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preserve the tone of his mind, for he has a motto, that there is no happiness without alloy; and so, where there is none, he makes

He has always a safe resource in his own morbid fancy, and has only to fall back upon himself to escape effectually from any surrounding influences that happen to throw too strong a glare upon his moroseness, or to affront his egotism by showing that other people can be happier than himself.

The fundamental error of the travelling English consists in bringing their English feelings and modes with them, instead of leaving them behind to be taken care of with their pictures and furniture. You can detect an Englishman abroad by that repulsion of manner which covers him over like frost-work, and within the range of which nobody can enter without being bitten with cold. His sense of superiority freezes the very air about him; you would think he was a statue of ice, or a block dropped from a glacier of the loftiest Alps. It would be as easy for the sun to thaw the eternal peak of the snowy Jungfrau, as for any ordinary warmth of society to melt that wintry man into any of the cordial courtesies of intercourse. Why is this? Why is it that the English alone treat all foreign countries through which they pass with such topping humours and contempt—looking down upon them as if they belonged to an inferior clay, as if they alone were the genuine porcelain, as if arts and civilization, knowledge and power, grace and beauty, intelligence, strength, and the godheraldry of goodness and wisdom, were one vast monopoly within the girth of Great Britain? Why is this? Why, simply because the corruption of gold has eaten into their hearts; because they are the purse-holders of the world ; because money is power, and they have only to put their hands into their pockets if they would make the earth pant on its axis. The English are not exempt from the frailties of universal nature; and pride and vainglory, and lustrous pomp, with its eyes amongst the stars, follow in the train of gold as surely as the lengthening shadows track the decline of light. It was so with all the gorgeous republics of antiquity, with Tyre and Athens, and with imperial Venice, when, crowned like another mistress of the world, she married the Adriatic, and thought herself immortal!

The insular position of the English, and a protracted war, which shut them up for half a generation in their workshops and their prejudices, contributed largely to foster this hard and obstinate character, this egotistic and selfish intolerance. The peculiarities of other nations, like colours in the prism, dissolve into each other at their frontier lines; but the English are water-locked; they enjoy none of the advantages of that miscellaneous experience, that free expanse of observation and intercourse, which Immobility of the English.

93 elsewhere have the effect of enlarging the capacity of pleasure, of furnishing materials for reflection, of strengthening, elevating, and diffusing human knowledge and sympathy. The sea has been compared to the confines of eternity; and the English may be said to have been looking out upon eternity while other races have been engaged in active commerce with their fellow men.

All this sounds very oddly in reference to a people who have amassed such enormous wealth, who have been the great navigators and colonizers of the world, who exercise sovereignty in every quarter of the globe, and upon whose possessions the sun never sets! Yet it is true, nevertheless. All this work of colonization and extension of empire is transacted at a writing-desk. The counting-house in a twilight alley, in the murky depths of the city, is the laboratory where the portable gases are generated, which are thus carried off and distributed over the remotest regions. Half-a-dozen dismal men meet round a table, scratch their signatures to a paper, and a new empire starts up in the Southern Pacific; they part in silence, and go home to dinner, with as much apathetic regularity as if nothing had happened out of the way; and for the rest of the evening nurse their family phlegm as they had done any time all their lives long. In a single morning, the basis of a teeming trade of centuries

hence is laid down; but it brings no change in the inner life of the individual. The hands move outwards, but the works of the clock still keep their dark routine. It is one thing to ship off our superfluous population to distant lands, to plant the Union Jack on some savage rock, and crack a bottle with a huzza! to the health of Old England ; and another to maintain intimate relations and constant interchange with nations as civilized as ourselves, to rub off the rust of isolation and drudgery, to lift ourselves out of the one idea of money-getting, and to draw in humanity and good-humour from our neighbours. In the large and philosophical sense of the word, we have never acted upon the true principle of colonization: we never conciliate the races we subdue-we conquer every thing but their affections. Our settlements are camps in a hostile country, as completely

apart from the native population as swans' nests in a stream. In India, we are hedged in on all sides by jealousy and distrust; the war of races in Canada is as bitter at this moment as it was in 1760; and the animosities of the pale still flourish as rankly as ever in Ireland, in spite of free trade, two rebellions, the Union, Catholic Emancipation, and Reform. This comes of our immobility-of our elemental resistance to fusion.

The same thing that happens upon a great scale in political affairs, is illustrated in a minor way in the intercourse of tra

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velling. Our social tariff amounts almost to a prohibition. Exchange of ideas takes place only at the extreme point of necessity. We are as reluctant to open our mouths or our ears as our ports, and have as profound a horror of foreign vivacity and communicativeness as of foreign corn. Habit goes a long way with us. People are so used to cry out · The farmers are ruined,' that they must keep up war prices after a peace of nearly thirty years. We have a similar difficulty in relaxing our manners. The bulk of our continental travellers enter an hotel with as much severity and suspicion in their looks as if we were fighting the battles of legitimacy over again, and were doomed to fight them

By staying so much at home, and being kept so much at home by the pressure of external circumstances, our ideas and feelings become introverted. We turn eternally upon ourselves. We accumulate immensely, but undergo little or no sensible modifications of character. We advance in the direction of utility, but are still pretty much the same people we were a couple of hundred years ago. The only marked difference is that we are less hearty, less frank and joyous. We drop our old customs, our games and festivals, one by one, and grow more and more plodding and selfish.

Merry England survives only in ballads. Robin Hood and Little John are gone to the workhouse.

When a Frenchman, or an Italian, comes to England, he brings his sunshine with him. When an Englishman goes to France or Italy, he cannot leave his fogs behind him. He is like a rolling mass of darkness, absorbing all the encircling light, but emitting none. There is this remarkable point of contrast too, that the former becomes at once a citizen of the country he visits, and the latter never ceases to be the petty lord of the manor,

the common council man, the great gun of the village or the county. The universe is only Big Little Pedlington to Hopkins.

But it is surprising how a little knocking about in steamboats, and railways, and diligences, and schnell-posts and voitures of all sorts, and hotels with every variety of perfumes, shakes a man out of his sluggish thoughts and opake humours. It is the best of all constitutional remedies for mind and body, although it acts but slowly on the whipcord nerves of the English. It is good for the brains and the stomach. It invigorates the imagination, loosens the blood and makes it leap through the veins, dispels the nebulous mass of the stay-at-home animal

, and, liberating the spirit from its drowsy weight of prejudices, sends it rebounding back, lighter and brighter than ever, with the fresh morning beams throbbing in its pulses. There is nothing in this levelling world of ours which so effectually annihilates conventional re

Benefits of Travelling.


spectability as travelling. It tumbles down with a single blow the whole wire and gauze puppet, reducing its empty length and breadth to mere finery and sawdust. All our staid, solemn proprieties, that beset and check us at every land's turn like inauguration mysteries, as if we were entering upon some esoteric novitiate every day of our lives—all our family pride and class instincts our local importance and stately caution-paddocks and lawns-liveries, revenues and ceremonials all go for nothing in the swirl and roar of the living tide. A great landed gentleman cannot bring his ten-feet walls, his deer-park, or his parishchurch with its time-honoured slabs and monuments, in the palm of his hand to the continent; he cannot stick the vicar and the overseer and the bench of justices in his hatband; he cannot inscribe the terrors of the tread-mill on his travelling-bag; he cannot impress every body abroad as he can at home with the awful majesty of his gate-house, and the lump of plush that slumbers in the padded arm-chair; he has passed out of the artificial medium by which he has hitherto been so egregiously magnified, and he is forced, for once in his life, to depend solely on himself, docked of his lictors, for whatever amount of respect, or even attention, he can attract. This is a wholesome and healthy ordeal; very good for the moral as well as the biliary ducts. It sets a new and unexpected value upon

whatever little sense or self-reliance one may really possess, and makes a man understand his manhood better in a month than he could have done in twenty years through the mirage of a false position.

And no man abandons himself so utterly to the intoxication of this new and rapturous existence as an Englishman, once he allows himself to give way to it. He rushes at once to the opposite extreme. He chuckles and screams, like a boy out of school, like a hound just released from the thong, bounding over fields and ditches, and taking every thing at a leap, as if Beelzebub were dancing mad at his heels. If he is only sure that he is not observed, that nobody sees him—for this craven consciousness, and fear of ridicule, haunt him day and night—there is nothing too puerile, nothing too gay or riotous for him. He is no longer forty or fifty, but rampant nineteen. The sudden enchantment sets him beside himself; he is under the influence of a spell; no longer starched and trammelled in frigid responsibilities, his joints begin to move with freedom and elasticity; he is all eyes, legs, ears. With what curiosity he peers into shop-windows and bazaars; with what vivacity, wondering secretly all the while at his miraculous accession of gusto, he criticises picture-galleries and museums; how vigorously he hunts through royal parks and palaces to collect gossip for the table-d’hôte; how he climbs lofty steeples and boasts of his lungs; what mountains of ice he devours in the heat of the day; what torrents of lemonade gazeuse or Seltzer water he swallows; what a dinner he makes amidst a bewildering chaos of provocations; and how zealously he nourishes his emancipated enthusiasm with hock and claret, in the exquisite agony of a profound contempt for gout and indigestion. Verily there is nothing under heaven so thoroughly English, as those things which are in the very grain of their nature the most thoroughly unEnglish: so unnatural is the slavery of our habitual self-suppression, so natural our disfranchisement: and of these extremes are we pieced. Oye who fold yourselves up in the coil of sour melancholy,“ like the fat weed that rots on Lethe's stream,' take heec at that critical turn of life when the green leaf is beginning to get yellow and sickly, and be assured there is nothing like a plunge into new worlds of human faces for the

recovery of youth, with all its giddy joys and airy fallacies.

But the difficulty is to get an Englishman to make this plunge in downright earnest. Instead of running wild amongst the people of the continent, and giving free vent to whatever youthful mirth has not been quite trampled out of him, he usually runs a muck at them. Instead of gambolling with them, he butts and horns them. He takes umbrage at every thing. It is impossible to please him. He is resolved not to be pleased, come what may: Shine or rain, it is all the same; he quarrels with every thing, simply because it is not English. It might be supposed he went on an expedition in search of England, he is so discontented at not finding England at every turn of the road. It never occurs to him how much enjoyment and instruction he loses by not trying to discover the points of mutual agreement: his whole labour is to dig out the points of difference. He has not the least glimmer of a conception how much the former overbalance the latter; how much more there is to admire and imitate, than to censure and avoid; and how much sound feeling and morality, practical virtue, and social goodness, there may be in common between people who scowl at each other like frowning cliffs apart' upon questions of cookery and ventilation. He delights in picking up vexations and crosspurposes, and incidents that “hint dislike;' and he snarls at them as a dog does at a bone, which, all unprofitable as it is, he takes a sort of surly pleasure in growling over. Every step he makes furnishes fresh excuses for grumbling and getting out of humour; and the only wonder is why he ever left home, and why he does not go back again without delay. There is nothing to eat (this is universal); the wines are vinegar ; the lower classes wallow in dirt and superstition ; the churches are hung all over with theatrical gewgaws; the people are eaten up by the priests; the stench

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