Sunny Memories Of Foreign Lands - Volume 2 - By Harriet Beecher Stowe




































































































 -  I could not
help, therefore, saying, when Macaulay observed that he had the most
agreeable wit of any literary man - Page 3
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I Could Not Help, Therefore, Saying, When Macaulay Observed That He Had The Most Agreeable Wit Of Any Literary Man

Of his acquaintance, "Well, it was very agreeable, but it could not have been very agreeable to the people who

Came under the edge of it," and instanced his treatment of Dr. Carey. Some others who were present seemed to feel warmly on this subject, too, and Macaulay said, -

"Ah, well, Sidney repented of that, afterwards." He seemed to cling to his memory, and to turn from every fault to his joviality, as a thing he could not enough delight to remember.

Truly, wit, like charity, covers a multitude of sins. A man who has the faculty of raising a laugh in this sad, earnest world is remembered with indulgence and complacency, always.

There were several other persons of note present at this breakfast, whose conversation I had not an opportunity of hearing, as they sat at a distance from me. There was Lord Glenelg, brother of Sir Robert Grant, governor of Bombay, whose beautiful hymns have rendered him familiar in America. The favorite one, commencing "When gathering clouds around I view," was from his pen. Lord Glenelg, formerly Sir Charles Grant, himself has been the author of several pieces of poetry, which were in their time quite popular.

The historian Hallam was also present, whose Constitutional History, you will remember, gave rise to one of Macaulay's finest reviews; a quiet, retiring man, with a benignant, somewhat sad, expression of countenance. The loss of an only son has cast a shadow over his life. It was on this son that Tennyson wrote his "_In Memoriam_."

Sir Robert H. Inglis was also present, and Mr. S. held considerable conversation with him. Knowing that he was both high tory and high church, it was an agreeable surprise to find him particularly gentle and bland in manners, earnest and devout in religious sentiment. I have heard him spoken of, even among dissenters, as a devout and earnest man. Another proof this of what mistakes we fall into when we judge the characters of persons at a distance, from what we suppose likely to be the effect of their sentiments. We often find the professed aristocrat gentle and condescending, and the professed supporter of forms spiritual.

I think it very likely there may have been other celebrities present, whom I did not know. I am always finding out, a day or two after, that I have been with somebody very remarkable, and did not know it at the time.

After breakfast we found, on consulting our list, that we were to lunch at Surrey parsonage.

Of all the cities I was ever in, London is the most absolutely unmanageable, it takes so long to get any where; wherever you want to go it seems to take you about two hours to get there. From the West End down into the city is a distance that seems all but interminable. London is now more than ten miles long. And yet this monster city is stretching in all directions yearly, and where will be the end of it nobody knows. Southey says, "I began to study the map of London, though dismayed at its prodigious extent. The river is no assistance to a stranger in finding his way; there is no street along its banks, and no eminence from whence you can look around and take your bearings."

You may take these reflections as passing through my mind while we were driving through street after street, and going round corner after corner, towards the parsonage.

Surrey Chapel and parsonage were the church and residence of the celebrated Kowland Hill. At present the incumbent is the Rev. Mr. Sherman, well known to many of our American clergy by the kind hospitalities and attentions with which he has enriched their stay in London. The church maintains a medium rank between Congregationalism and Episcopacy, retaining part of the ritual, but being independent in its government. The kindness of Mr. Sherman had assembled here a very agreeable company, among whom were Farquhar Tupper, the artist Cruikshank, from whom I received a call the other morning, and Mr. Pilatte, M. P. Cruikshank is an old man with gray hair and eyebrows, strongly marked features, and keen eyes. He talked to me something about the promotion of temperance by a series of literary sketches illustrated by his pencil.

I sat by a lady who was well acquainted with Kingsley, the author of Alton Locke, Hypatia, and other works, with whom I had some conversation with regard to the influence of his writings.

She said that he had been instrumental in rescuing from infidelity many young men whose minds had become unsettled; that he was a devoted and laborious clergyman, exerting himself, without any cessation, for the good of his parish.

After the company were gone I tried to get some rest, as my labors were not yet over, we being engaged to dine at Sir Edward Buxton's. This was our most dissipated day in London. We never tried the experiment again of going to three parties in one day.

By the time I got to my third appointment I was entirely exhausted. I met here some, however, whom I was exceedingly interested to see; among them Samuel Gurney, brother of Elizabeth Fry, with his wife and family. Lady Edward Buxton is one of his daughters. All had that air of benevolent friendliness which is characteristic of the sect.

Dr. Lushington, the companion and venerable associate of Wilberforce and Clarkson, was also present. He was a member of Parliament with Wilberforce forty or fifty years ago. He is now a judge of the admiralty court, that is to say, of the law relating to marine affairs. This is a branch of law which the nature of our government in America makes it impossible for us to have. He is exceedingly brilliant and animated in conversation.

Dr. Cunningham, the author of World without Souls, was present.

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