing
that which was so "hard a saying;" and, as there was not the slightest
particle of levity or ridicule in his manner, I spoke as earnestly as I
felt and always feel upon this subject,--very strenuously advising him
not to strain his comprehension upon matters which baffle human
endeavour, which, after all our wanderings and weary explorings, still
lead us back to the wide boundless waste of uncertainty; concluding by
exhorting him to read his Bible, say his prayers, and go to church if
he could,--or, if he could not, at all events to be as good as he could.
While we were at tea, young ---- and Dr. ---- came in. They put me down
to the piano, and I continued to sing until past eleven o'clock, when,
somebody looking at a watch, there was a universal exclamation of
surprise, the piano was shut down, the candles put out, the gentlemen
vanished, and I came to bed.


WINTER.

     I saw him on his throne, far in the north,
     Him ye call Winter, picturing him ever
     An aged man, whose frame, with palsied shiver,
     Bends o'er the fiery element, his foe.
     But him I saw was a young god, whose brow
     Was crown'd with jagged icicles, and forth
     From his keen spirit-like eyes there shone a light,
     Broad, glaring, and intensely cold and bright.
     His breath, like sharp-edged arrows, pierced the air;
     The naked earth crouch'd shuddering at his feet;
     His finger on all murmuring waters sweet
     Lay icily,--motion nor sound was there;
     Nature seem'd frozen--dead; and still and slow
     A winding-sheet fell o'er her features fair,
     Flaky and white, from his wide wings of snow.


I am sorry to find that I must skip Friday and Saturday, thereby
omitting an account of an interesting ball at Mrs. ----'s, where the
floors were duly chalked, the music very good, the women very lovely,
and where I fell in again with my dear kinsman, whom I love devotedly,
and whom I jumped half across a quadrille to greet with extended hands,
which must greatly have edified the whole assembly. Likewise I must skip
a most interesting account of a second polemical conversation with ----;
in the course of which, to my great amazement, he managed to introduce a
most vehement abuse of Dr. ----, whose admiration of my singing appears
to have troubled him fully as much as the doctrine of original
sin,--together with many other things worthy of note, which shall now
die in oblivion, and the times return unenlightened to their graves.


_Sunday, 23d._

Was only dressed in time to swallow two mouthfuls of breakfast, and get
ready for church. ---- came to know at what time we would ride, and
walked with us to the church door.

       *       *       *       *       *

       *       *       *       *       *

After church, came home,--habited; went and sat with Mrs. ---- till
half-past one. The villanous servants did not think fit to announce the
horses till they had been at the door full half an hour, so that when we
started it was near two o'clock. D---- seemed quite at her ease upon her
gangling charger, and I had gotten up upon Mr. ----'s big horse, to see
what I could make of him. The day was beautifully bright and clear, with
a warm blessed sunshine causing the wintry world to smile. We had
proceeded more than halfway to Laurel Hill without event, when, driving
my heavy-shouldered brute at a bank, instead of lifting up his feet, he
thought fit to stumble, fall, and fling me very comfortably off upon the
mound. I sprang up neither hurt nor frightened, shook my habit,
tightened my girths, and mounted again; when we set off, much refreshed
by this little incident, which occasioned a world of mirth and many
saucy speeches from my companions to me. At Laurel Hill the master of
the house came bowing forth with the utmost courteousness to meet me,
expressing his profound sense of the honour I did him in deigning to
inhale the air around his abode, and his unspeakable anguish at having
been absent when I had so far condescended before. He was a
foreigner,--French or Italian, or _such like_,--which accounts for his
civility. Had the horses taken to the stable, and their girths
slackened. D---- kept the heights, and ---- and I ran, slipped, slid,
and scrambled down to the water's edge. The river was frozen over, not,
however, strongly enough to bear much, and every jutting rock was hung
with pure glittering icicles that shone like jewels in the bright
sunshine. Far down the river all was still and lonely, and bright, yet
wintry-looking. The flow of the water and its plashing music were still;
there was no breath of wind stirring the leafless boughs; the sunlight
came down, warm and dazzling upon the silent sparkling world, all clad
in its shimmering ice robe: the air was transparent and clear, and the
whole scene was perfectly lovely. Taming to re-ascend the rocks, I
called aloud to D----, and the distinctest loudest echo answered me. So
perfect was the reflection of the sound, that at first I thought some
one was mocking me. I ran up a scale as loud, and high, and rapid as I
could; and, from among the sunny fields, a voice repeated the threaded
notes as clearly, as rapidly, only more softly, with a distinctness that
was startling. I never heard an echo that repeated so much of what was
sung or said. I stood in perfect enchantment, exercising my voice, and
provoking the hidden voice of the air, who answered me with a far-off
tone, that seemed as though the mocking spirit fled along the hill tops,
repeating my notes with a sweet gleeful tone that filled me with
delight. Oh, what must savages think an echo is? How many many lovely
and wild imaginations are suggested by that which natural philosophers
analyse into mere conformations of earth and undulations of air! At
length we joined D----, and walked to the house, where presently
appeared the master of the mansion, with cakes, wine, cordial,
preserves, or, as Comus hath it, "a table covered with all manner of
deliciousness." I was at first a little puzzled by the epithet _cordial_
applied to three goodly-looking _decanters_ full of rosy and golden
liquor, and which ---- informed me is the invariable refreshment
presented to visiters of both sexes who ride or drive up to Laurel Hill.
To satisfy my curiosity, I put my lips to some of it, which proved to be
no other than liqueur, an indifferent sort of noyau--that which soberest
folks in England take but a thimble-full of after dinner, by way of
_chasse-café_, and drunkenest folk would be ashamed to touch in the
morning. It seems that it is otherwise here; and, indeed, generally
speaking, Americans swallow much more of all sorts of spirituous
nauseousness than we do in our country. The men take brandy, in a way
that would astound people of any respectability in England, and in this,
as well as many other ways, contribute to assist the enervating effects
of their climate.[76] Our host waited himself most attentively upon us,
and refused all species of remuneration save thanks, which, indeed, he
said he owed me for so far honouring him as to stuff his cakes and
drink his wine. We mounted again, being refreshed, and, taking leave of
this pearl of innkeepers, continued our ride along the banks of the
Schuylkill, until we came to Manayunk, a manufacturing place, where they
create cottons, and which has the additional advantage of being most
lovelily situated upon the banks of the river, backed by rocky heights,
where the cedar bushes, with their rich dark tufts, and the fine bold
masses of grey granite, together with a hundred little water-courses now
hanging from every ridge they used to flow over in brilliant ice
pendants, had a most beautiful effect. It was getting late, however, and
we pushed on to the bridge; but, lo! when we reached it, it was under
repair and impassable. What was to be done? the sun had withdrawn his
warm rays from the heavens,--the lower earth was shadowy and dark,--a
rich orange light hung over the brow of the ridge of hills on the
opposite side of the river, whose current, rapid and strong, flowed
darkly between beautiful slabs of granite which lay in its path, and
round which the water hurried angrily. What was to be done? To turn back
was disheartening,--to go on for the chance of a bridge was also to run
the chance of being utterly benighted in paths we knew nothing of, and
on horses which were any thing but safe. However, my evident inclination
to the latter course prevailed with my companions. We crossed a narrow
bridge, and pursued a sort of tow-path between the canal and the river.
The glimmering daylight was fading fast from the sky, and the opposite
shores of the river were losing their distinctness of outline, when,
from between two beautiful bold masses of rock which overhung its
entrance, the wooden bridge appeared. I should like to have lingered in
this spot till nightfall, but this was by no means the bargain either
with my fellow-travellers or my horse. So on we went over the bridge,
and, turning to the left, pursued the river's side,--now close down to
its gushing fretful waters, hurrying from between the rocky impediments
of their path,--now high above its course, in the midst of woods growing
to the very edge of the precipitous bank, with rocky ridges rising again
above us, crowned with the black-looking tufts of the cedar, jagged with
icicles, and from which descended, at every ten yards, a trickling rill,
which, smoothed over by the glassy ice, rendered our horses' footing,
particularly in the twilight, very insecure. We were _in for it_; and
when that is the case, 'tis vain making lamentations or piteous
retrospections: I therefore pushed on, with as much care as I could of
Mr. ----'s tumble-down charger, whose headlong motion kept me in
agonies, leaving ---- to take care of dear D----, whose bones I feared
would ach for this adventure most bitterly. The road was perfectly
beautiful. Broad masses of shadowy clouds hung in the sky, and were
reflected in the waters, together with the pale delicate grey of
evening, and the last amber tinge of sunset. We did not reach
Philadelphia till it was perfectly dark. To add to my consternation,
too, when we asked ---- to dine with us, he said that he had an
engagement, for which I began to fear this ill-starred ride would have
kept him too late.

       *       *       *       *       *

       *       *       *       *       *

I came up to my own room, changed my clothes, and went in to see Mrs.
----.

       *       *       *       *       *

       *       *       *       *       *

       *       *       *       *       *

She was completely overpowered with laudanum. Her head was declined upon
a chair.

       *       *       *       *       *

       *       *       *       *       *

       *       *       *       *       *

She looked very lovely, with her beautiful head bowed, and her dark
eyelashes lying on her wan cheeks. Her features were contracted with
suffering. I sat watching her with much heartfelt sadness and interest.
I was summoned away, however, to see some gentlemen who were in the
drawing-room, whither I adjourned, and where I found Mr. ---- and Dr.
----. I was stupid and sleepy, and the gentlemen had the charity not to
keep me up, or make me sing.


_Monday, 24th, Christmas-eve._

After breakfast, put out clothes for to-night. When I came down, found
---- in the drawing-room with my father: paid him his bill, and pottered
an immensity. Went to rehearsal,--afterwards paid all manner of cards
with poor dear D----, who puffed and panted through the streets in order
not to freeze me, which, however, she did not escape.

       *       *       *       *       *

       *       *       *       *       *

After dinner, went and sat with my poor invalid, whom, in spite of her
republicanism, I am greatly inclined to like and admire. Remained with
her till coffee-time. Went to the theatre: the play was the Merchant of
Venice,--my favourite part, Portia. The house was very full: I played
so-soish.

       *       *       *       *       *

       *       *       *       *       *


_Tuesday, 25th, Christmas-day._

I wish you a merry Christmas, poor child! away from home and friends.
Truly, the curse of the old Scriptures has come upon me; my lovers and
my acquaintance are far off from me. After breakfast, practised for and
hour; went and saw Mrs. ----; drove out shopping; saw ---- walking with
my father. Came home and wrote journal: went out with D----; bought a
rocking-horse for Mrs. ----'s chicks, whose merry voices I shall miss
most horribly by and by. Dragged it in to them in the midst of their
dinner. Dined at three. After dinner, went and sat with her till
coffee-time. When I came into the drawing-room, found a beautiful
work-box sent me by that very youthful admirer of mine, Mr. ----. I was
a little annoyed at this, but still more so at my father's desiring me
to return it to him, which I know will be a terrible mortification to
him. Went to the theatre: the house was crammed with men, and very
noisy,--a Christmas audience. Play, Macbeth: I only played so-so. Oh,
me! these marks in the stream of time, over which it breaks as over a
dam, drawing our attention, which without them would even less often
note its rapid, rapid current! They do but become halting-posts for our
souls, round which gather the memories of days and hours escaped and
gone from us for ever.[77]

       *       *       *       *       *

       *       *       *       *       *


_Wednesday, 26th._

After breakfast, put out things for theatre. When I came down to the
drawing-room, I found a middle-aged gentleman of very respectable
appearance sitting with my father. He rose on my coming in, and, after
bowing to me, continued his discourse to my father thus:--"Yes, sir,
yes; you will find as I tell you, sir, the winter is our profitable
theatrical season, sir; so that if any thing should take you to England,
you can return again at the beginning of next fall." I modestly withdrew
to another end of the room, supposing they were engaged upon business.
But my curiosity was presently attracted by the continuation of his
discourse. "And recollect, sir, and this lady, your daughter, too, if
you please, that what I have said must not on any account be repeated
out of this room. I am myself going immediately to England, and from
thence direct to _Jerusalem_!" I stared. "There, sir, is my real name,
----: the card I sent up to you is not my real name. You see, sir, I am
an Irishman, that is to say, in fact, I am really a Jew. _I am one of
those of the tribe of Ephraim who refused to cross the Red Sea: we were
not to be humbugged by that damned fellow, Moses,--no, sir, we were
not!_" Here my heart jumped into my throat, and my eyes nearly out of my
head with fright and amazement. "Well," continued the poor madman, "I
suppose I may deliver this to the young lady herself;" giving me a small
parcel, which I took from him as if I thought it would explode and blow
me up. "And now, sir, farewell. Remember remember, my words,--in three
years, perhaps, but _certainly_ in ten, _He_ that will come _will come_,
and it's all up with the world, and the children of men!" This most
awful announcement was accompanied with a snap of his fingers, and a
demi-pirouette. He was then rushing out of the room, leaving his cloak
behind him. My father called him back to give it him. He bundled himself
into it, exclaimed, "God bless you both! God bless you both!--remember,
what I have said requires the profoundest secrecy, as you perceive," and
darted out of the room, leaving my father and myself with eyes and mouth
wide open, gaping in speechless astonishment. At last I bethought me of
opening the little packet the madman had left me. It was a small box, on
the cover of which was written, To Miss Kemble, with the compliments of
St. George. I then recollected, that some time past I had received some
verses, in which love and religion were very crazily blended, signed St.
George. But, as I am abundantly furnished with epistles of this sort, I
had flung them aside, merely concluding the writer to be gone a short
way from his wits. The box contained a most beautiful and curious
ornament, something like a Sévigné, highly wrought in gold and enamel,
and evidently very costly. I was more confounded than ever, and did not
recover from my amazement and fright for a long time. I went in to Mrs.
---- to tell her the event. Thence we began talking about young ----'s
box; and, upon her advice, I again spoke to my father and obtained his
leave not to send it back; so I indited him a thankful epistle.
Practised for a short time, and then went to the riding-school. It was
quite empty: I put on my cap and skirt, and was sitting, thinking of
many things, in the little dressing-room, when I heard the school-door
open, and Mr. ---- walked straight up to me.

       *       *       *       *       *

       *       *       *       *       *

       *       *       *       *       *

Dr. ---- called to-day. I was quite glad to see him: he gave me all the
New York news, and brought with him a gentleman, a friend of his, who
nearly made me sick by very deliberately spitting upon the carpet. Mercy
on me! I thought I should have jumped off my chair, I was so disgusted.
Mr. ----, too, does this constantly.

       *       *       *       *       *

       *       *       *       *       *

After dinner, went and sat with Mrs. ----; was called away to see Mr.
----, whom I thanked for his present.

       *       *       *       *       *

       *       *       *       *       *

Went to the theatre at half-past five. The house was very fair,
considering the weather, which was very foul. Play, School for Scandal.
They none of them knew their parts, or remembered their
business--delightful people, indeed! I played only so-so. ---- supped
with us. He is a very gentlemanly nice person, and I am told he is
extremely amiable.

       *       *       *       *       *

       *       *       *       *       *

       *       *       *       *       *

He told me sundry steam-boat stories that made my blood curdle; such as,
a public brush, a public comb, and a public _tooth-brush_. Also, of a
gentleman who was using his own tooth-brush,--a man who was standing
near him said, "I'll trouble you for that article when you've done with
it." When he had done with it, the gentleman presented it to him, and on
receiving it again, immediately threw it into the river, to the infinite
amazement of the borrower, who only exclaimed, "Well, however, you're a
queer fellow."[78]


_Thursday, 27th._

After breakfast, went to rehearsal. Katharine and Petruchio. After
rehearsal, went to the riding-school. It was quite empty, except of Mr.
----, and Mr. ----.

       *       *       *       *       *

       *       *       *       *       *

       *       *       *       *       *

Came home: found a letter to me from that strange madman. On opening it,
it proved a mere envelope, containing a visiting-card with the name St.
George upon it. After dinner, wrote journal; went and sat with Mrs. ----
till coffee-time. I have had a most dreadful side-ach all day.

       *       *       *       *       *

       *       *       *       *       *

       *       *       *       *       *

At half-past five, went to the theatre. Play, Much Ado about Nothing;
farce, Katharine and Petruchio.

       *       *       *       *       *

At the end I was so tired, and so overcome with the side-ach, that I lay
down on the floor perfectly done up.


_Friday, 28th._

After breakfast, ---- called. Settled to ride, if possible, to-morrow. I
would give the world for a good shaking. I'm dying of the blue devils: I
have no power to rouse myself.

       *       *       *       *       *

       *       *       *       *       *

       *       *       *       *       *

When ---- was gone, sat down to practise. Tried Mrs. Hemans's Messenger
Bird, but the words were too solemn and too sad: I sobbed instead of
singing, and was a little relieved. Went in to see Mrs. ----. She seemed
better; she was _en toilette_, in a delicate white wrapper, with her
fine hair twisted up round her classical head. She is a beautiful
person; she is better--an amiable, a sensible, and a pious one; I am
very deeply interested by her; I like her extremely. At half-past one,
went to the riding-school. I met there a daughter of old Lady ----'s,
who introduced herself to me, and asked leave to stay and see me ride,
which leave I gave her. The bay pony is, however, fairly ruined. A
little wretch not twelve years old had just been riding it: it had
fallen from all its paces, and went so lame that I gave up riding, and
sat disconsolately enough in the little dressing-closet, looking through
a window six inches square, at the blessed mild blue heavens, and
longing for wings, till my soul was like to faint.

       *       *       *       *       *

       *       *       *       *       *

After dinner, wrote journal. Went in and sat with Mrs. ----. By the by,
that worthy youth, Mr. ----, dined with us. I got rid of some of my
vapours by sundry hearty laughs at him. I am sorry to leave Philadelphia
on Mrs. ----'s account. I am growing to her. Oh, Lord! how soon, how
soon we do this!--how we do cling to every thing in spite of the
pitiless wrenches of time and chance! Her dear babies are delightful to
me; their laughing voices have power to excite and make me happy,--and
when they come dancing to meet me, my heart warms very fondly towards
them.

       *       *       *       *       *

       *       *       *       *       *

She amuses me much by her intense anxiety that I should be married.
First, she wishes ---- would propose to me; then she thinks Mr. ----'s
estates in Cuba would be highly acceptable; in short, my single
blessedness seems greatly to annoy her, and I believe she attributes
every thing evil in life to that same. She seemed surprised, and a
little shocked, when I said I would accept death most thankfully in
preference to the happiest lot in life,--and so I would--I would. Yet
death----. 'Tis strange, that Messenger Bird threw more than a passing
gloom over me. If the dead do indeed behold those whom they have loved,
with loving eyes and fond remembrance, do not the sorrows, the
weariness, the toiling, the despairing of those dear ones rise even into
the abodes of peace, and wring the souls of those who thence look down
upon the earth, and see the woe and anguish suffered here? Or, if they
do not feel,--if, freed from this mortal coil, they forget all they have
suffered, all that we yet endure, oh! then what fourfold trash is human
love! what vain and miserable straws are all the deep, the dear, the
grasping affections twined in our hearts' fibres,--mingled with our
blood! How poor are all things,--how beggarly is life! Oh! to think that
while we yet are bowed in agony, and mourning over the dead,--while our
bereaved hearts are aching, and our straining eyes looking to that
heaven, beyond which we think they yet may hear our cries, they yet may
see our anguish, the dead, the loved, the mourned, nor see, nor hear; or
if they do, look down with cold and careless gaze upon the love that
lifts our very souls in desperate yearning towards them. Yet one of the
two must surely be: either the other life is like this, a life of pain,
though not like this, perhaps, a life of selfishness; or this earth, and
time, and all they hold, are a more hollow mockery than even I sometimes
dream they are. I will not think any more of it. We went to the theatre
at half-past five. Play, Hunchback; after it, Katharine and Petruchio. I
thought I should have died of the side-ach,--I was in perfect agony. The
people here are more civil and considerate than can be imagined. I sent,
yesterday evening, for some water-ice: the confectioner had none; when,
lo! to-night he brings me some he has made on purpose for me, which he
entreats my acceptance of. I admired a very pretty fan Mrs. ---- had in
her hand; and at the end of the play she had it sent to my
dressing-room;--and these sort of things are done by me, not once, but
ten times every day. Nothing can exceed the kindness and attention which
has encountered us every where since we have been in this country. I am
sure I am bound to remember America and Americans thankfully; for,
whatever I may think of their ways, manners, or peculiarities, to me
they have shown unmingled good will, and cordial real kindness. Remained
up, packing, till two o'clock.


TO ---- ----.

     Many a league of salt sea rolls
     Between us, yet I think our souls,
     Dear friend, are still as closely tied
     As when we wander'd side by side,
     Some seven years gone, in that fair land
     Where I was born. As hand in hand
     We lived the showery spring away,
     And, when the sunny earth was gay
     With all its blossoms, still together
     We pass'd the pleasant summer weather,
     We little thought the time would come,
     When, from a trans-Atlantic home,
     My voice should greet you lovingly
     Across the deep dividing sea.
     Oh, friend! my heart is sad: 'tis strange,
     As I sit musing on the change
     That has come o'er my fate, and cast
     A longing look upon the past,
     That pleasant time comes back again
     So freshly to my heart and brain,
     That I half think the things I see
     Are but a dream, and I shall be
     Lying beside you, when I wake,
     Upon the lawn beneath the brake,
     With the hazel copse behind my head,
     And the new-mown fields before me spread.

     It is just twilight: that sweet time
     Is short-lived in this radiant clime,--
     Where the bright day, and night more bright,
     Upon the horizon's verge unite,
     Nor leave those hours of ray serene,
     In which we think of what has been:
     And it is well; for here no eye
     Turns to the distant days gone by:

         They have no legendary lore
         Of deeds of glory done of yore,--
         No knightly marvel-haunted years,
         The nursery tales of adult ears:
         The busy present, bright to come,
         Of all their thoughts make up the sum:
         Little their little past they heed;
         Therefore of twilight have no need.

     Yet wherefore write I thus? In the short span
     Of narrow life doled out to every man,
     Though he but reach the threshold of the track,
     Where from youth's better path, strikes out the worse,
     If he has breathed so long, nor once look'd back,
     He has not borne life's load, nor known God's curse.

     And yet, but for that glance that o'er and o'er
     Goes tearfully, where we shall go no more;
     Courting the sunny spots, where, for a day,
     Our bark has found a harbour on its way;
     O! but for this, this power of conjuring
     Hours, days, and years into the magic ring,
     Bidding them yield the show of happiness,
     To make our real misery seem less,
     Life would be dreary. But these memories start,
     Sometimes, unbidden on the mourner's heart;
     Unwish'd, unwelcome, round his thoughts they cling,--
     In vain flung off, still dimly gathering,
     Like melancholy ghosts, upon the path
     Where he goes sadly, seeking only death.

     Then live again the forms of those who lie
     Gather'd into the grave's dark mystery.
     Vainly at reason's voice the phantom flies,--
     It comes, it still comes back to the fond eyes,--
     Still, still the yearning arms are spread to clasp
     The blessing that escapes their baffled grasp:
     Still the bewildering memory mutters "Gone!"
     Still, still the clinging aching heart loves on.
     Oh, bitter! that the lips on which we pour
     Love's fondest kisses, feel the touch no more;
     Oh, lonely! that the voice on which we call
     In agony, breaks not its silent thrall;
     Oh, fearful! that the eyes in which we gaze
     With desperate hope through their thick filmy haze,
     Return no living look to bless our sight!
     Oh, God! that it were granted that one might
     But once behold the secret of the grave,--
     That but one voice from the all-shrouding cave
     Might speak,--that but one sleeper might emerge
     From the deep death-sea's overwhelming surge!
     Speak, speak from the grey coffins where ye lie
     Fretting to dust your foul mortality!
     Speak, from your homes of darkness and dismay,--
     To what new being do ye pass away?--
     O _do_ ye live, indeed?--speak, if on high
     One atom springs whose doom is not to die!--
     Where have I wandered?

       *       *       *       *       *

       *       *       *       *       *


_Saturday, 29th._

When I came down to breakfast, found a very pretty diamond ring and some
Scotch rhymes, from Mr. ----, what we call a small return of favours. I
wish my hand wasn't so abominably ugly,--I hate to put a ring upon it.
---- called to see if we would ride; but D---- had too much to do; and,
after sitting pottering for some time, I sang him the Messenger Bird,
and sent him away. Went for a few moments to Mrs. ----, who seemed much
better. Went out to pay sundry bills and visits. Called at Mr. ----'s,
and spent half an hour most delightfully in his study. His picture of my
father is very like, and very agreeable. 'Tis too youthful by a good
deal; but the expression of the face is extremely good, and upon the
whole, except that stern-looking thing of Kearsley's, 'tis the likest
thing I have seen of him. We had a long discussion about the
stage,--the dramatic art; which, as Helen says, "is none," for, "no art
but taketh time and pains to learn." Now I am a living and breathing
witness that a person may be accounted a good actor, and to a certain
degree deserve the title, without time or pains of any sort being
expended upon the acquisition of the reputation. But, on other grounds,
acting has always appeared to me to be the very lowest of the arts,
admitting that it deserves to be classed among them at all, which I am
not sure it does. In the first place, it originates nothing; it lacks,
therefore, the grand faculty which all other arts possess--creation. An
actor is at the best but the filler-up of the outline designed by
another,--the expounder, as it were, of things which another has set
down; and a fine piece of acting is at best, in my opinion, a fine
translation. Moreover, it is not alone to charm the senses that the
nobler powers of mind were given to man; 'tis not alone to enchant the
eye, that the gorgeous pallet of the painter, and the fine chisel of the
statuary, have become, through heavenly inspiration, magical wands,
summoning to life images of loveliness, of majesty, and grace; 'tis not
alone to soothe the ear that music has possessed, as it were, certain
men with the spirit of sweet sounds; 'tis not alone to delight the
fancy, that the poet's great and glorious power was given him, by which,
as by a spell, he peoples all space, and all time, with undying
witnesses of his own existence; 'tis not alone to minister to our senses
that these most beautiful capabilities were sown in the soil of our
souls. But 'tis that, through them, all that is most refined, most
excellent and noble, in our mental and moral nature, may be led through
their loveliness, as through a glorious archway, to the source of all
beauty and all goodness. It is that by them our perceptions of truth may
be made more vivid, our love of loveliness increased, our intellect
refined and elevated, our nature softened, our memory stored with images
of brightness, which, like glorious reflections, falling again upon our
souls, may tend to keep alive in them the knowledge of, and the desire
after, what is true, and fair, and noble. But, that art may have this
effect, it must be to a certain degree enduring. It must not be a
transient vision, which fades and leaves but a recollection of what it
was, which will fade too. It must not be for an hour, a day, or a year,
but abiding, inasmuch as any thing earthly may abide, to charm the sense
and cheer the soul of generation after generation. And here it is that
the miserable deficiency of acting is most apparent. Whilst the poems,
the sculptures, of the old Grecian time yet remain to witness to these
latter ages the enduring life of truth and beauty; whilst the poets of
Rome, surviving the trophies of her thousand victories, are yet familiar
in our mouths as household words; whilst Dante, Boccaccio, that giant,
Michael Angelo, yet live, and breathe, and have their being amongst us,
through the rich legacy their genius has bequeathed to time; whilst the
wild music of Salvator Rosa, solemn and sublime as his painting, yet
rings in our ears, and the souls of Shakspeare, Milton, Raphael, and
Titian, are yet shedding into our souls divinest influences from the
very fountains of inspiration;--where are the pageants that, night after
night, during the best era of dramatic excellence, riveted the gaze of
thousands, and drew forth their acclamations?--gone, like rosy sunset
clouds;--fair painted vapours, lovely to the sight, but vanishing as
dreams, leaving no trace in heaven, no token of their ever having been
there. Where are the labours of Garrick, of Macklin, of Cooke, of
Kemble, of Mrs. Siddons?--chronicled in the dim memories of some few of
their surviving spectators; who speak of them with an enthusiasm which
we, who never saw them, fancy the offspring of that feeling which makes
the old look back to the time of their youth as the only days when the
sun knew how to shine. What have these great actors left, either to
delight the sense or elevate the soul, but barren names, unwedded to a
single lasting evidence of greatness! If, then, acting be alike without
the creating power and the enduring property, which are at once the
highest faculty of art, and its most beneficial purpose, what becomes of
it when ranked with efforts displaying both in the highest degree? To me
it seems no art,[79] but merely a highly rational, interesting, and
exciting amusement; and I think men may as well, much better, perhaps,
spend three hours in a theatre than in a billiard or bar-room,--and this
is the extent of my approbation and admiration of my art. Called on Mrs.
----, whom I like very much. Went to the riding-school to try a new
horse, which was ten hands high, all covered with shaggy angry-looking
hair, with a donkey's head, and cart-horse legs, with one of which he
peached. ---- came to see me mount. Dr. ----'s grey horse was standing
in the school with a man's saddle on. I persuaded ---- to put me on it,
and I then sent him away.

       *       *       *       *       *

       *       *       *       *       *

When he was gone, rode for about an hour without any pommel, and found I
managed it famously. I slipped my foot out of the stirrup in order to
see if I could sit without both; but this proved rather too much, for I
presently slid very comfortably off. On my way home, met young ----,
with his head so completely in the clouds, that I had bowed to him, and
was driving on, when he just perceived me, and fell into a confusion of
bows, which he continued long after the coach had passed him. Found the
usual token of his having been at our house--a most beautiful nosegay;
roses, hyacinths, and myrtle. While I was arranging them, I heard a
tremendous shriek of laughter in the hall, which was followed by the
appearance of Mr. ----. After sitting with him some time, I went and sat
with Mrs. ----. The amiable Chargé d'Affaires dined with us. After
dinner, went to see Mrs. ----; but she was too unwell to receive me.

       *       *       *       *       *

       *       *       *       *       *

Saw Dr. ----, who expressed manifold deplorings at my departure: gave
him the words of the Sisters. At half-past five, went to the theatre:
play, the Wonder. I acted only so-so: my father was a _leetle dans les
vignes du Seigneur_. When the play was over, the folk called for us, and
we went on: he made them a neat speech, and I nothing but a cross face
and three courtesies. How I do hate this! 'Tis quite enough to exhibit
myself to a gaping crowd, when my profession requires that I should do
so in a feigned semblance; but to come bobbing and genuflexioning on, as
me myself, to be clapped and shouted at, and say, "Thank ye kindly," is
odious. After the play, dressed, and off to Mrs. ----, with my father
and Mr. ----. On our way thither, the spring of our coach broke, and we
had to go halting along for half an hour, with a graceful inclination
towards the pavement on one side, which was very pleasant. There was
quite a brilliant party at Mrs. ----'s. Told Mr. ---- that I had thrown
his horse down. Saw and spoke to all Philadelphia. ---- was there, and
actually sitting still. Fell in love with Mr. ----'s youngest son, who
is a youth of some ten years old, and hovers round me with a plenitude
of silent admiration and astonishment that is most delightful. Miss
----, who is a very pretty creature (in fact, all American women are
pretty creatures, I never saw any prettier), sang Dalla Gioga e del
Piacer. She sings very well, but pronounces Italian very Americanly,
which is a pity. I don't know any thing so necessary to good singing as
a good Italian pronunciation, _except_ perhaps a good voice, and a good
school. They made me sing, and I sang them the galley song, after which
Miss ---- warbled again. They were surrounding me again, with a shower
of "pray do's," when perceiving D---- making towards me, with my boa on
her arm, I sat down and sang them, "Yes, aunt, I am ready to go," to
their infinite edification. I wonder if Mrs. ---- would object to this;
I should think not, as ---- is not here to catch it again.

       *       *       *       *       *

       *       *       *       *       *

Came home, and supped. I had eaten nothing since four o'clock, and was
famished; for I do not like stewed oysters and terrapins, which are the
refreshments invariably handed round at an American evening party. Did
not get to bed till two o'clock. How beautifully bright the heavens are
here! The sky has an earnest colour that is lovely and solemn to look
at; and the moon, instead of being "the maiden with white fire laden,"
has a rich, mellow, golden light, than which nothing can be more
beautiful. The stars, too, are more vivid than in our skies, and there
is a variety of hues in their light which I never observed before,--some
reddish, some violet, and again others of the palest silver.


_Sunday, 30th._

After breakfast, Mr. ---- called, also ----, to know at what time we
would ride. I fixed at twelve, thereby calculating that we should escape
the people coming out from church. Went and sat a few minutes with Mrs.
----.

       *       *       *       *       *

       *       *       *       *       *

       *       *       *       *       *

Spent my Sunday morning on my knees, indeed, but packing, not praying.
The horses did not come till half-past twelve; so that, instead of
avoiding, we encountered the pious multitude. I'm sure when we mounted
there were not less than a hundred and fifty beholders round the Mansion
House. Rode out to Laurel Hill. The cross road was muddy, so we took the
turnpike, which was clean and short, and would have been pleasant enough
but for my brute of a horse. Upon my word, these American horses are
most unsafe to ride. I never mount one but I recommend myself to the
care of Heaven, for I expect to have every bone in my body broken before
I dismount again. At Laurel Hill we lunched. While D---- put up her
hair, ---- and I ran down to the water side. The ice had melted from the
river, in whose still waters the shores, and trees, and bridge lay
mirrored with beautiful and fairy-like distinctness. The long icicles
under the rocky brow beneath which we stood had not melted away, though
the warm sun was shining brilliantly on them, and making the granite
slab on which we stood sparkle like a pavement of diamonds. I called to
the echo, and sang to it scales up, and scales down, and every manner of
musical discourse I could think of, during which interesting amusement I
as nearly as possible slipped from my footing into the river, which
caused both ---- and myself to gulp. We left our pleasant sunny stand at
last, to rejoin D---- and the lunch, and, having eaten and drunken, we
remounted and proceeded on to Manayunk, under the bright, warm, blessed
sunshine, which came down like a still shining shower upon the earth.
The beautiful little water-courses had all broken from their diamond
chains, and came dancing and singing down the hills, between the cedar
bushes, and the masses of grey granite, like merry children laughing as
they run. After crossing the bridge at Flat Rock, I took the van, riding
by myself much faster than my companions, whom I left to entertain each
other. Several times, as I looked down at the delicious fresh water, all
rosy with the rosy light of the clouds, and gushing round the masses of
rock that intercepted their channel, I longed to jump off my horse, and
go down among their shallow brilliant eddies. The whole land was mellow
with warm sunset, the sky soft, and bright, and golden, like a dream. I
stopped for a long time opposite the Wissihiccon creek. The stone
bridge, with its grey arch, mingled with the rough blocks of rock on
which it rested, the sheet of foaming water falling like a curtain of
gold over the dam among the dark stones below, on whose brown sides the
ruddy sunlight and glittering water fell like splinters of light. The
thick, bright, rich tufted cedars basking in the warm amber glow, the
picturesque mill, the smooth open field along whose side the river
waters, after receiving this child of the mountains into their bosom,
wound deep, and bright, and still, the whole radiant with the softest
light I ever beheld, formed a most enchanting and serene subject of
contemplation. Further on, I stopped again, to look at a most beautiful
mass of icicles, formed by some water falling from a large wooden
conduit which belonged to a mill. The long thick masses of silvery white
clung in downward pyramids together, and on the ground, great round
balls of purest transparent ice, like enormous crystal grapes, lay
clustered upon each other. I waited on a little sunny knoll above this
glittering fairy work, till my companions joined me, when, leaving D----
to pursue the main road, ---- and I turned off, and explored a pretty
ravine, down which another mountain stream, half free wild water, half
shimmering diamond ice, sparkled in the sunset. We reached Philadelphia
at half-past four, and had again to canter down Chestnut Street just as
the folks were all coming from church, which caused no little staring,
and turning of heads. My father asked ---- to dine with us, but he
refused. Mr. ---- dined with us. After dinner, went in to pay my last
visit to my poor sick friend. I sat with her until summoned to see some
gentlemen in the drawing-room. It pained me to part from her; for
though she exerted herself bravely, she was very much overcome. I fear
she will miss me, poor thing; I had become very much attached to her. I
went in to bid Mrs. ---- good-by. ---- was not gone to bed; I took her
in my arms and kissed her, saying I should not see her for a long time
again. The tears came into her baby eyes, and she said very sadly, "God
bless you, Fanny." How curious a train of associations that word
produced in me! It brought ----, and Lord ----, and that beautiful
creature his child, before my very eyes. But her father had told little
Lady ---- to say that,--I am sure he did; now this little creature
blessed me out of her own heart. A child's blessing is a holy thing.
Came into the drawing-room. Found Dr. ----, young Mr. ----, and Mr. ----
there. Presently, Mr. ---- came in, with Baron ----, a man with a thick
head, thick white hair, that stood out round it like a silver halo, and
gold ear-rings. I sang to them till past ten o'clock, and then came to
my own room, where I remained up packing and pottering until past two.


_Monday, 31st._

The river being yet open, thank Heaven, we arose at half-past four
o'clock. Dressed sans dawdling for once, and came down.

       *       *       *       *       *

       *       *       *       *       *

D---- and I were bundled into a coach, and rumbled and tumbled over the
stones, through the blackness of darkness down to the steam-boat. ----
was waiting for us, and convoyed us safely to the cabin, where I laid
myself down, and slept till breakfast-time. My father, Captain ----, Mr.
----, and Baron ----, sat themselves down most comfortably to breakfast,
leaving us entirely to the charge and care of ----, who fulfilled his
trust with infinite zeal. 'Tis curious; there was a man on board whom I
have now seen every time I have been going to or from New York to
Philadelphia, whose appearance was in itself very remarkable, and the
subsequent account I received of him perhaps increased the sort of
impression it made upon me. He was a man of about from thirty to
thirty-five, _I guess_, standing about five feet ten, with a great
appearance of strength and activity. His face was that of a foreigner,
the features were remarkably well cut, and the piercing black eyes, dark
hair, and brown complexion, gave a Spanish character to his
countenance. There was a sort of familiar would-be gentlemanly manner in
his deportment and address, and a species of slang gentility in his
carriage and conversation, that gave me a curiosity to ascertain what on
earth he could be. After breakfast, walked up and down deck with ----.
---- was on board. I am happy to hear he is thriving: I love all my
fellow-passengers; and when I see one of them, my heart warms towards
them, as to a bit of the dear old land left behind. After about an
hour's steaming, we disembarked to cross the narrow neck of land which
divides the Delaware from the Chesapeake. Here we got into a coach
holding some twelve of us, to be conveyed over the rail-road by one of
Stevenson's engines. Neither the road nor the conveyances are comparable
to those of the Liverpool and Manchester rail-way; and instead of those
luxurious roomy coaches, which form the merit of the Liverpool train, we
were squeezy and uncomfortable to a degree. The country along this slip
of land is flat and very uninteresting, clothed with threadbare young
woods, whose thin spare skeletons, without their leafy mantles, looked
excessively miserable. The distance from the Delaware to Frenchtown, on
the Elk, where we were again to take water, is about sixteen miles,
which we did in an hour. The first part of the road lies in Delaware,
the latter in Maryland. The Elk, which in this world of huge waters is
considered but a paltry ditch, but which in our country would be thought
a very decent-sized river, was, a few days ago, frozen up, thereby
putting a stop to the steam-boat travelling. But, fortunately for us, it
was open to-day, and presently we beheld the steamer coming puffing up
to take us from the pier. This boat--the Charles Carroll--is one of the
finest they have. 'Tis neither so swift nor so large, I think, as some
of the North river boats, but it is a beautiful vessel, roomy and
comfortable in its arrangements. I went below for a few minutes, but
found, as usual, the atmosphere of the cabin perfectly intolerable. The
ladies' cabin, in winter, on board one of these large steamers, is a
right curious sight. 'Tis generally crammed to suffocation with women,
_strewn_ in every direction. The greater number cuddle round a stove,
the heat of which alone would make the atmosphere unbreathable. Others
sit lazily in a species of rocking-chair,--which is found wherever
Americans sit down,--cradling themselves backwards and forwards, with a
lazy, lounging, sleepy air, that makes me long to make them get up and
walk. Others again manage, even upon fresh water, to be very sick.
There are generally a dozen young human beings, some naughty, sick, and
squalling, others happy, romping, and riotous; and what with the
vibratory motion of the rocking-chairs and their contents, the women's
shrill jabber, the children's shriller wailing and shouting, the heat
and closeness of the air, a ladies' cabin on board an American
steam-boat is one of the most overpowering things to sense and soul that
can well be imagined. There was a poor sick woman with three children,
among our company, two of which were noisy unruly boys, of from eight to
ten years old. One of them set up a howl as soon as he came on board,
which he prolonged, to our utter dismay, for upwards of half an hour
sans intermission, except to draw breath. I bore it as long as I could;
but threats, entreaties, and bribes having been resorted to in vain, by
all the women in the cabin, to silence him, I at length very composedly
took him up in my arms, and deposited him on his back in one of the
upper berths; whereupon his brother flew at his mother, kicking,
thumping, screaming, and yelling. The cabin was in an uproar; the little
wretch I held in my arms struggled like a young giant, and though I
succeeded in lodging him upon the upper shelf, presently slid down from
it like an eel. However, this effort had a salutary effect, for it
obtained silence,--the crying gave way to terror, which produced
silence, of which I availed myself to sleep till dinner-time. At dinner,
---- and Mr. ---- took charge of D---- and me, who, seeing that we were
to get no dinner till six o'clock, thought fit to eat some lunch. The
strange dark man was sitting opposite us, and discoursing away to his
neighbours in a strain and tone in which shrewdness and swagger, and
vulgarity and a sort of braggart gallantry, were curiously jumbled. From
his conversation, it was evident that he was a seafaring man. He spoke
of having been a midshipman on board an American frigate. The question
they were debating was that of superstitious prejudice, involving belief
in lucky and unlucky days, witches, ghosts, etc. The stranger professed
perfect faith in all, and added sundry experiences of his own, at the
same time observing, that with regard to sailors, the strong prejudice
they have against sailing on certain days often creates the very ill
luck they apprehend; for if any danger should occur, 'tis all attributed
to evil influences against which they have no power, and they are at
once deprived of half their energy in labour, and half their courage in
peril. When dinner was over, I pointed out this strange man to my
father, asking him if he had any idea who he was. "I am told," was his
reply, "that he is but just returned from New York, where he has been
tried for piracy." This accounted for every thing,--dare-devil look and
language, seafaring adventures, and superstitious creed. It is a
pleasant mode of travelling that throws one into contact with such
company.

       *       *       *       *       *

       *       *       *       *       *

Touching pirates, Baltimore, I was told (I know not how truly) is famous
for them. They have small schooners there of a particularly light build,
and raking masts, which are the prettiest craft in the world to look at,
and the swiftest that sail sea. The Baltimore clippers are proverbial
for their elegance and fleetness: they are like greyhounds on the water.
These, I was told, were frequently owned by gentlemen of rather an
ambiguous character, something between pirate, smuggler, and wrecker,
perhaps a judicious compound of all three. Their trade is chiefly, I
believe, with and about the West India islands. I looked at my
Spanish-faced friend with redoubled curiosity: he was the very man for a
pirate. We reached Baltimore at about half-past four. The Chesapeake
bay, like the Delaware river, appeared to me admirable only as an
immense sheet of water. At some parts that we passed, it was six, at
others, ten, at others, thirteen miles across. The shores were flat and
uninteresting on one side, but on the other occasionally very
picturesque and beautiful, rising in red-looking cliffs from the water's
edge, and crowned with beautiful green tufts of wood--cedar, I suppose,
for nothing else is green at this time. The curvings of the shore, too,
are very pretty; but, owing to the enormous width of the water, my
imperfect vision could hardly discern the peculiar features of the land.
The day was more lovely than a fine day in early September, in
England,--bright, soft and sunny, with the blue in the sky of the
delicate colour one sees in the Sèvres porcelain. As we entered the
Patapsco, and neared Baltimore, North Point and Fort M'Henry were
pointed out to me. My spirits always sink when I come to a strange
place; and as we came along the wharf sides, under the red dingy-looking
warehouses, between which the water ran in narrow dark-looking canals, I
felt terribly gloomy. We drove up to Barnham's, the best house in the
town; and, having found out where to lay my head, I had my fill of
crying.[80] After dinner, went and lay down; slept profoundly till nine
o'clock. On my return to the drawing-room, found ---- there, and Mr.
----, the man who owns the Front Street theatre, but who it seems is
only just out of gaol, and has neither actors nor scenes to get up a
play withal. While he was here, came missives from the proprietors of
the Holliday Street theatre, to inform my father that it was lighted up,
and requesting him to come and look at it. This was awkward rather. When
Mr. ---- was gone, I came to my room, where I remained without a fire,
cold without and disconsolate within, till past one o'clock. I did not
know it was New-Year's eve; and so the waters carried me over this other
dam without my looking back at what was past, or forward at what is to
come: and why should I?--surely "the thing that hath been, it is that
which shall be; and that which is done, is that which shall be done; and
there is no new thing under the sun:" sorrow and joy, hoping and
fearing, pain and pleasure, laughing and weeping, striving and
yielding,--they will all come again and again, and all things will be
the same, till all things cease.


_Tuesday, January, 1st_, }
  _New-Year's Day_,      } 1833.

There it lies in its cradle! its pure forehead yet unstained by sin,
unfurrowed by care; and not an hour shall have passed without the traces
of both becoming visible. And where is the mother gone? where is the
fulfilled year?--Gone sorrowing to join the crowd of ancestors, who
witness each against me for the unthrift waste I have made of the rich
legacies they one by one have bestowed on me. Oh, new-born year! ere
half thy hours are spent, how often will my weary spirit have wished
them fleeter wings than even those they wear! What secrets are there
folded in thy breast,--what undreamt-of chances,--what strange
befallings,--what unforeseen sorrows,--what unexpected joys! Perhaps,
in the mysterious accomplishments with which thou art laden, my death
may be numbered!--perhaps, ere thy course be duly run, the death of Time
may be decreed! Oh! this life, and all things in it, remind me of the
thin veils of spiders' webs which divided Desire from his aim, and
which, though light and transparent, were so numerous, that to lift them
all away was hopeless. After breakfast, began writing journal. 'Twas not
until dating it that I discovered it was New-year's day. When I did so,
and looked at my strange surroundings, at the gloomy wintry sky, and
thought of the heathenish disregard with which I was passing over, in
this far land, the season of home-gathering and congregating of kin in
my own country, I could not refrain from crying bitterly. In spite of
the pouring rain, and Mr. ----'s hints to keep us away, my father, who
wished to ascertain the truth of the reports with regard to the state of
his theatre, set forward thither with me. We found a very large handsome
house, larger, I think, than the Park, but dirty, dilapidated, and
looking as if there had been eleven executions in it that morning. No
actors, scarcely any scenes,--in short, such a state of things as
rendered it totally impossible for us to think of acting there. Came
home; sat diligently crying the whole morning. The afternoon cleared up,
and became soft and sunny. My father insisted on my taking a walk; so I
bonneted and set out with him. What I saw of the town appeared to me
extremely like the outskirts of Birmingham or Manchester. Bright-red
brick houses, in rows of three and five, with interesting gaps of
gravel-pits, patches of meadow, and open spaces between, which give it
an untidy straggling appearance. They are building in every direction,
however, and in less than two years, these little pauses being filled
up, Baltimore will be a very considerable place; for it covers, in its
present state, a large extent of ground, and contains a vast population.
Immediately after dinner, our host made his entrée with a piano-forte. I
had suggested to Mr. ---- that I should be glad of one; and here it
came. I had asked him to return in the evening, and was glad of the
piano, for it helps the time away. At six o'clock, the managers of the
Holliday Street theatre made their appearance; and my father stating
that Mr. ---- was literally unable to fulfil his engagement with us,
entered into arrangements with them, during which I sat up at a
tremendously high window, looking at the beautiful serious skies, and
radiant moon, and listening to a tolerable band playing sundry of
Rossini's airs. When these men had departed, ---- came in. I sang and
made him sing till tea-time. After that, he entertained us with a very
long, but not very clear, account of the various processes of making,
polishing, etc. steel, as practised in his manufactory. His account of
their hard dealings with the poorer manufacturers was dreadful; and he
himself spoke with horror of it, saying, "Oh, they are so miserably
ground, poor wretches, they cannot be said to live,--they barely exist."
When I remonstrated with him upon the wickedness of such proceedings, he
replied, "We are compelled to do it in self-defence: if we did not use
the same means as other manufacturers, we should presently be
undersold." And this is the game playing all over England at this
moment, in every department of her commerce and manufacture,--this cruel
oppression of the poor, this forcing them by a league against them, as
it were, to toil in bitterness for their scanty daily bread, while those
who thus inhumanly depreciate their labour, and wring their hard
earnings from their starving grasp, grow wealthy on their plunder. Are
not these the things for which God has said he will avenge? Is his
abomination of the false balance, and the stinted measure, and the
unjust reckoning, less than in the days when he said he would visit the
oppressor of the poor, and plead the cause of the widow and fatherless?
Are not these the things that make a nation rotten at core, and ripe for
decay? Are not these the things for which retribution is laid up, and
fourfold restitution will be demanded?--'Tis awful to think of. From
this the conversation grew to the means of obtaining interest upon money
in this country, which the gentlemen discussed together for a length of
time. I listened to them with many sad thoughts. How intent they seemed
in their discourse, how much they appeared to value every slightest
advantage of place or circumstance which enabled them to draw a greater
profit from their capital; how eagerly, how earnestly, they seemed
absorbed in these calculations. I do not know when I have been so
forcibly struck with the worthlessness of money, and the strange
delusion under which all men seem to be labouring, giving up their
lives, as they do, to the hunting of wealth. Are these the cares that
should engross the faculties of immortal souls, and rational thinking
creatures? That we must live, I know, and that money is necessary to
live, I know; but that our glorious capacities of soul, mind, and body,
the fitting exercise of which alone, in itself, is happiness, should
thus be chained down to the altar horns of Mammon, is what I never will
believe wise, right, or fitting. I at length spoke, for my heart was
burning within me, and burst into an eloquent lamentation on the folly
and misery of which the world was guilty in following this base worship
as it does. But when I said that I was convinced happiness might and did
exist most blessedly upon half the means which men spent their lives in
scraping together, my father laughed, and said I was the last person in
the world who could live on little, or be content with the mediocrity I
vaunted. I looked at my satin gown, and held my tongue, but still I was
not convinced. We returned to our music till ten o'clock, when they had
some supper, after which they drank a happy new year to England:--poor
old England, God bless it! At about twelve o'clock, ---- departed. Sat
up a long time at the window, listening to some serenading, which, in
the moonlight, sounded pleasantly enough.[81]


_Sunday, 6th._

At about half-past ten, Mr. ---- called for us, and we walked up to the
cathedral, which is a large unfinished stone building, standing on the
brow of a hill, which is to be the fashionable quarter of the town, and
where there are already some very nice-looking houses. The interior of
the church is large and handsome, and has more the look of a church than
any thing I have been inside of in this country yet. 'Tis full eight
years since I was in a Catholic church; and the sensation with which I
approached the high altar, with its golden crucifix, its marble
entablatures, and its glimmering starry lights, savoured fully as much
of sadness as devotion. I have not been in a Catholic place of worship
since I was at school. How well I remember the beautiful music of the
military mass, the pageants and processions of the feast days at high
mass, and the evening service, not vespers, but the Salut.[82] They sang
that exquisitely mournful and beautiful _Et incarnatus est_, of
Haydn's, which made my blood all run backwards. One thing disgusted me
dreadfully, though the priests who were officiating never passed or
approached the altar without bending the knee to it, they kept spitting
all over the carpet that surrounded and covered the steps to it,
interrupting themselves in the middle of the service to do so, without
the slightest hesitation. We had a very indifferent sermon: the service
was of course in Latin. When it was over, Mr. ---- insisted on showing
me some paintings which hung on either side the grand entrance. These
were a couple of pictures by Paulin Guerin; the one representing the
descent from the cross, the other, the burying of the dead, by St.
Charles, in the Holy Land. I do not understand much about bad pictures,
but I know good ones when I see them; and I think these were not such.
There was no beauty of imagination or poetical conception whatever in
them, and there appeared to me to be manifold glaring faults in the
execution. I could have sworn to their being French pictures. Was
introduced to several people, coming out of church. A little way beyond
the cathedral stands Washington's monument,--a _neat and appropriate_
pillar,--which, together with a smaller one erected at the head of our
street, to the memory of the North Point heroes, has given Baltimore the
appellation of the monumental city, which never could have befallen it
in any other country under heaven but this. At eight o'clock, we went to
Mrs. ----'s. They are all in deep mourning, and the circle was very
small. They are most agreeable pleasant people, with a peculiar
gentleness of manner, like very high breeding, which I have often
observed in Catholics of the better orders. Their conversation appeared
to me totally divested of the disagreeable accent which seems almost
universal in this country. Mrs. ---- talked to me about my aunt
Whitelock, and what a charming actress she was, and what an enchanting
thrilling voice she had. I spent a delightful evening. Before we went
away, Mr. ---- showed us a picture of Lady ----, by Lawrence. It looked
quite refreshing, with its lovely dark curls unfrizzed, and the form of
the neck and arms undisguised by the hideousness of modern fashions. Saw
a very good likeness, too, of the Duke of ----. 'Twas very like him,
though many years younger.

       *       *       *       *       *

       *       *       *       *       *

       *       *       *       *       *

By the by, somebody said that ---- had turned Roman Catholic, and very
devout. Some of the Marys and Magdalens of the old Italian painters are
very converting pictures, with their tearful melancholy eyes, and
golden, glorious, billowy hair. Mrs. ---- amused me very much by her
account of the slaves on their estates, whom, she said, she found the
best and most faithful servants in the world. Being born upon the land,
there exists among them something of the old spirit of clanship, and
"our house," "our family," are the terms by which they designate their
owners. In the south, there are no servants but blacks; for the greater
proportion of domestics being slaves, all species of servitude whatever
is looked upon as a degradation; and the slaves themselves entertain the
very highest contempt for white servants, whom they designate as "poor
white trash."


_Monday, 7th._

Young ---- called, and stayed about an hour with us. At half-past five,
took coffee, and off to the theatre. The play was Romeo and Juliet; the
house was extremely full: they are a delightful audience. My Romeo had
gotten on a pair of trunk breeches, that looked as if he had borrowed
them from some worthy Dutchman of a hundred years ago. Had he worn them
in New York, I could have understood it as a compliment to the ancestry
of that good city; but here, to adopt such a costume in Romeo, was
really perfectly unaccountable. They were of a most unhappy choice of
colours, too,--dull, heavy-looking blue cloth, and offensive crimson
satin, all be-puckered, and be-plaited, and be-puffed, till the young
man looked like a magical figure growing out of a monstrous strange
coloured-melon, beneath which descended his unfortunate legs, thrust
into a pair of red slippers, for all the world like Grimaldi's legs _en
costume_ for clown. The play went off pretty smoothly, except that they
broke one man's collar-bone, and nearly dislocated a woman's shoulder by
flinging the scenery about. My bed was not made in time, and when the
scene drew, half a dozen carpenters in patched trowsers and tattered
shirt-sleeves were discovered smoothing down my pillows, and adjusting
my draperies. The last scene is too good not to be given verbatim:--


     ROMEO.                    Rise, rise, my Juliet,
     And from this cave of death, this house of horror,
     Quick let me snatch thee to thy Romeo's arms.


Here he pounced upon me, plucked me up in his arms like an uncomfortable
bundle, and staggered down the stage with me.


     JULIET. (_aside._) Oh, you've got me up horridly!--that'll never
     do; let me down, pray let me down.

     ROMEO. There, breathe a vital spirit on thy lips,
            And call thee back, my soul, to life and love!

     JULIET. (_aside._) Pray put me down; you'll certainly throw me down
     if you don't set me on the ground directly.


In the midst of "cruel cursed fate," his dagger fell out of his dress;
I, embracing him tenderly, crammed it back again, because I knew I
should want it at the end.


      ROMEO. Tear not our heart-strings thus! They crack! they
     break!--Juliet! Juliet! (_dies._)

     JULIET. (_to corpse._) Am I smothering you?

     CORPSE. (_to Juliet._) Not at all; could you be so kind, do you
     think, as to put my wig on again for me?--it has fallen off.

     JULIET. (_to corpse._) I'm afraid I can't, but I'll throw my
     muslin veil over it. You've broken the phial, haven't you?

     (_Corpse nodded._)

     JULIET. (_to corpse._) Where's your dagger?

     CORPSE. (_to Juliet._) 'Pon my soul, I don't know.


_Sunday, 13th._

By half-past ten we were packed in what in this country is termed an
_exclusive extra_, _i. e._ a stage-coach to ourselves, and progressing
towards Washington. The coach was comfortable enough, and the country,
for the first twelve or fifteen miles, owing to the abominable account I
had heard of it from every body, disappointed me rather agreeably. It
was by no means so dreary or desolate as I had been led to expect. There
was considerable variety in its outline, and the quantity of cedar
thickets scattered over it took away from the comfortless threadbare
look of the wintry woods. Threadbare, indeed, the trees can scarce be
called; for the leaves of the black oak, instead of falling as they
fade, remain upon the branches, and give the trees more the effect of
being lightning-struck, or accidentally blasted, than withered by the
fair course of the seasons. I think the effect is more disagreeable than
that of absolutely bare leafless boughs. When near, the trees look
singularly deplorable and untidy, although at the distance, the
red-brown of the faded oaks mingling with the bright, vivid, green
cedars, and here and there a silver-barked buttonwood tree raising its
white delicate branches from among them, produce a very agreeable and
harmonious blending to the eye. The soil, the banks by the road-side,
and broken ridges of ravines, and water-courses, attracted my attention
by the variety and vividness of their colours; the brightest red and
yellow, and then again pale green, and rich warm gravel-colour. I wished
I had been a geologist. How much pleasure of reflection and
contemplation is lost to the ignorant, whose outward sense wanders over
the objects that surround it, deriving from them but half the delight
that they give the wise and well-informed; even fancy is at fault, for
fancy itself scarce devises images more strange, and beautiful, and
wonderful, than the reality of things presents to those who understand
their properties and natures. The waters were all fast frozen up, and
one or two little pools, all curdled with ice, and locked up in deep
gravelly basins, looked like onyx stones set in gold. As for the road,
we had been assured it was exceedingly good; but mercy on us! I can't
think of it without aching. Here we went up, up, up, and there we went
down, down, down,--now, I was in my father's lap, and now I was half out
of window. The utter impossibility of holding one's self in any one
position for two minutes is absolutely ridiculous. Sometimes we laughed,
and at other times we groaned, at our helpless and hopeless condition;
but at last we arrived, with no bones broken, at about three o'clock, at
the capital and seat of government of the United States.[83] Upon the
height immediately above the city is situated the Capitol, a very
handsome building, of which the Americans are not a little proud; but it
seems placed there by mistake, so little do the miserable untidy hovels
above, and the scattered unfinished red-brick town below, accord with
its patrician marble and high-sounding title. We drove to Gadsby's,
which is an inn like a little town, with more wooden galleries, flights
of steps, passages, door-ways, exits, and entrances, than any building I
ever saw: it reminded me of the house in Tieck's Love-charm. We had not
been arrived a quarter of an hour, when in walked Mr. ---- and Captain
----, and presently Mr. ----. They sat for some time discussing,
laughing, quizzing, and being funny, and then departed. Captain ---- was
telling us a story about a man somewhere up in the lost lands, who was
called Philemon, and whose three sons were paganed (christened, I
suppose, one can't say,) Romulus, Remus, and Tiberius. I thought this
was too good to be true; and D---- and I, laughing over it at dinner,
agreed that we wished any thing of the sort had happened to us. "Some
bread, waiter: what is your name?" said I to the black who was waiting
upon us. "Horatius!" was the reply; which sent me and D---- into fits.


_Monday, 14th._

When I came in to breakfast, found Mr. ----, whom I like mainly. While
he was here, Dr. ---- and ---- came in. I gave the latter a most
tremendous grasp of the hand: it was like seeing a bit of England to see
him. He said to me, "Oh, how strange it is to see you here;" which
caused my eyes to fill with tears, for, Heaven knows, it feels strange
enough. They had hardly been seated two minutes, when in rushed a boy to
call us to rehearsal. I was as vexed as might be. They all departed;
---- faithfully promising to come again, and have a long talk about the
old country: we then set forth to rehearsal. The theatre is the tiniest
little box that ever was seen,--not much bigger, I verily think, than
the baby's play-house at Versailles. When I came to perceive who the
company were, and that sundry of our Baltimore comrades were come on
hither, I begged to be excused from rehearsing, as they had all done
their parts but a few days before with me. At about two o'clock, Mr.
---- came to take us to the Capitol. Mr. ---- was in the drawing-room.
He had just seen the President; and it seems, that far from coming to
any accommodation with the South Carolinians, there is an immediate
probability of their coming to blows. They say, the old General is
longing for a fight; and, most assuredly, to fight would be better, in
this instance, than to give in; for to yield would be virtually to admit
the right of every individual state to dictate to the whole government.
We walked up to the Capitol: the day was most beautifully bright and
sunny, and the mass of white building, with its terraces and columns,
stood out in fine relief against the cloudless blue sky. We went first
into the senate, or upper house, because Webster was speaking, whom I
especially wished to hear. The room itself is neither large nor lofty;
the senators sit in two semi-circular rows, turned towards the
President, in comfortable arm-chairs. On the same ground, and literally
sitting among the senators, were a whole regiment of ladies, whispering,
talking, laughing, and fidgeting. A gallery, level with the floor, and
only divided by a low partition from the main room, ran round the
apartment: this, too, was filled with pink, and blue, and yellow
bonnets; and every now and then, while the business of the house was
going on, and Webster speaking, a tremendous bustle, and waving of
feathers, and rustling of silks, would be heard, and in came streaming a
reinforcement of political beauties, and then would commence a jumping
up, a sitting down, a squeezing through, and a how-d'-ye-doing, and a
shaking of hands. The senators would turn round; even Webster would
hesitate, as if bothered by the row, and, in short, the whole thing was
more irregular, and unbusiness-like, than any one could have
imagined.[84] Webster's face is very remarkable, particularly the
forehead and eyes. The former projects singularly, absolutely
overhanging the latter, which have a very melancholy, and occasionally
rather wild, expression. The subject upon which he was speaking was not
one of particular interest,--an estimate of the amount of French
spoliations, by cruizers and privateers, upon the American commerce. The
heat of the room was intolerable; and after sitting till I was nearly
suffocated, we adjourned to the House of Representatives. On our way
thither, we crossed a very beautiful circular vestibule, which holds the
centre of the building. It was adorned with sundry memorable passages in
American history, done into pictures by Colonel Trumbull. In the House
of Representatives we were told we should hear nothing of interest, so
turned off, under Mr. ----'s escort, to the Library, which is a
comfortable well-sized room, where we looked over Audubon's Ornithology,
a beautiful work, and saw a man sitting, with his feet upon the table,
reading, which is an American fashion. Met half the New York world
there. After we had stayed there some time, we went into the House of
Representatives. The room itself is lofty and large, and very handsome,
but extremely ill-constructed for the voice, which is completely lost
among the columns, and only reaches the gallery, where listeners are
admitted, in indistinct and very unedifying murmurs. The members not
unfrequently sit with their feet upon their desks. We walked out upon
the terrace, and looked at the view of the Potomac, and the town, which,
in spite of the enlivening effect of an almost summer's sky, looked
dreary and desolate in the extreme. We then returned home. At half-past
five, we went to the theatre. We were a long time before we could
discover, among the intricate dark little passages, our own private
entrance, and were as nearly as possible being carried into the pit by a
sudden rush of spectators making their way thither: I wish we had been;
I think I should like to have seen myself very much. The theatre is
absolutely like a doll's play-house: it was completely crammed with
people. I played ill; I cannot act tragedy within half a yard of the
people in the boxes. By the by, a theatre may very easily be too small
for tragedies which is admirably adapted to comedies. In the latter
species of dramatic representations, the incidents, characters, manners,
and dresses, are, for the most part, modern,--such as we meet with, or
can easily imagine, in our own drawing-rooms, and among our own society.
There is little if any exaggeration of colouring necessary, and no great
exertion of fancy needful either in the actor or audience in executing
and witnessing such a performance. On the contrary, comedy,--high
comedy,--generally embodying the manners, tone, and spirit of the higher
classes of society, the smaller the space, consistent with ease and
grace of carriage, in which such personifications take place, the less
danger there is of the actor's departing from that natural, quiet, and
refined deportment and delivery, which are, in the present day, the
general characteristics of polished society. 'Tis otherwise with tragic
representations. They are unnatural, not positively, but comparatively
unnatural; the incidents are, for the most part, strange, startling,
unusual; and though they always must be within possibility, in order to
excite the sympathies of beholders,--though some of them may even be
historical facts,--yet they are, for the most part, events which come
within the probabilities of few of us, and this renders necessary a
degree of excitement and elevation in the mind of the spectator, foreign
to, and at variance with, the critical spirit of prosaic reality. Again,
the scene of a comedy is generally a drawing-room; and the smaller the
stage, the greater is the possibility of rendering it absolutely like
what we all have seen, and are daily in the habit of seeing; but to
represent groves and mountains, or lakes, or the dwellings of the kings
of the earth, satisfactorily to the spectator's mind, there must be a
certain distance observed, from which the fancy may take its stand for
the best perception of what is intended. Whereas, in closer contact with
such scenes, not only does their immediate proximity convey an
unpleasing consciousness of the unreality of the whole, but the near and
absolute detail of paint, canvass, and gilding, is obtruded in a manner
that destroys all illusion, and, by disturbing the effect of the whole
upon the spectator, necessarily weakens that part which depends solely
upon the actor. The same thing applies to dress. Foil-stone, paste, and
coloured glass, by French ingenuity have been manufactured into toys,
which, with the help of distance, may be admitted as representing the
splendours of Eastern costume, or even the glittering trappings of those
gaudy little superhumans, the fairies. But nearness utterly dissolves
the spell, and these substitutes for magnificence become palpable
impositions, and very often most ludicrous ones. I have often been
accused of studying my attitudes; but the truth is, that most things
that are presented to my imagination, instead of being mere
abstractions, immediately assume form and colour, and become pictures;
these I constantly execute on the stage as I had previously seen them in
my fancy: but as few pictures as large as life admit of being seen to
best effect immediately close to the spectator, so the whole effect
produced by a graceful attitude, fine colours, or skilful grouping on
the stage, is considerably diminished when the space is restricted, and
the audience brought too near the performers. So much for little
theatres. ---- came in after the play. He told us that as he was coming
out of the theatre, a Kentuckian accosted him with, "Well, what do you
think of that 'ere _gal_?"--"Oh," hesitatingly replied ----, "I don't
quite know."--"Well," retorted the questioner, "any how, I guess she's
o' some account!"


_Tuesday, 15th._

At eleven o'clock, Mr. ---- called. Went with him to see the original of
the Declaration of Independence, also a few medals, for the most part
modern ones, and neither of much beauty or curiosity. Afterwards went to
the War-Office, where we saw sundry Indian properties,--bows and arrows,
canoes, smoking-pipes, and, what interested me much more, the pictures
of a great many savage chiefs, and one or two Indian women. The latter
were rather pretty: the men were not any of them handsome; scorn round
the mouth, and cunning in the eyes, seemed to be the general
characteristic of all their faces. There was a portrait of Red Jacket,
which gave me a most unpoetical low-life impression of that great
palaverer. The names of many of them delighted me,--as, _the Ever-awake;
the Man that stands and strikes; the North Wind_. One of the women's
names amused me a great deal,--_the Woman that spoke first_; which title
occasioned infinite surmise among us as to the occasion on which she
earned it. After we had done seeing what was to be seen, we went on to
the President's house, which is a comfortless handsome-looking building,
with a withered grass-plot enclosed in wooden palings in front, and a
desolate reach of uncultivated ground down to the river behind. Mr. ----
gave us a most entertaining account of the levees, or rather public
days, at the President's house. Every human being has a right to present
himself there; the consequence is, that great numbers of the very
commonest sort of people used to rush in, and follow about the servants
who carried refreshments, seizing upon whatever they could get, and
staring and pushing about, to the infinite discomfiture of the more
respectable and better-behaved part of the assembly. Indeed, the
nuisance became so great, that they discontinued the eatables, and in
great measure got rid of the crowd. Mr. ---- assured me that on one of
these occasions, two _ladies_ had themselves lifted up and seated on the
chimney-piece, in order to have a better view of the select
congregation beneath them. Mr. ---- left us to go to the Capitol, and
we came home. ----, Mr. ----, and Captain ---- called. We sat discussing
names; which, in this country, are certainly more ambitious than in any
other in the world.[85] Besides Captain ----'s classical family, Mr.
---- assured us that he knew of a man whose name was _Return Jonathan
Meigs_; and ---- swore to one in New York called _Alonzo Leontes
Agamemnon Beaugardus_. I have myself seen a _Harmanus Boggs_, _Aquila
Jones_, and _Alpheus Brett_; but I have not been favoured with an
acquaintance with any such names as they quoted. ---- appears to me
altered since I saw him in England. He was always silent, and quiet, and
gentle; but there was an air of complacency and contented cheerfulness
about him, which I think he has very much lost: he looks sad and
careworn. I was sorry to see it. After dinner, sat writing journal. Mr.
---- came in and sat some time with us. He is very clever and agreeable,
and I like him greatly.


_Wednesday, 16th._

After breakfast, went to rehearsal. At half past twelve, Mr. ---- came
to ride with me. The horse he had gotten for me was base; but never
mind, the day was exquisitely mild and bright,--the sort of early
spring-feeling day, when in England the bright gold and pale delicate
violet of the crocus buds begin to break the rich dark mould, and the
fragrant gummy leaves of the lilac bushes open their soft brown folds.
We had a very pleasant ride through some pretty woodlands on the
opposite side of the river. At half-past five, went to the theatre. The
play was the Hunchback: the house was crowded. In the last scene, Master
Walter upbraided me thus:--


                                 The engineer
     Who lays the last stone of his sea-built tower,
     And, smiling at it, bids the winds and waves
     To roar and whistle now--but in a night
     Beholds the tempest sporting in its place,
     May look _agash_ as I did.


Also in the exclamation,--


     Fathers, make straws your children: nature's nothing,
     Blood nothing: once in other veins it flows,
     It no more _yawneth_ for the parent flood
     Than doth the stream that from the stream disparts.


Mr. ---- and ---- came in after the play. We had a discussion as to how
far real feeling enters into our scenic performances. 'Tis hard to say:
the general question it would be impossible to answer, for acting is
altogether a monstrous anomaly. John Kemble and Mrs. Siddons were always
in earnest in what they were about; Miss O'Neill used to cry bitterly in
all her tragedy parts; whilst Garrick could be making faces and playing
tricks in the middle of his finest points, and Kean would talk gibberish
while the people were in an uproar of applause at his. In my own
individual instance, I know that sometimes I could turn every word I am
saying into burlesque (_never_ Shakspeare, by the by), and at others my
heart aches, and I cry real, bitter, warm tears, as earnestly as if I
was in earnest.


_Thursday, 17th._

Sat writing journal till twelve o'clock, when we went to Mr. ----'s.
Took him up, and thence proceeded to the Presidency to be presented in
due form. His Excellency Andrew Jackson is very tall and thin, but erect
and dignified in his carriage--a good specimen of a fine old
well-battered soldier. His hair is very thick and grey: his manners are
perfectly simple and quiet, therefore very good; so are those of his
niece, Mrs. ----, who is a very pretty person, and lady of the house,
Mrs. Jackson having been dead some time. He talked about South Carolina,
and entered his protest against scribbling ladies, assuring us that the
whole of the present southern disturbances had their origin in no larger
a source than the nib of the pen of a lady. Truly, if this be true, the
lady must have scribbled to some purpose. We sat a little more than a
quarter of an hour; Mr. ---- was calling at the same time.[86] We
afterwards adjourned to Mr. ----'s house.

       *       *       *       *       *

       *       *       *       *       *

Appointed Mr. ---- to come down directly and ride with me. Drove with my
father and Mr. ---- to leave cards on ----, and then walked home. The
day was bright and fine, but very cold. Habited, and at about one
o'clock Mr. ---- called for me. On going to the door, I found him and
his horse, and a strange, tall, grey horse for me, and a young gentleman
of the name of ----, to whom I understood it belonged, and whom Mr. ----
introduced to me as very anxious to join my party. I was a little
startled at this, as I did not quite think Mr. ---- ought to have
brought any body to ride with me without my leave. However, as I was
riding his horse, I was just as well pleased that he was by, for I
don't like having the responsibility of such valuable property as a
private gentleman's horse to take care of. I told him this, alleging it
as a reason for my preferring to ride an indifferent hack horse, about
which I had no such anxiety. He replied that I need have none about his.
I told him laughingly that I would give him two dollars for the hire of
it, and then I should feel quite happy; all which nonsense passed as
nonsense should, without a comment. He is a son of ----: I thought him
tolerably pleasant and well informed.

       *       *       *       *       *

       *       *       *       *       *

I would have a man who lived in the wretchedest corner of the earth
think his own country the first of countries; for 'tis noble and
natural, one of the most respectable instincts in the human heart. We
rode till half-past three. The horse I was upon was, Mr. ---- assured
me, an English one, but he had been long enough in this world to learn
racking, and forget every other more christian pace; he tired me
dreadfully. After dinner, wrote journal till time to go to the theatre.
The play was the School for Scandal; in the fourth act of which Joseph
Surface assured me that _I was a plethora_!!!--Mr. ---- came in and
supped with us after the play. He gave us a very interesting account of
a school that had been attempted to be formed in Massachusetts, for the
purpose of educating young men of the savage tribes, who were willing to
become Christians, and receive instruction. It was obliged, however, to
be given up, in consequence of several of them having fallen in love
with and married American girls, whom they took away into the woods,
many of them after they were there returning to their savage ways of
living, which must have placed their wretched Christian wives in a
horrible situation.


_Friday, 18th._

At eleven, Mr. ---- called to take D---- and myself to the War-Office: I
wanted her to see the Indian spoils there. On our way thither, he read
us some very pretty verses which he had written upon the subject of the
"woman who spoke first." When we had seen what we wanted to see, we
returned home, and I began to habit. While doing so, received a most
comical Yankee note, signed by Mr. ----, but written, I am sure, by
Captain ----, to apprize me that the former was unwell, but that he,
Captain ----, would accompany me on horseback, if I pleased. The note
was exquisite. I finished dressing, and then we set off. I charged
Captain ---- with the note, and he pleaded guilty,--the thing was
evident. While we were riding, Captain ---- told me sundry most
exquisite native morceaux, and one thing that half-killed me with
laughing. Mr. ----'s negro servant and Mr. ----'s conversing together
about me, one asked the other if he had seen me yet at the theatre, to
which Mr. ----'s man replied, "No, sir; I have had the pleasure of
seeing Miss Kemble in private society:"--he brings my horse down every
morning for me!

       *       *       *       *       *

       *       *       *       *       *

       *       *       *       *       *

Perhaps, after all, life is worth no more than a laugh, and all its
strange mysteries of sin and suffering, its summer dreams of excellence
innate and to be acquired, its fond yearning affections, its deep
passions, its high and glorious tendings,--all but jests to make the
worldly-wise smile, and the believers in them despair. God keep me from
such thoughts!--they are dreadful!

       *       *       *       *       *

       *       *       *       *       *

After dinner, wrote journal. At half-past five, went to the theatre: the
play was the Hunchback,--the house was very good. I wonder if any body
on earth can form the slightest idea of the interior of this wretched
little theatre; 'tis the smallest I ever was in. The proprietors are
poor, the actors poorer; and the grotesque mixture of misery, vulgarity,
stage-finery, and real raggedness, is beyond every thing strange, and
sad, and revolting,--it reminds me constantly of some of Hogarth's
pictures, and passages in Goethe's Wilhelm Meister. After the play, came
home and supped. By the by, just as I had done breakfast this morning,
Judge ---- called, who is the most exquisite original I have met with
even in this land of their abundance. He gave me a long scolding for
getting up so late, and assured me that I meant to settle in this
country, at the same time drawing an enchanting picture of rural
happiness to the west,--a cottage by a rivulet, with two cows, and just
enough to starve upon!--I think I see myself there. This sentimental
prophecy was prefaced by a remark that he knew I was very romantic, and
interrupted every two minutes by a dexterous expectoral interjection,
which caused me nearly to jump off my chair with dismay.


_Saturday, 19th._

_Giorno d'orrore!_--but I won't anticipate. They have settled to act
Much Ado about Nothing, instead of the Inconstant. I have no clothes for
Beatrice,--but that don't matter. After breakfast, went to rehearsal,
and then walked with my father to see a very pretty model of what is to
be the town-hall. It never will be, for the corporation are as poor as
_Job's kittens_ (Americanism--communicated by Captain ----), and the
city of Washington itself is only kept alive by Congress. Talking of the
city of Washington,--'tis the strangest thing by way of a town that can
be fancied. It is laid out to cover, I should think, some ten miles
square, but the houses are here, there, and no where: the streets,
conventionally not properly so called, are roads, crooked or straight,
where buildings are _intended_ to be. Every now and then an interesting
gap of a quarter of a mile occurs between those houses that _are_ built:
in the midst of the town, you can't help fancying you are in the
country; and between wooden palings, with nothing to be seen on either
side but cedar bushes and sand, you are informed you are in the midst of
the town. The Elysian Fields is a broken patch of moorland, sand, and
gravel: the Jardin des Plantes is a nursery-ground full of slips of
shrubs a foot and a half high; the Tiber, alias Goose Creek, is an
unhappy-looking ditch;--and Washington altogether struck me as a
rambling red-brick image of futurity, where nothing _is_, but all things
_are to be_. Came home and habited. At half-past twelve, Captain ----
came for me; just as we were going, ---- called. He was on horseback,
and asked leave to join us, which I agreed to very readily. He was
pilot, and led us round and about, through the woods, and across the
waters; all of which, as Captain ---- observed, was in the day's work.
We returned at half-past three. Directly after dinner, I set out to pay
sundry cards. The day had been heavenly,--bright, and warm, and balmy;
the evening was beautifully soft; and as I drove over hill and dale,
marsh and moorland, through the city of Washington, paying my cards, the
stars came out one after another in the still sky, and the scattered
lights of the town looked like a capricious congregation of
Jack-o'-lanterns, some high, some low, some here, some there, showing
more distinctly, by the dark spaces between them, the enormous share
that emptiness has in the congressional city. One of my visits lay
nearly three miles out of town, so that I was not back until six
o'clock. As I came rushing along the corridor, I met D---- coming to
meet me, who exclaimed, with an air of mingled horror and satisfaction,
"Oh, here you are!--here is coffee and Mr. ---- waiting for you!" I went
into the room, and found a goodly-looking personage, old enough to know
better, sitting with my father, who appeared amazingly disturbed, held
an open letter in his hand, and exclaimed, the moment I came in, "There,
sir, there is the young lady to speak for herself." I courtesied, and
sat down. "Fanny," quoth my father, "something particularly disagreeable
has occurred,--pray, can you call to mind any thing you said during the
course of your Thursday's ride, which was likely to be offensive to Mr.
----, or any thing abusive of this country?" As I have already had
sundry specimens of the great talent there is for tattle in the
exclusive coteries of this gossiping new world, I merely untied my
bonnet, and replied, that I did not at that moment recollect a word that
I had said during my whole ride, and should certainly not give myself
any trouble to do so. "Now, my dear," said my father, his own eyes
flashing with indignation, "don't put yourself into a passion; compose
yourself, and recollect. Here is a letter I have just received." He
proceeded to read it, and the contents were to this effect--that during
my ride with Mr. ---- I had said I did not choose to ride an American
gentleman's horse, and _had offered him two dollars for the hire of
his_; that moreover, I had spoken most derogatorily of America and
Americans; in consequence of all which, if my father did not give some
explanation, or make some apology to the public, I should certainly be
hissed off the stage, as soon as I appeared on it that evening. This was
pleasant. I stated the conversation as it had passed, adding, that as to
any sentiments a person might express on any subject, liberty of
opinion, and liberty of speech, were alike rights which belonged to
every body, and that, with a due regard to good feeling, and good
breeding, they were rights which nobody ought, and I never would forego.
Mr. ---- opened his eyes. I longed to add, that any conversation between
me and any other person was nobody's business but mine, and his or hers,
and that the whole thing was, on the part of the young gentleman
concerned, the greatest piece of blackguardism, and on that of the old
gentleman concerned the greatest piece of twaddle, that it had ever been
my good fortune to hear of. "For," said Mr. ----, "not less than
_fifty_ members of Congress have already mentioned the matter to me."
Fifty old gossiping women! why the whole thing is for all the world like
a village tattle in England, among half a dozen old wives round their
tea-pots. All Washington was in dismay; and my evil deeds and evil words
were the town talk,--fields, gaps, marshes, and all, rang with them.
This is an agreeable circumstance, and a display of national character
highly entertaining and curious.[87] It gave me at the time, however, a
dreadful side-ach, and nervous cough. I went to the theatre, dressed,
and came on the stage in the full expectation of being hissed off it,
which is a pleasant sensation, very, and made my heart full of
bitterness to think I should stand,--as no woman ought to stand,--the
mark of public insult. However, no such thing occurred,--I went on and
came off without any such trial of my courage; but I had been so much
annoyed, and was still so indignant, that I passed the intervals between
my scenes in crying,--which, of course, added greatly to the mirth and
spirit of my performance of Beatrice. In the middle of the play, Mr.
---- and Captain ---- came behind the scenes, and then, indeed, I _was_
quite glad to see Englishmen; though their compassionate sympathies for
my wrongs, and tender fears lest I should catch cold behind those horrid
scenes, very nearly set me off crying again. A soft word, when one is in
deep commiseration of one's self, is very apt to open the flood-gates;
but I was ashamed to cry before them, so tried to keep my
heart-swellings down. When the play was over, came home. Mr. ---- came
and supped with us. By the by, he called this morning before I went out
riding, and expressed many sorrows at our departure. He is a clever and
extremely well-informed man, and I like him very much. When he was gone,
sat talking over the ---- affair. My father was in a greater passion
than I think I ever saw him before. I am sure I would not have warranted
one of that worthy young gentleman's bones, if he had fallen in with
him. I am very glad he did not; for, to knock a man down, even though he
does deserve it, is a serious matter rather.


_Wednesday, 30th, Philadelphia._

After breakfast, practised for an hour: wrote journal. Mr. ----, the
wild-eyed, flowing-haired, white-waistcoated, velvet-collared, ---- ----
called upon me. He sat some time asking me questions; but, since the
---- affair, I have grown rather afraid of opening my mouth, and he had
the conversation chiefly to himself. Finished journal; dined at
half-past three: after dinner, went and sat with Mrs. ----. One Mr.
----, a Boston man who was at Mrs. ----'s ball last night, was in her
room. I was introduced to him, and he spoke of the ----s.

       *       *       *       *       *

       *       *       *       *       *

Sat with them till coffee-time. Went to the theatre at half-past five.
It poured with rain, in spite of which the house was very good: the play
was Fazio. When I came on in my fine dress, at the beginning of the
second act, the people hailed me with such a tremendous burst of
applause, and prolonged it so much, that I was greatly puzzled to
imagine what on earth possessed them. I concluded they were pleased with
my dress, but could not help being rather amused at their vehement and
continued clapping, considering they had seen it several times before.
However, they ceased at last, and I thought no more about it. Towards
the time for the beginning of the third act, which opens with my being
discovered waiting for Fazio's return, as I was sitting in my
dressing-room working, D---- suddenly exclaimed, "Hark!--what is that?"
---- opened the door, and we heard a tremendous noise of shouts and of
applause. "They are waiting for you, certainly," said D----. She ran
out, and returned, saying, "The stage is certainly waiting for you,
Fanny, for the curtain is up." I rushed out of the room; but on opening
the door leading to the stage, I distinctly heard my father's voice
addressing the audience. I turned sick with a sort of indefinite
apprehension, and on enquiry found that at the beginning of the play a
number of handbills had been thrown into the pit, professing to quote my
conversation with Mr. ---- at Washington, and calling upon the people to
resent my conduct in the grossest and most vulgar terms. This precious
document had, it seems, been brought round by somebody to my father, who
immediately went on with it in his hand, and assured the audience that
the whole thing was a falsehood. I scarce heard what he said, though I
stood at the side scene: I was crying dreadfully with fright and
indignation. How I wished I was a caterpillar under a green
gooseberry-bush!

       *       *       *       *       *

       *       *       *       *       *

       *       *       *       *       *

Oh, how I did wince to think of going on again after this scene, though
the feeling of the audience was most evident; for all the applause I had
fancied they bestowed upon my dress was, in fact, an unsolicited
testimony of their disbelief in the accusation brought against me. They
received my father's words with acclamations; and when the curtain drew
up, and I was discovered, the pit rose and waved their hats, and the
applause was tremendous. I was crying dreadfully, and could hardly
speak; however, I mastered myself and went on with my part,--though,
what with the dreadful exertion that it is in itself, and the painful
excitement I had just undergone, I thought I should have fainted before
I got through with it.

       *       *       *       *       *

       *       *       *       *       *

       *       *       *       *       *


_Saturday, Feb. 2d._

After breakfast, ---- called to see how I did after my walk: he sat for
some time. At twelve, went out paying bills and calls; bought a German
æolina; sat some time with old Mrs. ----, and spent a delightful hour
with Mr. ---- and his family. He is a most agreeable person, but he
thinks too well of acting. Came home; dined at three; Mr. and Mrs. ----
dined with us. After dinner, went into her room, and remained there till
time to go to the theatre. Young ---- and Dr. ---- came in. The play was
the Gamester: it was my benefit, and I am afraid the good folks who
addressed that amiable placard to the public will have been rather ill
satisfied with their suggestion about my benefit. The house was
literally crammed, in consequence of that very circumstance,--crammed is
the word. When the curtain drew up, they applauded me without end, and I
courtesied as profoundly as I was able; indeed, I am extremely obliged
to this same excellent public, for they have testified most
satisfactorily every way the kindest feeling possible for me, and the
most entire faith in my good behaviour. I did not play well, my voice
was so dreadfully affected by my cough.


_Monday, 4th._

Dined at three. After dinner, Mrs. ---- came into our room, where I sang
and played till time to go to the theatre. The play was the Merchant of
Venice, and Katharine and Petruchio for the farce;--my father's benefit:
the house was crammed from floor to ceiling, as full as it could hold:
so much for the success of the hand-bills. Indeed, as somebody
suggested, I think if we could find the author of that placard out we
are bound to give him a handsome reward, for he certainly has given us
two of the finest benefits that ever were seen. I heard that a man said
the other day that he should not be surprised if _my father had got the
whole of this up himself_. Oh, day and night! that such thoughts should
come into any human being's head.[88] At the end, the people shouted and
shrieked for us. He went on, and made them a speech, and I went on and
made them a courtesy; and certainly they do deserve the civillest of
speeches, and lowest of courtesies from us, for they have behaved most
kindly and courteously to us; and, for mine own good part, I love the
whole city of Philadelphia from this time forth, for evermore.[89]

Mr. ---- came round to the stage door to bid us good-night; and as we
drove off, a whole parcel of folk, who had gathered round the door to
see us depart, set up a universal hurrah! How strange a thing it is,
that popular shout. After all, Pitt or Canning could get no more for the
finest oratory that human lips ever uttered, or the wisest policy that
human brain ever devised. Sometimes they got the reverse; but then the
_hereafter_--there's the rub! Praise is so sweet to me that I would have
it lasting: above all, I would wish to feel that I deserved it. I must
do so if I am to value it a straw; and acting, even the best that ever
was seen, is, to my mind, but a poor claim to approbation. I think the
applause of an audience in a play-house should be reckoned with the
friendly and favourable opinions of a good-natured tipsy man,--'tis
given under excitement. Oh Lord! how unsatisfactory all things are!


_Wednesday, 13th, New York._

After dinner, ---- came in. He sat himself down, and presently was
over-head in reminiscences. His account of Tom Paine's escape from the
Conciergerie, on the eve of being guillotined, was extremely
interesting. His own introduction to, and subsequent acquaintance with,
that worthy, was equally so, and his summing up was highly
characteristic. "I tell ye, madam, the saving of that man's life was an
especial providence, that he might come over to this country, where his
works have done so much harm, and might have done so much more, and just
exemplify the result of his own principles put into practice in his own
person, and show that the glorious light of reason, and the noble
natural gifts of man, of which he preached so much, would neither
prevent a man's becoming a drunkard and a spendthrift, nor a debased
degraded being. If Paine had been guillotined, madam, he would have been
a martyr, and his works would have had ten times the power of evil they
had before. But he lived to be a miserable low unthrift, and sot, and
died neglected and despised by all reputable and respectable
individuals, and, I say again, it was a manifest providence that he did
so." We left the gentlemen to their wine for a short time, but were
presently summoned back. ---- had gone to the theatre. ---- began his
history to me, and it was, word for word, a repetition of Galt's book,
except that occasionally it was more touching. The pity of all this is,
the man's own consciousness that he is a lion. His vanity is almost as
amusing as his recollections are curious and interesting; and though the
tears were in my eye several times while he described the blessed time
he lived with his sweet Phoebe, yet, at others, I could scarce help
exclaiming, in the words of his own countryman, "Heigh, cretur, cretur!
thou hast unco plause o' thysel'!" He ended his narrative with a eulogy
of women that would have warmed the heart of a stone; and to my utter
surprise addressed Mr. ---- with, "Out upon ye, bachelors, all! ye throw
away your lives, and your life's happiness!" This last attack of ----'s
seemed too much for Mr. ----; and, as I turned to him with the tears in
my eyes, to desire he would not laugh, which he was doing very heartily,
he said he couldn't stand it any longer, and went away, apparently more
amused than edified by ----'s appeal.


_Thursday, 14th._

St. Valentine's day! I wish all these pretty golden days, which, like
the flowers in the sundial of Linnæus, were wont so gaily to mark the
flight of time, were not becoming so dim in our calendars; I wish St.
Valentine's day, and May morning, and Christmas day, and New-Year's day,
were not putting off their holiday suits to wear the work-day russet of
their drudging fellows; I wish we were not making all things, of all
sorts, so completely of a neutral tint.

       *       *       *       *       *

I wouldn't be in the Reform Parliament of England for ten thousand
pounds! ----, and ----, the bruiser, and the bankrupt! Oh, shame,
England, shame!--Poor England!


A RHAPSODY.

         White lady, sitting on the sea,
         Tell to me, oh, tell to me,
         How long shall thy reigning be,
         White lady, sitting on the sea?

     Long as the oak with which I'm crown'd
     Shall bear one leaf above the ground,
     Round which the crawling ivy's grasp
     Its cursed tendrils does not clasp;
     Long as one foot remains to stand
     Firm on its own ancestral land;
     Or one true man be left to claim
     The burden of a noble name;
     Long as one Gothic shrine shall rise
     With 'scutcheon'd tomb, and banner'd stall,
     Or the blest glances of the skies,
     Through storied casements dimly fall;
     Long as one heart shall beat to hear
     Legends of the old valiant time;
     Long as the Sabbath wind shall bear
     The music of one haunting chime.

         White lady, sitting on the sea,
         Tell to me, oh, tell to me,
         When shall thy downfalling be,
         White lady, sitting on the sea?

     When the vile kennel mud is thrown
     Upon the ermine of the king,
     And the old worships are cast down
     Before a rabble's triumphing;
     When toothless ---- is young again,
     To do the mischief he but dreams,
     And little ---- shall make more plain
     The good that glitters through his schemes;
     When the steam-engine of the north
     Leaves making essays and wry faces;
     And patriot Whigs forget the worth
     Of pensions, power, pride, and places;
     When on the spot where Burke and Pitt
     Earn'd their high immortality,
     Boxers and bankrupts boldly sit,
     Then, then shall my downfalling be.


_Monday, 18th._

After breakfast, went to rehearsal; came home and stitched at my
_Françoise de Foix_ head-dress. My father is extremely unwell; I scarce
think he will be able to get through his part to-night. After dinner,
practised, and read a canto in Dante. It pleases me, when I refer to
Biagioli's notes, to find that the very lines Alfieri has noted are
those under which I have drawn my emphatic pencil marks. At half-past
five, went to the theatre. The play was Macbeth, for my benefit: the
house was very full, and I played very ill. My father was dreadfully
exhausted by his work. I had an interesting discussion with Mr.
---- about the costume and acting of the witches in this awful play. I
should like to see them acted and dressed a little more like what they
should be, than they generally are. It has been always
customary,--Heaven only knows why,--to make low comedians act the
witches, and to dress them like old fish-women. Instead of the wild
unearthly appearance which Banquo describes, and which belongs to their
most terrible and grotesquely poetical existence and surroundings, we
have three jolly-faced fellows,--whom we are accustomed to laugh at,
night after night, in every farce on the stage,--with as due a
proportion of petticoats as any woman, letting alone witch, might
desire, jocose red faces, peaked hats, and broomsticks, which last
addition alone makes their costume different from that of Moll Flagon.
If I had the casting of Macbeth, I would give the witches to the first
melo-dramatic actors on the stage,--such men as T. P. Cooke, and O.
Smith, who understand all that belongs to picturesque devilry to
perfection,--and give them such dresses as, without ceasing to be
grotesque, should be a little more fanciful, and less ridiculous than
the established livery; something that would accord a little better with
the blasted heath, the dark fungus-grown wood, the desolate misty
hill-side, and the flickering light of the caldron cave.[90]

       *       *       *       *       *

       *       *       *       *       *


_Wednesday, 20th._

After breakfast, ---- and Mr. ---- came. ---- gave me the words and tune
of a bewitching old English ballad. Mr. ---- called and sat some time
with me: I like him mainly,--he's very pleasant and clever. That
handsome creature, Mme. ----, called with her daughter and her
son-in-law. Mr. ---- and ---- dined with us. After dinner, came to my
own room, sang over ----'s ballad, and amused myself with writing one of
my own. At half-past five, took coffee, and off to the theatre. The
house was very full; play, the Stranger: I didn't play well: I'd a gown
on that did not fit me, to which species of accident our _art_ is
marvellously subservient, for a tight arm-hole shall mar the grandest
passage in Queen Constance, and too long or too short a skirt keep one's
heart cold in the balcony scene in Juliet. Came home; supped; finished
marking the Winter's Tale. What a dense fool that fat old Johnson must
have been in matters of poetry! his notes upon Shakspeare make one
swear, and his summing up of the Winter's Tale is worthy of a newspaper
critic of the present day,--in spirit, I mean, not language; Dr. Johnson
always wrote good English.--What dry, and sapless, and dusty earth his
soul must have been made of, poor fat man! After all, 'tis even a
greater misfortune than fault to be so incapable of beauty.

       *       *       *       *       *

       *       *       *       *       *


BALLAD.

     The Lord's son stood at the clear spring head,
       The May on the other side,
     "And stretch me your lily hand," he said,
       "For I must mount and ride.

     "And waft me a kiss across the brook,
       And a curl of your yellow hair;
     Come summer or winter, I ne'er shall look
       Again on your eyes so fair.

     "Bring me my coal-black steed, my squire,
       Bring Fleetfoot forth!" he cried;
     "For three-score miles he must not tire,
       To bear me to my bride.

     "His foot must be swift, though my heart be slow;
       He carries me towards my sorrow;
     To the Earl's proud daughter I made my vow,
       And I must wed her to-morrow."

     The Lord's son stood at the altar stone,--
       The Earl's proud daughter near:
     "And what is that ring you have gotten on,
       That you kiss so oft and so dear?

     "Is it a ring of the yellow gold,
       Or something more precious and bright?
     Give me that ring in my hand to hold,
       Or I plight ye no troth to-night."

     "It is not a ring of the yellow gold,
       But something more precious and bright;
     But never shall hand, save my hand, hold
       This ring by day or night."

     "And now I am your wedded wife,
       Give me the ring, I pray."--
     "You may take my lands, you may take my life,
       But never this ring away."

     They sat at the board; and the lady bride
       Red wine in a goblet pour'd;
     "And pledge me a health, sweet sir," she cried,
       "My husband and my lord."

     The cup to his lips he had scarcely press'd,
       When he gasping drew his breath,
     His head sank down on his heaving breast,
       And he said, "It is death! it is death!--

     "Oh bury me under the gay green shaw
       By the brook, 'neath the heathery sod,
     Where last her blessed eyes I saw,
       Where her blessed feet last trod!"


_Saturday, 23d._

We came home at two. ---- and the horses were waiting for me: we mounted
and rode down to the Hoboken ferry, where we crossed. The day was like
an early day in spring in England; a day when the almond trees would all
have been in flower, the hawthorn hedges putting forth their tender
green and brown shoots, and the primroses gemming the mossy roots of the
trees by the water-courses. The spring is backwarder here a good deal
than with us: to be sure, it is sudden compared with ours,--as my
poetising friend hath it,--


     "Not with slow steps, in smiles, in tears advancing,
     But with a bound, like Indian girls in dancing."


I do not like this: I like to linger over the sweet hourly and daily
fufilment of hope, which the slow progress of vegetation in my own dear
country allows one full enjoyment of; to watch the leaf from the bark,
the blossom from the bud; the delicate, pale-white, peeping heads of the
hawthorn, to the fragrant, snowy, delicious flush of flowering; the
downy green clusters of small round buds on the apple trees, to the
exquisite rosy-tinted clouds of soft blossoms waving against an evening
sky. The melted snow had made the roads all but impassable; however, the
day was delightfully mild and sunny, and therefore we did not get
chilled by the very temperate rate at which we were obliged to proceed.
We turned off to look at the Turtle Pavilion, and, pursuing the water's
edge, got up upon a species of high dyke between some marshes that open
into the river. Our path, however, was presently intercepted by a stile,
and as the horses were not quite of the sort one could have risked a
leap with, ---- got off and endeavoured to lead his charger round the
edge of the steep bank, but the brute refused that road, and we were
forced to turn back; and, after floundering about over some of the
roughest worst ground imaginable, we e'en went out of the Hoboken domain
at the gate where we entered, and pursued that beautiful road
overlooking the Hudson, under that fine range of cliffs which are the
first idea, as it were, of the Palisadoes. We took the lower road down
into the glen below Weehawk. The sun shone gloriously: the little fairy
stream that owns this narrow glade was singing and dancing along its
beautiful domain with a sweet gleesome voice, and a succession of little
sparkling breaks and eddies that looked like laughter. We left the muddy
road, and turned our horses into the stream; but its bed was very stony
and uneven, and we were obliged to turn out of it again. We rode like
very impudent persons up to the house on the height. The house itself is
too unsheltered for comfort either in summer or winter, but the view
from its site is beautiful, and we had it in perfection to-day. Standing
at an elevation of more than a hundred feet from the river, we looked
down its magnificent, broad, silvery avenue, to the Narrows--that rocky
gate that opens towards my home. New York lay bright and distinct on the
opposite shore, glittering like a heap of toys in the sunny distance:
the water towards Sandy Hook was studded with sails; and far up on the
other side the river rolled away among shores that, even in this wintry
time of bare trees and barren earth, looked gay and lovely in the
sunshine. We turned down again; but after crossing the bridge over the
pretty brook, we took an upper path to the right, and riding through
some leafless, warm, sunny woodlands, joined the road that leads to the
Weehawken height, and so returned to New York. On our way, discussing
the difference between religion as felt by men and women, ---- agreed
with me, that hardly one man out of five thousand held any distinct
entire and definite religious belief. He said that religion was a
sentiment, and that, as regarded all creeds, there was no midway with
them; that faith or utter disbelief were the only alternatives; for that
displacing one jot of any of them made the whole totter,--which last is,
in some measure, true, but I do not think it is true that religion is
_only_ a sentiment. There are many reasons why women are more religious
than men. Our minds are not generally naturally analytical--our
education tends to render them still less so: 'tis seldom in a woman's
desire (because seldom in her capacity) to investigate the abstract
bearings of any metaphysical subject. Our imaginations are exceedingly
sensitive, our subservience to early impressions, and exterior forms,
proportionate; and our habits of thought, little enlarged by experience,
observation, or proper culture, render us utterly incapable of almost
any logical train of reasonings. With us, I think, therefore, faith is
the only secure hold; for disbelief, acting upon mental constructions so
faulty and weak, would probably engender insanity, or a thousand species
of vague, wild, and mischievous enthusiasms.[91] I believe, too, that
women are more religious than men, because they have warmer and deeper
affections. There is nothing surely on earth that can satisfy and
utterly fulfil the capacity for loving which exists in every woman's
nature. Even when her situation in life is such as to call forth and
constantly keep in exercise the best affections of her heart, as a
wife, and a mother, it still seems to me as if more would be wanting to
fill the measure of yearning tenderness, which, like an eternal
fountain, gushes up in every woman's heart; therefore I think it is that
we turn, in the plenitude of our affections, to that belief which is a
religion of love, and where the broadest channel is open to receive the
devotedness, the clinging, the confiding trustfulness, which are
idolatry when spent upon creatures like ourselves, but become a holy
worship when offered to Heaven.[92] Nor is it only from the abundance
and overflowing of our affections that we are devout; 'tis not only from
our capacity of loving, but also from our capacity of suffering, that
our piety springs. Woman's physical existence, compared with that of
man, is one of incessant endurance. This in itself begets a necessity
for patience, a seeking after strength, a holding forth of the hands for
support; thus, the fragile frame, the loving heart, and the ignorant
mind, are in us sources of religious faith. But it often happens that
those affections, so strong, so deep, so making up the sum and substance
of female existence, instead of being happily employed, as I have
supposed above, are converted into springs of acute suffering. These
wells of feeling hidden in the soul, upon whose surface the slightest
smile of affection falls like sunlight, but whose very depths are
stirred by the breath of unkindness, are too often un-visited by the
kindly influence of kindred sympathies, and go wearing their own
channels deeper, in silence and in secrecy, and in infinite
bitterness,--undermining health, happiness, the joy of life, and making
existence one succession of burden-bearing days, and toilsome, aching,
heavy hours. It is in this species of blight, which falls upon many
women, that any religious faith becomes a refuge and a consolation, more
especially that merciful and compassionate faith whose words are, "Come
unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you
rest." To that rest betakes itself the wearied spirit, the wounded
heart; and it becomes a blessing beyond all other blessings; a source of
patience, of fortitude, of hope, of strength, of endurance; a shelter in
the scorching land,--a spring of water in the wilderness.

       *       *       *       *       *

       *       *       *       *       *


_Saturday, April 13th._

At a quarter after four, drove down to the boat. ---- was waiting to see
us off, and ---- presently made his appearance to see us on. Owing to
the yesterday's boat not having sailed, it was crowded to-day, and
freighted most heavily, so as to draw an unusual quantity of water, and
proceed at a much slower rate than common. At a few minutes after five,
the huge brazen bell on deck began to toll; the mingled crowd jostled,
and pushed, and rolled about; the loiterers on shore rushed on board;
the bidders-farewell on board rushed on shore; D---- and I took a quiet
sunny stand, away from all the confusion, and watched from our floating
palace New York glide away like a glittering dream from before us. A
floating palace indeed it was, in size and in magnificence: I never saw
any thing to compare with the beauty, and comfort, and largeness of all
its accommodations. Our Scotch steam-boat, the United Kingdom, is a
cockboat to it, and even the splendid Hudson boat, the North America, is
far inferior to it in every respect, except, I believe, swiftness,--but
then these Boston boats have sometimes very heavy sea to go through.[93]
Besides the ladies' cabin, this boat is furnished with half a dozen
state rooms, taken from the upper deck,--an inexpressible luxury. Into
one of these our night-bags were conveyed, and we returned to the deck
to watch the sun down. A strong and piercing wind blew over the waters,
and almost cut me in half as I stood watching the shores, which I did
not wish to lose by going in. However, I might have done so, and lost
but little; for after passing Hell-gate, where the rocks in the river
and the banks have rather a picturesque appearance, there was neither
form nor comeliness in the flat wearisome land to either side; and the
only objects which detained me on deck were the bright blue waters
themselves, all shining in the sunset, and those lovely little boats,
with one mast and two glittering sails, scudding past us like fairy
craft upon the burnished waves. At about eight, we were summoned down to
tea, which was a compound meal of tea and supper. The company were so
numerous that they were obliged to lay the table twice. We waited till
the crowd had devoured their feed, and had ours in comparative peace and
quiet. An excellent man, by name ----, an officer in the American army,
made himself known to me, considering, as he afterwards told me, his
commission to be a sufficient right of introduction to any body. He was
a native of Boston, and was returning to it, after an absence of
_fourteen years_.

       *       *       *       *       *

       *       *       *       *       *


_Sunday, 14th._

The morning was beautifully bright and clear. While dressing, heard the
breakfast-bell, and received sundry intimations to descend and eat;
however, I declined leaving my cabin until I had done dressing, which I
achieved very comfortably at leisure, during which time the ship
weathered Point Judith, where the Atlantic comes in to the shore between
the termination of Long Island and the southern extremity of Rhode
Island. The water is generally rough here, and I had been prophesied an
agreeable little fit of sea-sickness; but no such matter,--we passed it
very smoothly, and presently stopped at Newport, on Rhode Island, to
leave and take up passengers. The wind was keen and bracing; the morning
beautifully bright and sunny; the blue waters, all curled and crisped
under the arrow-like wind, broke into a thousand sapphire ridges tipped
with silver foam, that drove away in sparkling showers before the bitter
breath of the north. We entered Providence river in a few moments, and
steamed along between Rhode Island and the main land, until we reached
Providence, a town on the shore of Rhode Island, where we were to leave
the boat, and pursue our route by coach to Boston. I walked on deck with
Captain ---- for an hour after breakfast, breasting the wind, which
almost drove us back each time we turned up the deck towards the prow.
After my walk, went in, righted my hair, which the wind had dressed _à
la frantic_, and came and sat in the sun with Brewster's book,--which I
like mainly,--till we reached Providence. The boat was so heavily laden
that she drew an enormous quantity of water, and was fairly aground
once, as we were nearing the pier. When the crowd of passengers had
ebbed away, and we had seen them pack themselves into their stages and
drive off, we adjourned to our exclusive extra, which, to our great
sorrow, could not take all our luggage after all. The distance from
Providence to Boston is forty miles; but we were six hours and a half
doing it over an excellent road. The weather was beautiful, but the
country still sad and wintry-looking. The spring is backwarder here than
in New York by full three weeks: the trees were all bare and leafless,
except the withered foliage of the black oaks; and the face of the
country, with its monotonous rises, and brooks flowing through flat
fields, reminded me of parts of Cumberland. Every now and then, however,
we came to a little lakelet, or, as they call them here, pond, of the
holiest deepest dark-blue water, sparkling like a magic sapphire,
against smooth, bright, golden, sandy shores, and screened by vivid
thickets of cedar bushes. They were like little bits of fairy-land, and
relieved the wearisomeness of the road. As we approached Boston, the
country assumed a more cultivated aspect,--the houses in the road-side
villages were remarkably neat, and pretty, and cottage-like,--the land
was well farmed; and the careful cultivation, and stone walls, which
perform the part of hedges here, together with the bleak look of the
distances on each side, made me think of Scotland. We entered Boston
through a long road with houses on each side, making one fancy one's
self in the town long before one reaches it. We did not arrive until
half-past six. Went to my own room and dressed for dinner. When I came
to the drawing-room, found the ----s: dear ---- was half crazy at seeing
us again. After dinner, came to my room with her, and righted all my
clothes, and established myself; after tea, returned to the same work,
and, at about half-past ten, came to bed. Here we are in a new
place!--How desolate and cheerless this constant changing of homes is!
the Scripture saith, "There is no rest to the wicked;" and truly I never
felt so convinced of my own wickedness as I have done since I have been
in this country.


_Monday, 15th._

Went over to the theatre to rehearse Fazio. Mr. ----, however, met us at
the door, and assured me there was no necessity for my doing so till
to-morrow. ---- came early to see me, and stayed all the morning. Mr.
---- called this morning,--I was quite glad to see him,--and Mrs. ----,
whom I thought beautiful. Tried to finish letter to ----, but was
interrupted about a dozen times. At about half-past four, the horses
came to the door. The afternoon was lovely, and the roads remarkably
good: I had a fine handsome spirited horse, who pulled my hands to
pieces for want of being properly curbed. We rode out to _Cambridge_,
the University of Massachusetts, about three miles distant from Boston.
The village round it, with its white cottages, and meeting roads, and
the green lawns and trees round the college, reminded me of England. We
rode on to a place called Mount Auburn, a burial-ground which the
Bostonians take great pride in, and which is one of the lions of the
place. The entrance is a fine solid granite gateway, in a species of
_Egyptian_ style, with this inscription engraved over it: "Then shall
the dust return to the earth as it was, and the spirit shall return unto
God, who gave it."[94] The whole place is at present in an unfinished
state, but its capabilities are very great, and, as far as it has
progressed, they have been taken every advantage of. The enclosure is of
considerable extent,--about one hundred acres,--and contains several
high hills and deep ravines, in the bottom of which are dark, still,
melancholy-looking meres. The whole is cut, with much skill and good
taste, by roads for carriages, and small narrow footpaths. The various
avenues are distinguished by the names of trees, as, Linden walk, Pine
walk, Beech walk; and already two or three white monuments are seen
glimmering palely through the woods, reminding one of the solemn use to
which this ground is consecrated, which, for its beauty, might seem a
pleasure-garden instead of a place of graves. Mr. ---- delighted me very
much: he told me he was looking for a plot of earth in this cemetery
which he intended to dedicate to poor English people, who might come out
here, and die without the means of being decently laid to rest. We
looked, with this view, at a patch of ground on the slope of a high
hill, well shadowed over with trees, and descending to a great depth to
a dark pond, shining in the hollow like an emerald. 'Twas sad and
touching to gaze at that earth, with the thought that amidst strangers,
and in a strange land, the pity of a fellow-countryman should here allot
to his brethren a grave in the quiet and solemn beauty of this hallowed
ground. Our time was limited; so, after lingering for a short space
along the narrow pathways that wind among dwellings of the dead, we rode
home. We reached Boston at a quarter to seven. My father and D---- were
already gone to the theatre. I dressed, and went over myself
immediately. The play was begun: the house was not very full. The
managers have committed the greatest piece of mismanagement
imaginable,--they advertise my father alone in Hamlet to-night, and
instead of making me play alone to-morrow night, and so securing our
attraction singly before we act together, we are _both_ to act to-morrow
in Fazio, which circumstance, of course, kept the house thin to-night.
My father's Hamlet is very beautiful. 'Tis curious, that when I see him
act I have none of the absolute feeling of contempt for the profession
that I have while acting myself. What he does appears, indeed, like the
work of an artist; and though I always lament that he loves it as he
does, and has devoted so much care and labour to it as he has, yet I
certainly respect acting more while I am seeing him act than at any
other time.[95] Yet surely, after all, acting is nonsense, and as I sit
here opposite the churchyard, it seems to me strange to think, that when
I come down into that darkness, I shall have eaten bread, during my
life, earned by such means. The Ophelia was perfectly beautiful: I think
I scarcely ever saw a more faultless piece of mortality in point of
outward loveliness. The eyes and brow of an angel, serene and calm, yet
bright and piercing; a mouth chiselled like a Grecian piece of
sculpture, with an expression of infinite refinement; fair round arms
and hands, a beautifully-moulded foot, and a figure that seemed to me
perfectly proportioned. It did not perhaps convey to me the idea of such
absolute loveliness as ----'s figure did; but altogether I think I never
saw a fairer woman--it was delightful lo look at her.[96] The audience
are, upon the whole, cold;--very still and attentive, however, and when
they do warm, it is certainly very effectually, for they shout and
hurrah like mad.

       *       *       *       *       *


_Wednesday, 27th._

Somebody very civilly has sent me that beautiful book, Rogers's Italy:
it set me wild again with my old frenzy for the south of Europe. Wrote
to ----; after dinner, practised for an hour; at half-past five, off to
the theatre. The house was crammed: the play, the Stranger. It is quite
comical to see the people in the morning at the box-office: our window
is opposite to it, and 'tis a matter of the greatest amusement to me to
watch them. They collect in crowds for upwards of an hour before the
doors open, and when the bolts are withdrawn, there is a yelling and
shouting as though the town were on fire. In they rush, thumping and
pummelling one another, and not one comes out without rubbing his head,
or his back, or showing a piteous rent in his clothes. I was surprised
to see men of a very low order pressing foremost to obtain boxes, but I
find that they sell them again at an enormous increase to others who
have not been able to obtain any; and, the better to carry on their
traffic, these worthies smear their clothes with molasses, and sugar,
etc., in order to prevent any person of more decent appearance, or whose
clothes are worth a cent, from coming near the box-office: this is
ingenious, and deserves a reward. Our other window looks out upon a
large churchyard, in the midst of which stands a cenotaph, erected by
Franklin in honour of his father. Between the view of the play-house,
and the view of the burial-ground, my contemplations are curiously
tinged. This house (the Tremont) is admirably quiet and comfortable.


_Thursday, 18th._

After breakfast, went to rehearsal,--the School for Scandal,--however,
half the people were not there, so the rehearsal was nought. Came home,
and at half-past eleven rode out; the day was beautifully bright: we
rode to a beautiful little mere, called Jamaica Pond, through some
country very like Scotland. We turned from the road into a gentleman's
estate, and rode up a green rise into an enclosed field, which commanded
an extensive view of the country below. But the spring tarries still,
and though her smile is in the sky, the trees are leafless, and
blossomless, and wintry-looking still. We came in by a pretty village
called Roxbury, about two miles and a half distant from Boston: here we
stopped to get a nosegay for my Lady Teazle, at a very pretty
green-house, kept by a mechanic, who has devoted his leisure hours to
the pleasurable and profitable pursuits of gardening. We returned to
town at about half-past two. I ran into the drawing-room, and found ----
sitting with my father.

       *       *       *       *       *

       *       *       *       *       *


_Saturday, 20th._

Walked up to the State House. The day was any thing but agreeable; a
tremendous high wind (easterly of course,--'tis the only wind they have
in Boston), and a burning sun tempered only by clouds of dust, in which,
every two minutes, the whole world,--at least, as much as we could see
of it,--was shrouded. On entering the hall of the State House, we
confronted Chantry's statue of Washington, which stands in a recess
immediately opposite the entrance. I saw that, how many years ago, in
his study at Pimlico! We proceeded to mount into the cupola, whence a
very extensive view is obtained of the city and its surroundings,--and a
cruel height it was! I began it at full speed, like a wise woman, but
before I got to the top was so out of breath, that I could hardly
breathe at all: defend me from such altitudes!--and, after all, the day
was hazy and not favourable for our purpose; the wind came in through
the windows of the lantern like a tornado; and, as my father observed,
after the exertion of ascending, 'twas the very best place in the world
for catching one's death of cold. We came down as quickly as we could.
At about twelve, we rode to Mount Auburn. The few days of sunshine since
we were last there have clothed the whole earth with delicate purple and
white blossoms, a little resembling the wood anemone, but growing close
to the soil, and making one think of violets with their pale purple
colour: they have no fragrance whatever. We afterwards rode on to a
beautiful little lake called Fresh Pond, along whose margin we followed
a pretty woody path: a high bank covered with black-looking pines rose
immediately on our right, and on our left the clear waters of the
rippling lake came dancing to and fro along the pebbly shore, which
shone bright and golden under their crystal folds. We stood with our
hats off to receive the soft wind upon our brows, and to listen to the
chiming of the water upon the beach, the most delicious sound in all
nature's orchestra. We then turned back and rode home. By the by, on our
way out to Mount Auburn we took the Charleston road, and rode over
Bunker Hill. They have begun a monument upon the spot where General
Warren was killed, to commemorate the event. I felt strangely as I rode
over that ground. Mr. ---- was the only American of our party, but,
though in the minority, he had rather the best of it. And this is where
so much English blood was shed, thought I; for, after all, 'twas all
English blood,--do as they can, they can never get rid of their stock;
and deeply as oppression and resistance have dug the grave in which all
kindred feeling seems for a time to have been buried,--'tis only, I
believe and trust, for a time,--buried in blood and fierce warfare, to
spring up again in peace and mutual respect. England and America ought
not to be enemies, 'tis unnatural while the same language is spoken in
both lands. Until Americans have found a tongue for themselves, they
must still be the children of old England, for they speak the words her
children speak by the fireside of her homes. Oh, England! noble, noble
land! They may be proud of many things, these inheritors of a new world,
but of nothing more than that they are descended from Englishmen; that
their fathers once trod the soil whereon has grown more goodness, more
greatness, more beauty, and more truth, than on any other earth under
God's sun.

       *       *       *       *       *

       *       *       *       *       *

At half-past four, we went to dine with the ----s. Their house is very
pretty and comfortable. When first we went in, we were shown into a
couple of drawing-rooms, in which there were beautiful marble copies of
one or two of the famous statues. One of Canova's dancing girls, the
glorious Diana, a reclining figure of Cleopatra, an exquisite
thing,--the crouching Venus, and the lovely antique Cupid and Psyche.

       *       *       *       *       *

       *       *       *       *       *

'Tis strange that feelings should pass from our hearts and minds as
clouds pass from the face of heaven, as though they had never been
there;--yet not so, after all; they do not pass so tracklessly,--they do
leave faint shadows behind; they leave a darker colour upon the face of
all existence: sometimes they leave a sad conviction of wasted
capabilities, and time, precious time, expended in vain. Yet not in
vain: even though our feelings change,--pass, perhaps, to our own
consciousness--cease altogether,--'tis not in vain--life is going
on--experience and solemn wisdom may come with the coming time; and
existence is, after all, but a series of experiments upon our spiritual
nature. Our trials vary with our years; and though we deem (too often
rightly) that suffering and disappointment are but barren thorns,
whereon grows neither fruit nor flower, 'tis our sin that they are so,
for they are designed to bear an excellent harvest. "Sweet are the uses
of adversity;" so he has said who knew all things, and so indeed to the
wise they are.


_Tuesday, 30th._

We rode down to the "Chelsea Ferry," and crossed over the Charles river,
where the shore opposite Boston bears the name of that refuge for
damaged marine stores. The breath of the sea was delicious, as we
crossed the water in one of the steam-boats constantly plying to and
fro; and on the other side, as we rode towards the beach, it came
greeting us delightfully from the wide waters. When we started from
Boston, the weather was intensely hot, and the day promised to be like
the day before yesterday, a small specimen of the dog-days. We had about
a five miles' ride through some country that reminded me of Scotland:
now and then the dreary landscape was relieved by the golden branches of
a willow tree, and the delicate pale peach blossoms, and tiny white buds
in the apple orchards, peeping over some stone dyke, like a glance over
the wall from the merry laughing spring. So we reached Chelsea beach, a
curving, flat, sandy shore, forming one side of a small bay which runs
up between this land and a rocky peninsula that stretches far out into
the ocean, called Nahant. At the extremity of the basin lay glimmering a
while sunny town, by name _Lynn_;--'tis quite absurd the starts and
stares which the familiar names cause one for ever to make here. This
small bay is beautifully smooth and peaceful; the shore is a shelving
reach of hard fine sand, nearly two miles long, and the wild waves are
warded off in their violence from it by the rocky barrier of Nahant. How
happy I was to see the beautiful sea once more,--to be once more
galloping over the golden sands,--to be once more wondering at and
worshipping the grandeur and loveliness of this greatest of God's
marvellous works. How I do love the sea!--my very soul seems to gather
energy, and life, and light, from its power, its vastness, its bold
bright beauty, its fresh invigorating airs, its glorious, triumphant,
rushing sound. The thin, thin rippling waves came like silver leaves
spreading themselves over the glittering sand, with just a little,
sparkling, pearly edge, like the cream of a bright glass of champagne.
Close along the shore the water was of that pale transparent green
colour, that blends so delicately with the horizon, sometimes at
sunset; but out beyond, towards the great deep, it wore that serene and
holiest blue that surrounds one in mid-ocean, when the earth is nearly
as far below as the heaven seems high above us. For a short time my
spirits seemed like uncaged birds; I rejoiced with all my might,--I
could have shouted aloud for delight; I galloped far along the sand, as
close into the water's restless edge as my horse would bear to go. But
the excitement died away, and then came vividly back the time when last
I stood upon the sea beach at Cramond, and lost myself in listening to
that delicious sound of the chiming waters--I was many years younger
then.

       *       *       *       *       *

       *       *       *       *       *

The end of my ride was sadder than the beginning, for at first my senses
alone took cognizance of what surrounded me, and afterwards my soul
looked on it, and it grew dark. We rode two miles along the beach, and
stopped at a little wooden hut, where, Mr. ---- told me, sportsmen, who
come to shoot plover along the flats by the shore, resort to dress their
dinners and refresh themselves. Here we dismounted: lay in the sun on
the roof with the fresh, sweet, blessed breath of heaven fanning us. My
horse thought proper to break his bridle and walk himself off through
the fields: they followed him with corn, and various inducements; ----
and I, meantime, ran down to the water, collecting interesting relics,
muscle shells, quartz, pebbles, and sea-weed; finally, we remounted and
returned home. The weather had changed completely, and become quite
bleak and cold: the variations of the climate in this place are
terrible. As we rode down a pleasant lane towards the Salem road, we met
a large crowd of country-people busily employed in raising the framework
of a house. In this part of the country, the poorer class of people
build their houses, or rather, the wooden frames of their houses,
entirely before they set them up. When the skeleton is entirely
finished, they call together all their neighbours to assist in the
raising, which is an event of much importance, and generally ends in a
merry-making. The filling up the outline of the habitation, which they
do with boards here, is an after work: the frame seems to be the
material part of the building, and slight enough too, I thought, for
protection against these bitter east winds. We reached home at about
half-past two. The play was Much Ado about Nothing: the house was spoilt
by the fair which the ladies have been getting up for the blind here,
and which was lighted and open for inspection previous to to-morrow,
when the sale is to take place.

       *       *       *       *       *

       *       *       *       *       *


LINES.

         *          *        *      and I
     Am reading, too, my book of memory:
     With eyelids closed, over the crested foam,
     And the blue marbled sea, I seek my home.
     All present things forgotten, on the shore
     Of the romantic Forth I stand once more;
     Once more I hear the waves' harmonious strife;
     Once more, upon the mountain coast of Fife,
     I see the checker'd lights and shadows fall.
     Upon the sand crumbles the ruin'd wall
     That guards no more the desolate demesne,
     And the deserted mansion. High between
     The summer clouds the Ochil hills arise;
     And far, far, like a shadow in the skies,
     Ben Lomond towers aloft in sovereign height.
     O, Cramond beach! are thy sands still as bright--
     Thy waters still as sunny,--thy wild shore
     As lonely and as lovely as of yore?--
     Haunts of my happy time! as wandering back
     Along my life, on memory's faithful track,
     How fair ye seem,--how fair, how dear ye are!
     Ye need not to be gazed at from afar;
     Deceptive distance lends no brighter hue;
     Your beauty and your peacefulness were true.
     Not yours the charms from which we wearied stray,
     And own them only when they're far away.
     O, be ye blest for all the happiness
     Which I have known in your wild loneliness.
     Old sea, whose voice yet chimes upon my ear,--
     Old paths, whose every winding step was dear,--
     Dark rocky promontories,--echoing caves,
     Worn hollow by the white feet of the waves,--
     Blue lake-like waters,--legend-haunted isle,
     Over ye all, bright be the summer's smile;
     And gently fall the winter on your breast,
     Haunts of my youth, my memory's place of rest.


_Wednesday, May 1st._

Mr. ---- came in the morning, and I settled to call down at eleven for
Mrs. ---- to go to the fair. We drove to Faneuil Hall, a building
opposite the market, which was appropriated to the uses of the fair; but
the crowd was so dense round the steps, that we found it impossible to
approach them, and wisely gave up the attempt, determining to take our
drive, and then come back and try our later fortune. We drove down to
the Chelsea beach. The day was bleak and cold, though bright, with a
cutting east wind. After taking a good race along the bright creaming
edge, we returned to the carriage, and drove into town again to the
fair, which we managed at last to enter. The whole thing was crowd,
crush, and confusion, to my bewildered eyes. We got upon a platform
behind the stalls, and squeezed our way to Mrs. ----'s shop, where my
father had desired me to buy him a card-case, which I did. I found ----
installed in her stall. ---- joined us, and Mr. ----, who drew me away
to his wife's table, where I bought one or two things, and, having
emptied my purse, came away. After dinner, Mr. ---- came in: he showed
us some things he had bought at the fair. I thought the prices enormous,
but the money is well spent in itself, or rather, on its ultimate
object, and the immediate return is of no import.


_Thursday, 2d._

After breakfast, went over to rehearsal; at half-past eleven, went out
to ride: the day was heavenly, bright, and mild, with a full, soft,
sweet spring breeze blowing life and health over one. The golden
willow-trees were all in flower, and the air, as we rode by them, was
rich with their fragrance. The sky was as glorious as the sky of
Paradise: the whole world was full of loveliness; and my spirits were in
most harmonious tune with all its beauty. We rode along the chiming
beach, talking gravely of many matters, temporal and spiritual; and when
we reached the pines, I dismounted, entreated for a scrap of paper,
and, in the miserable little parlour of this miserable little mansion,
sat down and scribbled some miserable doggrel to ease my heart. How
beautiful the scene around me was! the bright boundless sea, smooth as a
sapphire, except at the restless rippling edge; the serene holy sky
looking down so earnestly and gently on the flowering earth; the
reviving breeze, dipping like a bird its fresh wings into the
water,--how beautiful all things did seem to me,--how full of witnesses
of the great power and goodness that created them. Why is it that clouds
ever come between us and God when there are seasons like this, when we
seem to sit at his very feet,--when his glory and his mercy seem the
atmosphere we are breathing, and our whole existence is lifted, for a
time, into the reality of all we hope and pray for? Yet these are but
passing emotions: they are not, indeed, the very spirit of God,--they
are but reflections of his image, caught from the glorious mirror of
nature. The sky becomes cloudy,--the sea stormy; the blossoming and the
bearing seasons pass away, and winter comes apace, with withered aspect,
and bitter biting breath; the face of the universe becomes dark, and the
trust, and faith, and joy of our souls, fade into doubt, disbelief, and
sorrow. Infirmity and imperfection pluck us back from our heavenward
flight, and the weight of our mortality drags us down fast, fast again
towards the earth. These fair outward creatures, and the blessed
emotions they excite, will pass away,--must--do pass away,--and where is
the abiding revelation of God to which we shall turn? It lives for ever,
in the still burning light of a strong and steadfast soul; in the
resolute will and high unshaken purpose of good; in the quiet, calm,
collected might of reason; in the undying warmth and brightness of a
pure and holy heart.

       *       *       *       *       *

My ride did me ten thousand goods. As we were riding through Mrs. ----'s
farm, a little boy came running to meet me with his hand full of
beautiful flowers, which he stood upon tiptoe to thrust into my hand,
and, without waiting to be thanked, rushed back into the house. I was
delighted: the flowers were exquisite, and the manner of the gift very
enchanting. Altogether, I do not know when I have been so completely
filled with pleasurable emotions as during this ride.

       *       *       *       *       *

       *       *       *       *       *


LINES.

     To the smooth beach, the silver sea
       Comes rippling in a thousand smiles,
     And back again runs murmuringly,
       To break around yon distant isles.
     The sunshine, through a floating veil
       Of golden clouds, looks o'er the wave,
     And gilds, far off, the outline pale,
       Of many a rocky cape and cave,
     The breath of spring comes balmily
       Over the newly-blossom'd earth;
     The smile of spring, on sea, and sky,
       Is shedding light, and love, and mirth.
     I would that thou wert by my side,
       As underneath the rosy bloom
     Of flowering orchard trees I ride,
       And drink their fragrant fresh perfume;
     I would that thou wert by my side,
       To feel this soft air on thy brow,
     And listen to the chiming tide
       Along that smooth shore breaking now;
     I would that thou wert here to bless,
       As I do now, the love and care,
     That, with such wealth of loveliness,
       Have made life's journeying-land so fair.

            *       *       *       *       *

            *       *       *       *       *

            *       *       *       *       *


I have taken several enormous rides round Boston, and am more and more
delighted with its environs, which are now in full flush of blossoming,
as sweet, and fresh, and lovely as any thing can be. On Saturday, rode
to the Blue Hills, a distance of upwards of twelve miles. The roads
round this place are almost as good as roads in England, and the country
altogether reminds me of that dear little land.[97] These Blue Hills
were, a few years ago, a wilderness of forest--the favourite resort of
rattlesnakes; but the trees have been partly cleared, and though 'tis
still a wild desolate region, clothed with firs, and uncheered by a
human habitation, its more savage tenants have disappeared with the
thick coverts in which they nestled, and we rode to the summit of the
highest hill without seeing any thing in the shape of Eve's enemy. At
the top, by the by, we did find some species of building in decay and
ruin. Whoever perched himself up there had no mind to be overlooked, and
must have been fond of fresh air. The view from the mountain is
magnificent, yet I do not believe the elevation to be very
extraordinary; although, as I looked down, it seemed to me as though the
world was stretched at my feet; and I thought of the temptation of our
Saviour. The various villages, with their blossoming orchards, looked
like patches of a snow-scene; the river wound, like a silver snake, all
round the fields; the little lakes lay diminished to drops of bright
blue light; and the lesser mountains rose below us like the waves of a
dark sea. The whole was strange and awful to me--the savage loneliness
of the place, its apparent remoteness from the earth, and its walkers,
filled me with a solemn sensation. Had I been there alone, I do not know
a place where I should sooner have expected to meet some of the
wandering spirits of mid-air,--shapes, and sights, and beings of another
order from those of the world, that lay like a map below me. The
mountain itself is formed of granite, of which large slabs appeared
through the turf and brushwood. I looked in vain for what I found in
such abundance on the Portland hill, the sweet wild thyme. I thought I
should find some of it among the stony rifts, where it loves to cling,
but I was disappointed. Indeed, I met with a much more severe
disappointment than that. The turf was thickly strewn with clumps of
violets, the very same in form and colour as our own sweet wood violet.
I stooped in an ecstasy to gather them, but found they were totally
senseless--mere pretences of violets. A violet without fragrance! a
wild one, too!--the thing's totally unnatural. I flung the little purple
cheat away in a rage. I have since found cowslips with the same entire
absence of fragrance. The heat and cold of this climate chill or wither
every thing; and almost all the flowers which are most common and sweet,
growing in the moist soil of England, seem reared with difficulty here,
and lose their great fragrance, their soul, as it were, under the
extreme influences of this sky.[98] There were many wild things growing
on this mountain, that for beauty, and delicacy of form and colour,
would have found honourable place in our conservatories; but they had
not the slightest perfume, and I took no delight in them. A scentless
flower is a monster; and though I acknowledge with due admiration the
pale beauty of that queen of flowers, the camelia, I never see it in its
cold pearl-like pride of bloom, that it does not strike me like a fine
lady--an artificial creature, fair indeed to behold, but without the
very property of a flower--sweetness. Oh, the lilies of the valley,--the
primroses,--the violets,--the sweet, sweet hawthorn,--the fresh fragrant
blush rose,--the purple lilac bloom,--the silver serynga,--the faint
breathing hyacinths,--the golden cowslips, of a morning, at the close of
May in England!--the fulness of sweetness that loads the temperate air,
as it breathes over the fresh lawns of that flower garden!

       *       *       *       *       *

       *       *       *       *       *

I took another long ride to a quarry ten miles distant from Boston,
whence the granite, which is much used in Boston for building, is
drawn. I started at six in the morning, and rode about twenty miles
before breakfast, which I think was a piece of virtue bordering upon
heroism: to be sure, I had my reward, for any thing so sweet as the
whole world, at about half-past six, I never beheld. The dew was yet
fresh upon tree and flower,--the roads were shady and cool,--the dust
had not yet been disturbed; a mild, soft, full breeze blew over the
flowery earth, and the rosy apple blossoms stirred on the rocking boughs
against the serene and smiling sky. They have in this country neither
nightingales, thrushes, linnets, nor blackbirds, at least, none with the
same notes as ours; but every now and then, from the snowy cherry trees,
there came a wild snatch of trilling melody, like the clear ringing song
of a canary bird. My companion did not know the minstrel by his note;
but I never heard a more brilliant and joyful strain, or one more fitted
to the bright hour of opening day,--always excepting the lark's, that
triumphant embodied spirit of song.[99] The blackbird's song is to me
the sweetest in the world,--sad and soft, and rich as the sunsets
through which it is heard. The quarry which we visited is an extensive
vein of fine dark-coloured granite. We dismounted, and walked among the
workmen to see them at their various processes. This quarry, and one at
a short distance, merely supply the blocks of granite, which, being
detached from the main stone, are piled upon cars, and sent down an
inclined plane to the rail-road, by means of a powerful chain, which
acts at once as a support and check, suffering the load to proceed
slowly down the declivity, and at the same time sending up from the
bottom, upon another track, the empty car from which the granite has
been unloaded below, as the buckets of a well are drawn up and down. A
very serious accident occurred here, by the by, to a party of gentlemen,
among whom Mr. ---- was one. They had placed themselves in the empty car
at the bottom of the inclined plane, and were being slowly drawn up, as
the car loaded with granite descended on the other track. Just as they
were approaching the summit, the chain by which the car was drawn up
gave way, and it rolled backwards down the plane with fearful velocity,
and, starting off the track of the rail-road, pitched down into a ravine
full of rocks and blocks of granite, over which the road passes like a
bridge at the foot of the quarry. I believe one of them was killed, and
the others most terribly injured. The rough blocks of granite are
conveyed by horses, in the same rail-road cars, to smaller quarries
below, where they are wrought and shaped for their appointed uses. After
looking down from the summit of the granite rock upon the country which
lay smiling for many a sunny mile of flowery earth and sparkling sea
below, and wandering about the works, which are interesting and curious,
we remounted, and rode home over turfy wood-paths, through tangled
thickets of pine, fir, and cedar, whose warm fragrance was beginning to
be drawn forth by the morning sun. We disturbed in our path a poor
woodcock, who was sitting with her young: it was a pity to see the poor
thing flutter about her treasure, and go trailing a little way into the
brush-wood, to entice us away from them. Poor mother! what a tempest of
fear and agony was in your downy breast. I was very sorry we had
frightened her, poor creature. The country we rode through was extremely
pretty,--so, indeed, I think all the country round Boston is; the only
deficiency is water,--running water, I mean; for there are several
beautiful pools in this vicinity,--and, turn which way you will, the
silver shield of the sea shining against the horizon is a lovely feature
of the landscape. But there are no rivulets, no brooks, no sparkling
singing water-courses to refresh one's senses, as one rides across the
fields and through the woodlands. ---- called on us on Sunday last. He
is very enchanting: I wish it had been my good fortune to see him
oftener. One of the _great men_ of this country, he would have been a
first-rate man all the world over; and, like all first-rate people,
there is a simplicity and a total want of pretension about him that is
very delightful. He gave us a description of Niagara, which did what he
complained no description of it ever does,--conveyed to us an exact idea
of the natural position and circumstances which render these falls so
wonderful; whereas, most describers launch forth into vague and
untangible rhapsodies, which, after all, convey no express idea of any
thing but water in the abstract, he gave me, by his few simple words, a
more _real_ impression of the stupendous cataract than all that was ever
writ or spoken of waterfalls before, not excepting Byron's Terni. Last
Saturday, I dined at ----'s; where, for my greater happiness, I sat
between ---- and ----. I remember especially two bright things uttered;
the one by the one, the other by the other of these worthies. Mr. ----,
speaking of Knowles's Hunchback, said, "Well, after all, it's no great
matter. The author evidently understands stage effect and dramatic
situations, and so on; but as for the writing, it's by no means as good
as Shakspeare." I looked at the man in amazement, and suggested to him
that Shakspeare did not grow upon every bush. Presently, Mr. ---- began
a sentence by assuring me that he was a worshipper of Shakspeare; and
ended it by saying that Othello was disgusting, King Lear ludicrous, and
Romeo and Juliet childish nonsense: whereat I swallowed half a pint of
water, and nearly my tumbler too, and remained silent; for what could I
say? However, in spite of this, I owe ---- some gratitude, for he
brought ---- to see me the other day, whose face is more like that of a
good and intellectual man than almost any face I ever saw. The climate
of this place is dreadful! The night before last, the weather was so
warm, that, with my window open, I was obliged to take half the clothes
off my bed: last night was so cold, that, with window shut, and
additional covering, I could scarce get to sleep for the cold. This is
terrible, and forms a serious drawback upon the various attractions of
Boston; and to me it has many. The houses are like English houses: the
Common is like Constitution Hill; Beacon Street is like a bit of Park
Lane; and Summer Street, now that the chestnut trees are in bloom, is
perfectly beautiful. But for the climate, I should like to live in
Boston very much: my stay here has been delightful. It is in itself a
lovely place, and the country round it is charming. The people are
intellectual, and have been most abundantly good-natured and kind to me.

       *       *       *       *       *

       *       *       *       *       *

I have finished ----'s sermons, which are most excellent. I think he is
one of the purest English prose-writers now living. I revere him
greatly; yet I do not think his denial of the Trinity is consistent with
the argument by which he maintains the truth of the miracles. I have
begun the Diary of an Ennuyée again: that book is most enchanting to
me,--merely to read the names of the places in which one's imagination
goes sunning itself for ever, is delightful.


_New York._

I have seen ----, who in his outward man bears but little token of his
inward greatness. Miss ---- had prepared me for an exterior over which
debility and sickness had triumphed now for some years; but, thought I,
there must be eyes and a brow; and there the spirit will surely be seen
upon its throne. But the eyes were small grey eyes, with an expression
which struck me at first as more akin to shrewdness of judgment, than
genius and the loftier qualities of the mind; and though the brow and
forehead were those of an intellectual person, they had neither the
expanse nor conformation I had imagined. The subject of our
conversation, though sufficiently natural for him to choose, addressing
one of my craft, did not appear to me to be a happy one for his own
powers,--perhaps I thought so because I differed from him. He talked
about the stage and acting in as unreal, and, in my opinion, mistaken, a
manner as possible. Had he expressed himself unknowingly about acting,
that would not have surprised me; for he can have no means of judging of
it, not having frequented the theatre for some years past: and those who
have the best means of forming critical judgments upon dramatic subjects
for the most part talk arrant nonsense about them. Lawrence was the only
man I ever heard speak about the stage who did so with understanding and
accuracy. I have heard the very cleverest men in England talk the
greatest stuff imaginable about actors and acting. But to return to
----: he said he had not thought much upon the subject, but that it
appeared to him feasible and highly desirable to take detached passages
and scenes from the finest dramatic writers, and have them well
declaimed in comparatively private assemblies,--this as a wholesome
substitute for the stage, of which he said he did not approve; and he
thought this the best method of obtaining the intellectual pleasure and
profit to be derived from fine dramatic works, without the illusion and
excitement belonging to theatrical exhibitions. My horror was so
unutterable at this proposition, and my amazement so extreme that he
should make it, that I believe my replies to it were all but incoherent.
What! take one of Shakspeare's plays bit by bit, break it piece-meal, in
order to make recitals of it!--destroy the marvellous unity of one of
his magnificent works, to make patches of declamation! If the stage is
evil, put it away, and put away with it those writings which properly
belong to it, and to nothing else; but do not take dramatic
compositions, things full of present action and emotion, to turn them
into recitations,--and mutilated ones too. Get other poems to declaim,
no matter how vivid or impassioned in their descriptions, so their form
be not dramatic. It is not to be supposed that the effect proper and
natural to a fine dramatic conception can be preserved when the language
is merely declaimed without the assistance of distance, dress, scenic
effects,--all the appertainings that the author has reckoned upon to
work out his idea. ---- mentioned the dagger soliloquy in Macbeth, as an
instance which would admit of being executed after his idea; saying,
that that, well read by any person in a drawing-room, would have all the
effect necessary or desirable. I remember hearing my aunt Siddons read
the scenes of the witches in Macbeth; and, while doing so, was obliged
to cover my eyes, that her velvet gown, modern cap, and spectacles might
not disturb the wild and sublime images that her magnificent voice and
recitation were conjuring up around me. If a man professes to tell you a
story, no matter what,--say the story of Romeo and Juliet,--and sits in
a modern drawing-room, in modern costume, it matters not,--_he_ is no
part of his story,--you do not connect him with his narrative,--his
appearance in no way clashes with your train of thought,--you are not
thinking of him, but of the people he is talking about. But if a man in
a modern drawing-room, and in modern costume, were to get up, and begin
reciting the balcony scene in Romeo and Juliet, I think the case would
be altered. However, never having heard such a proposal before, I had
not thought much about it, and only felt a little stunned at the idea of
Shakspeare's _histories_ being broken into fragments.[100]


_Thursday._

At a little after ten, ---- came to take us to see the savages. We drove
down, D----, my father, he, and I, to their hotel. We found, even at
that early hour, the portico, passage, and staircase, thronged with
gazers upon the same errand as ourselves. We made our way, at length,
into the presence-chamber; a little narrow dark room, with all the
windows shut, crowded with people, come to stare at their fellow wild
beasts. Upon a sofa sat Black Hawk, a diminutive shrivelled-looking old
man, with an appearance of much activity in his shrunk limbs, and a
calmness and dignified self-composure in his manner, which, in spite of
his want of size and comeliness, was very striking. Next to him sat a
young man, the adopted son of his brother the prophet, whose height and
breadth, and peculiar gravity of face and deportment, were those of a
man nearly forty, whereas he is little more than half that age. The
undisturbed seriousness of his countenance was explained to me by _their
keeper_, thus: he had, it seems, the day before, indulged rather too
freely in the delights of champagne, and was suffering just retribution
in the shape of a headach,--unjust retribution, I should say, for in his
savage experience no such sweet bright poison had ever before been
recorded, _I guess_, by the after pain it causes. Next to him sat Black
Hawk's son, a noble big young creature, like a fine Newfoundland puppy,
with a handsome scornful face, which yet exhibited more familiarity and
good-humoured amusement at what was going on than any of the rest. His
hair was powdered on the top, and round the ears, with a bright
vermilion-coloured powder, and knots of scarlet berries or beads, I
don't know which, hung like ear-rings on each side of his face. A string
of glass beads was tied round his naked throat; he was wrapped in a
large blanket, which completely concealed his form, except his legs and
feet, which were clothed in common leather shoes, and a species of
deerskin gaiter. He seemed much alive to what was going on, conversed
freely in his own language with his neighbour, and laughed once or twice
aloud, which rather surprised me, as I had heard so much of their
immovable gravity. The costume of the other young man was much the same,
except that his hair was not adorned. Black Hawk himself had on a blue
cloth surtout, scarlet leggings, a black silk neck-handkerchief, and
ear-rings. His appearance altogether was not unlike that of an old
French gentleman. Beside him, on a chair, sat one of his warriors,
wrapped in a blanket, with a cotton handkerchief whisped round his head.
At one of the windows apart from their companions, with less courtesy in
their demeanour, and a great deal of sullen savageness in their serious
aspects, sat the great warrior, and the prophet of the tribe--the latter
is Black Hawk's brother. I cannot express the feeling of commiseration
and disgust which the whole scene gave me. That men such as ourselves,
creatures with like feelings, like perceptions, should be brought, as
strange animals at a show, to be gazed at the livelong day by succeeding
shoals of gaping folk, struck me as totally unfitting. The cold dignity
of the old chief, and the malignant scowl of the prophet, expressed the
indecency and the irksomeness of such a situation. Then, to look at
those two young savages, with their fine muscular proportions, and think
of them cooped up the whole horrible day long, in this hot prison-house
full of people, made my heart ach. How they must loathe the sight of
these narrow walls, and the sound of these strange voices; how they must
sicken for their unmeasured range of wilderness! The gentleman who
seemed to have the charge of them pressed me to go up and shake hands
with them, as every body else in the room did; but I refused to do so
from literal compassion, and unwillingness to add to the wearisome toil
they were made to undergo. As we were departing, however, they
reiterated their entreaties that we would go up and shake hands with
them,--so I did. Black Hawk and the young men received our courtesy with
great complaisance; but when we went to the great warrior and the
prophet, they seemed exceedingly loath to receive our hands, the latter
particularly, who had, moreover, one of the very worst expressions I
think I ever saw upon a human countenance. I instinctively withdrew my
hand; but when my father offered his, the savage's face relaxed into a
smile, and he met his greeting readily. I wonder what pleased him about
my father's appearance, whether it was his large size or not. I had a
silver vinaigrette in my pouch, which I gave Black Hawk's son, by way of
keepsake: it will make a charming present for his squaw.


_Sunday, June 30th._

Rose at four, but, after looking at my watch, resumed my slumbers until
six, when I started up, much dismayed to find it so late, and presently,
having dressed as fast as ever I could, we set off for the steam-boat.
The morning was the brightest possible, the glorious waters that meet
before New York were all like rivers of light blazing with the reflected
radiance of the morning sky. We had no sooner set foot on board the
steam-boat, than a crowd of well-known faces surrounded us: I was
introduced to Mr. ----, and Mr. ---- the brother of our host at Cold
Spring. Mr. ---- came and stood by me for a considerable time after we
started. It is agreeable to talk to him, because he has known and seen
so much; traversed the world in every direction, and been the friend of
Byron and Shelley; a common mind, that had enjoyed the same
opportunities (that's impossible, by the by, no common mind would have
sought or found them), must have acquired something from intercourse
with such men, and such wide knowledge of things; but he is an uncommon
man, and it is very interesting to hear him talk of what he has seen,
and those he has known.

       *       *       *       *       *

When we reached West Point, Mr. ---- was waiting with his boat to convey
us over to Cold Spring; and accordingly, bidding our various
acquaintance and companions farewell, we rowed over out of the course of
the river, into a sunny bay it forms among the hills, to our kinsman's
abode.

Mr. ----'s place is a lovely little nook, situated on the summit of a
rise on the brink of the placid curve of water formed here by the river,
and which extends itself from the main current about a mile into the
mountains, ending in a wide marsh. The house, though upon a hill, is so
looked down upon, and locked in by the highlands around it, that it
seems to be at the bottom of a valley. From the verandah of his house,
through various frames which he has had cut, with exceeding good
judgment, among the plantations around the lawn, exquisite glimpses
appeared of the mountains, the little bay, the glorious Hudson itself,
with the graceful boats for ever walking its broad waters, their white
sails coming through the rocky passes where the river could not be
detected, as though they were sailing through the valleys of the earth.
The day was warm, but a fresh breeze stirred the boughs, and cooled the
air. My father and D---- seemed overcome with drowsiness, and lay in the
verandah with half-closed eyes, peeping at the dream-like scene around
them. I was not inclined to rest; and Mr. ---- having promised to show
me some falls at a short distance from the house, he, his brother, and I
set forth thither. We passed through the iron-works: 'twas Sunday, and
every thing, except a bright water-course, laughing and singing as it
ran, was still. They took me over the works; showed me the iron frames
of large mill-wheels, the machinery and process of boring the cannon,
the model of an iron forcing-pump, the casting-houses, and all the
wonders of their manufactory. All mechanical science is very interesting
to me, when I have an opportunity of seeing the detail of it, and
comprehending, by illustrations presented to my eyes, the technical
terms used by those conversing with me. We left these dark abodes, and
their smouldering fires, and strange powerful-looking instruments, and,
taking a path at the foot of the mountains, skirted the marsh for some
time, and then struck into the woods, ascending a tremendous stony path,
at the top of which we threw ourselves down to pant, and looked below,
through a narrow rent in the curtain of leaves around us, on the river,
and rocks, and mountains, bright with the noonday splendour of the
unclouded sky. After resting here a few moments, we arose, and climbed
again, through the woods, across a sweet clover-field, to the brow of
the hill where stands the highland school, a cheerful-looking cottage,
with the mountain tops all round, the blessed sky above, and the
downward sloping woods, and lake-like river below. Passing through the
ground surrounding it, we joined a road skirting a deep ravine, from
the bottom of which the waters called to me. I was wild to go down, but
my companions would not let me: it was in vain that I strained over the
brink, the trees were so thickly woven together, and the hollow so deep,
that I could see nothing but dark boughs, except every now and then, as
the wind stirred them, the white glimmer of the leaping foam, as it
sprang away with a shout that made my heart dance. We followed the path,
which began to decline; and presently a silver thread of gushing water
ran like a frightened child across our way, and flung itself down into
the glen. At length we reached the brown golden-looking stream. Mr. ----
was exhorting us to take an upper path, which, he said, would bring us
to the foot of the fall; but I was not to be seduced away from the side
of the rivulet, and insisted upon crossing it then and there, through
the water, over moss-capped stones, across fallen trees, which, struck
by the lightning, or undermined by the cold-kissing waters, had choked
up the brook with their leafy bridges. So striving on, as best we might,
after wading through the stream two or three times, we reached the end
and aim of our journey, the waterfall. We stood on the brink of a pool,
about forty feet across, and varying in depth from three to seven or
eight feet: it was perfectly circular, and except on the south, where
the waters take their path down the glen, closed round with a wall of
rock about thirty feet high, in whose crevices trees with their rifted
roots hung fearlessly, clothing the grey stone with a soft curtain of
vivid green. Immediately opposite the brook, and at the north of the
pool, the water came tumbling over this rocky wall in three distinct
streams, which, striking the projecting ledges of iron-looking stone, at
different angles, met within eight or ten feet of the pool, and fell in
a mingled sheet of foam. The water broke over the rocks like a shower of
splintered light; the spray sprang up in the sunlight, and fell again
all glittering into the dark basin below, that gleamed like a magic
jewel set in the mossy earth. On the edge of the rocks, beside the
waterfall, a tree stood out among its greenly-mantled fellows, bare,
broken, and scathed to the very roots with lightning. Its upper half had
fallen aslant one branch of the waterfall, and lay black and dripping
over the pure white torrent; half falling down its course, half stayed
by some rocky ledges on which it rested. As I gazed up in perfect
ecstasy, an uncontrollable desire seized me to clamber up the rocks by
the side of the fall, and so reach the top of it. My companions laughed
incredulously as I expressed my determination to do so; but followed
where I led, until they became well assured that I was in earnest.
Remonstrance, and representation of impossibility, having been tried in
vain, Mr. ---- prepared to guide me, and Mr. ---- with my bag, parasol,
and bonnet in charge, returned to the edge of the pool to watch our
progress. Away we went over the ledges of the rocks, with nothing but
damp leaves, and slippery roots of trees, for footing. At one moment,
the slight covering of mould on which I had placed my foot crumbled from
beneath it, and I swung over the water by a young sapling which upheld
me well, and by which I recovered footing and balance. We had now
reached the immediate side of the waterfall, and my guide began
ascending the slippery slanting rocks down which it fell. I followed: in
an instant I was soaked through with the spray, my feet slipped, I had
no hold, he was up above me, the pool far below. With my head bowed
against the foam and water, I was feeling where next to tread, when a
bit of rock, that my companion had thought firm, broke beneath his foot,
and came falling down beside me into the stream. I paused, for I was
frightened: I looked up for a moment, but was blinded by the water, and
could not see where my guide was; I looked down the slanting ledge we
had climbed, over which the white water was churning angrily: "Shall I
come down again?" I cried to Mr. ----, who was anxiously looking up at
our perilous path. "Give me your hand," shouted his brother, above me. I
lifted my head, and turned towards him, and a dazzling curtain of spray
and foam fell over my face. "I cannot see you," I replied; "I cannot go
on; I do not know what to do." "Give me your hand!" he exclaimed again;
and I, planting one foot upon a ledge of rock so high as to lift me off
the other, held up my arm to him: but my limbs were so strained from his
height above me, that I had no power to spring or move, either up or
down. However, I felt my presence of mind going: I knew that to go down
was impossible, except headlong; the ascent must therefore be persevered
in. "Are you steady, quite, quite steady?" I enquired; he replied,
"Yes;" and holding out his hand, I locked mine in it, and bade him draw
me up. But he had not calculated upon my weight; my slight appearance
had deceived him; and as I bore upon his arm, we both of us slipped. I
turned as sick as death; but only cried out, "Recover yourself, recover
yourself, I am safe;" which I was, upon a rocky rim about three inches
wide, with my arm resting on the falling stump of the blasted tree. He
did recover his balance; and, again holding out his hand, drew me up
beside where he was sitting, on the edge of the rocks, in the water. We
pledged each other in the clear stream; and, standing on the top of our
hardly-gained eminence, in the midst of the rushing brook I wrang my
handkerchief triumphantly at Mr. ----; which was rather a comical
consideration, as I was literally dripping from head to foot. No Naïad
ever looked so thoroughly watery, or could have taken more delight in a
ducking. As soon as he saw us safe, he scrambled up through the woods to
the road; and we doing the same, we presently all met on the dusty
highway, where we congratulated each other on our perseverance and
success, and laughed very exceedingly at my soaked situation. We
determined not to pass through the highland school-ground, but kept the
main road for the advantage of sun and wind, the combined influences of
which presently dried my frock and handkerchief. When I reached home,
ran up stairs, and dressed myself for dinner, which we sat down to at
about four. After dinner, came up to my room and slept very profoundly,
until summoned to coffee, which we drank in the verandah. At about eight
o'clock, the sun had left the sky; but his warm mantle lay over the
western clouds, and hung upon the rocks and woody mountain sides. A
gentle breeze was stirring the trees round where we sat; and through the
thick branches of a chestnut tree, as they waved to and fro, the silver
disk of the full moon looked placidly down upon us. We set out strolling
through the woods: leisurely as foot could fall, we took our way through
the twilight paths; and when we reached the Roman Catholic chapel our
host is building by the river side, the silent thoughtful mountains were
wrapped in deep shadows, and the broad waters shone like a sheet of
silver in the moonlight. We sat down on the cannon lying on the pebbly
shore, and Mr. ---- ran off to order the boat, which presently came
stealing round over the shining waters. We got in, ---- rowing, and they
put me at the helm: but, owing to Mr. ----'s misdirections, who seemed
extremely amused at my awkwardness, and took delight in bothering poor
----, by making me steer all awry, we made but little progress, and that
rather crab-wise; backing, and sideling, and turning, as though the poor
boat had been a politician.

       *       *       *       *       *

Full of my own contemplations, I kept steering round and round, and so
we wandered, as purposeless as the night air over the smooth waters, and
beneath the shadows of the solemn hills, till near eleven o'clock, when
we made for shore, and slowly turned home. We sat for a length of time
under the verandah: the gentlemen were discussing the planetary system,
as accepted in the civilised world; and Mr. ---- maintained, with
sufficient plausibility, that we knew nothing at all about it, in spite
of Newton: for that, though his theories were borne out by all
observation, it did not follow, therefore, that another theory equally
probable might not exist; that because he had found out one way of
accounting for the construction and motion of the heavenly bodies, there
was no other possible way in which they were constructed and impelled;
because one means is sufficient, he argued, it does not thence follow,
that 'tis the only sufficient means. Mr. ---- maintained that there was,
at least, strong presumption in favour of Newton's systems; because they
are borne out by our observation of results, and also because hitherto
no other better method of accounting for what we perceive has been
discovered. And so they went on, the end of all being, to my mind, as
usual, utter unsatisfactoriness; and, as the mosquitoes were stinging
me, I left them to their discussions, and came to bed.


_Monday, July 1st._

Major ---- and Mr. ---- came over from West Point: they were going to
prove some cannon that had not yet been fired; and some time passed in
the various preparations for so doing. At length, we were summoned down
to the water-side, to see the success of the experiment. The cannon lay
obliquely one behind the other, at intervals of about six yards, along
the curve line of the little bay; their muzzles pointed to the high
gravelly bank into which they fired. The guns were double-loaded, with
very heavy charges; and as soon as we were safely placed, so as to see
and hear, they were fired. The sound was glorious: the first heavy peal,
and then echo after echo, as they _rimbombavano_ among the answering
hills, who growled aloud at the stern voice waking their still and
noonday's deep repose. I pushed out in the boat, from shore, to see the
thick curtain of smoke as it rolled its silver, and brassy, and black
volumes over the woody mountain-sides; parting in jagged rents as it
rose; through which the vivid green, and blessed sky, smiled in their
peaceful loneliness. They ended in discharging all the cannon at once;
which made a most glorious row, and kept the mountains grumbling with
its echoes for some minutes after the discharge. All the pieces were
sound; which was highly satisfactory, as upon each one that flaws in the
firing Mr. ---- loses the cost of the piece. Just as the smoke cleared
off from the river, we saw the boat making to shore; and, presently, Mr.
----, his wife and children, and a young Mr. ----, landed. After
introductions, and one or two questions, Mrs. ---- went up to her
cottage to put things in order there; Mr. ---- betook himself to
Froissart and the shade; Mr. ---- to his business; and D----, my father,
Mr. ---- and myself, set forth to the fountain in the glen. The weather
was intensely hot; the thermometer above ninety in the shade; it was
about half-past twelve; and we toiled and gasped on like so many Indians
up the steep path. The walk had been so laborious, that neither D----
nor my father were willing, at first, to admit that the object was a
sufficient one. We sat for some time by the dark shady pool; and they,
by degrees, recovered their breath and complacency, and began to
perceive how beautiful the place really was. My father said the
waterfall looked like a fine lace veil torn by the rocks; which pleased
me, because it did look like that. Mr. ---- proposed an admirable plan,
that of walking down the water's side, and taking a boat upon the
Hudson; and so avoiding the long hot walk home. We called at the
highland school; where the worthy man who keeps it received us with
infinite civility, put us into a delicious cool room, and gave us some
white hermitage and water to drink, which did us all manner of
good.[101] We then descended to the river: after some delay and
difficulty, got a boat and rowed home.

       *       *       *       *       *

       *       *       *       *       *


LINES.

     Here be the free gifts of the morning for thee;
     Dog-roses, with their thorns all strung with pearls,
     And a large round diamond in each rosy cup:
     Their leaves are the colour of Aurora's cheeks.
     Here is a pale white flower, without a name,
     At least to me, who am a stranger here:
     It has a delicate almond smell, and grew
     Among thick boughs, and leaves that guarded it.
     Poor thing! I took it from its shelter for thee.
     Here be some lilac heads of clover, sweet
     As the breath of love: they lay amongst the hay
     In a new-mown meadow, glittering in the sun.
     Here are the leaves of the wild vine, that shine
     Like glass without, and underneath are white
     And soft as a swan's breast. There is an oak branch;
     I gather'd it, because it grows at home,
     And in this strange land look'd as sad and loving
     As a friend's face: when it is wither'd, keep it.
     They are all heavy with the tears of the night,
     Who weeps, because she may not meet the sun;
     And when he comes down from the mountain tops,
     Parting the forests with his hands of fire,
     He drinks her weeping, kissing all the flowers
     With passionate love, which makes them look so blushing.


_Tuesday, 2d._

Packed up my bag, took a cup of tea, went and gathered some flowers, and
gave the poor lamb some heads of clover; bade a very unwilling farewell
to the pretty place, and rowed over to West Point, where Mr. ---- was
waiting for us. We breakfasted at ten, and went down to meet the boat.
Young Mr. ---- came over to see us off, and brought me some lovely fresh
flowers. Mr. ---- and Mr. ---- were both at the embarking-post. When the
boat came up, the rush to and from it was, without exception, the most
frightful thing I ever saw. The ----s were landing; and I just spoke to
her, as she was borne past by the throng. Safely on board, I again found
myself surrounded by familiar faces: I took out my work, and Mr. ----
sat down by us. As a nuisance, which all unsought-for companionship is,
he is quite the most endurable possible; for he has seen such things,
and known such people, that it is greatly worth while to listen to him.
Every thing he says of Byron and Shelley confirms my own impression of
them. The scenery of the Hudson, immediately beyond West Point, loses
much of its sublimity, though no beauty. The river widens, and the
rugged summits of the highlands melt gradually into a softer and more
undulating outline. The richness, and swelling, and falling of the land
reminded me occasionally of England. The yellow grain was giving
diversity and warmth to the green landscape; and the shadowy woods
fencing the corn-fields threw over the whole picture a sheltering
peaceful charm. On the left, we presently began to see the blue outline
of the Catskill mountains, towering into the hot sky, and looking most
blessedly cool and dark amid the fervid glowing of the noonday world.
Mrs. ---- came on board at one of the stopping places. I was quite glad
to see her sweet face, and hear her gentle voice again. Mr. ---- was
greatly smitten with her calm look of repose, and lulling speech, and
took to her vehemently. She told me long stories, like fairy tales, of
caverns lately discovered in the bosom of these mountains; of pits black
and fathomless; of subterranean lakes in gloomy chambers of the earth;
and tumbling waters, which fall down in the dark, where men heard, but
none had dared to go. How I should like to go there! Oh, who will lead
me into the secret parts of the earth; who will guide me to the deep
hiding-places where spirits are--where the air of this upper world is
not breathed, and its sounds are unknown--where the light of the sun is
unseen, and the voice of human creatures unheard? how I should like to
go there! At about half-past three in the afternoon, the sky became
suddenly and thickly overcast: the awning which sheltered the upper deck
was withdrawn, and every preparation made for a storm. The pale
angry-looking clouds lay heaped like chalk upon a leaden sky; and
presently one red lightning dipped down into the woods like a fiery
snake falling from the heavens. At the same time, a furious gust of wind
and torrent of rain rushed down the mountain side. We scuttled down to
the lower deck as fast as ever we could; but the storm met us at the
bottom of the stairs, and in an instant I was drenched. Chairs, tables,
every thing was overturned by the gust; and the boat was running with
water in every direction. It thundered and lightened a little; but the
noise of the engine was such, that we scarce heard the storm. I stood by
the door of the furnace, and dried leisurely, talking the while to Mr.
----, who is sun-burnt enough to warm one through with a look. During
our progress, one of the wheels (or paddles, as they are properly
called) took it into its head to knock its case to pieces, and banged
the boards about in a strange way. Accident the second:--one of the men,
a black, who was employed in tending the fire, got so dreadfully heated
with the intense furnace, that he rushed out of the engine-room, and
swallowed two or three draughts of cold water. The effect was
instantaneous: he fell down in violent internal spasms, and died, poor
wretch! before we arrived at Albany. We reached that town at about
half-past five in the afternoon, and went to a house the ----s
recommended to us. At about seven, they gave us dinner; and immediately
after I came up to my own room. I was so exhausted with fatigue, and a
violent cold and cough, that I literally fell down on the floor, and
slept till dark. As we came up the river, we passed Dr. ----'s place,
Hyde Park, which has the reputation of being the best-kept private
estate in America: the situation of the house, on the edge of a ridge,
appeared to me, from the river, rather too much exposed.


_Saturday, 6th._

My father had settled to go to the Cohoes Falls.

       *       *       *       *       *

       *       *       *       *       *

When we were in the steam-boat, going up to Troy,[102] ---- put a
letter into my hands, which he told me was written by the mother of
Allegra, Byron's child. The letter was remarkable only for more
straightforwardness and conciseness than is usual in women's letters. I
do not know whether ---- gave it me to read on that account alone, or
because it contained allusions to wild and interesting adventures of his
own: perhaps there was a mingling of motives. There never was, by the
by, a _homogeneous_ motive, as Brewster would say, in the human breast.
We reached Troy in about twenty minutes, and walked up into the town to
procure some species of vehicle for our progress to the falls. There was
none ready; and while one was being procured, a man, who was standing
near us, very civilly invited us to come into his shop and sit down,
which we did very readily. The situation of the warehouses, on the side
near the river, of the main street of Troy, is exceedingly pretty. They
are, for the most part, large long rooms, opening to the street at the
one end, and on the other looking down, from a considerable height, upon
the Hudson. The shop we were in was a china-store; and the nice cold
crockery-ware made one cool to look at it: the weather was roasting. Mr.
---- left us to gather information, and kindly brought me back word that
the population of Troy was five hundred, _or_ five thousand, I really
forget which; and, for my journal, it don't much matter; and that the
storekeeper assured him the Trojans were an exceedingly refined and
literary set of folks; and that the society, in point of these two
advantages, was no whit behind Boston: there's for Boston!--We obtained
a coach, and crossed a ferry, such as I had never seen before, worked by
horses. Poor wretches! they reminded me of ----'s steeds, Martyre et
Souffrance. Mr. ---- observed that they led the life of the majority;
and so they do,--labour and suffering that custom renders endurable, and
that ends by grinding down every faculty of mind or soul: we're a
blessed pack of drudges, and deserve to be just what we are. After
crossing the ferry, we drove about five miles through some gentle
smiling lands, that made one feel very charitable. The Cohoes is, I
believe, a Dutch name for a hill just above a turn in the Mohawk, where,
after some shallow, rapid, hasty running over a rocky bed, the river
flings itself down over a broad barrier, between thirty and forty feet
high, with the most delightful gushing sound in the world. The foam
looked very nice, and soft, and thick, and cold: I longed to be in the
middle of it.

       *       *       *       *       *

       *       *       *       *       *

After wandering about for some time, we sat ourselves down on a high
grassy knoll just above the falls.

       *       *       *       *       *

We returned in time, as we flattered ourselves, to meet the steam-boat
which leaves Troy for Albany at four; but, just as we were crossing the
ferry, the steamer ran past us, leaving us, with eyes and mouths wide
open, very much bothered as to how we were to get down to Albany. D----
proposed a row-boat, and the sense of the company seemed to agree
thereto; but, upon driving to the inn where we hired our carriage, and
enquiring for such a conveyance, we were assured that there was no such
thing to be had: whereupon my father, good easy man! believed there was
not, and got into the coach again. Mr. ----, however, had absconded, and
remained gone so long, that I began to think he had, perhaps, started to
swim down the river; when he presently appeared, informing us that he
had gotten a boat for us. We jumped readily out of the coach; and,
though my father had actually made a bargain for the hire of it, to
convey us to Albany, with the innkeeper, and, moreover, given him the
money, the righteous man refunded the dollars; which, Falstaff knows, is
a displeasing thing to do: "I hate that paying back!" Our row back was
delightful: the evening was calm and lovely beyond description; the sun
had lost his fierceness, and the warm air clasped the fresh woods
tenderly; the waters were unbroken as a mirror; the very spirit of love
and peace possessed the world: the effect of all which was to send me
into a very sound sleep.

       *       *       *       *       *

       *       *       *       *       *

We reached Albany in very good time for dinner. Mr. ---- dined with us:
what a savage he is, in some respects! He's a curious being: a
description of him would puzzle any one who had never seen him. A man
with the proportions of a giant for strength and agility; taller,
straighter, and broader than most men; yet with the most listless
indolent carelessness of gait, and an uncertain wandering way of
dropping his feet to the ground, as if he didn't know where he was
going, and didn't much wish to go any where. His face is as dark as a
Moor's; with a wild strange look about the eyes and forehead, and a
mark like a scar upon his cheek: his whole appearance giving one an idea
of toil, hardship, peril, and wild adventure. The expression of his
mouth is remarkably mild and sweet, and his voice is extremely low and
gentle. His hands are as brown as a labourer's: he never profanes them
with gloves, but wears two strange magical-looking rings: one of them,
which he showed me, is made of elephant's hair.

       *       *       *       *       *

       *       *       *       *       *

Occasionally, in his horror of one class of prejudices, he embraces the
opposite ones: perhaps the extreme of any evil, in this world of
imperfect means, can only be effectually resisted by its reverse
extreme.


_Monday, 8th._

After breakfast, went to rehearsal: Mr. ---- came with us. The actors
were one and all reading their parts: the lady who played Charlotte was
the only exception--she was perfect. As I sat on the stage, between my
scenes, a fat, good-tempered, rosy, bead-eyed, wet-haired, shining-faced
looking man accosted me; and, having ascertained that I was myself,
proceeded to accuse me of having, in Mrs. Haller, pronounced the word
"industry" with the accent on the middle syllable, as "in_dus_try;"
adding, that he had already quoted my authority to several people for
the emphasis, and begging to know my "exquisite reason" therefor. It was
in vain that I urged that it must have been a mistake if I said so; that
I never meant to say so, if I did say so; that if I did say so, I was
very wrong to say so; that I was very sorry for having said so; that I
never would say so again. Between each of my humblest apologies my
accuser merely replied, "But you _did_ say in_dus_try," with an
inflexible pertinacity of condemnation, which was not a whit softened by
my sincere confessions. Presently the worthy creature, adverting to the
letter in the Mirror about General Jackson, begged that as I had passed
the fourth of July, that glorious anniversary, in Albany, I would
illustrate its celebration by some remarks in the style of that
admirable composition. Great was the fat man's surprise, and evident his
contempt for me, when I disclaimed the authorship of that document.
Greater still waxed both, when I assured him that on the fourth of July
I positively walked out of the town, to avoid the noise in it. After
this, he remained gazing at me in silent amazement; and, as soon as he
had sufficiently recovered from it to move, he took up his hat, and
briefly wished me "good morning." Mr. ---- told me the man was a
newspaper-editor; but I think he looked too fat, and fresh, and
good-tempered for that. When we returned home, sat down to write
journal.

       *       *       *       *       *

       *       *       *       *       *

The play was the Gamester: the house was very full. Mr. ---- did not
know one syllable of his part, and bothered me utterly. At the end of
the play, they called for my father, and civilly desired we would act
the Hunchback; as, however, we had not the dresses for it with us, he
declined, but promised we would return hereafter.

       *       *       *       *       *

       *       *       *       *       *


_Tuesday, 9th._

After breakfast, the day being extremely fine, Mr. ---- urged us to go
out, and take a walk; so forth we set, my father and I leading the way,
and D---- and Mr. ---- following.

       *       *       *       *       *

       *       *       *       *       *

We crossed the river, and, following the first road like a flock of
geese errant, arrived at the top of a delightful breezy knoll, opposite
a tiny waterfall, the rocks and basin of which were picturesque; but the
water had been turned off to turn a mill. The hill where we stood
commanded a beautiful view of the Hudson, Albany, and the shores
stretching away into sunny indistinctness. My father, and D----, and Mr.
----, sat down under some oak trees: I ran off to explore the stream.

       *       *       *       *       *

       *       *       *       *       *

After looking about in every direction, I returned to my friends: we
strolled away through the woods and along the high road, with the sweet
smell of mellow hay keeping us company the while. We halted at an
orchard corner, near a pleasant-looking farm, where we all agreed we
should like to live.

       *       *       *       *       *

       *       *       *       *       *

Mr. ---- killed us with laughing with an account he gave us of some of
Byron's sayings and doings, which were just as whimsical and eccentric
as unamiable, but very funny. To-morrow we start for Utica: Mr.
---- comes with us: I am glad of it--I like him.


_Wednesday, 10th._

Just as we were getting into the railroad coach for Schenectady, a
parcel was put into my hand: it was a letter from ----, and Pellico's
"Mie Prigioni:" I was glad of it. At Schenectady we dined. By the by, I
must not forget to mention the civility we met with from the people who
kept the house. There have been so many instances given of the
discomfort and discourteousness which travellers encounter in America,
that it is but justice to record the reverse when one meets with it. For
my own part, with very few exceptions, I have hitherto met with nothing
but civility and attention of every description. We have almost always
commanded private sitting, and single sleeping, rooms; have had our
meals served in tolerable comfort and decency; and even on board the
steam-boats, where every thing is done by shoal, I have found that, in
spite of being an inveterate dawdle, and never ready at any of the
bell-ringings, I have always had a place reserved for me, and enough to
eat without fighting for it. But to return to our Schenectady hosts. The
house was very full; and, while waiting for the canal boat, to avoid the
gaping crowds with which all the rooms were filled, D---- and I walked
out into the verandah, when a pretty lassie, the daughter, I conclude,
of the house, invited us into a very nice private parlour, belonging to
the family, where I found a fine piano, books, music, and all
civilisation as well as civility. We proceeded by canal to Utica, which
distance we performed in a day and a night, starting at two from
Schenectady, and reaching Utica the next day at about noon. I like
travelling by the canal boats very much. Ours was not crowded; and the
country through which we passed being delightful, the placid moderate
gliding through it, at about four miles and a half an hour, seemed to me
infinitely preferable to the noise of wheels, the rumble of a coach, and
the jerking of bad roads, for the gain of a mile an hour. The only
nuisances are the bridges over the canal, which are so very low, that
one is obliged to prostrate one's self on the deck of the boat, to
avoid being scraped off it; and this humiliation occurs, upon an
average, once every quarter of an hour. Mr. ---- read Don Quixote to us:
he reads very peculiarly; slowly, and with very marked emphasis. He has
a strong feeling of humour, as well as of poetry: in fact, they belong
to each other; for humour is but fancy laughing, and poetry but fancy
sad. The valley of the Mohawk, through which we crept the whole
sunshining day, is beautiful from beginning to end; fertile, soft, rich,
and occasionally approaching sublimity and grandeur in its rocks and
hanging woods. We had a lovely day, and a soft blessed sunset, which,
just as we came to a point where the canal crosses the river, and where
the curved and wooded shores on either side recede, leaving a broad
smooth basin, threw one of the most exquisite effects of light and
colour I ever remember to have seen over the water and through the sky.
The sun had scarce been down ten minutes from the horizon, when the deck
was perfectly wet with the heaviest dew possible, which drove us down to
the cabin. Here I fell fast asleep, till awakened by the cabin girl's
putting her arms affectionately round me, and telling me that I might
come and have the first choice of a berth for the night, in the horrible
hen-coop allotted to the female passengers. I was too sleepy to
acknowledge or avail myself of the courtesy; but the girl's manner was
singularly gentle and kind. We sat in the men's cabin until they began
making preparations for bed, and then withdrew into a room about twelve
feet square, where a whole tribe of women were getting to their beds.
Some half undressed, some brushing, some curling, some washing, some
already asleep in their narrow cribs, but all within a quarter of an
inch of each other: it made one shudder. As I stood cowering in a
corner, half asleep, half crying, the cabin girl came to me again, and
entreated me to let her make a bed for me. However, upon my refusing to
undress before so much good company, or lie down in such narrow
neighbourhood, she put D---- and myself in a small closet, where were
four empty berths, where I presently fell fast asleep, where she
established herself for the night, and where D----, wrapped up in a
shawl, sat till morning under the half-open hatchway, breathing damp
starlight.


_Thursday, 11th._

D----'s exclamations woke me in the morning: the day was breaking
brightly, and the dewy earth was beginning to smile in the red dawn,
when we approached Little Falls, a place where the placid gentle
character of the Mohawk becomes wild and romantic, and beautifully
picturesque. The canal is for some space cut through the solid rock, and
the banks, high and bold, were crowned with tangled woods, and gemmed
with wild flowers, and the delicate vivid tufts of fern. It was
exceedingly beautiful; and though I believe I missed some part of the
scenery immediately surrounding Little Falls, the approach to it, which
is of the same nature, enchanted me extremely. When we arrived at Utica,
I gave the nice cabin-girl my silver needle-case: her tenderness and
care of me the night before made it impossible for me to offer her
money. She took my gift, and, throwing her arms round my neck, kissed me
very fervently for it. I was struck with her manner, which had appeared
to me, in discharge of her common duties, reserved, and rather
dignified. This exhibition of feeling surprised me therefore; and
together with her dark eyes, hair, and complexion, made me think she
must have foreign blood in her veins. I asked her, but she said no:
American by birth, English by descent: certainly she had neither the
face nor bearing of the one or the other. She was a very singular and
striking looking person. As for Mr. ----, he fell in love with her
forthwith, and, I think, had half a mind to settle on the Mohawk, and
make her his fellow farmer. At Utica we dined; and after dinner I slept
profoundly. The gentlemen, I believe, went out to view the town, which
twenty years ago _was not_, and now is a flourishing place, with
fine-looking shops, two or three hotels, good broad streets, and a body
of lawyers, who had a supper at the house where we were staying, and
kept the night awake with champagne, shouting, toasts, and clapping of
hands: so much for the strides of civilisation through the savage lands
of this new world. The house was full, and we could not get a room to
ourselves; so we sat in a corner of the large dining-room. Passed the
evening in writing journal. Mr. ---- showed me his of Sunday last.


_Friday, 12th._

We all breakfasted early together, and immediately after breakfast got
into an open carriage and set off for Trenton. D---- and my father sat
beside each other, and I opposite them; Mr. ---- on the box; and so we
progressed. The day was bright and breezy: the country was all smiling
round us in rich beauty; the ripening sheets of waving grain; the
sloping fields, with here and there the grey tomb-stone of a forest
tree; the vivid thickets bounding the pale harvest plots; the
silvery-looking fences, with their irregular lines relieved against the
dark woods; the clear sky above; all was lovely. About seven miles from
Utica, we stopped to water the horses at a lonely road-side house: we
alighted, and without ceremony strolled into the garden,--a mere
wilderness of overgrown sweet briar, faint breathing dog-roses, and
flaunting red poppies, overshadowed by some orchard trees, from which we
stole sundry half-ripe cherries. The place was desolate, I believe; yet
we lingered in it, and did not think it so. We got into the carriage
again: the remaining eight miles of our journey were as beautiful and as
bad as the preceding ones had been. I thought of our dark drive back
through these miry and uneven ways. At last we reached the house at
which visiters to the Falls put up; a large comfortable dwelling enough,
kept by a couple of nice young people, who live in this solitude all the
year round, and maintain themselves and a beautiful big baby by the
profits they derive from the pilgrims to Trenton. We ordered dinner, and
set forth to the Falls, with our host for guide. We crossed a small wood
immediately adjoining the house, and, descending several flights of
steps connected by paths in the rocky bank, we presently stood on the
brink of the channel, where the water was boiling along, deep, and
black, and passing away like time. We followed along the rocky edge: the
path is not more than a foot wide, and is worn into all manner of
unevenness and cavities, and slippery with the eternal falling of the
spray. ---- walked before me: we dared not turn our heads, for fear of
tumbling into the black whirlpool below. We walked on steadily, warning
each other at every step, and presently we arrived at the first fall,
where the rest of our party were halting. I can't describe it: I don't
know either its height or width; I only know it was extremely beautiful,
and came pouring down like a great rolling heap of amber. The rocks
around are high to the heavens, scooped, and singularly regular; and the
sides of the torrent are every now and then paved with large smooth
layers of rock, as even and regular in their proportions as if the
fairies had done the work. After standing before the tumbling mass of
water for a length of time, we climbed to the brink above, and went on.
Mr. ---- flung himself down under a roof of rock by the waterfall. My
father, D----, and the guide, went on out of sight, and ---- and I
loitered by the rapid waters, flinging light branches and flowers upon
the blood-coloured torrent, that whirled, and dragged, and tossed them
down to the plunge beneath. When we came to the beautiful circular fall,
we crept down to a narrow ridge, and sat with our feet hanging over the
black caldron, just opposite a vivid rainbow that was clasping the
waterfall. We sat here till I began to grow dizzy with the sound and
motion of the churning darkness beneath us, and begged to move, which we
did very cautiously. I was in an agony lest we should slip from the
narrow dripping ledges along which we crawled. We wandered on, and
stopped again at another fall, upon a rocky shelf overhanging the
torrent, beside the blasted and prostrate trunk of a large tree. I was
tired with walking, and ---- was lifting me up to seat me on the fallen
tree, when we saw Mr. ---- coming slowly towards us. He stopped and
spoke to us, and presently passed on; we remained behind, talking, and
dipping our hands into the fresh water. At length we rejoined the whole
party, sitting by a narrow channel, where the water looked like ink.
Beyond this our guide said it was impossible to go: I was for
ascertaining this by myself, but my father forbade me to attempt the
passage further. I was thirsty; and the guide having given me a
beautiful strawberry and a pale blue-bell, that he had found, like a
couple of jewels in some dark crevice of the rocks, I devoured the one,
and then going down to the black water's edge, we dipped the fairy cup
in, and drank the cold clear water, with which abundant draught I
relieved my father's thirst also.[103] Around the place where we were
resting, the rocks rose like circular walls up to the very sky. From
their overhanging edges, tiny threads of water fell upon the rocky
pavement beneath, with a silver glancing, and a clear plashing tone,
that sounded even amid the hoarse talking of the dark waters below. In
some mould among these cliffs, at their very highest edge, a tree had
struck its roots, and, growing upside down, stretched its drooping green
arms to the hurrying stream below, that would not tarry. We had walked,
I suppose, a mile and a half along the water's side, and in this
distance its course is broken by six beautiful cataracts. The variety of
the colour of the water, occasioned by the various depths of its
channel, and the different tints of the rocks over which it flows, is
singular. Where the river expands, its rapid broken waves were of the
darkest red-brown, like coffee; or rather, indeed, redder than that,
like a deep blood colour: reaching the walls of rock, over which they
fall into a lower bed, they became pouring masses of amber and diamonds,
or soft thick heaps of whitest foam; and then again, in the deep narrow
channels which received their headlong leaping, all was black as
blackest night, and the waters were sucked away under the hollow rocks
in inky eddies, that made me think of drowning with double horror. The
several falls are very various in their height and forms, but they are
all beautiful, most beautiful; not a place to visit for a day, but to
live the summer away in.

       *       *       *       *       *

When we were all rested, we rose to retrace our steps: our guide was a
man of some cultivation, and of much natural refinement, with a strong
feeling of the exquisite beauty of the scenes in which he was living.
These falls are upon his own land, belong to him, and he pointed out to
us a spot beside the torrent where, he said, he had read all Byron's
works: this pleased me. Returning, I thought the path even more
difficult than it was before: there is a chain fastened along the rock
where it narrows, for the security of persons walking: this has been put
up since the lamentable loss of a young girl, who, following her party
along this slippery path, missed her footing, and was swept into a
foaming whirlpool, whence nothing could ever emerge. Our guide told us
of another terrible accident, which happened not long before we were
there. A young lady and her lover were going along the water side, and,
in order to retain hold of her hand, he walked upon a narrow ridge,
where he could hardly balance himself: the girl said, "Oh, if you walk
there, I shall let you go:" she did so, and in the same instant he
slipped from the rock and was dragged away to that dark death.[104]

The chain upon the rock was about as high as my shoulder; but when the
river is swollen, it constantly rises above the chain: at which time, it
is scarce possible to go any distance along its banks. This had been the
case a short time before we were there. We returned to the house, and
dined. After dinner, had a gossip with Mrs. ----, and a romp with her
beautiful baby. I strolled into the garden: it was in disorder, and
looked like a wilderness; but I saw some roses drooping their full
bosoms to the earth, and I went to fetch them. Our host came with me: he
said he had but little leisure to cultivate his garden, and could not
well afford to have it kept in better order; that it supplied them with
nearly all they required; and that, with his other occupations, he had
hardly time to make it more than useful. I questioned him about the
number of visiters who came to the falls. He said in summer there was a
constant succession of them; but that in winter no one came there. Upon
my expressing some surprise that people did not come, and remain for
some weeks at least, in so beautiful a place, he told me that the
generality of visiters were quite satisfied with an hour's stroll by the
water; and that some had arrived at his door, alighted from their
carriage, dined, sauntered round the house, and, _without even going
down to the river_, returned to Utica quite satisfied with having been
at Trenton. I was amazed. But the utter insensibility of the generality
of Americans to the beauty and sublimity of nature is nothing short of
amazing; and in this respect they literally appear to me to want a
sense. I have been filled with astonishment and perplexity at the total
indifference with which they behold scenes of grandeur and loveliness,
that any creature, with half a soul, would gaze at with feelings almost
of adoration. But in these glorious tabernacles of nature, where God's
majesty seems, as it were, visibly resting on his works, I have seen
Americans come and stare, and stand for a moment, and depart again,
apparently impressed with nothing but the singularity of the man or
woman who could remain there longer than they did. What can be the cause
of this?--Is it possible that a perception of the beautiful in nature is
a result of artificial cultivation?--is it that the grovelling
narrowness of the usual occupations to which the majority addict
themselves has driven out of them the fine spirit, which is God's altar
in men's souls?--is it that they become incapable of beauty? Wretched
people! They remind me, by contrast, as I see them toiling along the
crowded streets of their cities, those dens of Mammon, of Wordsworth's
noble description of him


     "Who walk'd in glory and in joy,
     Behind his plough, upon the mountain side."

       *       *       *       *       *

       *       *       *       *       *

At about sunset, I wandered into the wood, to the top of the steps
leading to the waterfall; where I could hear, far below, its sweet voice
singing as it passed away. I remained standing here till the carriage
was announced. Just before we went away, our host gave me a small piece
of crystal. It is found among the rocks here, which, I believe, present
many curious geological phenomena, which I leave to the learned to
describe. The strata are the most beautifully regular possible; and,
upon their broad smooth surfaces, a thousand theories sit; which I hope
I did not disturb, as I walked over them in the plenitude of my
ignorance, admiring God's masonry. Oh, fair world!--oh, strange, and
beautiful, and holy places--where one's soul meets one in silence--and
where one's thoughts arise, with the everlasting incense of the waters,
from the earth, which is _His_ footstool, to the heavens, which are
_His_ throne. It grew dark long before we reached Utica: half the way I
sang; the other half I slept, in spite of ruts five fathoms deep, and
all the joltings of these evil ways. To-morrow we start on our way to
Niagara; which, Mr. ---- says, is to sweep Trenton clean from our
memories. I do not think it.


_Saturday, 13th._

Left Utica at six o'clock, in our exclusive extra: we were to go on as
far as Auburn, a distance of seventy-six miles. The day was very
beautiful, but extremely hot. At Vernon, where we stopped to breakfast,
we overtook the ----s: we had a very good breakfast; and, I think, for
the first time since our land journey from Baltimore to Philadelphia,
last winter, we were waited on by women. Found a case of musical
glasses: sat on the floor, in great delight, amusing myself with them,
while the stage was getting ready, ---- and I began wandering about; but
the place did not look promising, and the heat was intense. We sat
ourselves down under the piazza of the tavern, and I gave him the words
of "To that lone Well." In about an hour we set off again. The country
was very rich and beautiful; and, at every knoll, backed by woodlands,
and skirted by golden grain fields, Mr. ---- exclaimed, "Come, we will
have a farm here." He and my father were to smoke, reflect, and enjoy
life; I was to sing, whenever I happened to please, and enjoy life too;
D---- was to brew, to bake, wash, iron, plough, manage the house, look
after the cattle, take care of the poultry, mind the dairy; in short, do
every thing on earth that was to be done, and enjoy life too: all which
arrangements afforded us matter of converse on the way, and much
amusement. Then my father and Mr. ---- had long argumentations about
acting: the latter is a vehement admirer of Kean; and of course, that
being the case, matter of debate was not wanting. It was all extremely
pleasant and profitable; and while the sun shone, and we all kept our
tempers, nothing could do better. ---- amused me by telling me portions
of ----'s book, the Adventures of a younger Son, with which he had been
extremely charmed; and which I remember beginning on board ship, as we
crossed from England.

       *       *       *       *       *

       *       *       *       *       *

At about half-past three, we arrived at a place called
_Syracuse_!!!--where, stopping to change horses, my father observed that
here there were two different routes to our point of destination; and
desired our driver to take that which passes through Skaneateles, a very
beautiful village, situated on a lake so called. However, to this the
master of the inn, who was also, I believe, proprietor of the coach,
seemed to have some private objection; and while my father was yet
speaking, very coolly shut the coach door in his face, and desired the
driver to go on in the contrary direction. The insolence of the fellow
enraged my father extremely; and it was rather astonishing, that's the
fact: but the deuce is in't if, in a free country, a man may not choose
which way his own coach shall go, in spite of the folk who pay him for
the use of it. We had to pocket the affront; and, what was much more
disagreeable, to travel an ugly uninteresting road, instead of a
picturesque and pretty one. We had not proceeded many miles after this
occurrence, and were just recovering our equanimities, when the said
vehicle broke down. We were not overturned or hurt, only tilted a little
on one side. The driver, however, did not seem to think it safe to
proceed in this condition: the gentlemen got out, and searched the
hedges and thickets for a piece of oak sufficiently strong and stout to
repair, at least for the moment, the damage: we were not at the time
within reach of any house. At last, they procured what they wanted; and,
having propped up the carriage after the best fashion they could, we
proceeded at a foot pace to the next village. Here, while they were
putting our conveyance into something like better order, ---- and I
wandered away to a pretty bright water-course, which, like all water in
this country, was made to turn a mill. The coach being made sound once
more, we packed ourselves into it, and progressed. The evening was
perfectly sultry. I never shall forget, at a place where we stopped to
water the horses, a cart-full of wretched sheep and calves, who were, I
suppose, on their way to the slaughterhouse, but who, in the mean time,
seemed enduring the most horrible torture that creatures can suffer.
They were jammed into the cart so as to be utterly incapable of moving a
single limb; the pitiless sun shone fiercely upon their wretched heads,
and their poor eyes were full of dust and flies. I never saw so
miserable a spectacle of suffering. I looked at the brutal-looking man
that was driving them, and wondered whether he would go to hell, for
tormenting these helpless beasts in this fashion.

The sun set gloriously. Mr. ---- began talking about Greece, and,
getting a good deal excited, presently burst forth into "The isles of
Greece! the isles of Greece!" which he recited with amazing vehemence
and earnestness. He reminded me of Kean several times: while he was
declaiming, he looked like a tiger. 'Tis strange, or, rather, 'tis not
strange, 'tis but natural, how, in spite of the contempt and even hatred
which he often expresses for England, and every thing connected with it,
his thoughts and plans, and all the energies of his mind, seem for ever
bent upon changes to be wrought in England--freer government, purer
laws, more equal rights. He began to talk about Cromwell: he wanted, he
said, to have a play written out of Cromwell's life. We talked the
matter over with infinite zeal, and established most satisfactorily,
that to accomplish such a thing, as it ought to be done, would be quite
one of the most difficult tasks in the world. Nobody but a religious and
political enthusiast could do it: a poet, unless himself a republican
Englishman, and fanatical sectarian, hardly could: it must be unlike all
other works of art--not an imitation of truth, but truth itself.
Schiller is the only man I can imagine who could have attempted it with
any chance of success: and I even doubt whether he would have made of it
the firebrand our friend wants.[105] Towards evening the heat became
more and more oppressive. Our coach was but ill cobbled, and leaned
awfully to one side. I fell asleep lying in my father's lap; and when we
reached Auburn, which was not until nine o'clock, I was so tired, so
miserably sleepy, and so tortured with the side-ach, from the cramped
position in which I had been lying, that I just crawled into the first
room in the inn where we alighted, and dropped down on the floor fast
asleep. They roused me for supper; and very soon after I betook myself
to bed. The heat was intolerable; the pale feet of the summer lightning
ran along the black edges of the leaden clouds,--the world was alight
with it. I could not sleep: I never endured such suffocating heat.


_Sunday, 14th._

Rose at eight: the morning was already sultry as the hottest noon in
England. After breakfast, I wandered about the house in search of shade;
went into an empty room, opened the shutters, and got out upon a large
piazza, or rather colonnade, which surrounded it. The side I had chosen
was defended by the house from the fierce sunlight; and I walked up and
down in quiet and loneliness for some time. Not far from the house stood
the prison, one of the state prisons of the country; a large grey
building, which appeared like a huge block of granite, unsheltered by a
single tree or bush, and dim with the hazy heat of the atmosphere. Being
Sunday, we were not able to visit it; but the person who kept the house
where we were, a very intelligent and civil man, gave us some account of
it, and fully corroborated the fact which Stuart mentions,--that when
the prison took fire, and all the criminals confined in it were
liberated to assist in saving the building, in spite of the general
confusion and total absence of restraint or observation, which for some
time left them the most easy opportunity of escape, not one of them took
advantage of this accident to recover their liberty, but every prisoner
returned voluntarily, after the fire was got under, to his cell. This
seems miraculous, and speaks more for the excellence of the system
pursued in these establishments than all the disquisitions in the world.
At about ten, our exclusive extra having driven to the door, we packed
ourselves into it, and proceeded towards Geneva, where we were to dine.
The sky, however, presently became overcast; and, towards noon, the
world was absolutely shrouded in a lead-coloured pall. The air was
stifling: it was impossible to draw one's breath; and a quarter of a
degree more of heat would certainly have occasioned suffocation. We were
all gasping. Suddenly the red lightning tore open the heavy clouds, the
thunder rolled round the heavens, the rain came down in torrents: we
were away from all shelter, and obliged to proceed through the storm.
The leather curtains of our coach were speedily unrolled and buttoned
down; but this formed but a miserable shelter against the furious rain.
Our carpet bags, which were on the outside of the carriage, were soaked
through; and we ourselves were soon in nearly as bad a plight. The rain
came in rivulets through the crevices of our insufficient shelter, and
the seats and bottom of the coach were presently standing pools. We
arrived between twelve and one o'clock at Cayuga; and here we drew up
before the inn door, to await the end of the storm. The rain was still
so violent, that we preferred remaining in the coach to getting out and
being still more thoroughly drenched. The thunder growled sulkily at a
distance, and the lightning glared rapidly from side to side. By
degrees, the over-swollen clouds, having emptied themselves, rolled
away; the rain became less violent; the mist and heavy vapour parted
from off the face of the earth, and the lake appeared blending with the
sky amid the indistinct and hazy outlines of the half-shrouded country.
While we were sitting listening to the storm, silence had fallen upon us
all: a thunderstorm is apt to prove an interruption to conversation.
During this pause, Mr. ---- took out his pencil, and wrote upon a scrap
of paper a very eloquent Mahomedan description of the attributes of God.
I do not know whether it was his own, or an authentic Mahomedan
document: it was sublime.

       *       *       *       *       *

       *       *       *       *       *

       *       *       *       *       *

The storm having abated, we proceeded on our way; crossed a bridge a
mile and some roods long, over the Cayuga lake; which, however, was
still so veiled with scowling mist and clouds, that we could discern
none of its features. At about three o'clock we reached Geneva, a small
town situated on a lake called Seneca Water. Here we dined. ---- had
most providentially brought silver forks with him: for the wretched
two-pronged iron implements furnished us by our host were any thing but
clean or convenient. After dinner, the weather having become mild and
bright, we went up to a piazza on the second floor, which overlooked the
lake and its banks: the latter are very picturesque; and the town
itself, climbing in terraces along the side of a steep acclivity, rising
from the water, has a very good effect. The lake at this point did not
appear very wide; for we could distinguish, from where we stood, minute
objects on the opposite shore.

After resting ourselves for a short time, we again took to our coach,
and pursued our route towards Canandaigua, where we were to pass the
night. The afternoon was bright and beautiful, the road tolerable, and
the country through which we passed fertile and smiling.

As the evening began to come on, we reached Canandaigua Lake, a very
beautiful sheet of water, of considerable extent; we coasted for some
time close along its very margin. The opposite shore was high, clothed
with wood, from amidst which here and there a white house looked
peacefully down on the clear mirror below: the dead themselves can
hardly inhabit regions more blessedly apart from the evil turmoil of the
world, than the inhabitants of these beautiful solitudes.[106]

Leaving the water's edge, we proceeded about a quarter of a mile, and
found ourselves at the door of the inn at Canandaigua, the principal
among some houses surrounding an open turfed space, like an English
village green, across which ran the high road. My father, Mr. ----, and
I went up to a sort of observatory at the top of the house, from whence
the view was perfectly enchanting. The green below, screened on three
sides with remarkably fine poplar trees, and surrounded by neat white
houses, reminded me of some retired spot in my own dear country.
Opposite us, the land rose with a gentle wooded swell; and to the left,
the lake spread itself to meet the horizon. A fresh breeze blew over the
earth, most grateful after the intense heat of the morning, and the sky
was all strewed with faint rosy clouds, melting away one by one into
violet wreaths, among which the early evening star glittered cold and
clear.

We came down to supper, which was served to us, as usual, in a large
desolate-looking public room. After this, we came to the sitting-room
they had provided for us, a small comfortable apartment, with a very
finely-toned piano in it. To this I forthwith sat down, and played and
sang for a length of time: late in the evening, I left the instrument,
and my father, Mr. ----, and I took a delightful stroll under the
colonnade, discussing Milton; many passages of which my father recited
most beautifully, to my infinite delight and ecstasy. By and by they
went in, and ---- came out to walk with me.

Certainly this climate is the most treacherous imaginable: the heat this
morning had been intolerable, and to-night a piercing cold wind had
arisen, that would have rendered winter clothing by no means
superfluous. We walked rapidly up and down, till the bleak blast became
so keen, that we were glad to take refuge in the house. Our unfortunate
carpet bags and their contents are literally drenched: many of my goods
and chattels will never recover this ablution; among others, I am sorry
to say, ----'s beautiful satchel.


_Monday, 15th._

Our breakfast, which was extremely comfortable and clean, was served to
us in our private room; a singular favour: one, I hope, which will
become a custom as the country is travelled through by greater numbers.
Before breakfast, D---- had been taking a walk about the pretty village,
and trying to beg, borrow, or steal some flowers for me. The master of
the inn, however, succeeded better than she did; for he presently made
his appearance with a very beautiful and fragrant nosegay, which I
found, to my utter dismay, had been levied from a gentleman's private
garden in my name. My horror was excessive at this, and was scarcely
diminished when I discovered, upon enquiry, that they had been gathered
from Mr. ----'s garden; that gentleman having large property and a fine
residence here. He was not in Canandaigua himself; but, as we drove
past his house, I left cards for his lady, who must have thought my
demand on her green-house one of the greatest impertinencies extant. It
was nine o'clock when we left Canandaigua: we were all a little done up
with our two previous days; and it was unanimously settled that we
should proceed only to Rochester, a distance of between thirty and forty
miles, which we accomplished by two o'clock.

Rochester, upon whose site, I understand, twenty years ago there stood
hardly a house, is now a large and populous manufacturing town. The
progress of life in this country is amazing. From day to day the
wilderness becomes inhabited, peopled, civilised; and where yesterday
the majestic woods were standing, and the silent waters gliding in all
the solemn solitude of unexplored nature, to-day the sound of the forge
and anvil is heard, the busy feet of men pass and repass, their mingled
voices resound, their dwellings arise; the wheels of a thousand
mechanical miracles clash, creak, and jar; the vapours of a thousand
steam-engines mingle with the hitherto lonely clouds; and the huge fins
of a thousand steam-boats beat the waters, carrying over their hitherto
undisturbed surface the vast produce of industry. The labours, the arts,
the knowledge, the wealth, the wonders of education and civilisation! It
is something that fills one with admiration, in the old, and eke the
new, sense of the word.

The inn at which we alighted was large and comfortable: in the
drawing-room I found a very tolerable piano-forte, to which I instantly
betook myself. By the time we had seen our bed-rooms, and ordered
dinner, we found we should have leisure, before it was ready, to walk to
the falls of the Genesee (the river on which Rochester stands), which
have some celebrity for their beauty. A man from the hotel volunteered
to be our guide, and joined our party. We walked up the main street,
which was crowded and full of business. From this, presently turning
off, we followed a wider road, with houses and pretty flower gardens on
each side, and reached, after half a mile's walk, a meadow skirted by a
deep ravine, through which the river ran; from whence we looked
immediately upon the falls. They would be, and were, I doubt not, once
beautiful; for the barrier of rock, over which the river throws itself
into the valley below, is of considerable breadth and height; but, alas!
the waters have been turned off to turn mills, and a thin curtain, which
falls over the rocks like a vapoury sheet of blue smoke, is all that
remains of the Genesee falls; whilst, from a thousand dingy-looking
mills and manufactories, the poor little rivulets of labouring water
come rushing through narrow dirty channels, all stained and foaming and
hot from their work, to throw themselves into the thin bosom of their
parent stream. Truly, mills and steam-engines are wonderful things, and
I know that men must live; but I wish it were not expedient to destroy
what God has made so very beautiful, in order to make it useful. Our
guide perceiving our admiration was a good deal excited by the
picturesque beauty of the scene, fell into a species of rhapsody,
which terminated thus: "Yes, sir, when I see the waters thus falling
_from the bottom to the top_; I say, sir, when I look at the
water falling from _the bottom to the top_, I can compare it to
nothing--but--but--but--wool out of a cotton-mill!" This was an
unlooked-for climax, and gave us all a violent inclination to laugh in
the face of the orator; which, however, would have been exceedingly
wrong; for so sincere was the good man in his enthusiasm, that he was
not in the least aware of the miraculous proceeding which he twice, with
much emphasis, ascribed to the _upward falling_ water.[107]

       *       *       *       *       *

       *       *       *       *       *

We waited in this meadow for the passing of a train of rail-road
carriages, which run between Rochester and a small village about three
miles distant, where the river was said to be very beautiful. We hailed
them as they went by, and proceeded in them to their destination. The
view itself, from this point, though romantic and pretty, was scarce
worth going out of the way for; the walk back, however, was delightful.
The river runs here through a deep gully, the banks rising precipitously
above a hundred feet on each side of it. On one side they are
beautifully and thickly wooded; the other presents a bare wall of
reddish rock lying in very regular strata. About a mile and a half
below the falls, the channel of the river contracts itself, and the
water, forcing its way through some irregular rocky projections, forms a
very pretty miniature cataract. We walked along the high margin of the
glen, upon some very thick soft turf, looking down upon the deep bed of
the water, and enjoying a delicious fresh breeze. 'Tis curious enough,
that upon this strip of turf, close to the high road, under the shelter
of a group of trees, we found a couple of tomb-stones. They were
carefully railed round, and bore the names of a man and his wife,
without, however, assigning any cause for their choice of a burial-place
so public and unhallowed. The last mile of our walk was by no means so
agreeable as the previous part had been. Nearing the town, we had to
leave the brink of the river and follow the dusty track of the
rail-road. When we reached Rochester, we dined; after which I went and
lay down, and slept till tea-time. When I came down to tea, found the
gentlemen profoundly busied: ---- writing home, Mr. ---- journalising,
my father poring over maps and road-books, to find out if we could not
possibly get as far as Niagara to-morrow.


_Tuesday, 16th._

Had to get up before I'd half done my sleep. At six, started from
Rochester for Murray, where we purposed breakfasting. Just as we were
nearing the inn, at this same place, our driver took it into his head to
give us a taste of his quality. We were all earnestly engaged in a
discussion, when suddenly I felt a tremendous sort of stunning blow, and
as soon as I opened my eyes, found that the coach was overturned, lying
completely on its side. I was very comfortably curled up under my
father, who, by Heaven's mercy, did not suffocate me; opposite sat
D----, as white as a ghost, with her forehead cut open, and an
awful-looking stream of blood falling from it; by her stood Mr. ----,
also as pale as ashes: ---- was perched like a bird above us all, on the
edge of the doorway, which was open. The first thing I did, was to cry
as loud as ever I could, "I'm not hurt, I'm not hurt!" which assurance I
shouted sufficiently lustily to remove all anxiety from their minds. The
next thing was to get my father up; in accomplishing which, he trampled
upon me most cruelly. As soon as I was relieved from his mountainous
pressure, I got up, and saw, to my dismay, two men carrying Mr. ----
into the house. We were all convinced that some of his limbs were
broken: I ran after as quickly as I could, and presently the house was
like an hospital. They carried him into an upper room, and laid him on a
bed; here, too, they brought D----, all white and bleeding. Our
hand-baskets and bags were ransacked for salts and eau de Cologne. Cold
water, hot water, towels, and pocket handkerchiefs, were called into
requisition; and I, with my clothes all torn, and one shoulder all
bruised and cut, went from the one to the other in utter dismay.
Presently, to my great relief, Mr. ---- revived; and gave ample
testimony of having the use of his limbs, by getting up, and, in the
most skilful manner, plastering poor D----'s broken brow up. ---- went
in quest of my father, who had received a violent blow on his leg, and
was halting about, looking after the baggage and the driver, who had
escaped unhurt.[108] The chief cause of our misfortune was the economy
with which the stage-coaches are constructed in this thrifty land; that
is, they have but one door, and, of course, are obliged to be turned
round much oftener than if they had two: in wheeling us, therefore,
rapidly up to the inn, and turning the coach with the side that had a
door towards the house, we swung over, and fell. While the coach was
being repaired, and the horses changed, we, bound up, bruised, and
aching, but still very merry, sat down to breakfast. Mr. ----, who had
been merely stunned, seized on the milk and honey, and stuffed away with
great zeal: poor D---- was the most deplorable of the party, with a
bloody handkerchief bound over one half her face; I only ached a little,
and I believe ---- escaped with a scratch on his finger; so, seeing it
was no worse, we thanked God, and devoured. After breakfast, we packed
ourselves again in our vehicle, and progressed. Mr. ---- had procured
for me a bunch of flowers; and I amused myself with making a wreath of
them. Our route lay over what is called the Ridge road; a very
remarkable tract, pursuing a high embankment, which was once the
boundary of Lake Ontario; though the waters are now distant from it
upwards of seven miles. The theories of the geologists respecting the
former position of the lake are very singular; though borne out by
similar instances of natural convulsions, and also by the very features
of the land. The country through which we journeyed to-day was wilder
and less cultivated than any we have yet seen. A great deal of forest
land, consisting of close, thin, tall, second-growth, springing around
the stump of many a huge tree; thick tangled underwood; marsh and damp
green wilderness, where the grass and bushes trailed about in rank
luxuriance; and piles of felled timber, with here and there a root yet
smoking, bore witness to the first inroads of human cultivation. None of
the trees that were standing were of any girth, or comparable in size
and beauty to our park trees; but some of the stumps were of large size,
and must have been the foundations of noble forest pillars. Our road,
after leaving the Ridge road, was horrible: for some length of time
before we reached Lockport, we were dragged over what is called a
_corduroy road_; which consists merely of logs of wood laid close to
each other, the natural inequalities of which produce a species of
jolting incomparably superior to any other I ever felt, and
administering but little comfort either to our bruised bones or
apprehensive nerves.

We reached Lockport at about four o'clock. There had been rain in the
course of the morning, but the evening was clear, though very cold. The
appearance of Lockport is very singular: a collection of new white
houses, that look as though they were but this instant finished,
standing in a half-cleared wilderness. All round the town, if such it
may be called, stretch the remains of the once pathless woods, half
cleared, half savage-looking yet; and, as far as the eye can reach, the
country presents a series of dreary slopes, covered with prostrate
trees, heaps of hewn timber, smoking stumps, and blackened trunks--a
sort of forest stubble-land--a very desolate-looking thing indeed. The
house where we stopped appeared to be hardly finished. We ordered
dinner, and I forthwith began kindling a fire, which was extremely
welcome to us all. I was very much bruised with our morning's overturn,
and went and lay down in my bed-room, where I presently slept
profoundly.


_Wednesday, 17th._

At nine o'clock, we started from Lockport: before doing so, however, we
went down to the canal side to look at the works, which are here very
curious and interesting. ---- ran into a bookseller's shop, and got
----'s book for me, which he was going to pounce upon without knowing
what it was; and ----, for some reasons best known to himself, snatched
it away from him, saying it was a book which he was sure he would not
like. The road between Lockport and Lewistown is very pretty; and we got
out and walked whenever the horses were changed. At one place where we
stopped, I saw a meek-eyed, yellowish-white cart-horse, standing with a
man's saddle on his back. The opportunity was irresistible, and the
desire too--I had not backed a horse for so long. So I got up upon the
amazed quadruped, woman's fashion, and took a gallop through the fields,
with infinite risk of falling off, and proportionate satisfaction. We
reached Lewistown at about noon, and anxious enquiries were instituted
as to how our luggage was to be forwarded, when on the other side; for
we were _exclusive extras_; and for creatures so above common fellowship
there is no accommodation in this levelling land. A ferry and a
ferry-boat, however, it appeared, there were, and thither we made our
way. While we were waiting for the boat, I climbed out on the branches
of a huge oak, which grew over the banks of the river, which here rise
nearly a hundred feet high. Thus comfortably perched, like a bird,
'twixt heaven and earth, I copied off some verses which I had scrawled
just before leaving Lockport. The ferry-boat being at length procured,
we got into it. The day was sultry; the heat intolerable.

The water of this said river Niagara is of a most peculiar colour, like
a turquoise when it turns green. It was like a thick stream of
verdigris, full of pale milky streaks, whirls, eddies, and
counter-currents, and looked as if it were running up by one bank, and
down by the other. I sat in the sun, on the floor of the boat, revising
my verses.

       *       *       *       *       *

       *       *       *       *       *

Arrived on the other side, _i. e._ Canada, there was a second pause, as
to how we were to get conveyed to the Falls. My father, ----, and D----
betook themselves to an inn by the road-side, which promised
information and assistance; and ---- and I, clambering up the heights of
Queenston, sat ourselves down under some bushes, whence we looked
towards Lake Ontario, and where he told me the history of the place; how
his countrymen had thumped my countrymen upon this spot, and how the
English general Brock had fallen near where we sat. A monument, in the
shape of a stone pillar, has been erected to his memory; and to the top
of this ---- betook himself to reconnoitre; which ambitious expedition I
felt no inclination to share. After he had been gone some time, I
thought I perceived signs of stirring down by the inn door: I toiled up
the hill to the base of the pillar to fetch him, and we proceeded down
to the rest of the party. An uneasy-looking rickety cart without springs
was the sole conveyance we could obtain, and into this we packed
ourselves. ---- brought me some beautiful roses, which he had been
stealing for me, and ---- gave me a glass of milk; with which
restoratives I comforted myself, and we set forth. As we squeaked and
creaked (I mean our vehicle) up the hill, I thought either my father's
or ----'s weight quite enough to have broken the whole down; but it did
not happen. My mind was eagerly dwelling on what we were going to see:
that sight which ---- said was the only one in the world which had not
disappointed him. I felt absolutely nervous with expectation. The sound
of the cataract is, they say, heard within fifteen miles when the wind
sets favourably: to-day, however, there was no wind; the whole air was
breathless with the heat of midsummer, and, though we stopped our waggon
once or twice to listen as we approached, all was profoundest silence.
There was no motion in the leaves of the trees, not a cloud sailing in
the sky; every thing was as though in a bright warm death. When we were
within about three miles of the Falls, just before entering the village
of Niagara, ---- stopped the waggon; and then we heard distinctly,
though far off, the voice of the mighty cataract. Looking over the
woods, which appeared to overhang the course of the river, we beheld one
silver cloud rising slowly into the sky,--the everlasting incense of the
waters. A perfect frenzy of impatience seized upon me: I could have set
off and run the whole way; and when at length the carriage stopped at
the door of the Niagara house, waiting neither for my father, D----, nor
----, I rushed through the hall, and the garden, down the steep footpath
cut in the rocks. I heard steps behind me; ---- was following me: down,
down I sprang, and along the narrow footpath, divided only by a thicket
from the tumultuous rapids. I saw through the boughs the white glimmer
of that sea of foam. "Go on, go on; don't stop," shouted ----; and in
another minute the thicket was passed: I stood upon Table Rock. ----
seized me by the arm, and, without speaking a word, dragged me to the
edge of the rapids, to the brink of the abyss. I saw Niagara.--Oh, God!
who can describe that sight?


THE END.


FOOTNOTES:

[1] I do not know how it is to be accounted for, but in spite of much
lighter duties, every article of dress, particularly silks,
embroideries, and all French manufactures, are more expensive here than
in England. The extravagance of the American women in this part of their
expenditure is, considering the average fortunes of this country, quite
extraordinary. They never walk in the streets but in the most showy and
extreme toilet, and I have known twenty, forty, and sixty dollars paid
for a bonnet to wear in a morning saunter up Broadway.

[2] These are the titles of three omnibuses which run up and down
Broadway all the day long.

[3] The New Yorkers have begun to see the evil of their ways, as far as
regards their carriage-road in Broadway,--which is now partly
Macadamised. It is devoutly to be hoped, that the worthy authorities
will soon have as much compassion on the feet of their fellow-citizens,
as they have begun to have for their brutes.

[4] The roughness and want of refinement, which is legitimately
complained of in this country is often however mitigated by instances of
civility, which would not be found commonly elsewhere. As I have noticed
above, the demeanour of men towards women in the streets is infinitely
more courteous here than with us; women can walk, too, with perfect
safety, by themselves, either in New York, Philadelphia, or Boston: on
board the steam-boats no person sits down to table until the ladies are
accommodated with seats; and I have myself in church benefited by the
civility of men who have left their pew, and stood, during the whole
service, in order to afford me room.

[5] Saw a woman riding to-day; but she has gotten a black velvet beret
upon her head.--Only think of a beret on horseback! The horses here are
none of them properly broken: their usual pace being a wrong-legged
half-canter, or a species of shambling trot, denominated, with infinite
justice, a _rack_. They are all broken with snaffles instead of curbs,
carry their noses out, and pull horribly; I have not yet seen a decent
rider, either man or woman.

[6] The spirit of independence, which is the common atmospheric air of
America, penetrates into the churches, as well as elsewhere. In Boston,
I have heard the Apostles' Creed mutilated and altered; once by the
omission of the passage "descended into hell," and another time, by the
substitution of the words "descended into the place of departed
spirits."

[7] Unfortunately this precaution does not fulfil its purpose; universal
suffrage is a political fallacy: and will be one of the stumbling-blocks
in the path of this country's greatness. I do not mean that it will
lessen her wealth, or injure her commercial and financial resources; but
it will be an insuperable bar to the progress of mental and intellectual
cultivation--'tis a plain case of action and reaction. If the mass, _i.
e._ the inferior portion, (for when was the mass not inferior?) elect
their own governors, they will of course elect an inferior class of
governors, and the government of such men will be an inferior
government; that it may be just, honest, and rational, I do not dispute;
but that it ever will be enlarged, liberal, and highly enlightened, I do
not, and cannot, believe.

[8] I do not know whether his honour the Recorder's information applied
only to the state of New York, or included all the others; 'tis not one
of the least strange features which this strange political process, the
American government, presents, that each state is governed by its own
laws; thus forming a most involved and complicated whole, where each
part has its own individual machinery; or, to use a more celestial
phraseology, its own particular system.

[9] Whoever pretends to write any account of "Men and Manners" in
America must expect to find his own work give him the lie in less than
six months; for both men and manners are in so rapid a state of progress
that no record of their ways of being and doing would be found correct
at the expiration of that term, however much so at the period of its
writing. Broadway is not only partly Macadamised since first we arrived
here, but there are actually to be seen in it now two or three carriages
of decent build, with hammercloths, foot-boards, and even once or twice
lately I have seen footmen standing on those foot-boards!!!

[10] Perhaps one reason for the perfect coolness with which a fire is
endured in New York is the dexterity and courage of the firemen: they
are, for the most part, respectable tradesmen's sons, who enlist in this
service, rather than the militia; and the vigilance and activity with
which their duty is discharged deserves the highest praise.

[11] I have lately read Goethe's Wilhelm Meister. In that wonderful
analysis of the first work of our master-mind by his German peer, all
has been said upon this subject that the most philosophical reason, or
poetical imagination, can suggest; and who that has read it can forget
that most appropriate and beautiful simile, wherein Hamlet's mind is
likened to an acorn planted in a porcelain vase--the seed becomes
living--the roots expand--and the fragile vessel bursts into a thousand
shivers!

[12] The fish of these waters may be excellent in the water; but owing
to the want of care and niceness with which they are kept after being
caught, they are very seldom worth eating when brought to table. They
have no turbot or soles, a great national misfortune: their best fish
are rock-fish, bass, shad (an excellent herring, as big as a small
salmon), and sheep's-head. Cod and salmon I have eaten; but from the
above cause they were never comparable to the same fish at an English
table. The lobsters, crabs, and oysters are all gigantic, frightful to
behold, and not particularly well-flavoured: their size makes them tough
and coarse.

[13] My friend was entertaining himself, at the expense of my credulity,
in making this assertion. The rattle-snakes and red Indians have fled
together before the approach of civilisation; and it would be as
difficult to find the one as the other in the vicinity of any of the
large cities of the northern states.

[14] It is two years since I visited Hoboken for the first time; it is
now more beautiful than ever. The good taste of the proprietor has made
it one of the most picturesque and delightful places imaginable; it
wants but a good carriage-road along the water's edge (for which the
ground lies very favourably) to make it as perfect a public promenade as
any European city can boast, with the advantage of such a river, for its
principal object, as none of them possess.

I think the European traveller, in order to form a just estimate both of
the evils and advantages deriving from the institutions of this country,
should spend one day in the streets of New York, and the next in the
walks of Hoboken. If in the one, the toil, the care, the labour of mind
and body, the outward and visible signs of the debasing pursuit of
wealth, are marked in melancholy characters upon every man he meets, and
bear witness to the great curse of the country; in the other, the crowds
of happy, cheerful, enjoying beings of that order, which, in the old
world, are condemned to ceaseless and ill-requited labour, will testify
to the blessings which counterbalance that curse. I never was so
forcibly struck with the prosperity and happiness of the lower orders of
society in this country as yesterday returning from Hoboken. The walks
along the river and through the woods, the steamers crossing from the
city, were absolutely thronged with a cheerful well-dressed population
abroad, merely for the purpose of pleasure and exercise. Journeymen,
labourers, handicraftsmen, tradespeople, with their families, bearing
all in their dress and looks evident signs of well-being and
contentment, were all flocking from their confined avocations, into the
pure air, the bright sunshine, and beautiful shade of this lovely place.
I do not know any spectacle which could give a foreigner, especially an
Englishman, a better illustration of that peculiar excellence of the
American government--the freedom and happiness of the lower classes.
Neither is it to be said that this was a holiday, or an occasion of
peculiar festivity--it was a common week-day--such as our miserable
manufacturing population spends from sun-rise to sun-down, in confined,
incessant, unhealthy toil--to earn, at its conclusion, the inadequate
reward of health and happiness so wasted. The contrast struck me
forcibly--it rejoiced my heart; it surely was an object of
contemplation, that any one who had a heart must have rejoiced in.
Presently, however, came the following reflections:--These people are
happy--their wants are satisfied, their desires fulfilled--their
capacities of enjoyment meet with full employment--they are well
fed--well clothed--well housed--moderate labour insures them all this,
and leaves them leisure for such recreations as they are capable of
enjoying; but how is it with me?--and I mean not _me myself_ alone, but
all who, like myself, have received a higher degree of mental
cultivation, whose estimate of happiness is, therefore, so much higher,
whose capacity for enjoyment is so much more expanded and
cultivated;--can I be satisfied with a race in a circular railroad car,
or a swing between the lime-trees? where are my peculiar objects of
pleasure and recreation? where are the picture-galleries--the
sculptures--the works of art and science--the countless wonders of human
ingenuity and skill--the cultivated and refined society--the intercourse
with men of genius, literature, scientific knowledge--where are all the
sources from which I am to draw my recreations? They are not. The heart
of a philanthropist may indeed be satisfied, but the intellectual man
feels a dearth that is inexpressibly painful; and in spite of the real
and great pleasure which I derived from the sight of so much enjoyment,
I could not help desiring that enjoyment of another order were combined
with it. Perhaps the two are incompatible; if so, I would not alter the
present state of things if I could.

The losers here are decidedly in the minority. Indeed, so much so, as
hardly to form a class; they are a few individuals, scattered over the
country, and of course their happiness ought not to come into
competition with that of the mass of the people; but the Americans, at
the same time that they make no provision whatever for the happiness of
such a portion of their inhabitants, would be very angry if one were to
say it was a very inconsiderable one, and yet that is the truth.

[15] The climate of this country is the scape-goat upon which all the
ill looks and ill health of the ladies is laid; but while they are
brought up as effeminately as they are, take as little exercise, live in
rooms like ovens during the winter, and marry as early as they do, it
will appear evident that many causes combine, with an extremely variable
climate, to sallow their complexions, and destroy their constitutions.

[16] The hackney coaches in this country are very different from those
perilous receptacles of dust and dirty straw, which disgrace the London
stands. They are comfortable within, and clean without; and the horses
harnessed to them never exhibit those shocking specimens of cruelty and
ill usage which the poor hack horses in London present. Indeed (and it
is a circumstance which deserves notice, for it bespeaks general
character,) I have not seen, during a two years' residence in this
country, a single instance of brutality towards animals, such as one is
compelled to witness hourly in the streets of any English town.

[17] There is a striking difference in this respect between the
tradespeople of New York and those of Boston and Philadelphia; and in my
opinion the latter preserve quite self-respect enough to acquit their
courtesy and civility from any charge of servility. The only way in
which I can account for the difference, is the greater impulse which
trade receives in New York, the proportionate rapidity with which
fortunes are made, the ever-shifting materials of which its society is
composed, and the facility with which the man who has served you behind
his counter, having amassed an independence, assumes a station in the
first circle, where his influence becomes commensurate with his wealth.
This is not the case either in Boston or Philadelphia, at least not to
the same degree.

[18] The universal hour of dining, in New York, when first we arrived,
was three o'clock; after which hour the cooks took their departure, and
nothing was to be obtained fit to eat, either for love or money: this
intolerable nuisance is gradually passing away; but even now, though we
can get our dinner served at six o'clock, it is always dressed at three;
its excellence may be imagined from that. To say the truth, I think the
system upon which all houses of public entertainment are conducted in
this country is a sample of the patience and long-suffering with which
dirt, discomfort, and exorbitant charges may be borne by a whole
community, without resistance, or even remonstrance. The best exceptions
I could name to these various inconveniences are, first, Mr. Cozzen's
establishment at West Point; next, the Tremont at Boston, and, lastly,
the Mansion House at Philadelphia. In each of these, wayfarers may
obtain some portion of decent comfort: but they have their drawbacks; in
the first, there are no private sitting-rooms; and in the last, the
number of servants is inadequate to the work. The Tremont is by far the
best establishment of the sort existing at present. Mr. A----, the
millionnaire of New York, is about to remedy this deficiency, by the
erection of a magnificent hotel in Broadway. One thing, however, is
certain; neither he nor any one else will ever succeed in having a
decent house, if the servants are not a little superior to the Irish
savages who officiate in that capacity in most houses, public and
private, in the northern states of America.

[19] It is fortunate for the managers of the Park Theatre, and very
unfortunate for the citizens of New York, that the audiences who
frequent that place of entertainment are chiefly composed of the
strangers who are constantly passing in vast numbers through this city.
It is not worth the while of the management to pay a good company, when
an indifferent one answers their purpose quite as well: the system upon
which theatrical speculations are conducted in this country is, having
one or two "stars" for the principal characters, and nine or ten sticks
for all the rest. The consequence is, that a play is never decently
acted, and at such times as stars are scarce, the houses are very
deservedly empty. The terrestrial audiences suffer much by this mode of
getting up plays; but the celestial performers, the stars propped upon
sticks, infinitely more.

[20] Stewart--Bonfanti. The name of shopkeepers in Broadway: the
former's is the best shop in New York.

[21] Were the morality that I constantly hear uttered a little more
consistent, not only with right reason, but with itself, I think it
might be more deserving of attention and respect. But the mock delicacy,
which exists to so great a degree with regard to theatrical exhibitions,
can command neither the one nor the other. To those who forbid all
dramatic representations, as exhibitions of an unhealthy tendency upon
our intellectual and moral nature, I have no objections, at present, to
make. Unqualified condemnation, particularly when adopted on such
grounds, may be a sincere, a respectable, perhaps a right, opinion. I
have but one reply to offer to it: the human mind requires recreation;
is not a theatre (always supposing it to be, not what theatres too often
are, but what they ought to be), is not a theatre a better, a higher, a
more noble, and useful place of recreation than a billiard-room, or the
bar of a tavern? Perhaps in the course of the moral and intellectual
improvement of mankind, _all_ these will give way to yet purer and more
refined sources of recreation; but in the mean time, I confess, with its
manifold abuses, a play-house appears to me worthy of toleration, if not
of approbation, as holding forth (when directed as it should be) a
highly intellectual, rational, and refined amusement.

However, as I before said, my quarrel is not with those who condemn
indiscriminately all theatrical exhibitions; they may be right: at all
events, so sweeping a sentence betrays no inconsistency. But what are we
to say to individuals, or audiences, who turn with affected disgust from
the sallies of Bizarre and Beatrice, and who applaud and laugh, and are
delighted, at the gross immorality of such plays as the Wonder, and Rule
a Wife and have a Wife; the latter particularly, in which the immorality
and indecency are not those of expression only, but of conception, and
mingle in the whole construction of the piece, in which not one
character appears whose motives of action are not most unworthy, and
whose language is not as full of coarseness, as devoid of every
generous, elevated, or refined sentiment. (The tirades of Leon are no
exception; for in the mouth of a man who marries such a woman as
Marguerita, by such means, and for such an end, they are mere
mockeries.) I confess that my surprise was excited when I was told that
an American audience would not endure that portion of Beatrice's wit
which the London censors have spared, and that Othello was all but a
proscribed play; but it was infinitely more so, when I found that the
same audience tolerated, or rather encouraged with their presence and
applause, the coarse productions of Mrs. Centlivre and Beaumont and
Fletcher. With regard to the Inconstant, it is by far the most moral of
Farquhar's plays; that, perhaps, is little praise, for the Recruiting
Officer, and the Beaux' Stratagem, are decidedly the reverse. But in
spite of the licentiousness of the writing, in many parts, the
construction, the motive, the action of the play is not licentious; the
characters are far from being utterly debased in their conception, or
depraved in the sentiments they utter (excepting, of course, the
companions of poor Mirable's last revel); the women, those surest
criterions, by whose principles and conduct may be formed the truest
opinion of the purity of the social atmosphere, the women, though free
in their manners and language (it was the fashion of their times, and of
the times before them, when words did not pass for deeds, either good or
bad), are essentially honest women; and Bizarre, coarse as her
expressions may appear, has yet more _real_ delicacy than poor Oriana,
whose womanly love causes her too far to forget her womanly pride. Of
the catastrophe of this play, and its frightfully-pointed moral, little
need be said to prove that its effect is likely to be far more
wholesome, because far more homely, than that of most theatrical
inventions; invention, indeed, it is not, and its greatest interest, as
perhaps its chief utility, is drawn from the circumstance of its being a
faithful representation of a situation of unequalled horror, in which
the author himself was placed, and from which he was rescued precisely
as he extricates his hero. Of the truth and satirical power of the
dialogue, none who understand it can dispute; and if, instead of
attaching themselves to the farcical romping of Bizarre and her
ungallant lover, the modest critics of this play had devoted some
attention to the dialogues between young and old Mirable, their nice
sense of decency would have been less shocked, and they might have found
themselves repaid by some of the most pointed, witty, and pithy writing
in English dramatic literature. I am much obliged to such of my friends
as lamented that I had to personate Farquhar's impertinent heroine; for
my own good part, I would as lief be such a one, as either Jane Shore,
Mrs. Haller, Lady Macbeth, or the wild woman Bianca. I know that great
crimes have a species of evil grandeur in them; they spring only from a
powerful soil, they are in their very magnitude respectable. I know that
mighty passions have in their very excess a frightful majesty, that
asserts the vigour of the natures from which they rise; and there is as
little similarity between them, and the base, degraded, selfish,
cowardly tribe of petty larceny vices with which human societies abound,
as there is between the caterpillar blight, that crawls over a fertile
district, gnawing it away inch-meal, and the thunderbolt that scathes,
or the earthquake that swallows the same region, in its awful mission of
destruction. But I maintain that freedom of expression and manner is by
no means an indication of laxity of morals, and again repeat that
Bizarre is free in her words, but not in her principles. The authoress
of the most graceful and true analysis of Shakspeare's female characters
has offered a better vindication of their manners than I could write; I
can only say, I pity sincerely all those who, passing over the exquisite
purity, delicacy, and loveliness of their conception, dwell only upon
modes of expression which belong to the times in which their great
creator lived. With respect to the manner in which audiences are
affected by what they hear on the stage, I cannot but think that
gentlemen, who wish their wives and daughters to hear no language of an
exceptionable nature, had better make themselves acquainted with what
they take them to see, or, at all events, avoid, when in the theatre,
attracting their attention to expressions which their disapprobation
serves only to bring into notice, and which had much better escape
unheard, or at least unheeded. Voluminous as this note has become, I
cannot but add one word with respect to the members of the profession to
which I have belonged. Many actresses that I have known, in the
performance of unvirtuous or unlovely characters (I cannot, however,
help remembering that they were also secondary parts), have thought fit
to impress the audience with the wide difference between their assumed
and real disposition, by acting as ill, and looking as cross as they
possibly could, which could not but be a great satisfaction to any moral
audience. I have seen this done by that fine part in Milman's Fazio,
Aldabella, repeatedly, and not unfrequently by the Queen in Hamlet,
Margarita in Rule a Wife and have a Wife (I scarcely wonder at that,
though), and even by poor Shakspeare's Lady Falconbridge. I think this
is a mistake: the audience, I believe, never forget that the actress is
not indeed the wicked woman she seems. In one instance that might have
been the case, perhaps. I speak of a great artist, whose efforts I never
witnessed, but whose private excellence I have a near right to rejoice
in, and who was as true in her performance of the wretch Millwood, as in
her personifications of Shakspeare's grandest creations.

[22] The Russians and Danes are rich in the possession of an original
and most touching national music; Scotland, Ireland, and Wales, are
alike favoured with the most exquisite native melodies, probably, in the
world. France, though more barren in the wealth of sweet sounds, has a
few fine old airs, that redeem her from the charge of utter sterility.
Austria, Bohemia, and Switzerland, each claim a thousand beautiful and
characteristic mountain songs; Italy is the very palace of music,
Germany its temple; Spain resounds with wild and martial strains, and
the thick groves of Portugal with native music, of a softer and sadder
kind. All the nations of Europe, I presume all those of all the world,
possess some kind of national music, and are blessed by Heaven with some
measure of perception as to the loveliness of harmonious sounds. England
alone, England and her descendant America, seems to have been denied a
sense, to want a capacity, to have been stinted of a faculty, to the
possession of which she vainly aspires. The rich spirit of Italian
music, the solemn soul of German melody, the wild free Euterpe of the
Cantons, have in vain been summoned by turns to teach her how to listen;
'tis all in vain--she does listen painfully; she has learnt by dint of
time, and much endurance, the technicalities of musical science; she
pays regally her instructors in the divine pleasure, but all in vain:
the spirit of melody is not in her; and in spite of hosts of foreign
musicians, in spite of the King's Theatre, in spite of Pasta, in spite
of music-masters paid like ministers of state, in spite of singing and
playing young ladies, and criticising young gentlemen, England, to the
last day of her life, will be a dunce in music, for she hath it not in
her; neither, if I am not much mistaken, hath her daughter.

[23] It is but justice to state, that this house has passed into other
hands, and is much improved in every respect. Strangers, particularly
Englishmen, will find a great convenience in the five o'clock ordinary,
now established there, which is, I am told, excellently conducted and
appointed.

[24] The whole of this passage is in fact a succession of small bays,
forming a continuation to the grand bay of New York, and dividing Staten
Island from the mainland of New Jersey; the Raritan river does not
properly begin till Amboy, where it empties itself into a bay of its own
name.

[25] I had always heard that the face of nature was gigantic in America;
and truly we found the wrinkles such for so young a country. The ruts
were absolute abysses.

[26] The southern, western, and eastern states of North America have
each their strong peculiarities of enunciation, which render them easy
of recognition. The Virginian and New England accents appear to me the
most striking; Pennsylvania and New York have much less brogue; but
through all their various tones and pronunciations a very strong nasal
inflection preserves their universal brotherhood. They all speak through
their noses, and at the top of their voices. Of dialects, properly so
called, there are none; though a few expressions, peculiar to particular
states, which generally serve to identify their citizens; but these are
not numerous, and a jargon approaching in obscurity that of many of our
counties is not to be met with. The language used in society generally
is unrefined, inelegant, and often ungrammatically vulgar; but it is
more vulgar than unintelligible by far.

[27] This appears to me to be a most frequent ailment among the American
ladies: they must have particularly bilious constitutions. I never
remember travelling in a steam-boat, on the smoothest water, without
seeing sundry "afflicted fair ones," who complained bitterly of
_sea-sickness_ in the river.

[28] In spite of its beauty, or rather on that very account, an American
autumn is to me particularly sad. It presents a union of beauty and
decay, that for ever reminds me of that loveliest disguise death puts
on, when the cheek is covered with roses, and the eyes are like stars,
and the life is perishing away; even so appear the gorgeous colours of
the withering American woods. 'Tis a whole forest dying of consumption.

[29] The magnolia and azalia are two of these; and earlier in the
summer, the whole country looks like fairy-land, with the profuse and
lovely blossoms of the wild laurel, an evergreen shrub unequalled for
its beauty, and which absolutely overruns every patch of uncultivated
ground. I wonder none of our parks have yet been adorned with it: it is
a hardy plant, and I should think would thrive admirably in England.

[30] In the opening chapter of that popular work, Eugene Aram, are the
following words:--"It has been observed, and there is a world of homely,
ay, and of legislative knowledge in the observation, that wherever you
see a flower in a cottage garden, or a bird-cage at the window, you may
feel sure that the cottagers are better and wiser than their
neighbours." The truth of this observation is indisputable. But for such
"humble tokens of attention to something beyond the _sterile labour_ of
life" you look in vain during a progress through this country. In New
England alone, neatness and a certain endeavour at rustic elegance and
adornment, in the cottages and country residences, recall those of their
fatherland; and the pleasure of the traveller is immeasurably heightened
by this circumstance. If the wild beauties of uncultivated nature lead
our contemplations to our great Maker, these lowly witnesses of the
industry and natural refinement of the laborious cultivator of the soil
warm our heart with sympathy for our kind, and the cheering conviction
that, however improved by cultivation, the sense of beauty, and the love
of what is lovely, have been alike bestowed upon all our race; 'tis a
wholesome conviction, which the artificial divisions of society too
often cause us to lose sight of. The labourer, who, after "sweating in
the eye of Phoebus" all the day, at evening trains the fragrant jasmine
round his lowly door, is the very same man who, in other circumstances,
would have been the refined and liberal patron of those arts which
reflect the beauty of nature.

[31] In all my progress I looked in vain for the refreshing sight of a
hedge--no such thing was to be seen; and their extreme rarity throughout
the country renders the more cultivated parts of it arid looking and
comparatively dreary. These crooked fences in the south, and stone walls
to the north, form the divisions of the fields, instead of those
delicious "hedge-rows green," where the old elms delight to grow, where
the early violets and primroses first peep sheltered forth, where the
hawthorn blossoms sweeten the summer, the honeysuckle hangs its yellow
garlands in the autumn, and the red "hips and haws" shine like bushes of
earthly coral in the winter.

But the Americans are in too great a hurry to plant hedges: they have
abundance of native material; but a wooden fence is put up in a few
weeks, a hedge takes as many years to grow; and, as I said before, an
American has not time to be a year about anything. When first the
country was settled, the wood was an encumbrance, and it was cut down
accordingly: that is by no means the case now; and the only
recommendation of these fences is, therefore, the comparative rapidity
with which they can be constructed. One of the most amiable and
distinguished men of this country once remarked to me, that the
Americans were in too great a hurry about every thing they undertook to
bring any thing to perfection. And certainly, as far as my observation
goes, I should _calculate_ that an American is born, lives, and dies
twice as fast as any other human creature. I believe one of the great
inducements to this national hurry is, that "time is money," which is
true; but it is also true, sometimes, that "most haste makes worst
speed."

[32] These are two very pretty villages, of Quaker origin, situated in
the midst of a fertile and lovely country, and much resorted to during
the summer season by the Philadelphians.

[33] It has happened to me after a few hours' travelling in a steam-boat
to find the white dress, put on fresh in the morning, covered with
yellow tobacco stains; nor is this very offensive habit confined to the
lower orders alone. I have seen _gentlemen_ spit upon the carpet of the
room where they were sitting, in the company of women, without the
slightest remorse; and I remember once seeing a gentleman, who was
travelling with us, very deliberately void his tobacco-juice into the
bottom of the coach, instead of through the windows, to my inexpressible
disgust.

[34] I wish that somebody would be so obliging as to impress people in
general with the extreme excellence of a perception of the _fitness of
things_. Besides the intrinsic beauty of works of art, they have a
beauty derived from their appropriateness to the situations in which
they are placed, and their harmony with the objects which surround them:
this minor species of beauty is yet a very great one. If it were more
studied, and better understood, public buildings would no longer appear
as if they had fallen out of the clouds by chance; parks and plantations
would no more have the appearance of nurseries, where the trees were
classed by kind, instead of being massed according to their various
forms and colours; and Gothic and classic edifices would not so often
seem as if they had forsaken their appropriate situations, to rear
themselves in climates, and among scenery, with which they in no way
harmonise.

[35] Politics of all sorts, I confess, are far beyond my limited powers
of comprehension. Those of this country, as far as I have been able to
observe, resolve themselves into two great motives,--the aristocratic
desire of elevation and separation, and the democratic desire of
demolishing and levelling. Whatever may be the immediate cause of
excitement or discussion, these are the two master-springs to which they
are referable. Every man in America is a politician; and political
events, of importance only because they betray the spirit which would be
called into play by more stirring occasions, are occurring incessantly,
and keeping alive the interest which high and low alike take in the
evolutions of their political machine. Elections of state officers,
elections of civil authorities, all manner of elections (for America is
one perpetual contest for votes), are going on all the year round; and
whereas the politics of men of private stations in other countries are
kept quietly by them, and exhibited only on occasions of general
excitement, those of an American are as inseparable from him as his
clothes, and mix up with his daily discharge of his commonest daily
avocations. I was extremely amused at seeing over a hat-shop in New York
one day, "Anti-Bank Hat-Store," written in most attractive characters,
as an inducement for all good democrats to go in and purchase their
beavers of so republican a hatter. The universal-suffrage system is of
course the cause of this general political mania; and during an election
of mayor or aldermen, the good shopkeepers of New York are in as fierce
a state of excitement as if the choice of a perpetual dictator were the
question in point. Politics is the main subject of conversation among
American men in society; but, as I said before, the immediate object of
discussion being most frequently some petty local interest or other,
strangers cannot derive much pleasure from, or feel much sympathy in,
the debate.

[36] I have often thought that the constant demand for small theatres,
which I have heard made by persons of the higher classes of society in
England, was a great proof of the decline of the more imaginative
faculties among them; and the proportionate increase of that fastidious
and critical spirit, which is so far removed from every thing which
constitutes the essence of poetry. The idea of illusion in a dramatic
exhibition is confined to the Christmas spectators of old tragedies and
new pantomimes; the more refined portions of our English audiences yawn
through Shakspeare's historical plays, and _quiz_ through those which
are histories of human nature and its awful passions. They have
forgotten what human nature really is, and cannot even _imagine it_.
They require absolute reality on the stage, because their incapable
spirits scoff at poetical truth; and that absolute reality, in our days,
consists in such representations as the Rent Day; or (crossing the
water, for we dearly love what is foreign) the homely improbabilities of
Victorine, Henriette, and a pack of equally worthless subjects of
exhibition. Indeed, theatres have had an end; for the refined, the
highly educated, the first classes of society, they have had an end; it
will be long, however, before the mass is sufficiently refined to lose
all power of imagination; and while our aristocracy patronise French
melodramas, and seek their excitement in the most trashy
sentimentalities of the modern _école romantique_, I have some hopes
that our plebeian pits and galleries may still retain their sympathy for
the loves of Juliet and the sorrows of Ophelia. I would rather a
thousand times act either of those parts to a set of Manchester
mechanics, than to the most select of our aristocracy, for they are
"nothing, if not critical."

[37] Kean is gone--and with him are gone Othello, Shylock, and Richard.
I have lived among those whose theatrical creed would not permit them to
acknowledge him as a great actor; but they must be bigoted, indeed, who
would deny that he was a great genius, a man of most original and
striking powers, careless of art, perhaps because he did not need it;
but possessing those rare gifts of nature, without which art alone is as
a dead body. Who that ever heard will ever forget the beauty, the
unutterable tenderness, of his reply to Desdemona's entreaties for
Cassio, "Let him come when he will, I can deny thee nothing;" the deep
despondency of his "Oh, now farewell;" the miserable anguish of his "Oh,
Desdemona, away, away!" Who that ever saw will ever forget the
fascination of his dying eyes in Richard, when, deprived of his sword,
the wondrous power of his look seemed yet to avert the uplifted arm of
Richmond. If he was irregular and unartistlike in his performances, so
is Niagara, compared with the water-works of Versailles.

[38] I have acted Ophelia three times with my father, and each time, in
that beautiful scene where his madness and his love gush forth together
like a torrent swollen with storms, that bears a thousand blossoms on
its troubled waters, I have experienced such deep emotion as hardly to
be able to speak. The exquisite tenderness of his voice, the wild
compassion and forlorn pity of his looks bestowing that on others which,
above all others, he most needed; the melancholy restlessness, the
bitter self-scorning; every shadow of expression and intonation was so
full of all the mingled anguish that the human heart is capable of
enduring, that my eyes scarce fixed on his ere they filled with tears;
and long before the scene was over, the letters and jewel-cases I was
tendering to him were wet with them. The hardness of professed actors
and actresses is something amazing: after acting this part, I could not
but recall the various Ophelias I have seen, and commend them for the
astonishing absence of every thing like feeling which they exhibited.
Oh, it made my heart sore to act it.

[39] I am speaking now only of the common saddle-horses that one sees
about the streets and roads. The southern breed of race-horses is a
subject of great interest and care to all sporting men here: they are
very beautiful animals, of a remarkably slight and delicate make. But
the perfection of horses in this country are those trained for trotting:
their speed is almost incredible. I have been whirled along in a
light-built carriage by a pair of famous professed trotters, who
certainly got over the ground at the rate of a moderate-going
steam-engine, and this without ever for a moment breaking into a gallop.
The fondness of the Americans for this sort of horses, however, is one
reason why one can so rarely obtain a well-mouthed riding-horse. These
trotters are absolutely carried on the bit, and require only a snaffle,
and an arm of iron to hold them up. A horse well set upon his haunches
is not to be met with; and owing to this mode of breaking, their action
is entirely from the head and shoulders; and they both look and feel as
if they would tumble down on their noses.

[40] Except where they have been made political tools, newspaper writers
and editors have never, I believe, been admitted into good society in
England. It is otherwise here: newspapers are the main literature of
America; and I have frequently heard it quoted, as a proof of a man's
abilities, that he writes in such and such a newspaper. Besides the
popularity to be obtained by it, it is often attended with no small
literary consideration; and young men here, with talents of a really
high order, and who might achieve far better things, too often are
content to accept this very mediocre mode of displaying their abilities,
at very little expense of thought or study, and neglect far worthier
objects of ambition, and the rewards held out by a distant and permanent
fame. I know that half my young gentlemen acquaintance here would reply,
that they must live in the mean time: and it is a real and deep evil,
arising from the institutions of this country, that every man must toil
from day to day for his daily bread; and in this degrading and
spirit-loading care, all other nobler desires are smothered. It is a
great national misfortune.

[41] This delightful virtue of neatness is carried almost to an
inconvenient pitch by the worthy Philadelphians: the town, every now and
then, appears to be in a perfect frenzy of cleanliness; and of a
Saturday morning, early, the streets are really impassable, except to a
good swimmer. "Cleanliness," says the old saw, "is near to godliness."
Philadelphia must be very near heaven.

[42] The final result of our very unfortunate dealings with this
gentleman is, that our earnings (and they are not lightly come by), to
the amount of near three thousand dollars, are at this moment in the
hands of a trustee, and Heaven and a New England court of justice will
decide whether they are ever to come into ours.

[43] When we arrived in America, we brought letters of introduction to
several persons in New York: many were civil enough to call upon us: we
were invited out to sundry parties, and were introduced into what is
there called the first society. I do not wish to enter into any
description of it, but will only say that I was most disagreeably
astonished; and had it been my fate to have passed through the country
as rapidly as most travellers do, I should have carried away a very
unfavourable impression of the _best_ society of New York. Fortunately,
however, for me, my visits were repeated, and my stay prolonged; and, in
the course of time, I became acquainted with many individuals whose
manners and acquirements were of a high order, and from whose
intercourse I derived the greatest gratification. But they generally did
me the favour to visit me; and I still could not imagine how it happened
that I never met them at the parties to which I was invited, and in the
circles where I visited. I soon discovered that they formed a society
among themselves, where all those qualities which I had looked for among
the self-styled _best_ were to be found. When I name Miss Sedgwick,
Halleck, Irving, Bryant, Paulding, and some of less fame, but whose
acquirements rendered their companionship delightful indeed, amongst
whom I felt proud and happy to find several of my own name, it will no
longer appear singular that they should feel too well satisfied with the
resources of their own society, either to mingle in that of the vulgar
_fashionables_, or seek with avidity the acquaintance of every stranger
that arrives in New York. It is not to be wondered at that foreigners
have spoken as they have of what is termed fashionable society here, or
have condemned, with unqualified censure, the manners and tone
prevailing in it. Their condemnations are true and just as regards what
they see; nor, perhaps, would they be much inclined to moderate them
when they found that persons possessing every quality that can render
intercourse between rational creatures desirable were held in light
esteem, and neglected, as either bores, blues, or dowdies, by those so
infinitely their inferiors in every worthy accomplishment. The same
separation, or, if any thing, a still stronger one, subsists in
Philadelphia between the self-styled fashionables and the really good
society. The distinction there is really of a nature perfectly
ludicrous. A friend of mine was describing to me a family whose manners
were unexceptionable and whose mental accomplishments were of a high
order: upon my expressing some surprise that I had never met with them,
my informant replied, "Oh, no, they are not received by the Chestnut
Street _set_." If I were called upon to define that society in New York
and Philadelphia which ranks (by right of self-arrogation) as first and
best, I should say it is a purely dancing society, where a fiddle is
indispensable to keep its members awake; and where their brains and
tongues seem, by common consent, to feel that they had much better give
up the care of mutual entertainment to the feet of the parties
assembled; and they judge well. Now, I beg leave clearly to be
understood, there is another, and a far more desirable circle; but it is
not the one into which strangers find their way generally. To an
Englishman, this _fashionable_ society presents, indeed, a pitiful
sample of lofty pretensions without adequate foundation. Here is a
constant endeavour to imitate those states of European society which
have for their basis the feudal spirit of the early ages, and which are
rendered venerable by their rank, powerful by their wealth, and refined,
and in some degree respectable, by great and general mental cultivation.
Of Boston, I have not spoken. The society there is of an infinitely
superior order. A very general degree of information, and a much greater
simplicity of manners, render it infinitely more agreeable. But of that
hereafter.

[44] The beautiful villas on the banks of the Schuylkill are all either
utterly deserted and half ruinous, or let out by the proprietors to
tavern-keepers. The reason assigned for this is, that during that season
of the year when it would be most desirable to reside there, the fever
and ague takes possession of the place, and effectually banishes all
other occupants. This very extraordinary and capricious malady is as
uncertain in its residence, as unwelcome where it does fix its abode.
The courses of some of the rivers, and even whole tracts of country away
from the vicinity of the water, have been desolated by it: from these it
has passed away entirely, and removed itself to other districts, before
remarkably healthy. Sometimes it visits particular places at intervals
of one or two seasons; sometimes it attaches itself to one side of a
river, and leaves the inhabitants of the other in the enjoyment of
perfect health; in short, it is quite as unaccountable in its
proceedings as a fine lady. Many causes have been assigned as its
origin; which, however, have varied in credibility at almost every new
appearance of the malady. The enormous quantity of decaying vegetation
with which the autumn woods are strewn, year after year, till it
absolutely forms a second soil; the dam lately erected by the
water-works, and which, intercepting the tide, causes occasional
stagnation; the unwholesome action of water lodging in hollows in the
rocks; are all reasons which have been given to me when I have enquired
about this terrible nuisance along the banks of the Schuylkill: but
there is another, and one which appeared so obvious to me, that when
first I saw it, I felt much inclined to attribute the fever and ague to
that, and to that alone. I allude to a foul and stagnant ditch, lying
between the tow-path and the grounds of these country houses, of nearly
a mile in length, and of considerable width. When I saw the sun pouring
its intense light down into this muddy pool, covered with thick and
unwholesome incrustations, I could not help remarking that this alone
was quite sufficient to breed a malaria in the whole neighbourhood; and
that if the gentlemen proprietors of the lands along this part of the
river would drain this very poisonous-looking repository for bull-frogs,
their dwellings would, in all probability, be free from fever and ague.

[45] This beautiful younger world appears to me to have received the
portion of the beloved younger son--the "coat of many colours."

[46] This country is in one respect blessed above all others, and above
all others deserving of blessing. There are no poor--I say there are
none, there _need_ be none; none here need lift up the despairing voice
of hopeless and helpless want towards that Heaven which hears when men
will not. No father here need work away his body's health, and his
spirit's strength, in unavailing labour, from day to day, and from year
to year, bowed down by the cruel curse his fellows lay upon him. No
mother need wish, in the bitterness of her heart, that the children of
her breast had died before they exhausted that nourishment which was the
only one her misery could feel assured would not fail them. None need be
born to vice, for none are condemned to abject poverty. Oh, it makes the
heart sick to think of all the horrible anguish that has been suffered
by thousands and thousands of those wretched creatures, whose want
begets a host of moral evils fearful to contemplate; whose existence
begins in poverty, struggles on through care and toil, and
heart-grinding burdens, and ends in destitution, in sickness,--alas! too
often in crime and infamy. Thrice blessed is this country, for no such
crying evil exists in its bosom; no such moral reproach, no such
political rottenness. Not only is the eye never offended with those
piteous sights of human suffering, which make one's heart bleed, and
whose number appals one's imagination in the thronged thoroughfares of
the European cities; but the mind reposes with delight in the certainty
that not one human creature is here doomed to suffer and to weep through
life; not one immortal soul is thrown into jeopardy by the combined
temptations of its own misery, and the heartless selfishness of those
who pass it by without holding out so much as a finger to save it. If we
have any faith in the excellence of mercy and benevolence, we must
believe that this alone will secure the blessing of Providence on this
country.

[47] Throughout all the northern states, and particularly those of New
England, the Unitarian form of faith prevails very extensively. It
appears to me admirably suited to the spiritual necessities of this
portion of the Americans. They are a reasoning, not an imaginative,
race; moreover, they are a hard-working, not an idle, one. It therefore
suits their necessities, as well as their character, to have a religious
creed divested at once of mysteries at which the rational mind excepts;
and of long and laborious ceremonies, which too often engross the time
without the attention of the worshipper. They are poor, too,
comparatively speaking; and, were they so inclined, could little afford,
either the splendid pageantry which the Romish priesthood require, or
the less glaring but not less expensive revenues which the Episcopalian
clergy enjoy. Their form of religion is a simple one, a short one, and a
cheap one. Without attempting to discuss its excellence in the abstract,
it certainly appears to me to be as much fitted for this people, as the
marvellous legends and magnificent shows of the Romish church were to
the early European nations. The church in America is not, as with us,
made a mere means of living: there are no rich benefices, or
over-swelled bishoprics, to be hoped for, by the man who devotes himself
to the service of God's altar: the pecuniary remuneration of the clergy
depends upon the generosity of their congregations; and, for the most
part, a sincere love of his vocation must be the American minister's
reward, as it was his original instigation to the work.

[48] Whatever progress phrenology may have made in the convictions of
people in general, it is much to be hoped that the physiological
principles to which, in the development of their system, its professors
constantly advert, may find favour even with those who are not prepared
to admit the truth of the new philosophy of the human intellect. While
we have bodies as well as souls, we must take care of the health of our
bodies, if we wish our souls to be healthy. I have heard many people
mention the intimate union of spirit and matter, displayed in the
existence of a human being, as highly degrading to the former; however
that may be, it is certain that we by no means show our value for the
one, by neglecting and maltreating the other: and that if, instead of
lamenting over the unworthiness of the soul's fleshy partner, we were to
improve and correct and endeavour to ennoble it, we should do the wiser
thing. Upon a well-regulated digestion and circulation, and a healthful
nervous system, many of our virtues depend, much of our happiness; and
it is almost as impossible to possess a healthy and vigorous mind in a
diseased and debilitated body, as it is unusual to see a strong and
healthful body allied to an intemperate and ill-governed spirit. We have
some value for the casket which contains our jewel: then should we not
have some for that casket to which the jewel absolutely adheres, and
which cannot suffer injury itself without communicating it to that which
it contains? Exercise, regularity, and moderation in diet and sleep,
well-proportioned and varied studies and recreations,--these are none of
them subjects of trivial importance to the wise. Much of our ease and
contentedness depends upon them; much of our well-being, much of our
_well-doing_.

[49] I think it has not been my good fortune, in more than six
instances, during my residence in this country, to find ladies "at home"
in the morning. The first reason for this is, the total impossibility of
having a housekeeper; the American servants steadfastly refusing to obey
_two_ mistresses; the being subservient to any appears, indeed, a
dreadful hardship to them. Of course this compels the lady of the house
to enter into all those minute daily details, which with us devolve upon
the superintendent servant, and she is thus condemned, at least for some
part of the morning, to the store-room or the kitchen. In consequence of
this, her toilet is seldom completed until about to take her morning
promenade; and I have been a good deal surprised, more than once, at
being told, when I called, that "the ladies were dressing, but would be
down immediately." This is French; the disorderly slouching about half
the morning in a careless undress being, unluckily, quite compatible
with that exquisite niceness of appearance with which the Parisian
ladies edify their streets so much, and their homes so little. Another
very disagreeable result of this arrangement is, that when you are
admitted into a house in the morning, the rooms appear as if they never
were used: there are no books lying about, no work-tables covered with
evidences of constant use, and if there is a piano, it is generally
closed; the whole giving one an uninhabited feel that is extremely
uncomfortable. As to a morning lounge in a lady's boudoir, or a
gentleman's library, the thing's unheard of; to be sure there are no
loungers, where every man is tied to a counting-house from morning till
night; and therefore no occasion for those very pleasant sanctums
devoted to gossiping, political, literary, and scandalous.

[50] I am sure there is no town in Europe where my father could fix his
residence for a week, without being immediately found out by most of the
residents of any literary acquirements, or knowledge of matters relating
to art; I am sure that neither in France, Italy, or Germany, could he
take up his abode in any city, without immediately being sought by those
best worth knowing in it. I confess it surprised me, therefore, when I
found that, during a month's residence in Philadelphia, scarcely a
creature came near us, and but one house was hospitably opened to us; as
regards myself, I have no inclination whatever to speak upon the subject
but it gave me something like a feeling of contempt, not only for the
charities, but for the good taste of the Philadelphians, when I found
them careless and indifferent towards one whose name alone is a passport
into every refined and cultivated society in Europe. Every where else,
in America, our reception was very different; and I can only attribute
the want of courtesy we met with in Philadelphia to the greater
prevalence of that very small spirit of dignity which is always afraid
of committing itself.

[51] The familiar appellation by which the democracy designate their
favourite, General Jackson. The hickory wood is the tallest and the
toughest possible, and by no means a bad type of some of the President's
physical and moral attributes. Hickory poles, as they are called, are
erected before most of the taverns frequented by the thorough-going
Jacksonites; and they are sometimes surmounted by the glorious "Cap of
Liberty," that much abused symbol, which has presided over so many
scenes of political frenzy.

[52] In beholding this fine young giant of a world, with all its
magnificent capabilities for greatness, I think every Englishman must
feel unmingled regret at the unjust and unwise course of policy which
alienated such a child from the parent government. But, at the same
time, it is impossible to avoid seeing that some other course must, ere
long, have led to the same result, even if England had pursued a more
maternal course of conduct towards America. No one, beholding this
enormous country, stretching from ocean to ocean, watered with ten
thousand glorious rivers, combining every variety of climate and soil,
therefore, every variety of produce and population; possessing within
itself every resource that other nations are forced either to buy
abroad, or to create substitutes for at home; no one, seeing the
internal wealth of America, the abundant fertility of the earth's
surface, the riches heaped below it, the unparalleled facilities for the
intercourse of men, and the interchange of their possessions throughout
its vast extent, can for an instant indulge the thought that such a
country was ever destined to be an appendage to any other in the world,
or that any chain of circumstances whatever could have long maintained
in dependence a people furnished with every means of freedom and
greatness. But far from regretting that America has thrown off her
allegiance, and regarding her as a rebellious subject and irreverent
child, England will surely, ere long, learn to look upon this country as
the inheritor of her glory; the younger England, destined to perpetuate
the language, the memory, the virtues, of the noble land from which she
is descended. Loving and honouring my country as I do, I cannot look
upon America with any feeling of hostility. I not only hear the voice of
England in the language of this people, but I recognise in all their
best qualities, their industry, their honesty, their sturdy independence
of spirit, the very witnesses of their origin--they are English; no
other people in the world would have licked us as they did; nor any
other people in the world built up, upon the ground they won, so sound,
and strong, and fair an edifice.

With regard to what I have said in the beginning of this note, of the
many reasons which combined to render this country independent of all
others, I think they in some measure tell against the probability of its
long remaining at unity with itself. Such numerous and clashing
interests; such strong and opposite individuality of character between
the northern and southern states; above all, such enormous extent of
country; seem rationally to present many points of insecurity, many
probabilities of separations and breakings asunder; but all this lies
far on, and I leave it to those who have good eyes for a distance.

[53] I think the pretension to pre-eminence, in the various societies of
North America, is founded on these grounds. In Boston, a greater degree
of mental cultivation; in New York, the possession of wealth; and a
lady, of whom I enquired the other day what constituted the superiority
of the _aristocracy_ in Philadelphia, replied,--"Why, birth, to be
sure." Virginia and Carolina, indeed, long prided themselves upon their
old family names, which were once backed by large possessions; and for
many years the southern gentlemen might not improperly be termed the
aristocracy of America; but the estates of those who embraced the king's
cause during the rebellion were confiscated; and the annulling the laws
of entail and primogeniture, and the parcelling out of property under
the republican form of government, have gradually destroyed the fortunes
of most of the old southern families. Still, they hold fast to the
spirit of their former superiority, and from this circumstance, and the
possession of slaves, which exempts them from the drudgery of earning
their livelihood, they are a much less mercantile race of men than those
of the northern states; generally better informed, and infinitely more
polished in their manners. The few southerners with whom I have become
acquainted resemble Europeans both in their accomplishments, and the
quiet and reserve of their manners. On my remarking, one day, to a
Philadelphia gentleman, whose general cultivation keeps pace with his
political and financial talents, how singular the contrast was between
the levelling spirit of this government, and the separating and dividing
spirit of American society, he replied, that, if his many vocations
allowed him time, he should like to write a novel, illustrating the
curious struggle which exists throughout this country between its
political and its social institutions. The anomaly is, indeed, striking.
Democracy governs the land; whilst, throughout society, a contrary
tendency shows itself, wherever it can obtain the very smallest
opportunity. It is unfortunate for America that its aristocracy must, of
necessity, be always one of wealth.

[54] Of course the captain is undisputed master of the boat, and any
disorders, quarrels, etc., which may arise, are settled by his
authority. Any passenger, guilty of misbehaviour, is either confined or
sent immediately on shore, no matter how far from his intended
destination. I once saw very summary justice performed on a troublesome
fellow who was disturbing the whole society on board one of the North
River steamers. He was put into the small boat with the captain and a
stout-looking sailor, and very comfortably deposited on some rafts which
were floating along shore, about twenty miles below West Point, whither
he was bound.

[55] The quantity of one's companions in these conveyances is not more
objectionable than their quality sometimes. As they are the only
vehicles, and the fares charged are extremely low, it follows,
necessarily, that all classes and sorts of people congregate in them,
from the ragged Irish emigrant and the boorish back-countryman, to the
gentleman of the senate, the supreme court, and the president himself.

[56] The manners of the young girls of America appear singularly free to
foreigners; and until they become better acquainted with the causes
which produce so unrestrained a deportment, they are liable to take
disadvantageous and mistaken impressions with regard to them. The term
which I should say applied best to the tone and carriage of American
girls from ten to eighteen, is hoydenish; laughing, giggling, romping,
flirting, screaming at the top of their voices, running in and out of
shops, and spending a very considerable portion of their time in
lounging about in the streets. In Philadelphia and Boston, almost all
the young ladies attend classes or day schools; and in the latter place
I never went out, morning, noon, or evening, that I did not meet, in
some of the streets round the Tremont House, a whole bevy of young
school girls, who were my very particular friends, but who, under
pretext of going to, or returning from, school, appeared to me to be
always laughing, and talking, and running about in the public
thoroughfares; a system of education which we should think by no means
desirable. The entire liberty which the majority of young ladies are
allowed to assume, at an age when in England they would be under strict
nursery discipline, appears very extraordinary; they not only walk alone
in the streets, but go out into society, where they take a determined
and leading part, without either mother, aunt, or chaperon of any sort;
custom, which renders such an appendage necessary with us, entirely
dispenses with it here; and though the reason of this is obvious enough
in the narrow circles of these small towns, where every body knows every
body, the manners of the young ladies do not derive any additional charm
from the perfect self-possession which they thus acquire. Shyness
appears to me to be a quality utterly unknown to either man, woman, or
child in America. The girls, from the reasons above stated, and the
boys, from being absolutely thrown into the world, and made men of
business before they are sixteen, are alike deficient in any thing like
diffidence; and I really have been all but disconcerted at the perfect
assurance with which I have been addressed, upon any and every subject,
by little men and women just half way through their teens. That very
common character amongst us, a shy man, is not to be met with in these
latitudes. An American conversing on board one of their steam-boats is
immediately surrounded, particularly if his conversation, though
strictly directed to one individual, is of a political nature; in an
instant a ring of spectators is formed round him, and whereas an
Englishman would become silent at the very first appearance of a
listener, an American, far from seeming abashed at this "audience,"
continues his discourse, which thus assumes the nature of an harangue,
with perfect equanimity, and feels no annoyance whatever at having
unfolded his private opinions of men and matters to a circle of forty or
fifty people whom they could in no possible way concern. Speechifying is
a very favourite species of exhibition with the men here, by the by;
and, besides being self possessed, they are all remarkably fluent.
Really eloquent men are just as rare in this country as in any other,
but the "gift of the gab" appears to me more widely disseminated amongst
Americans than any other people in the world. Many things go to make
good speakers of them: great acuteness, and sound common sense,
sufficient general knowledge, and great knowledge of the world, an
intense interest in every political measure, no matter how trivial in
itself, no sense of bashfulness, and a great readiness of expression.
But to return to the manners of the young American girls:--It is
Rousseau, I think, who says, "Dans un pays où les moeurs sont pures, les
filles seront faciles, et les femmes sévères." This applies particularly
well to the carriage of the American women. When remarking to a
gentleman once the difference between the manners of my own young
countrywomen and his, I expressed my disapprobation of the education
which led to such a result, he replied, "You forget the comparatively
pure state of morals in our country, which admits of this degree of
freedom in our young women, without its rendering them liable to insult
or misconstruction." This is true, and it is also most true, for I have
seen repeated instances of it, that those very girls, whose manners have
been most displeasing to my European ways of feeling, whom I should have
pointed out as romps and flirts pre-eminent, not only make excellent
wives, but from the very moment of their marriage seem to forsake
society, and devote themselves exclusively to household duties and
retirement. But that I have seen and known of repeated instances of
this, I could scarcely have believed it, but it is the case; and a young
American lady, speaking upon this subject, said to me, "We enjoy
ourselves before marriage; but in your country, girls marry to obtain a
greater degree of freedom, and indulge in the pleasures and dissipations
of society." She was not, I think, greatly mistaken.

[57] For the origin of this curious name, see that interesting and
veracious work, the history of Knickerbocker.

[58] Famous as the scene of Ichabod Crane's exploits.

[59] If the results answer to the means employed, the pupils of West
Point ought to turn out accomplished scholars in every branch of human
learning, as well as ripe soldiers and skilful engineers. Their course
of education consists of almost every study within the range of man's
capacity; and as the school discipline is unusually strict, their hours
of labour many, and of recreation very few, they should he able to boast
of many "wise men" among their number. However it is here, I imagine, as
elsewhere; where studies are pursued laboriously for a length of time,
variety becomes a necessary relief to the mental powers, and so far the
multiplicity of objects of acquirement may be excused; but surely, to
combine in the education of one youth the elements of half a dozen
sciences, each one of which would wear out a man's life in the full
understanding of it, is not the best system of instruction. However, it
is the one now universally adopted, and tends to give more smatterers in
science than scientific men to the world. The military part of their
education is, however, what the pupils of West Point are most exercised
in, and, so far as one so ignorant of such matters as myself can judge,
I should imagine the system adopted calculated to make expert
artillerymen and engineers of them. Their deportment, and the way they
went through their evolutions on the parade, did not appear to me very
steady--there was a want of correctness of carriage, generally, and of
absolute precision of movement, which one accustomed to the manoeuvring
of regular troops detects immediately. There are several large pieces of
ordnance kept in the gun-room, some of which were taken from the
English; and I remarked a pretty little brass cannon, which almost
looked plaything, which bore the broad arrow and the name of Saratoga.

[60] It might be a curious and interesting matter of research to
determine under what combination of external circumstances the spirit of
poetry flourishes most vigorously, and good poets have most abounded.
The extremes of poverty and luxury seem alike inimical to its
well-being; yet the latter far more so than the former, for most poets
have been poor; some so poor, as to enrich the world, while they
themselves received so little return from its favour as miserably to
perish of want. Again, the level tenor of a life alike removed from want
and superfluity should seem too devoid of interest or excitement to make
a good poet. Long-lived competency is more favourable to the even temper
of philosophy than the fiery nature of one who must know the storms of
passion, and all the fiercer elements of which the acting and suffering
soul of man is made. Again, it would be curious to know, if it might be
ascertained, whether those men whose inspirations have been aided alone
by the contemplation of the inanimate beauties of nature, and the
phenomena of their own minds and the minds and lives of their fellows,
have been as great poets as those who, besides these sources of
inspiration, fed the power within them with the knowledge of great
writers and poets of other countries and times. Another question, which
it would be interesting to determine, would be, under what species of
government poets have been most numerous, and most honoured. As our
modern exploders of old fallacies have not yet made up their minds
whether such a person as Homer ever lived, it is rather a vain labour of
imagination to determine whether this great king of all poets flourished
under a monarchy or in a republic; certain it is, he sang of kings and
princes in right lordly style: be that as it may, we have rather better
authority for believing that the Greek dramatists, those masters, and
sometime models, of their peculiar branch of the art, flourished under
republican governments; but with them, I think, ends the list of
republican poets of great and universal fame. Rome had no poets till she
had emperors. Italy was, it is true, divided into so called republics
dining the golden age of her literature; but they were so in name alone;
the spirit of equality had long departed from the soil, and they were
merely prouder and more arbitrary aristocracies than have ever existed
under any monarchy in the world. If ever France can be said to have had
a poetical age, it was during the magnificent reign of Louis the
Fourteenth, that pageant that prepared the bloodiest tragedy in the
pages of history. England offers the only exception that I have
advanced, namely, that the republican form of government is inimical to
poetry. For it was during the short and shameful period of fanatical
republicanism, which blots her annals, that the glory and the might of
Milton rose upon the world; he is the only great poet who ever
flourished under a republic; and he was rather the poet of heaven and
hell, than of earth: his subjects are either biblical or mythological;
and however his stern and just spirit might advocate the cause of
equality and universal freedom in the more arid regions of political and
theological controversies, in his noblest and greatest capacity he has
sung of angels and archangels, the starry hierarchy of heaven, where
some of the blessed wore a brighter glory than their fellows, where some
were inferior to other celestial powers, and where God was King supreme
over all. In heaven, Milton dreamt of no republics, nor in hell either.

[61] It is quite curious to observe how utterly unknown a thing a
_really_ well-broken horse is in this country. I have just bought one
who was highly approved and recommended by several gentlemen considered
here as learned in all these matters; and of my own knowledge, I might
hunt the Union over and not find a better. As far as the make, and
beauty, and disposition of the animal goes, there is no fault to find;
but this _lady's horse_ never had a woman on its back, had never been
ridden but with a snaffle bit, and, until she came into my possession,
did not know how to canter with her right foot. When the Americans say a
horse is well broken, they mean it is not wild.

[62] The various censures which English travellers have bestowed upon
various things in this country are constantly, both in private
conversation and the public prints, attributed to _English jealousy_. I
confess I have been amused at the charge, and can only sincerely hope I
may not draw down so awful an accusation on myself, when I declare,
that, during a three years' residence in America, almost every article,
of every description, which I have had made, has been ill made, and
obliged to undergo manifold alterations. I don't pretend to account for
the fact, for fear the obvious reasons might appear to find their source
in that very small jealousy of which England is guilty towards this
country, in the person of her journal-scribbling travellers; but to the
fact there is and can be no denial.

[63] When you carry your complaint of careless work, or want of
punctuality, to the tradespeople whom you employ here, the unfortunate
principals really excite your sympathy by their helpless situation with
regard to the free republicans whom they employ, and who, with the utter
contempt of subordination which the cheapness of living, and the spirit
of license (not liberty) produce among the lower classes here, come when
they please, depart when they like, work when they choose, and, if you
remonstrate, take themselves off to new masters, secure of employment in
your neighbour's house, if your mode of employing them displeases them.
Manifold are the lamentations I have heard, of "Oh, ma'am, this is not
like the old country; we can't get journeymen to work here, ma'am; we're
obliged to do just as our workmen please, ma'am." One poor French
dress-maker appeared to me on the verge of distraction, from the utter
impossibility of keeping in any order a tribe of sewing girls, whom she
seemed to pay on purpose that they might drive her crazy; and my
shoemaker assured me the other day, with a most woful face, that it was
election week, and that if I was as suffering for shoes as a lady could
be, I could not have mine till the political cobblers in his employ had
settled the "business of the nation" to their satisfaction. Patience is
the only remedy. Whoever lives here, that has ever lived elsewhere,
should come provided with it.

[64] This description may amaze sundry narrow-minded and prejudiced
dwellers in those unhappy countries where standing armies are among the
standing abuses, and the miserable stipendiaries of hoary tyrannies go
about wearing the livery of their trade with a slavish unanimity
becoming alone to hirelings and salaried butchers base. But whoever
should imagine that the members of an enlightened and free republic
must, because they condescend to become soldiers, for the pure love of
their country, behave as soldiers also, would draw foolish conclusions.
Discipline, order, a peculiar carriage, a particular dress, obedience to
superiors, and observance of rules, these, indeed, may all be the
attributes of such miserable creatures as are content to receive wages
for their blood. But for free Americans! why should they not walk
crooked, in the defence of their country, if they don't like to walk
straight? why should they not carry their guns on their shoulders
instead of upright, if they please? and why, since they chose to defend
their lives and liberties by becoming volunteers, should they not stick
any feathers, of any colours that they like in their caps--black, white,
or green? Is the noble occupation of war incompatible with the still
nobler possession of freedom? Heaven forbid! and long live the American
militia, to prove their entire compatibility.

[65] The militia has fallen into disrepute of late in New York and
Philadelphia. Trainings and parades take too much of the precious time,
whose minutes are cents, and hours dollars. The only instance of humour,
national or individual, which I have witnessed since my abode in this
country, was a sham parade got up in mimicry of the real one here
described. In this grotesque procession, every man was dressed in the
most absurd costume he could devise: banners with the most ludicrous
inscriptions, wooden swords of gigantic dimensions, and children's
twopenny guns, were some of their paraphernalia; and, in the absurd and
monstrous objects the men had made of themselves, with false whiskers,
beards, and noses, I recognised some of the broad, coarse, powerful
humour of the lower orders in the old country. But it is the _only_
symptom of such a spirit which I have met with. The absolute absence of
imagination, of course, is also the absolute absence of humour. An
American can no more understand a fanciful jest than a poetical idea;
and in society and conversation the strictest matter of fact prevails:
for any thing departing from it, though but an inch, either towards the
sublime or the ridiculous, becomes immediately incomprehensible to your
auditors, who will stare at your enthusiasm, and sincerely ask you the
meaning of your jest.

[66] A place devoted to political meetings, chiefly, however, I believe,
those termed here "democratic."

[67] It is the property of perfection alone to rivet the admiration of
absolute ignorance; whence I conclude that the river craft, hovering
from morning till night along the waters that surround New York, must be
the most beautiful in the world. Their lightness, grace, swiftness, and
strength, appear to me unequalled. Such beautiful vessels I never saw;
more beautiful ones I cannot imagine.

[68] In Canova's group of Cupid and Psyche, the young god is smiling
like a god; but the eager parted lips with which Psyche is seeking his,
wear no such expression--you might fancy they trembled, but they
certainly do not smile.

[69] The ladies of New York, and all lady-like people there, have agreed
to call this eddy _Hurl_-gate. The superior propriety of this name is
not to be questioned; for hell is a shocking bad word, no doubt: but,
being infinitely more appropriate to the place and its qualities, I have
ventured to mention it.

[70] The ladies here have an extreme aversion to being called _women_, I
don't exactly understand why. Their idea is, that that term designates
only the lower or less-refined classes of female human-kind. This is a
mistake which I wonder they should fall into; for in all countries in
the world, queens, duchesses, and countesses, are called women; but in
this one alone, washerwomen, sempstresses, and housemaids are entitled
_ladies_; so that, in fact, here woman is by far the more desirable
appellation of the two.

[71] The established succession of figures which form the _one_ French
quadrille, in executing which the ball-rooms of Paris and London have
spent so many satisfactory hours ever since it was invented, by no means
satisfies the Americans. At the close of almost every quadrille, a
_fancy_ figure is danced, which, depending entirely upon the directions
of the leader of the band, is a very curious medley of all the rest. The
company not being gifted with second sight, and of course not knowing at
every step what next they may be called upon to do, go fearfully sliding
along, looking at each other, asking, "how does it go on?" some _en
avant deux-ing_, while others are starting off _en promenade_, the whole
being a complete confusion of purpose and execution. The common French
figure, the Trénis, is very seldom danced at all,--they do not appear to
know it.

[72] This terrible nuisance has often made me wish for that "still small
voice," which has become the universal tone of good society in England,
and which, however inconvenient sometimes from its utter inaudibility,
at least did not send one to bed with one's ears ringing and one's head
splitting. I was in a society of about twelve ladies, the other evening,
and the _uproar_ was so excessive that I felt my eyebrows contracting
from a sense of perfect bewilderment, occasioned by the noise all round
me, and more than once was obliged to request the person with whom I was
conversing to stop till the _noise_ had subsided a little, that I might
be able to distinguish what he was saying to me. Were the women here
large and masculine in their appearance, this defect would appear less
strange, though not less disagreeable; but they are singularly delicate
and feminine in their style of beauty; and the noise they make strikes
one with surprise as something monstrous and unnatural--like mice
roaring. They frequently talk four or five at a time, and directly
across each other; neither of which proceedings is exactly according to
my ideas of good breeding.

[73] Unromantic as these birds are in their external appearance, there
is something poetical in their love of sunny skies. Many attempts have
been made to rear them in England; but I am told that they will not sing
there, or indeed any where but where the sun shines as it does here.

[74] In speaking of the bad and disagreeable results of the political
institutions of this country, as exhibited in the feelings and manners
of the lower orders, I have every where dwelt upon those which, from my
own disposition, and the opinions and sentiments in which I have been
educated, have struck me most, and most unfavourably. But I should be
sorry to be so blind, or so prejudiced, as not to perceive the great
moral goods which arise from the very same source, and display
themselves strongly in the same class of people: _honesty_ and _truth_,
excellences so great, that the most bigoted worshipper of the forms and
divisions of societies in the old world would surely be ashamed to weigh
them in the balance against the deference there paid to rank or riches,
or even the real and very agreeable qualities of civility and courtesy.
Americans (I speak now of the _people_, not the gentlemen and ladies,
_they_ are neither so honest and true, nor quite so rude,) are indeed
independent. Every man that will work a little can live extremely well.
No portion of the country is yet overstocked with followers of trades,
not even the Atlantic cities. Living is cheap--labour is dear. To
conclude, as the Irish woman said, "It is a darling country for poor
folks; for if I work three days in the week, can't I lie in my bed the
other three if I plase?" This being so, all dealings between
handicraftsmen and those who employ them; tradesmen and those who buy of
them; servants and those who are served by them; are conducted upon the
most entire system of reciprocity of advantage; indeed, if any thing,
the obligation appears always to lie on that party which, with us, is
generally supposed to confer it. Thus,--my shoemaker, a person with whom
I have now dealt largely for two years, said to me the other day, upon
my remonstrating about being obliged regularly to come to his shop and
unboot, whenever I order a new pair of walking-boots--"Well, ma'am, we
can keep your measure certainly, _to oblige you_, but, as a rule, we
don't do it for any of our customers, it's so very troublesome." These
people are, then, as I said before, most truly independent; they are
therefore never servile, and but seldom civil, but for the very same
reason they do not rob you; they do not need to do so; neither do they
lie to you, for your favour or displeasure in no way affects their
interest. If you entrust to their care materials of any sort to make up,
you are sure, no matter how long you may leave them in their hands, or
how entirely you may have forgotten the quantity originally given, to
have every inch of them returned to you: and you are also generally sure
that any question you ask, with regard to the quality of what you
purchase, will be answered without any endeavour to impose upon you, or
palm upon your ignorance that which is worse for that which is better.
Two circumstances, which have come under my own knowledge, will serve to
illustrate the spirit of the people; and they are good illustrations to
quote, for similar circumstances are of daily and hourly occurrence.

A farmer who is in the habit of calling at our house on his way to
market, with eggs, poultry, etc., being questioned as to whether the
eggs were new-laid, replied, without an instant's hesitation, "No, not
the _very_ fresh ones, _we eat all those ourselves_."

On returning home late from the play one night, I could not find my
slippers any where, and, after some useless searching, performed my
toilet for bed without them. The next morning, on enquiring of my maid
if she knew any thing of them, she replied with perfect equanimity, that
having walked home through the snow, and got her feet extremely wet, she
had put them on, and forgotten to restore them to their place before my
return. Nobody, I think, will doubt that an English farmer, and an
English servant, might sell stale eggs, and use their mistress's
slippers; but I think it highly doubtful, that either fact would have
been acknowledged with such perfect honesty any where but here. As to
the servants here, except the blacks, and the poor Irish bread-hunters
who come over, there are scarcely any to be found: the very name seems
repugnant to an American; and however high their wages, and easy their
situation, they seem hardly to be able to endure the bitterness of
subserviency and subordination.

[75] The bridges here are all made of wood, and for the most part
covered. Those which are so are by no means unpicturesque objects. The
one-arched bridge at Fair Mount is particularly light and graceful in
its appearance: at a little distance, it looks like a scarf, rounded by
the wind, flung over the river.

[76] The time of locking of doors at gentlemen's dinner parties, and
drinking till the company dropped one by one under the table, has, with
the equally disgusting habit of spitting about the floors, long vanished
in England before a more rational hospitality, and a better
understanding of the very first rule of good breeding, not to do that
which is to offend others. Spirituous liquors are the fashion alone
among the numerous frequenters of the gin-palaces of Holborn, and St.
Giles's; even the old-fashioned favourites of our country gentlemen,
port, madeira, and sherry, are found too heavy and strongly-flavoured
for the palate of our modern exquisites,--and the fragrant and delicate
wines of Burgundy, Bordeaux, the Rhine, and its tributary streams, are
the wines now preferred before all others, by persons of refined taste
and moderate indulgence. This in itself is a great improvement. The
gross desire of excitement by a quantity of powerful stimulants has
given place to a temperate enjoyment of things, in themselves certainly
the most excellent in the world. Wine-drinking in England is become
altogether a species of _dilettante_ taste, instead of the disgusting
excess it used to be; it is indulged in with extreme moderation,--and so
much have all coarse and thick-blooded drinks gone out of fashion, that
even liqueurs are very seldom taken after coffee but by foreigners. Our
gentlemen have learnt to consider hard and gross drinking ungentlemanly.
I wish I could say the same of American gentlemen. The quantity and the
quality of their potations are as destructive of every thing like
refinement of palate, as detrimental to their health. Americans are,
generally speaking, the very worst judges of wine in the world, always
excepting madeira, which they have in great perfection, and is the only
wine of which they are tolerable judges. One reason of their ignorance
upon this subject is the extremely indifferent quality of the foreign
wines imported here, and a still more powerful reason, is the total loss
of all niceness of taste consequent upon their continual swallowing of
mint julaps, gin slings, brandy cocktails, and a thousand strong messes
which they take _even before breakfast_, and indifferently at all hours
of the day,--a practice as gross in taste as injurious to health.
Burgundy I have never seen at an American table: I believe it will not
stand the sea voyage. Claret they have now in very great perfection,
thanks to Mr. ----, who has introduced it among them, and deserves to be
considered a public benefactor therefor. Hock is, generally speaking,
utterly undrinkable, and champagne (the only foreign wine of which they
seem generally fond), though some of a good quality is occasionally
presented to you, is for the most part a very nauseous compound, in
which sugar is the only perceptible flavour. Although the American
gentlemen do not indeed lock the doors upon their guests, they have two
habits equally fatal to their sobriety, of which I have heard several
Englishmen complain bitterly. The one is mixing their wines in a most
unorthodox manner, equally distressing to the palate and the stomach;
_i. e._ giving you to drink by turns, after dinner, claret, madeira,
sherry, hock, champagne, all and each of which you are pressed to take
as specimens of excellence in their various ways, forming altogether a
vinous hotch-potch, which confounds alike the taste and the brain. The
second ordeal, to which the sobriety of Englishmen dining out here is
exposed, is at the close of all these various libations,--which of
course last some time,--an instantaneous removal from the dinner to the
supper table, where strong _whisky punch_ effectually _finishes_ the
wits of their guests, and sends them home to repent for two days the
excess of a few hours. Perhaps, when the real meaning of the word
_society_ becomes better understood in this country, absurd display and
disgusting intemperance will no more be resorted to as its necessary
accompaniments; but of course the _real_ material of which society
should be formed must increase a little first. I have been told that the
women in this country drink. I never saw but one circumstance which
would lead me to believe the assertion. At the baths in New York, one
day, I saw the girl who was waiting upon the rooms carry mint julaps (a
preparation of mint, sugar, and brandy,) into three of them. I was much
surprised, and asked her if this was a piece of service she often
performed for the ladies who visited the baths? She said, "Yes, pretty
often." Bar-rooms are annexed to every species of public building,--in
the theatres, in the hotels, in the bath-houses, on board the
steam-boats,--and there are even temporary buildings which serve this
purpose erected at certain distances along the rail-roads. Though the
gentlemen drink more than any other _gentlemen_, the lower orders here
are more temperate than with us. The appearance of a drunken man in the
streets is comparatively rare here; and certainly Sunday is not, as with
us, the appointed day for this disgusting vice among the lower classes
here. Fortunately, most fortunately, it is not with them as with us, the
only day on which the poor have rest, or drunkenness the only substitute
they can find for every other necessary or comfort of life. Our poor are
indeed intemperate. Alas! that vice of theirs will surely be visited on
others; for it is the offspring of their misery. The effects of habitual
intemperance in this country are lamentably visible in many young men of
respectable stations and easy circumstances; and it is by no means
uncommon to hear of young gentlemen--persons who rank as such
here--destroying their health, their faculties, and eventually their
lives, at a most untimely age, by this debasing habit.

[77] There is a species of home religion, so to speak, which is kept
alive by the gathering together of families at stated periods of joy and
festivity, which has a far deeper moral than most people imagine. The
merry-making at Christmas, the watching out the old year, and in the
new, the royalty of Twelfth-night, the keeping of birth-days, and
anniversaries of weddings, are things which, to the worldly-wise in
these wise times, may savour of childishness or superstition; but they
tend to promote and keep alive some of the sweetest charities and
kindliest sympathies of our poor nature. While we are yet children,
these days are set in golden letters in the calendar,--long looked
forward to,--enjoyed with unmixed delight,--the peculiar seasons of new
frocks, new books, new toys, drinking of healths, bestowing of blessings
and wishes by kindred and parents, and being brought into the notice of
our elders, and, as children used to think in the dark ages, therefore
their betters. To the older portion of the community, such times were
times of many mingled emotions, all, all of a softening if not of so
exhilarating a nature. The cares, the toils, of the world had become
their portion,--some little of its coldness, its selfishness, and sad
guardedness had crept upon them,--distance and various interests, and
the weary works of life had engrossed their thoughts, and turned their
hearts and their feet from the dear household paths, and the early
fellowship of home; but at these seasons the world was in its turn
pushed aside for a moment,--the old thresholds were crossed by those who
had ceased to dwell in the house of their birth,--kindred and friends
met again, as in the early days of childhood and youth, under the same
roof-tree,--the nursery revel, and the school-day jubilee, was recalled
to their thoughts by the joyful voices and faces of a new
generation,--the blessed and holy influences of home flowed back into
their souls, at such a time, by a thousand channels,--the heart was
warmed with the kind old love and fellowship,--face brightened to
kindred face, and hand grasped the hand where the same blood was
flowing, and all the evil deeds of time seemed for a while retrieved.
These were holy and happy seasons. Oh, England! dear, dear England! this
sweet sacred worship, next to that of God the highest and purest, was
long cherished in your soil, where the word home was surely more
hallowed than any other save heaven. Far, far off be the day when a cold
and narrow spirit shall quench in you these dear and good human
yearnings, and make the consecrated earth around our door-stones as
barren as the wide wilderness of life in strange lands. In this country
I have been mournfully struck with the absence of every thing like this
home-clinging. Here are comparatively no observances of tides and times.
Christmas-day is no religious day, and hardly a holiday with them.
New-year's day is perhaps a little, but only a little, more so. For
Twelfth-day, it is unknown; and the household private festivals of
birth-days are almost universally passed by unsevered from the rest of
the toilsome days devoted to the curse of labour. Indeed, the young
American leaves so soon the shelter of his home, the world so early
becomes to him a home, that the happy and powerful influences and
associations of that word to him are hardly known. Sent forth to earn
his existence at the very opening time of mind and heart, like a young
green-house plant just budding that should be thrust out into the colder
air, the blight of worldliness, of coldness, and of care, drive in the
coming blossoms; and if the tree lives, half its loveliness and half its
_usefulness_ are shorn from it. These are some of the consequences of
the universal doom of Americans, to labour for their bread: there are
others and better ones.

[78] This happened on board a _western_ steam-boat, I beg to observe, if
it happened at all.

[79] The evanescent nature of his triumph, however an actor may deplore
it, is in fact but an instance of the broad moral justice by which all
things are so evenly balanced. If he can hope for no fame beyond mere
mention, when once his own generation passes away, at least his power,
and his glory, and his reign is in his own person, and during his own
life. There is scarcely to be conceived a popularity for the moment more
intoxicating than that of a great actor in his day, so much of it
becomes mixed up with the individual himself. The poet, the painter, and
the sculptor, enchant us through their works; and, with very very few
exceptions, their works, and not their very persons, are the objects of
admiration and applause: it is to their minds we are beholden; and
though a certain degree of curiosity and popularity necessarily wait
even upon their bodily presence, it is faint compared with that which is
bestowed upon the actor; and for good reasons--he is himself his work.
His voice, his eyes, his gesture, are his art, and admiration of it
cannot be separated from admiration for him. This renders the ephemeral
glory which he earns so vivid, and in some measure may be supposed to
compensate for its short duration. The great of the earth, whose fame
has arisen like the shining of the sun, have often toiled through their
whole lives in comparative obscurity, through the narrow and dark paths
of existence. Their reward was never given to their hands here,--it is
but just glory should be lasting.

[80] Another house has been opened at Baltimore within the last year,
which, though unfinished at the time of our lodging there, promised to
be extremely comfortable. The building adjoined, and indeed formed, part
of the Exchange; the vestibule of which is the only very beautiful piece
of architecture I have seen here. It is very beautiful.

[81] This very romantic piece of gallantry (serenading) is very common
in this country. How it comes to be so I can't quite make out; for it is
not at all of a piece with the national manners or tone of feeling. It's
very agreeable, though, and is an anomaly worth cultivating.

[82] I have heard it several times asserted, that Catholicism was
gaining ground extremely in this country. Surely the Preacher sayeth
well, "The thing which has been, it is that which shall be, and there is
nothing new beneath the sun." Is it not a marvellous thing to think of,
that that mighty tree which has overshadowed the whole of the Christian
world, under whose branches all the European empires were cradled, and
which we have with our own eyes beheld droop, and fade, and totter, as
it does at this moment in the old soils,--is it not strange to think of
the seed being carried, and the roots taking hold in this new earth,
perhaps to send up another such giant shadow over this hemisphere? Its
growth here appears to me almost impossible; for if ever there were two
things more opposite in their nature than all other things, they are the
spirit of the Roman Catholic religion and the spirit of the American
people. It's true, that of the thousands who take refuge from poverty
upon this plenteous land, the greater number bring with them that creed,
but the very air they inhale here presently gives them a political
faith, so utterly incompatible with the spirit of subjection, that I
shall think the Catholic priesthood here workers of miracles, to retain
any thing like the influence over their minds which they possessed in
those countries, where all creeds, political and polemical, have but one
watch-word--faith and submission.

[83] In most European countries, the seat of government and residence of
the ruling powers and foreign ambassadors is the capital, and generally
the largest, most populous, most wealthy, and most influential city of
the kingdom--the place of all others to which travellers would resort to
become acquainted with its political, literary, and social spirit. In
this, however, as in most other respects, this country differs from all
others; and the spirit of independence, which renders every state a
republic within itself, gives to each its own capital, the superior
merits of which are advocated with no little pride and jealousy by the
natives of the state to which it belongs. Thus, New York, Boston,
Philadelphia, Baltimore, Charleston, and New Orleans, are all capitals;
each of them fulfilling in a much higher degree than Washington the
foreigner's idea of that word. Indeed I cannot conceive any thing that
would more amaze an European than to be transported into Washington, and
told he was in the metropolis of the United States; nor, indeed, could
any thing give him a less just idea of the curious political
construction, and widely-scattered resources, of the country.
Washington, in fact, is to America what Downing and Parliament Streets
are to London--a congregation of government offices; where political
characters, secretaries, clerks, place-holders, and place-seekers, most
do congregate.

[84] As the winter resort of all the leading political men of the Union,
Washington presents many attractions in point of society. Their wives
and daughters, frequently the reigning beauties of their respective
states and towns, generally accompany them thither during the session;
and this congregating of people from all parts of the country, together
with the foreign ministers residing there, and the travellers drawn
thither from mere curiosity, combine to give more variety to the
gaieties of Washington than those of any of the other cities in the
Union can boast. The Capitol is a favourite lounge in the morning; and
the American lady-politicians are just as zealous in their respective
parties as our own. I don't know, however, that they would much relish
listening to a long debate from that dismal hole, the lantern of the
House of Commons, where one may listen, indeed and even just manage to
see, but where to _be seen_ is an utter impossibility; neither do I
think that many of them would stand for four long hours, as Miss ----
and poor Lady ---- did, during Brougham's famous reform bill speech.

[85] The love of the sublime and beautiful, those aspirations after
something more refined, more exalted and perfect, than this world
affords, in short, that spiritual propensity classed in its many and
various manifestations by the phrenologists under the title of
_ideality_, will have some vent, and, under circumstances most adverse
to its existence, will creep out at some channel or another, and
vindicate human nature by flourishing in some shape over the narrowest,
homeliest, lowliest, and least favourable guise it may put on. Certainly
America is nothe country of large idealities,--it is the very reverse;
if I may create a bump, it is the country of large realities, _i. e._
large acquisitiveness, large causality, large caution, and small
veneration and wonder. Nathless some ideality must needs be, and is, and
it creeps out in Christian names. I have heard sempstresses called
Amanda and Emmeline, and we had a housemaid in New England called
Cynthia. Our village carpenter is named Rudolph; and if the spirit of
the people appears to me unimaginative and unpoetical, I take great
comfort in their fine names.

[86] I am neither sufficiently interested nor sufficiently well informed
in the politics of this country to have conceived any opinion of General
Jackson, beyond that which the floating discussions of the day might
suggest. Of his merits as a statesman I am totally incapable of judging,
or of the effect which his peculiar policy is calculated to have upon
the country. When first I came here I heard and saw that he was the man
of the people. In the dispute with South Carolina, his firmness and
decision of character struck me a good deal; and when, in consequence of
the temporary distress occasioned by his alteration of the currency, a
universal howl was for a short time raised against him, which he
withstood without a moment's flinching, I honoured him greatly. Of his
measures I know nothing; but firmness, determination, decision, I
respect above all things: and if the old General is, as they say, very
obstinate, why obstinacy is so far more estimable than weakness,
_especially_ in a ruler, that I think he sins on the right side of the
question.

[87] The national vanity of the French, and pride and prejudice of the
English are proverbial: it is, however, fortunate for both that they
carry these qualities to such an excess, that it is a matter of extreme
difficulty to shake the good opinion which they entertain of themselves.
Thus, foreigners may visit England, as Frenchmen have done, and swear
that the sun never shines there, and that the only ripe fruit the
country affords is roasted apples. John Bull, nothing wroth, wraps
himself still closer in his own dear self-approval, and, in the
plenitude of self-content, drinks his brown stout, and basks by
gas-light. On his part, he goes over to Paris, votes the whole _beau
pays de France_ horrible, because he can't get port wine to drink, or
boiled potatoes to eat; in spite of which, Monsieur does not attempt to
turn him out of his country, but eats his ragouts, and drinks his
chablis, and shrugs his shoulders at the savage islander, from the
seventh heaven of self-satisfaction. It were much to be desired that
Americans had a little _more_ national vanity, or national pride. Such
an unhappily sensitive community surely never existed in this world; and
the vengeance with which they visit people for saying they don't admire
or like them, would be really terrible if the said people were but as
mortally afraid of abuse as they seem to be. I would not advise either
Mrs. Trollope, Basil Hall, or Captain Hamilton, ever to set their feet
upon this ground again, unless they are ambitious of being stoned to
death. I live myself in daily expectation of martyrdom; and as for any
body attempting to earn a livelihood here who has but as much as said he
prefers the country where he was born to this, he would stand a much
better chance of thriving if he were to begin business after confinement
in the penitentiary. This unhappy species of irritability is carried to
such a degree here, that if you express an unfavourable opinion of any
thing, the people are absolutely astonished at your temerity. I
remember, to my no little amusement, a lady saying to me once, "I hear
you are going to abuse us dreadfully; of course, you'll wait till you go
back to England, and then shower it down upon us finely." I assured her
I was not in the least afraid of staying where I was, and saying what I
thought at the same time.

[88] I have been assured, I know not how truly, that the whole of this
affair originated with an _Englishman_. This piece of information was
given me by a person who said he knew such to be the fact, and also knew
the man.

[89] It may not be amiss here to say one word with regard to the
_gratitude_ which audiences in some parts of the world claim from
actors, and about which I have lately heard a most alarming outcry. Do
actors generally exercise their profession to please themselves and
gratify their own especial delight in self-exhibition? Is that
profession in its highest walks one of small physical exertion and
fatigue (I say nothing of mental exertion), and in its lower paths is it
one of much gain, glory, or ease? Do audiences, on the other hand, use
to come in crowds to play-houses to see indifferent performers? and when
there, do they, out of pure charity and good-will, bestow their applause
as well as their money upon tiresome performances? I will answer these
points as far as regards myself, and therein express the gratitude which
I feel towards the frequenters of theatres. I individually disliked my
profession, and had neither pride nor pleasure in the exercise of it. I
exercised it as a matter of necessity, to earn my bread,--and verily it
was in the sweat of my brow. The parts which fell to my lot were of a
most laborious nature, and occasioned sometimes violent mental
excitement, always immense physical exertion, and sometimes both. In
those humbler walks of my profession, from whose wearisomeness I was
exempted by my sudden favour with the public, I have seen, though not
known, the most painful drudgery,--the most constant fatigue,--the most
sad contrast between real cares and feigned merriments,--the most
anxious, penurious, and laborious existence imaginable. For the part of
my questions which regarded the audiences, I have only to say, that I
never knew, saw, heard, or read of any set of people who went to a
play-house to see what they did not like; this being the case, it never
occurred to me that our houses were full but as a necessary consequence
of our own attraction, or that we were applauded but as the result of
our own exertions. I was glad the houses were full, because I was
earning my livelihood, and wanted the money; and I was glad the people
applauded us, because it is pleasant to please, and human vanity will
find some sweetness in praise, even when reason weighs its worth most
justly. Thus I cannot say that in general I had any great _gratitude_
towards my audiences. Once or twice, however, that feeling was excited
between me and my witnesses, and the circumstance of which I have spoken
in my journal was one of the instances. But this was a different matter
altogether. I was no longer before an audience labouring for their
approbation as an actress. I was dragged before so many judges in my own
person, to answer for words spoken in private conversation. The same
clapping of hands, with which they rewarded my exertions in my
profession, was the only method by which they could intimate the "not
guilty," which was their judgment upon the appeal that had been made to
them against me; but with this difference, that I never felt _obliged_
to them, or _grateful_ for their applause before, and did feel obliged
and grateful for their verdict then. Now, as regards the benefit-nights
of actors, I do not observe that even on these occasions much
_gratitude_ is owing to the people who attend them; for I know, and so
does every member of the profession, that the oldest and best actor on
any stage,--the one who for a series of years has appeared before
audiences to whom his private respectability and worth were well
known,--the longest-established _favourite_ of the public (as they are
termed), will assuredly have empty houses on his benefit-nights, if,
trusting to the feeling of that public, to whom he owes so much
gratitude, he failed to secure the assistance of whatever star
(tragedian, pantomimist, or dancing dog, it matters not which), happens
to be the newest object of attraction. I speak all this more
particularly as regards this country, for it is here that I have heard
most of this species of cant. Gratitude is a good word and an excellent
thing, and neither in speaking or acting should it be misapplied. In the
aristocratical lands over the water, this nonsense about patronage might
surprise one less; but in America it seems strange there should be any
mistake about a simple matter of traffic--'tis nothing in life else. We
give our health, our strength, our leisure, and our pleasure, for your
money and your applause, neither of which do we beg or borrow from you.
This being the case, where lies the obligation, and where the gratitude?
As to the pretty speeches which actors make when called from behind the
curtain, they always appeared to me very much of the same order as
advertisements in newspapers--A. D. returns his grateful acknowledgments
to the public for their liberal support, etc., etc. That calling
performers on after a play is a foreign, not an English, custom, and, to
my mind, one more honoured in the breach than in the observance.
Extraordinary occasions might warrant extraordinary demonstrations; but
it is a pity to make that a common ceremony, which, rarely granted,
would be a gratifying testimony of feeling, and excite rational
_gratitude_ in those on whom it was conferred.

[90] I would recommend Retsch's etchings of Macbeth to the study of all
representatives of the witches: there is great sublimity and fearfulness
in their figures and attitudes. By the by, in looking over those unique
etchings (I mean _all_ those he has executed), the colossal genius of
Shakspeare is brought more fully in its vastness to our conviction; for
the genius of the artist,--which has fallen no whit behind the first
work of one of the first men of this age,--sinks in utter impotence
under the task of illustrating Shakspeare. The wonder, and the beauty,
and the pity of Faust, are as strong and true in the outlines of Retsch,
as in the words of Goethe--the drawings equal the poem; 'tis the highest
praise they can receive: and it is only when we turn from these perfect
works, to contemplate his outlines of Shakspeare, that we feel, by the
force of comparison, how unutterably beyond all other conceptions are
those of Shakspeare. Retsch's etchings, both of Hamlet and Macbeth, are,
compared with his German illustrations, failures. Hamlet is the better
of the two; but he seems to have quailed under the other in utter
inability--Macbeth himself falls far short of all that he should be made
to express; and as to Lady Macbeth, Retsch seems to have thought he had
better not meddle with her.

[91] I wonder how long it will be before men begin to consider the
rational education of the mothers of their children a matter of some
little moment. How much longer are we to lead existences burdensome to
ourselves and useless to others, under the influence of every species of
ill training that can be imagined? How much longer are the physical
evils under which our nature labours to be increased by effeminate,
slothful, careless, unwholesome habits? How much longer are our minds,
naturally weakened by the action of a highly sensitive nervous
construction, to be abandoned, or rather devoted, to studies the least
likely to strengthen and ennoble them, and render them independent, in
some measure, of the infirmities of our bodies? How much longer are our
imaginations and feelings to be the only portions of our spiritual
nature on which culture is bestowed? Surely it were generous in those
who are our earthly disposers to do something to raise us from the state
of half-improvement in which we are suffered to linger. If our
capacities are inferior to those of men,--which I believe, as much as I
believe our bodies to be inferior to theirs in strength, swiftness, and
endurance,--let us not be overwhelmed with all the additional shackles
that foolish and vain bringing up can add; let us at least be made as
strong in body and as wise in mind as we can, instead of being devoted
to spiritual, mental, and physical weakness, far beyond that which we
inherit from nature.

[92] Was it not Mme. de Sévigné who said, with such truth and bitter
satire, "Mme de ---- s'est jetée dans la dévotion, c'est-à-dire, elle a
changé d'amant"?

[93] The cleanliness of the table furniture, and the neatness of the
attendants, is one of the most essential comforts of these boats. The
linen, and knives and forks, etc. at our meals, were remarkably clean
and bright. On more than one occasion, too, being rather late for the
public breakfast, we have been indulged with a small separate table in
the quiet recess at the end of the great eating and sleeping cabin,--a
favour only to be appreciated by people unaccustomed to any ordinaries,
much less steam-boat dinner-tables with sometimes near two hundred
guests. On board all the other boats, the only alternative is to have
what you eat brought to you into the ladies' cabin. To those who have
once breathed the atmosphere of a "ladies' cabin," it will be difficult
to imagine how such an alternative should not be productive of an
amazing saving of the boat's provisions.

[94] My astonishment was unfeigned, when, upon an after inspection, I
found this very lofty gateway was constructed of _painted wood_. What! a
cheat, a sham thing at the threshold of the grave!--surely, thereabouts
pretences should have an end. Sham magnificence, too, is sad; an iron
railing, or a wooden paling, would, to my mind, have been a thousand
times better than this _mock granite_. Let us hope that this is merely a
temporary entrance,--there is _real_ granite enough to be had at Quincy;
and if the living can't afford it, why the dead will never miss it,--and
any thing would be better than an imitation gateway.

[95] The spirit of man of its own dignity ennobles whatever it devotes
itself to. The most trivial actions may become almost heroical from the
motive which prompts them, and the most absurd ceremonies of
superstition, sincerely practised, may excite pity, but neither contempt
nor ridicule. If such a thing as an enthusiastic shoemaker were to be
met with, there is no doubt but his feeling of his craft would elevate
it into something approximating an art, and his work would bear witness
to his veneration for it. At the time when the stage was in its highest
perfection, its members had _all_ a great love and admiration for their
profession; many of them were men of education and mental
accomplishment, and brought to bear upon their labour all the
intellectual stores which they possessed. They respected their own work,
and it was respectable; they thought acting capable of elevation, of
refinement, of utility, and their faith in it invested it with dignity.
Of this class were all my father's family. _One_ reason why the stage
and every thing belonging to it has fallen to so low an ebb now, is
because actors have ceased to care for their profession
themselves,--they are no longer artists,--acting is no longer an art.

[96] Besides the advantage of possessing the very prettiest collection
of actresses I ever saw, the theatre at Boston has decidedly the best
company I have played with _any where_ out of London. Some of the old
leaven alluded to in the last note exists amongst the ladies and
gentlemen of the Tremont theatre: they do not seem to despise their
work, and it is, generally speaking, well done therefore. Our pieces
were all remarkably well got up there; and the green-room is both
respectable and agreeable.

[97] To the English traveller, around whose heart the love of
country and the influences of early association may yet cling, New
England appears to me, of all the portions of the United States
which I have visited, most likely to afford gratification; and the
_Yankees_,--properly so called,--the Americans with whom he will find,
and towards whom he will feel, most sympathy. They do us the honour to
call themselves _purely English_ in their origin; they alone, of the
whole population of the United States, undoubtedly were so; and in the
abundant witness which their whole character, country, and institutions
bear to that fact, I feel an additional reason to be proud of
England,--of Old England, for these are her children,--this race of men,
as a race incomparably superior to the other inhabitants of this
country. In conversing with New Englandmen, in spite of any passing
temporary bitterness, any political difference, or painful reference to
past times of enmity, I have always been struck with the admiring and,
in some measure, tender feeling with which England, as the
mother-country, was named. Nor is it possible to travel through the New
England states, and not perceive, indeed, a spirit (however modified by
different circumstances and institutions) yet most truly English in its
origin. The exterior of the houses,--their extreme neatness and
cleanliness,--the careful cultivation of the land,--the tasteful and
ornamental arrangement of the ground immediately surrounding the
dwellings, that most English of all manifestations,--above all, the
church spires pointing towards heaven, from the bosom of every
village,--recalled most forcibly to my mind my own England, and
presented images of order, of industry, of taste, and religious feeling,
nowhere so exhibited in any other part of the Union. I visited Boston
several times, and mixed in society there, the tone of which appeared to
me far higher than that of any I found elsewhere. A general degree of
cultivation exists among its members, which renders their intercourse
desirable and delightful. Nor is this superior degree of education
confined to Boston: the zeal and the judgment with which it is being
propagated throughout that part of the country is a noble national
characteristic. A small circumstance is a good illustration of the
advance which knowledge has made in these states. Travelling by land
from New Haven to Boston, at one of the very smallest places where we
stopped to change horses, I got out of the carriage to reconnoitre our
surroundings. The town (if town it could be called) did not appear to
contain much more than fifty houses: amongst the most prominent of
these, however, was a bookseller's shop. The first volumes I took up on
the counter were Spurzheim's volume on education, and Dr. Abercrombie's
works on the intellectual and moral faculties, I saw more pictures, more
sculptures, and more books in private houses in Boston than I have seen
any where else. I could name more men of marked talent that I met with
there than any where else. Its charitable and literary institutions are
upon a liberal scale, and enlightened principles. Among the New
Englanders I have seen more honour and reverence of parents, and more
witnesses of a high religions faith, than among any other Americans with
whom I have lived and conversed.

[98] There are, I believe, no primroses, no wild thyme, and no heather,
that grow naturally in this country. I do not remember to have seen
either wild honeysuckle or clematis, both of which are so abundant with
us. The laurestinus, rosemary, southernwood, and monthly roses, all of
which are so common in England, growing out of doors all the year round,
are kept in hot-houses during the winter, even as far south as
Philadelphia. The common garden flowers--roses, pinks--are far less
abundant and less fragrant than with us. Sweet peas, and mignonette, are
comparatively scarce; serynga, and laburnum, I have never seen at all:
but so little care is bestowed upon ornamental gardening, that I do not
know whether this dearth of flowers is the fault of the climate, or the
consequence of the utter neglect in which flower-gardens are held here.

[99] Lacking the nightingale and the lark, I think they want the two
perfect specimens of natural music.

[100] Among the many signs of the total decay of dramatic mind and
spirit in this age, a frequent piece of criticism passed upon modern
plays appears to me a very conclusive one--"Such a play is exceedingly
full of dramatic effect, but there's no poetry in it." "Such a
playwright understands situation and character, but really, reading his
plays, you find no poetry in them." I have heard this bright comment
passed repeatedly upon the best dramatic composition of modern
times,--the Hunchback; a play whose immense popularity every where is
the surest and truest warrant of its excellence,--a play containing the
most dramatic situations, the most pathetic and comic effects, and by
far the finest conception of a female character of any play since the
old golden dramatic age. I do not hesitate to say that this is a most
false piece of criticism, induced alone by a want of perception of what
are the requisites in a dramatic poem, and a total absence of true
dramatic feeling. First, in the ingredients of a fine play, comes the
fiction,--the invention; to this belong those same much-sneered-at stage
effects, and theatrical situations; next comes the skilful and powerful
delineation of individual character; _lastly_ comes the item of a
poetical diction. _One_ alone has united these in their utmost
perfection; for such another the world may look in vain. But I think the
play-goers of Shakspeare's time would have been tolerably satisfied with
a most interesting fiction, and a true and vigorous delineation of
character; and let me ask, is there no poetry besides that of words?--is
there no poetry in the fable of a play--none in the faithful portraying
of a human being's mind and passions? As for all pretty speeches,
lengthy descriptions, abstract disquisitions,--unless things placed in
the mouth of characters to whose identity such mental manifestations
belong,--they are inadmissible in a right good play, and should by all
means be confined to the pages of those anomalous modern growths, plays
for the closet. In all our elder dramatists, Shakspeare alone excepted,
the main quality of a play, the story, is often defective to an excess,
not only in morality, but in probability and consistency; and the same
defects exist in the delineation of character in many of their noblest
plays.

[101] Of the mental process which the pupils at this highland school
undergo, I can say nothing, being totally unacquainted with the system
of education adopted there; but a more advantageous residence for the
cultivation of health, strength (for physical education), or the
development of all those pious and poetical tendings of the human soul
and mind which are fostered and ripened by the sublime influence of
natural beauty and grandeur, cannot be imagined. The gentlemen at the
head of this establishment are New Englanders. The observations I made
upon the superior intelligence and cultivation of the natives of that
part of the United States have been borne out constantly by the fact,
that there is hardly any establishment in the States I have visited, in
any way connected with education, or the dissemination of information,
which is not conducted partially or entirely by New Englanders.

[102] Troy! and that Troy has a Mount Ida! The names of places in this
country are truly astonishing. Troy, Syracuse, and Rome are pretty well
in this way; but the state of New York alone, I believe, boasts of a
Manlius, a Homer, a Virgil, an Ovid, a Cicero, and a Socrates, whose
second appearance in this world is in all the glories of flaming red
bricks, new boards, and white paint. Did Pythagoras admit of men
becoming towns as well as beasts? I forget.

[103] These beautiful little delicate wild flowers seem to love the dewy
neighbourhood of waterfalls: it is only at Trenton, and the Chaudière in
Canada, that I remember to have seen them at all in this country. Some
poor Scotch peasants, about to emigrate to Canada, took away with them
some roots of the "bonny blooming heather," in hopes of making this
beloved adorner of their native mountains the cheerer of their exile in
the wild lands to which they were going. The heather, however, refused
to grow in the Canadian soil, and the poor emigrants had not the
melancholy pleasure of seeing its sweet familiar bloom round their new
dwellings. The person who told me this said that the circumstance had
been related to him by Walter Scott, whose sympathy with the
disappointment of these poor children of the romantic heatherland
betrayed itself even in tears. When I visited the beautiful falls of the
Chaudière, our party was enlivened, and the picturesque effect of the
scene much heightened, by some of the Highland band belonging to the
regiment quartered in Quebec. I could not help wondering, as I gathered
the blue bells, which grew profusely round the cataract, whether these
poor fellows looked upon the emblem of their distant country with any of
the feelings which I lent them; and the whole brought back to my mind
the heather that would not gladden the exile's eyes in a foreign soil,
and the compassion of Scott for his countrymen's disappointment.

[104] I do not know that the sense of danger has ever been so vivid in
my mind as while walking along this narrow edge of eternity. Nothing
around Niagara appeared to me half so full of peril as the path along
the Trenton Falls, although I have hung over the brink of the last rock
that vibrates on the very verge of that great abyss, and explored,
entirely alone, the path under the huge watery curtain that falls from
Table Rock. I do not know whether the mention of the late accidents at
Trenton affected my imagination, and caused me to exaggerate the danger;
but it appeared to me almost miraculous that every body passing along
those narrow, dripping, uneven ledges did not share the fate of the two
unfortunate persons I have mentioned.

[105] Thank God! a firebrand, which shall throw all England into
confusion and anarchy, is not, indeed, of easy make. Italy, crushed
under the heel of her northern rulers; or France, blown about with every
breath of opinion, may rush into revolutions for a ballad or an opera.
The misery of the one, and the miserable excitability of the other
nation, render it easy to rouse, in the former, the spirit of
retribution; in the latter, the desire of change. But Englishmen, who
are neither slaves nor weathercocks, are less easily stirred to wild
excesses of political excitement. Let who will steer, the old ship is
too well ballasted to sink. Whoever rules, whatever party may be at the
head of her government, England is sound at heart: there is a broad
foundation of moral good and intelligence in the nation, which will not
be shaken or upturned, let factions erect or pull down what temporary
trophies they please, to their own short-lived and selfish triumphs. The
file of the mechanic may still gnaw angrily at the iron crown of the
aristocracy; interests of classes may still jar, parties wrangle, and
the eternal warfare between those who climb, and those who stand upon
the topmost round of the ladder, may still be waged. And so be it: in
none of these is there fear or danger; but rather a wholesome action of
power against power; a checking, winnowing, purifying, and preserving
influence. Moral evil, vice--and mental evil, ignorance--are the roots
of decay: surely England is far from the day of her downfalling.

[106] I have had occasion to observe, in a former note, that foreigners
travelling through this country see only the least desirable society of
the various cities they visit. There is another class of Americans, whom
they rarely, if ever, become acquainted with at all; by far the most
interesting, in my opinion, which the country affords. I speak of those
families thickly scattered through all the states, from whose original
settlers many of them are immediately descended; who reside upon lands
purchased by their grandfathers in the early days of the _British
colonies_; and who, living remote from the Atlantic cities, and the more
travelled routes between them, are free from all the peculiarities which
displease a European in the societies of the towns, and possess traits
of originality in their manners, minds, and mode of life, infinitely
refreshing to the observer, wearied of the eternal sameness which
pervades the human congregations of the Old World.

In mixing with the commercial fashionables and exclusives of the
American cities, the European is at once amused and annoyed with the
assumption of a social tone and spirit at variance with the whole _make_
of the country. He is told that he is in the best society of the place,
and with perfect justice condemns this best society as, probably, the
worst he ever saw: a society assuming the airs of separate rank where no
rank at all exists, attempting to copy the luxury and splendour of the
residents of European capitals, without possessing one tithe of their
wealth to excuse the extravagance, or enable them to succeed in the
endeavour, and presenting the most incongruous and displeasing mixture
possible of pretension, ignorance, affectation, and vulgarity. I have
before said, that even in the cities there are circles of a very
different order; but yet freer from all these drawbacks is the society
formed by the class of people of whom I have spoken above, and whom I
should designate as the gentry of this country; using that term in the
best sense in which it was once used in England.

Among this large but widely-scattered portion of the community, should
the European traveller's good fortune lead him, he will find hospitality
without ostentation, purity of morals independent of the dread of
opinion, intellectual cultivation unmixed with the desire of display,
great simplicity of life and ignorance of the world, originality of mind
naturally arising from independence and solitude, and _the best_,
because the most natural, manners. Of such, I know, from the lower
shores of the Chesapeake, to the half savage territory around
Michilimakinack.

[107] This spot is famous as the scene of the last exploit of a singular
individual, known by the name of Sam Patch. An Irishman by birth, I
believe, he came over to this country to earn his bread, and hit upon a
very ingenious method of doing so, _i. e._ jumping for large wagers down
cataracts; which daring feat he performed successfully more than once.
But, like the Sicilian diver of old, poor Sam Patch took one plunge too
many; and, after leaping with impunity from the rocks immediately below
the Falls of Niagara, he found his death in the Genesee--attempting the
leap, it is said, while in a state of intoxication.

[108] Although nobody, I believe, ever travelled a hundred miles by land
in this country without being overturned, the drivers deserve infinite
credit for the _rare occurrence_ of accidents. How they can carry a
coach at all over some of their roads is miraculous; and high praise is
due to them both for care and skill, that any body, in any part of this
country, ever arrives at the end of a land journey at all. I do not ever
remember to have seen six-in-hand driving except in New England, where
it is common, and where the stage-drivers are great adepts in their
mystery.



+-------------------------------------------------+
|Transcriber's note:                              |
|                                                 |
|Obvious typographic errors have been corrected.  |
|                                                 |
+-------------------------------------------------+





*** End of this Doctrine Publishing Corporation Digital Book "Journal of a Residence in America" ***

Doctrine Publishing Corporation provides digitized public domain materials.
Public domain books belong to the public and we are merely their custodians.
This effort is time consuming and expensive, so in order to keep providing
this resource, we have taken steps to prevent abuse by commercial parties,
including placing technical restrictions on automated querying.

We also ask that you:

+ Make non-commercial use of the files We designed Doctrine Publishing
Corporation's ISYS search for use by individuals, and we request that you
use these files for personal, non-commercial purposes.

+ Refrain from automated querying Do not send automated queries of any sort
to Doctrine Publishing's system: If you are conducting research on machine
translation, optical character recognition or other areas where access to a
large amount of text is helpful, please contact us. We encourage the use of
public domain materials for these purposes and may be able to help.

+ Keep it legal -  Whatever your use, remember that you are responsible for
ensuring that what you are doing is legal. Do not assume that just because
we believe a book is in the public domain for users in the United States,
that the work is also in the public domain for users in other countries.
Whether a book is still in copyright varies from country to country, and we
can't offer guidance on whether any specific use of any specific book is
allowed. Please do not assume that a book's appearance in Doctrine Publishing
ISYS search  means it can be used in any manner anywhere in the world.
Copyright infringement liability can be quite severe.

About ISYS® Search Software
Established in 1988, ISYS Search Software is a global supplier of enterprise
search solutions for business and government.  The company's award-winning
software suite offers a broad range of search, navigation and discovery
solutions for desktop search, intranet search, SharePoint search and embedded
search applications.  ISYS has been deployed by thousands of organizations
operating in a variety of industries, including government, legal, law
enforcement, financial services, healthcare and recruitment.



Home