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illustrated, by the remarks of another at his
side. What, however, was our disappointment
as the latter turned coolly round, on
the conclusion, and said to a bystander,
"Scusi, Signore; ma, dove e la Sicilia?"

The Continent is not cheaper than home
it has few advantages on the score of climate.
What, then, it may be asked, are the inducements
which yearly draw away from our
country such hordes of foreign travellers?
Some will ascribe this to the greater social
freedom enjoyed abroad, the less restricted
code of morals and manners, the wider
opportunities of entering society, and the ease of
admission into courts or courtly circles.
These, of course, have all their separate
influences; but if we were asked wherein lies
the great charm of the Continent, we should
say, it consists in the easy, unembarrassed tone
of intimacy enjoyed by all of the persons who
meet together in society. There is neither
lord worship nor gold worship. There is no
pushing, nor shoving, nor struggling for places
beside his grace nor her ladyship. Whatever
may be the differences of rank and
station, there is a perfect equality amongst the
individuals who compose society. The claim
of being a gentleman suffices for admission
and acceptance everywhere. Now we by no
means wish to disparage lords, nor affect to
class them with the worn-out representatives
of a French or a Spanish nobility; on the
contrary, we are fully alive to the vast
advantages enjoyed by educated gentlemen,
without any of the narrowing influences of a
professional career, or the small pedantries
that attach to special study; but we would
protest against the vulgar adulation of rank
so common in England; that indiscriminate
veneration for every member of the peerage, and
every name chronicled by Burke or Debrett.

One of the most remarkable results of the
opposite tone abroad is, the very great
superiority in all the pretensions to agreeability
and information possessed by that very class
which at home we are satisfied to admire on
the mere plea of a title. An English nobleman,
on the Continent, is satisfied to enter society
without the great prestige that accompanies
him at home, and consequently exercises all
those arts of agreeability which make the
success of a salon. But the whole tone of society
abroad is more natural and more free. There
is more ease, and less loungingmore
agreeability and less displaygreater deference to
modesty, and less adulation of high capacity.
In a word, society is like one of those
associations where the members can be only
holders of one ticket each, and the great
capitalist can never swamp nor overwhelm
his humble brother shareholder. Of course,
in all that we say here, we are rather pleading
the cause of little peopleof whom we are
ourselves one of the smallest; but we repeat,
that we know of nothing abroad to compare
with its social equality.

It will perhaps be said, that in this kind of
intercourse we lose much of our nationality,
and that our distinctly English features of
character usually wear away. If by such are
meant, our native coldness and distanceour
distrust of everybody we do not know
intimatelyour overweening belief in the
superiority of England in all things,—then, so
much the better.


"In the month of February,
When the little birds begin to sing."—Old Song.

ERE pale Primroses forlorn
    Oped to Spring's uncertain handling,
Or the creamy buds on thorn
    Even dreamt about expanding,
In a bower in sunny weather,
   While the birds sang free above,
Loud and sweet and all together,
Short grass sprung beneath their feet,
   Flecked with snow-flakes here and there,
That the Snow-drops dared to meet,
   Knowing they were quite as fair;
Blue Hepaticas up-rushed,
   (Wide as bird its eye uncloses,)
Cold Christmas roses blushed
   As they were the Summer's roses;
But the Crocus dared not show,
   For the story went of old
That Love had quarrelled long ago
   Both with purple and with gold!

Then said sweet Valentine,
   "Fast the world rocks on, and strange,
Leaving many a lit-up shrine
   Dark behind it on its range;
Yet the wreaths that lie on mine,
   Freshly gathered, do not change."

But before Love spoke he smiled,
   "Let not fear of change perplex thee,
Never let such fancies wild
   Come across thy soul to vex thee;
For it was the Heart that made thee
   For itself! with halo'd brow,
Out of its own wealth arrayed thee;
   Fear not, it will leave thee now!
Wayside chapel, like a bower,
   Built thee on life's dusty beat,
There to while a dreaming hour,
   Oft-times true, and ever sweet.
Hang it round with garlands green,
   Pictures quaint and uncouth rhyme,
And on them my smile hath been;
   Fear not they will last with time."

Here Love paused in glad surprise.
   To the Saint a maiden knelt,
And the sweet light in her eyes
   Was a light that might be felt.
Word she spoke not, only holding
   Up a scroll that she had set
In a myrtle wreath, enfolding
   Many a winter Violet.

But the Saint looked coldly on it,
   Finding never fiery dart,
Never Love or Dove upon it,
   Blushing rose, or bleeding heart;