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seemed to vibrate with one impulse: and I sat in silence, wishing, yet not daring, to break a pause becoming every moment more irksome. I was not doomed to hope in vain: a day sultry and cloudy, was closed by an evening so calm, so cool, and clear, that the ocean lay smooth as a mirror; all around was peaceful, and the beauty of the scene roused the slumbering sympathies of L. As the sun hastened to dip beneath the western water, he suddenly grasped my arm with one hand, and pointing into the distance with the other, exclaimed, energetically, "See you that dusky ridge stretching along the farthest verge of the horizon?"-"I see," said 1, "a long cloud, which seems to rise from the deep." "That which you call a cloud," said he, "is the place of our destination; those are the shores of Britain; on which I trust to-morrow's sun will see us safely landed. You have, no doubt," continued he, "observed my late difference of manner; I fear it has caused pain to your sensitive heart: forgive me, my friend, if I have seemed estranged and altered; this lovely sunset has recalled me to myself: my apparent neglect has arisen solely from increasing anxiety on your account. You have left home to accompany me amidst the scenes of civilized life, and I fear
your guileless simplicity will be disappointed at the result: I am hacknied in European manners, to you they are comparatively new. You are going to plunge into the tide of society, which, like our Thames when full, presents security to the eye of inexperience, which perceives not the shoals beneath the surface. You are going to visit that great city, who is drunk with her own abominations; where exist more virtue and more vice, more freedom and more slavery, more riches and more poverty, more truth and more falsehood—in short, more opposite extremes in every shape, than on any spot of like magnitude in our globe. You are going to witness closely in the aggregate, what as yet you have seen only in perspective, in a small circle of adventurers, who had left home in search of what was denied to them there you will behold the great ones of the earth stamping on the necks of prostrate fellowmen: you will, as your intellects expand with daily exercise, see the debasing fetters of superstition and slavery binding reason, the only attribute by which man is distinguished above the beasts of the field, in bonds more durable than iron. You will see man goaded with the lash of tyranny, until driven to frenzy he loses native purity, and becomes more ferocious than a hungry lion. You will hear.
pride and power demanding their victims fresh every day, and yet unsated, cry, "More, more:" Ignorance triumphant over cultivated intellect, cruelty playing at tortures with passiveness-in a word, good called evil, and evil good.
"You draw," said I, "a frightful picture of civilization; already I feel my ardour for knowledge damped and mortified: if description thus daunts me, what must I expect to feel when drawn within the vortex itself? Are religion, virtue, honour, empty sounds without a meaning? If so, how have I deceived myself. L, looking at me for a second or two, replied, with a benignant smile, "No, that would be indeed a dreadful state of things, which every good man would contemplate with horror; they do exist, and will exist much more at large, but not exactly in the shapes at present assigned to them. But perhaps I was wrong in drawing this gloomy prospect; perhaps I drew it prematurely; you must see with your own eyes, and prepare to judge for yourself. Fear not your mind will not fail to discern truth, when the mists of ignorance which now envelope your ideas, are dispersed by the beams of knowledge. We will together range through the haunts ofmen; we will endeavour to learn their secret springs of action; to
unravel the thread of their destiny. Each will be a mutual assistance and check on the other : I shall listen with delight to your artless remarks, and note the workings of an untutored mind, while your reflections, but slightly warped by prejudice, and unshackled by early lessons of error, will correct and reduce the explanations of passing events, which I will endeavour to delineate with fidelity."
Here our conversation ended: I have hastened to transmit it entire to thee.
I SHALL address you no more in the language of my two first: I find it is the style of discourse among a particular religious sect here, and L has a decided aversion to all sectarian distinctions whatever: he says, it is the height of absurdity for men to form any distinctions by garb or form of speech; that the real criterion of difference must consist in sentiments and principles, followed up by conduct. L-is certainly a singular man; he his eccentric without effort, apparently without consciousness of his eccentricity. To those who see no deeper than the surface, he would appear a man of common-place character; to those who see more than meets the eye, he is an extraordinary being.
On the evening of our arrival here, after bidding me kindly welcome to what he was pleased to call his poor sample of English hospitality, he addressed me as follows:
"From the specimens you have already had, you must certainly have long since begun to think me a very strange being; and if ec