Full Text Archive logoFull Text Archive — Free Classic E-books

Sunny Memories of Foreign Lands V2 by Harriet Beecher Stowe

Part 7 out of 7

Adobe PDF icon
Download this document as a .pdf
File size: 0.8 MB
What's this? light bulb idea Many people prefer to read off-line or to print out text and read from the real printed page. Others want to carry documents around with them on their mobile phones and read while they are on the move. We have created .pdf files of all out documents to accommodate all these groups of people. We recommend that you download .pdfs onto your mobile phone when it is connected to a WiFi connection for reading off-line.

When the English and Americans sneer at the instability, turbulence,
and convulsions of the French nation for the last century, let us ask
ourselves what our history would have been had the "Gunpowder Plot"
succeeded, and the whole element of the reformation been exterminated.
It is true, vitality and reactive energy might have survived such a
process; but that vitality would have shown itself just as it has in
France--in struggles and convulsions. The frequent revolutions of
France are not a thing to be sneered at; they are not evidences of
fickleness, but of constancy; they are, in fact, a prolonged struggle
for liberty, in which there occur periods of defeat, but in which,
after every interval of repose, the strife is renewed. Their great
difficulty has been, that the destruction of the reformed church in
France took out of the country entirely that element of religious
rationalism which is at once conservative and progressive.

There are three forces which operate in society: that of blind faith,
of reverent religious freedom, and of irreverent scepticism. Now,
since the human mind is so made that it must have religion, when this
middle element of reasonable religious freedom is withdrawn, society
vibrates, like a pendulum, between scepticism and superstition; the
extreme of superstition reacting to scepticism, and then the
barrenness of scepticism reacting again into superstition. When the
persecutions in France had succeeded in extinguishing this middle
element, then commenced a series of oscillations between religious
despotism and atheistic license, which have continued ever since. The
suppression of all reasonable religious inquiry, and the consequent
corruption of the church, produced the school of Voltaire and his
followers. The excesses of that school have made devout Catholics
afraid of the very beginning of religious rationalism; and these
causes act against each other to this day.

The revolution in England, under Cromwell, succeeded, because it had
an open Bible and liberty of conscience for its foundation, and united
both the elements of faith and of reason. The French revolution had,
as Lamartine says, Plutarch's Lives for its Bible, and the great
unchaining of human passion had no element of religious control. Plad
France, in the time of her revolution, had leaders like Admiral
Coligny, her revolution might have prospered as did England's under
Cromwell. But these revolutions, needlessly terrible as they have
been, still have accomplished something; without them France might
have died away into what Spain is. As it is, progress has been made,
though at a fearful sacrifice. No country has been swept cleaner of
aristocratic institutions, and the old bastiles and prisons of a past
tyranny. The aspiration for democratic freedom has been so thoroughly
sown in France, that it never will be rooted up again. How to get it,
and how to _keep_ it when it is got, they do not yet clearly see;
but they will never rest till they learn. There is a liberty of
thought and of speech in France which the tongue-tied state of the
press cannot indicate. Could France receive the Bible--could it be
put into the hands of all the common people--_that_ might help
her. And France is receiving the Bible. Spite of all efforts to the
contrary, the curiosity of the popular mind has been awakened; the
yearnings of the popular heart are turning towards it; and therein lie
my best hopes for France.

One thing more I would say. Since I have been here, I have made the
French and continental mode of keeping Sunday a matter of calm,
dispassionate inquiry and observation. I have tried to divest myself
of the prejudices--if you so please to call them--of my New England
education--to look at the matter sympathetically, in the French or
continental point of view, and see whether I have any occasion to
revise the opinions in which I had been educated. I fully appreciate
all the agreeableness, the joyousness, and vivacity of a day of
recreation and social freedom, spent in visiting picture galleries and
public grounds, in social _réunions_ and rural excursions. I am
far from judging harshly of the piety of those who have been educated
in these views and practices. But, viewing the subject merely in
relation to things of this life, I am met by one very striking fact:
there is not a single nation, possessed of a popular form of
government, which has not our Puritan theory of the Sabbath.
Protestant Switzerland, England, Scotland, and America cover the whole
ground of popular freedom; and in all these this idea of the Sabbath
prevails with a distinctness about equal to the degree of liberty. Nor
do I think this result an accidental one. If we notice that the
Lutheran branch of the reformation did not have this element, and the
Calvinistic branch, which spread over England and America, did have
it, and compare the influence of these two in sustaining popular
rights, we shall be struck with the obvious inference.

Now, there are things in our mode of keeping the Sabbath which have a
direct tendency to sustain popular government; for the very element of
a popular government must be self-control in the individual. There
must be enough intensity of individual self-control to make up for the
lack of an extraneous pressure from government. The idea of the
Sabbath, as observed by the Puritans, is the voluntary dissevering of
the thoughts and associations from the things of earth for one day in
seen, and the concentrating of the mind on purely spiritual subjects.
In all this there is a weekly recurring necessity for the greatest
self-control. No way could be devised to educate a community to be
thoughtful and reflective better than the weekly recurrence of a day
when all stimulus, both of business and diversion, shall be withdrawn,
and the mind turned in upon itself. The weekly necessity of bringing
all business to a close tends to give habits of system and exactness.
The assembling together for divine worship, and for instruction in the
duties of Christianity, is a training of the highest and noblest
energies of the soul. Even that style of abstract theologizing
prevailing in New England and Scotland, which has grown out of Sabbath
sermonizing, has been an incalculable addition to the strength and
self-controlling power of the people.

Ride through France, you see the laborer in his wooden shoes, with
scarce a thought beyond his daily toil. His Sunday is a _féte_
for dancing and recreation. Go through New England, and you will find
the laborer, as he lays his stone fence, discussing the consistency of
foreordination with free will, or perchance settling some more
practical mooted point in politics. On Sunday this laborer gets up his
wagon, and takes his wife and family to church, to hear two or three
sermons, in each of which there are more elements of mental discipline
than a French peasant gets in a whole lifetime. It is a shallow view
of theological training to ask of what practical use are its
metaphysical problems. Of what practical value to most students is
geometry? On the whole, I think it is the Puritan idea of the Sabbath,
as it prevails in New England, that is one great source of that
individual strength and self-control which have supported so far our
democratic institutions.

In regard to the present state of affairs here, it has been my lot to
converse unreservedly with some of all parties sufficiently to find
the key note of their thoughts. There are, first, the Bourbonists--mediaeval
people--believers in the divine right of kings in general, and of the
Bourbons in particular. There are many of them exceedingly interesting.
There is something rather poetic and graceful about the antique cast of
their ideas; their chivalrous loyalty to an exiled family, and their devout
belief of the Catholic religion. These, for the most part, keep out of Paris,
entirely ignore the present court, and remain in their chateaus in the
country. A gentleman of this class, with whom I talked, thought the
present emperor did very well in keeping other parties out till the time
should come to strike a blow for the true king.

Then there are the partisans and friends of the Orleans family. I
heard those who spoke, even with tears, of Louis Philippe and his
dynasty. They were patrons of letters and of arts, they say, of virtue
and of religion; and these good, faithful souls cling lovingly to
their memory.

And then there are the republicans--men of the real olden time,
capable of sacrificing every thing that heart holds dear for a
principle; such republicans as were our fathers in all, save their
religion, and because lacking that, losing the chief element of
popular control. Nevertheless, grander men have never been than some
of these modern republicans of France; Americans might learn many
lessons from them.

Besides all these there is another class, comparatively small, having
neither the prestige of fashion, rank, or wealth, but true, humble,
evangelical Christians, in whom the simplicity and spirituality of the
old Huguenot church seems revived. These men are laboring at the very
foundation of things; laboring to bring back the forgotten Bible;
beginning where Christ began, with preaching the gospel to the poor.
If any would wish to see Christianity in its loveliest form, they
would find it in some of these humble laborers. One, with whom I
conversed, devotes his time to the _chiffoniers,_ (rag pickers.)
He gave me an account of his labors, speaking with such tenderness and
compassion, that it was quite touching. "My poor people," he said,
"they are very ignorant, but they are not so very bad." And when I
asked him, "Who supports you in your labors?" he looked upward, with
one of those quick, involuntary glances by which the French express
themselves without words. There was the same earnestness in him as in
one of our city missionaries, but a touching grace peculiarly
national. It was the piety of Fénélon and St. John. And I cannot
believe that God, who loves all nations alike, and who knows how
beautifully the French mind is capable of reflecting the image of
Jesus, will not yet shine forth upon France, to give the light of the
knowledge of his glory in the face of Christ.

It was the testimony of all with whom I conversed, that the national
mind had become more and more serious for many years past. Said a
French gentleman to me one evening, "The old idea of _l'homme
d'esprit_ of Louis XIV.'s time, the man of _bon-mots_, bows,
and _salons_, is almost passed away; there is only now and then a
specimen of it left. The French are becoming more earnest and more
religious." In the Roman Catholic churches which I attended, I saw
very full audiences, and great earnestness and solemnity. I have
talked intimately, also, with Roman Catholics, in whom I felt that
religion was a real and vital thing. One of them, a most lovely lady,
presented me with the Imitation of Christ, by Thomas à Kempis, as a
ground on which we could both unite.

I have also been interested to see in these French Catholics, in its
most fervent form, the exhibition of that antislavery spirit which, in
other ages, was the boast of that church. One charming friend took me
to the church of St. Germain l'Auxerrois, pointing out with great
interest the statues and pictures of saints who had been distinguished
for their antislavery efforts in France. In a note expressing her warm
interest in the cause of the African slave, she says, "It is a
tradition of our church, that of the three kings which came to worship
Jesus in Bethlehem, one was black; and if Christians would kneel
oftener before the manger of Bethlehem they would think less of
distinctions of caste and color."

Madame Belloc received, a day or two since, a letter from a lady in
the old town of Orleans, which gave name to Joan of Arc, expressing
the most earnest enthusiasm in the antislavery cause. Her prayers, she
says, will ascend night and day for those brave souls in America who
are conflicting with this mighty injustice.

A lady a few days since called on me, all whose property was lost in
the insurrection at Hayti, but who is, nevertheless, a most earnest
advocate of emancipation.

A Catholic lady, in a letter, inquired earnestly, why in my Key I had
not included the Romish clergy of the United States among the friends
of emancipation, as that, she said, had been always the boast of their
church. I am sorry to be obliged to make the reply, that in America
the Catholic clergy have never identified themselves with the
antislavery cause, but in their influence have gone with the

I have received numerous calls from members of the Old French
Abolition Society, which existed here for many years. Among these I
met, with great interest, M. Dutrone, its president; also M. ----, who
presented me with his very able ethnological work on the distinctive
type of the negro race. One gentleman, greatly distressed in view of
the sufferings of the negro race in America, said, naively enough, to
Mrs. C., that he had heard that the negroes had great capability for
music, dancing, and the fine arts, and inquired whether something
could not be done to move sympathy in their behalf by training them to
exhibit characteristic dances and pantomimes. Mrs. C. quoted to him
the action of one of the great ecclesiastical bodies in America, in
the same breath declining to condemn slavery, but denouncing dancing
as so wholly of the world lying in wickedness as to require condign
ecclesiastical censure. The poor man was wholly lost in amazement.

In this connection, I cannot but notice, to the credit of the French
republican provisional government, how much more consistent they were
in their attachment to the principles of liberty than ever our own has
been. What do we see in our own history? Our northern free states
denouncing slavery as a crime, confessedly inconsistent with their
civil and religious principles, yet, for commercial and pecuniary
considerations, deliberately entering into a compact with slaveholders
tolerating a twenty years' perpetuation of the African slave trade,
the rendition of fugitives, the suppression of servile insurrections,
and allowing to the slaveholders a virtual property basis of
representation. It should qualify the contempt which some Americans
express of the French republic, that when the subject of the slave
colonies was brought up, and it was seen that consistency demanded
immediate emancipation, they immediately emancipated; and not only so,
but conferred at once on the slaves the elective franchise.

This point strongly illustrates the difference, in one respect,
between the French and the Anglo-Saxons. As a race the French are less
commercial, more ideal, more capable of devotion to abstract
principles, and of following them out consistently, irrespective of

There is one thing which cannot but make one indignant here in Paris,
and which, I think, is keenly felt by some of the best among the
French; and that is, the indifference of many Americans, while here,
to their own national principles of liberty. They seem to come to
Paris merely to be hangers on and applauders in the train of that
tyrant who has overthrown the hopes of France. To all that cruelty and
injustice by which thousands of hearts are now bleeding, they appear
entirely insensible. They speak with heartless levity of the
revolutions of France, as of a pantomime got up for their diversion.
Their time and thoughts seem to be divided between defences of
American slavery and efforts to attach themselves to the skirts of
French tyranny. They are the parasites of parasites--delighted if they
can but get to an imperial ball, and beside themselves if they can
secure an introduction to the man who figured as a _roué_, in the
streets of New York. Noble-minded men of all parties here, who have
sacrificed all for principle, listen with suppressed indignation,
while young America, fresh from the theatres and gambling saloons,
declares, between the whiffs of his cigar, that the French are not
capable of free institutions, and that the government of Louis
Napoleon is the best thing France could have. Thus from the plague-
spot at her heart has America become the propagandist of despotism in
Europe. Nothing weighs so fearfully against the cause of the people of
Europe as this kind of American influence. Through almost every city
of Europe are men whose great glory it appears to be to proclaim that
they worship the beast, and wear his name in their foreheads. I have
seen sometimes, in the forests, a vigorous young sapling which had
sprung up from the roots of an old, decaying tree. So, unless the
course of things alters much in America, a purer civil liberty will
spring up from her roots in Europe, while her national tree is blasted
with despotism. It is most affecting, in moving through French
circles, to see what sadness, what anguish of heart, lies under that
surface which seems to a stranger so gay. Each revolution has cut its
way through thousands of families, ruining fortunes, severing domestic
ties, inflicting wounds that bleed, and will bleed for years. I once
alluded rather gayly to the numerous upsets of the French government,
in conversation with a lady, and she laughed at first, but in a moment
her eyes filled with tears, and she said, "Ah, you have no idea what
these things are among us." In conversation nothing was more common
than the remark, "I shall do so and so, provided things hold out; but
then there is no telling what will come next."

On the minds of some there lie deep dejection and discouragement.
Some, surrounded by their growing families, though they abhor the
tyranny of the government, acquiesce wearily, and even dread change
lest something worse should arise.

We know not in America how many atrocities and cruelties that attended
the _coup d'etat_ have been buried in the grave which intombed
the liberty of the press. I have talked with eye witnesses of those
scenes, men who have been in the prisons, and heard the work of
butchery going on in the prison yards in the night. While we have been
here, a gentleman to whom I had been introduced was arrested, taken
from bed by the police, and carried off, without knowing of what he
was accused. His friends were denied access to him, and on making
application to the authorities, the invariable reply was, "Be very
quiet about it. If you make a commotion his doom is sealed." When his
wife was begging permission for a short interview, the jailer, wearied
with her importunities, at last exclaimed unguardedly, "Madam, there
are two hundred here in the same position; what would you have me do?"
[Footnote: That man has remained in prison to this day.]

At that very time an American traveller, calling on us, expatiated at
length on the peaceful state of things in Paris--on the evident
tranquillity and satisfaction universally manifest.


Saturday, August 27. Left Paris with H., the rest of our party having
been detained. Reached Boulogne in safety, and in high spirits made
our way on board the steamer, deposited our traps below, came on deck,
and prepared for the ordeal. A high north-wester had been blowing all
day, and as we ran along behind the breakwater, I could see over it
the white and green waves fiendishly running, and showing their malign
eyes sparkling with hungry expectation. "Come out, come out!" they
seemed to say; "come out, you little black imp of a steamer; don't be
hiding behind there like a coward. We dare you to come out here and
give us a chance at you--we will eat you up, as so many bears would
eat a lamb."

And sure enough, the moment her bows passed beyond the pier, the sea
struck her, and tossed her like an eggshell, and the deck, from stem
to stern, was drenched in a moment, and running with floods as if she
had been under water. For a few moments H. and I both enjoyed the
motion. We stood amidships, she in her shawl, I in a great tarpauling
which I had borrowed of Jack, and every pitch sent the spray over us.
We exulted that we were not going to be sick. Suddenly, however, so
suddenly that it was quite mysterious, conscience smote me. A
profound, a deep-seated remorse developed itself just exactly in the
deepest centre of the pit of my stomach.

"H.," said I, with a decided, grave air, "I'm going to be seasick."

"So am I," said she, as if struck by the same convictions that had
been impressed on me. We turned, and made our way along the leeward
quarter, to a seat by the bulwarks. I stood holding on by the
railrope, and every now and then addressing a few incoherent and
rather guttural, not to say pectoral, remarks to the green and gloomy
sea, as I leaned over the rail. After every paroxysm of
communicativeness, (for in seasickness the organ of secretiveness
gives way,) I regained my perpendicular, and faced the foe, with a
determination that I would stand it through--that the grinning,
howling brine should get no more secrets out of me. And, in fact, it
did not.

Meanwhile, what horrors--what complicated horrors--did not that
crowded deck present! Did the priestly miscreants of the middle ages
ever represent among the torments of purgatory the deck of a channel
steamer? If not, then they forgot the "lower deep," that Satan
doubtless thought about, according to Milton.

There were men and women of every age and complexion, with faces of
every possible shade of expression. Defiance, resolute and stern,
desperate resolves never to give in, and that very same defiant
determination sicklied o'er with the pale cast of thought. A deep
abyss of abdominal discontent, revealing afar the shadow, the
penumbra, of the approaching retch. And there were _bouleversements,_
and hoarse confidences to the sea of every degree of misery. The wind
was really risen quite to a gale, and the sea ran with fearful power. Two
sailors, standing near, said, "I wouldn't say it only to you, Jack, but
in all the time I've crossed this here channel, I've seen nothin' like

"Nor I neither," was the reply.

About mid channel a wave struck the windward quarter, just behind the
wheel, with a stroke like a rock from a ballista, smashed in the
bulwarks, stove the boat, which fell and hung in the water by one end,
and sent the ladies, who were sitting there with boxes, baskets,
shawls, hats, spectacles, umbrellas, cloaks, down to leeward, in a
pond of water. One girl I saw with a bruise on her forehead as large
as an egg, and the blood streaming from her nostrils. Shrieks
resounded, and for a few moments, we had quite a tragic time.

About this time H. gave in, and descended to Tartarus, where the floor
was compactly, densely stowed with one mass of heaving wretches, with
nothing but washbowls to relieve the sombre mosaic. How H. fared there
she may tell; I cannot. I stood by the bulwark with my boots full of
water, my eyes full of salt spray, and my heart full of the most
poignant regret that ever I was born. Alas! was that channel a channel
at all? Had it two shores? Was England over there, where I saw nothing
but monstrous, leaping, maddening billows, saying, "We are glad of it;
we want you; come on here; we are waiting for you; we will serve you

At last I seriously began to think of Tartarus myself, and of a calm
repose flat on my back, such as H. told of in his memorable passage.
But just then, dim and faint on the horizon, I thought I discerned the
long line of a bank of land. It was. This was a channel; that was the
shore. England had not sunk. I stood my ground; and in an hour we came
running, bounding, and rolling towards the narrow mouth of the
Folkstone pier heads.




Our last letters from home changed all our plans. We concluded to
hurry away by the next steamer, if at that late hour we could get
passage. We were all in a bustle. The last shoppings for aunts,
cousins, and little folks were to be done by us all. The Palais Royal
was to be rummaged; bronzes, vases, statuettes, bonbons,
playthings--all that the endless fertility of France could show--was
to be looked over for the "folks at home."

You ought to have seen our rooms at night, the last evening we spent
in Paris. When the whole gleanings of a continental tour were brought
forth for packing, and compared with the dimensions of original
trunks--ah, what an hour was that! Who should reconcile these
incongruous elements--bronzes, bonnets, ribbons and flowers, plaster
casts, books, muslins and laces--elements as irreconcilable as fate
and freedom; who should harmonize them? And I so tired!

"Ah," said Jladame B., "it is all quite easy; you must have a packer."

"A packer?"

"Yes. He will come, look at your things, provide whatever may be
necessary, and pack them all."

So said, so done. The man came, saw, conquered; he brought a trunk,
twine, tacks, wrapping paper, and I stood by in admiration while he
folded dresses, arranged bonnets, caressingly enveloped flowers in
silk paper, fastened refractory bronzes, and muffled my plaster
animals with reference to the critical points of ears and noses,--in
short, reduced the whole heterogeneous assortment to place and
proportion, shut, locked, corded, labelled, handed me the keys, and it
was done. The charge for all this was quite moderate.

How we sped across the channel C. relates. We are spending a few very
pleasant days with our kind friends, the L.'s, in London.

ON BOARD THE ARCTIC, Wednesday, September 7.

On Thursday, September 1, we reached York, and visited the beautiful
ruins of St. Mary's Abbey, and the magnificent cathedral. How
individual is every cathedral! York is not like Westminster, nor like
Strasbourg, nor Cologne, any more than Shakspeare is like Milton, or
Milton like Homer. In London I attended morning service in
Westminster, and explored its labyrinths of historic memories. The
reading of the Scriptures in the English tongue, and the sound of the
chant, affected me deeply, in contrast with the pictorial and dramatic
effects of Romanism in continental churches.

As a simple matter of taste, Protestantism has made these buildings
more impressive by reducing them to a stricter unity. The multitude of
shrines, candlesticks, pictures, statues, and votive offerings, which
make the continental churches resemble museums, are constantly at
variance with the majestic grandeur of the general impression. Therein
they typify the church to which they belong, which has indeed the
grand historic basis and framework of Christianity, though overlaid
with extraneous and irrelevant additions.

This Cathedral of York has a severe grandeur peculiar to itself. I saw
it with a deep undertone of feeling; for it was the last I should

No one who has appreciated the wonders of a new world of art and
association can see, without emotion, the door closing upon it,
perhaps forever. I lingered long here, and often turned to gaze again;
and after going out, went back, once more, to fill my soul with a
last, long look, in which I bade adieu to all the historic memories of
the old world. I thought of the words, "We have a building of God, a
house not made with hands, eternal in the heavens."

These glorious arches, this sublime mystery of human power and skill,
is only a shadow of some eternal substance, which, in the ages to
come, God will yet reveal to us.

It rained with inflexible pertinacity during all the time we were at
York; and the next day it rained still, when we took the cars for
Castle Howard station.

In riding through the park from the station, we admired an avenue
composed of groups of magnificent beeches, sixteen or eighteen in a
group, disposed at intervals on either hand.

The castle, a building in the Italian style, rose majestically on a
slight eminence in the centre of a green lawn. We alighted in the
crisis of one of the most driving gusts of wind and rain, so that we
really seemed to be fleeing for shelter. But within all was bright and

Lady Carlisle welcomed us most affectionately, and we learned that,
had we not been so reserved at the York station, in concealing our
names, we should have received a note from her. However, as we were
safely arrived, it was of no consequence.

Several of the family were there, among the rest Lady Dover and Mr.
and Mrs. E. Howard. They urged us to remain over night; but as we had
written to Leeds that we should be there in the evening train, we were
obliged to decline. We were shown over the castle, which is rich in
works of art. There was a gallery of antiques, and a collection of
paintings from old masters. In one room I saw tapestry exactly like
that which so much interested us in Windsor, representing scenes from
the Book of Esther. It seemed to be of a much more ancient date. I was
also interested in a portrait of an ancestor of the family, the
identical "Belted Will" who figures in Scott's Lay.

"Belted Will Howard shall come with speed,
And William of Deloraine, good at need."

In one of the long corridors we were traversing, we heard the voice of
merriment, and found a gay party of young people and children amusing
themselves at games. I thought what a grand hide-and-go-seek place the
castle must be--whole companies might lose themselves among the
rooms. The central hall of the building goes up to the roof, and is
surmounted by a dome. The architecture is in the Italian style, which
I think much more suited to the purposes of ordinary life than for
strictly religious uses. I never saw a church in that style that
produced a very deep impression on me. This hall was gorgeously
frescoed by Italian masters. The door commands the view of a
magnificent sweep of green lawn, embellished by an artificial lake. It
is singular in how fine and subtle a way different nationalities
express themselves in landscape gardening, while employing the same
materials. I have seen no grounds on the continent that express the
particular shade of ideas which characterize the English. There is an
air of grave majesty about the wide sweep of their outlines--a quality
suggestive of ideas of strength and endurance which is appropriate to
their nationality.

[Illustration: _of Castle Howard, with the artificial lake in the

In Lord Carlisle's own room we saw pictures of Sumner, Prescott, and
others of his American friends. This custom of showing houses, which
prevails over Europe, is, I think, a thing which must conduce greatly
to national improvement. A plea for the beautiful is constantly put in
by them--a model held up before the community, whose influence cannot
be too highly estimated. Before one of the choicest paintings stood
the easel of some neighboring artist, who was making a copy. He was
quite unknown to the family, but comes and goes at his pleasure, the
picture being as freely at his service as if it were an outside

After finishing our survey, I went with Lady Carlisle into her own
_boudoir_. There I saw a cabinet full-length picture of her
mother, the Duchess of Devonshire. She is represented with light hair,
and seemed to have been one whose beauty was less that of regular
classic model, than the fascination of a brilliant and buoyant spirit
inspiring a graceful form. Lady Carlisle showed me an album,
containing a kind of poetical record made by her during a passage
through the Alps, which she crossed on horseback, in days when such an
exploit was more difficult and dangerous than at present. I
particularly appreciated some lines in closing, addressed to her
children, expressing the eagerness with which she turned from all that
nature and art could offer, in prospect of meeting them once more.

Lord Carlisle is still in Turkey, and will, probably, spend the winter
in Greece. His mother had just received a letter from him, and he
thinks that war is inevitable.

In one of the rooms that we traversed I saw an immense vase of bog oak
and gold, which was presented to Lord Carlisle by those who favored
his election on the occasion of his defeat on the corn-law question.
The sentiment expressed by the givers was, that a defeat in a noble
undertaking was worthy of more honor than a victory in an ignoble one.

After lunch, having waited in vain for the rain to cease, and give us
a sunny interval in which to visit the grounds, we sallied out hooded
and cloaked, to get at some of the most accessible points of view. The
wind was unkindly and discourteous enough, and seemed bent on baffling
the hospitable intentions of our friends. If the beauties of an
English landscape were set off by our clear sky and sun, then
patriotism, I fancy, would run into extravagance. I could see that
even one gracious sunset smile might produce in these lawns and groves
an effect of enchantment.

I was pleased with what is called the "kitchen garden," which I
expected to find a mere collection of vegetables, but found to be a
genuine old-fashioned garden, which, like Eden, brought forth all that
was pleasant to the eye and good for food.

There were wide walks bordered with flowers, enclosing portions
devoted to fruit and vegetables, and, best of all this windy day, the
whole enclosed by a high, solid stone wall, which bade defiance to the
storm, and made this the most agreeable portion of our walk.

Our friends spoke much of Sumner and Prescott, who had visited there;
also of Mr. Lawrence, our former ambassador, who had visited them just
before his return.

After a very pleasant day we left, with regret, the warmth of this
hospitable circle, thus breaking one more of the links that bind us to
the English shore.

Nine o'clock in the evening found us sitting by a cheerful fire in the
parlor of Mr. E. Baines, at Leeds. The father of our host was one of
the most energetic parliamentary advocates of the repeal of the corn
laws. Mr. B. spoke warmly of Lord Carlisle, and gave me the whole
interesting history of the campaign which the vase at Castle Howard
commemorated, and read me the speech of Lord C. on that occasion.

It has occurred to me, that the superior stability of the English
aristocracy, as compared with that of other countries, might be
traced, in part, to their relations with the representative branch of
the government. The eldest son and heir is generally returned to the
House of Commons by the vote of the people, before he is called to
take his seat in the House of Peers. Thus the same ties bind them to
the people which bind our own representatives--a peculiarity which, I
believe, never existed permanently with the nobles in any other
country. By this means the nobility, when they enter the House of
Lords, are better adapted to legislate wisely for the interests, not
of a class, but of the whole people.

The next day the house was filled with company, and the Leeds offering
was presented, the account of which you will see in the papers. Every
thing was arranged with the greatest consideration. I saw many
interesting people, and was delighted with the strong, religious
interest in the cause of liberty, pervading all hearts. Truly it may
be said, that Wilberforce and Clarkson lighted a candle which will
never go out in England.

Monday we spent in a delightful visit to Fountains Abbey; less rich in
carvings than Melrose, but wider in extent, and of a peculiar
architectural beauty. We lunched in what _was_ the side gallery
of the refectory, where some drowsy old brother used to read the lives
of saints to the monks eating below. We walked over the graves of
abbots, and through the scriptorium, which reminded me of the
exquisite scene in the Golden Legend, of the old monk in the
scriptorium busily illuminating a manuscript.

In the course of the afternoon a telegraph came from the mayor of
Liverpool, to inquire if our party would accept a public breakfast at
the town hall before sailing, as a demonstration of sympathy with the
cause of freedom. Remembering the time when Clarkson began his career,
amid such opposition in Liverpool, we could not but regard such an
evidence of its present public sentiment as full of encouragement,
although the state of my health and engagements rendered it necessary
for me to decline.

Tuesday we parted from our excellent friends in Leeds, and soon found
ourselves once more in the beautiful Dingle; our first and our last
resting-place on English shores.

Sad letters from home met us there; yet not sad, since they only told
us of friends admitted before us to that mystery of glory for which we
are longing--of which all that we have seen in art or nature are but
dim suggestions and images.

A deputation from Ireland here met me, presenting a beautiful bog oak
casket, lined with gold, and carved with appropriate national symbols,
containing an offering for the cause of the oppressed. They read a
beautiful address, and touched upon the importance of inspiring with
the principles of emancipation the Irish nation, whose influence in
our land is becoming so great. Had time and strength permitted, it had
been my purpose to visit Ireland, to revisit Scotland, and to see more
of England. But it is not in man that walketh to direct his steps.

And now came parting, leave taking, last letters, notes, and messages.

The mayor of Liverpool and the Rev. Dr. Raffles breakfasted with us,
and after breakfast Dr. R. commended us in prayer to God. Could we
feel in this parting that we were leaving those whom we had known for
so brief a space? Never have I so truly felt the unity of the
Christian church, that oneness of the great family in heaven and on
earth, as in the experience of this journey. A large party accompanied
us to the wharf, and went with us on board the tender. The shores were
lined with sympathizing friends, who waved their adieus to us as we
parted. And thus, almost sadly as a child might leave its home, I left
the shores of kind, strong Old England--the mother of us all.


Book of the day:
Facebook Google Reddit StumbleUpon Twitter Pinterest