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salad, is a matter of grave importance.  Upon
this depends no less a matter than whether
the salad shall be short and crisp, or flabby
and greasy. The great Gaudet dropped
pearls of doctrine, but we do not retain a
jewel-syllable by which we can be aided on
this subject of salt. Concerning the herb, our
treatment of it varies with the kind; all, of
course, demand an intensity of cleanliness; all
should, when clean, be dried affectionately
and patted pleasantly between two napkins.
Some salads must be handled tenderly,
some pulled and pinched about like men's
limbs in a Russian bath, some must be
cut, some broken, some torn like the Roman
salad. Frederic Schlegel says, of Roman
salad, that it should be torn to very small
shreds, so that it may look like the
cumuli, the woolly " female clouds" of Pliny.
The hearts of some salads must be taken out
and dressed on separate dishes. Rousseau
tells us, that for a salad to have the true
flavour, it should be dressed by a maiden
between fifteen and eighteen years of age.

Rabelais affirms that the best oil to a salad
is good humour. The sauce used in the salad
of Pope Sixtus the Fifth would please the
English better. When this Pope was an
obscure monk, he had a great friend in a
certain lawyer, who sank into poverty as
steadily as the monk rose into popedom. So
the poor lawyer, journeying to seek
compassion from his old friend the Pope, fell sick
by the wayside, and commissioned his doctor
to plead for him with his Holiness."  "I will
send him a salad," said the Pope, and sent
to the sick man, accordingly, a basketful of
lettuces. When the lettuces were opened,
money was found in their hearts. Therefore
the proverb says in Italy, to this day,
of a man in need of money from some helping
friend, "He wants one of Sixtus the
Fifth's salads."

The great Gaudet, whom we have
mentioned incidentally, was one of the first
victims of that French Revolution which has
now lasted more than sixty years, and
promises to last for sixty more. Towards the
close of the last century, this wonderful man
found himself an exile in England without
friends or money. Ere long, the most
beautiful ladies of the land hung with bright,
watchful eyes over his labours; and mouths,
accustomed to command the destinies of
armies and of nations, watered when he came
near. In the houses of the old-fashioned,
nobilityas that of the late Marquis of
Abercornthe music would play, " See the
Conquering Hero comes," when the great Gaudet
entered. The talk of a dinner table lulled
into repose before him. Wonder succeeded
silence. What an expensive salad dressing-case!
What delicacy of touch over the light
green leaves! What charming little
stories to beguile the moments of suspense! How
gracefully and pleasantly he magnified the
noble art of salad-making! The great Gaudet
concentrated the entire force of his powerful
mind on salad; great, therefore, was his
success. Gaudet, like joy, was sought at every
feast. He drove in his own cabriolet from
dinner to dinner. To secure his services, the
high and mighty left cards at his house some
weeks before they were required. Have we
not seen with our eyes a letter addressed by
him to a noble duke, recommending that
person to postpone his dinner until
nine o'clock, because he, the great Gaudet, was
pledged to another noble lord at eight? The
fee of the great Gaudet rose to ten guineas;
and none who ate his salad grudged the
money it cost them.

Near the city of Rome there lived, about
the same time, a certain Madam. Drake, who
also illustrated by her own renown the
delightful salad science. With German solemnity
she accepted her mission. It was her belief,
that salad to be truly fresh, should not be
exposed to light until the moment of its being
eaten; she, therefore, in a dark room
mysteriously performed her office.

Thus much I have written, and have not
yet told you how a salad should be made. It
cannot be made by telling. You must be born
a salad-maker. Salad is a production of taste;
it belongs to the Fine Arts, and can no more
be acquired by rule than poetry, or sculpture,
or painting. You may, indeed, measure, or
hew out, or daub off a salad. You may know
that lettuce requires very little oil, and endive
very much; that rape needs beetroot and
celery; that cold cauliflower is the basis of a
delicious salad used very much in Italy, but
almost unknown in England; you may know
that four table-spoonsful of oil should go
generally to one of vinegar; that the salt is a
matter to be nervous with; that, above all
things, it is necessary to dissolve thoroughly
the salt in the vinegar before you add the oil.
All this you may know; and you may know
how to collect at the right season the right
herbs; yet, nevertheless, you must be born a
salad-maker, with the full measure of native
tact, if you would shine in the profession.
It has even been doubted, in the face of the
great Gaudet, whether one man can combine
in himself all the qualities which go to make
a perfect salad-maker; because, to complete
a salad properly, is said, in fact, to require the
united efforts of four different men: a
spendthrift for the oil, a miser for the vinegar,
a sage for the salt, and a maniac
for the mixing.

Now ready, Price 3s. 6d.,
To be completed in three Volumes, of the same size and price.
Collected and Revised from " Household Words,"
With a Table of Dates.