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ALL NIGHT ON THE MONUMENT.

IF a man wishes to become a real
unwavering cynic, cultivating the unamiable
quality of a thorough contempt for his species;
if he wishes to realise, and become a convert
to, the truth of the common-places of the
preacher about the utter nothingness of the
things of this world; if he wishes to enlarge
his views of life, and to spring out of his
narrow circle of folly, ignorance, and prejudice;
if he wishes to take a calm and dispassionate
review of the paths he has been
pursuing; to see how far he has wandered
from the right track, or whither his blind,
unguided, walled-in steps now lead him: if
he wishes to divest himself, for a few short
hours, of the depressing feeling of adoration
which the gaudy haberdashery of honour
excites in him when it appears to his
dazzled eyes surrounding the petted dolls
of the earth, let him take up his position
upon the misty mountain-tops which
frequently shut in great cities, or, if nature
fails him, let him labour to the summit of
one of those lofty monumentsthose
lighthouses of the landwhich dwellers in
crowded places have always loved to raise in
the centre of their homes. Seen from such a
place, the prince's chariot and the huckster's
cart, the glossy citizen and the tattered
beggar, the marble palace and the tottering
rookery, your dearest friend and your bitterest
enemy, are all merged in one mass of
indistinguishable equality. Heard from such
a place, the roar, the accumulated voice of
the great citylifted up in its joy, its labour,
its sorrow, its vice, and its sufferingsounds
as the sharp cry of agony issuing from the
mouths of men who are chained, within the
hateful bounds, by imaginary wants and
artificial desires; yet it fills the heart with
no more sense of pity than the united plaint
of low-sighing pain coming from the wretched
flies on yonder besmeared fly-catcher. It is
the curse of excessive smallness to be ill-
treated and despised. Men who would
shrink with horror from wounding an
elephant, will crunch ten thousand insects
under their heels, and whistle while they
do it. Those black dots that hurry and
wriggle through the crowded streets that
look no wider than the passages of a
bee-hive, what are they? Men with immortal
souls; centres of happy households;
fathers, brothers, and husbands, if you
look them in the face; but, seen from the
trifling elevation of a few hundred feet,
they sink into the most miserable beetles
that ever crawled down a gutter. Drop a
paving-stone upon them, crushing a dozen at
a blow, and, even with your own father
amongst the group, would you feel, from the
evidence of your senses, that you were the
perpetrator and witness of a horrid crime?
You would probably be as one who sees a
great battle afar offsees a puff of smoke
and the closing together of a few red lines
and who, while ten thousand men are lying
dead upon the field, and thirty thousand
children are weeping for their fathers, sits
with the calm unruffled serenity of an Egyptian
sphinx, the vacant placidity of a Nineveh
monarch, or the silent contempt of the gods
upon Mount Olympus. If the black dots
in the deep distant street were to hustle,
fight, and destroy each other, like the animalcules
in a drop of water, you would probably
laugh at them, as you laugh at the insect battle
when revealed to you by the powers of the
microscope. May all this teach the same
lesson to you as it does to me!—a lesson of
humanity to the weak and small.

It was in some such spirit as this, that, at
four o'clock on the afternoon of Thursday,
the thirty-first day of December, eighteen
hundred and fifty-seven, I became the guest
of the Right Honourable the Corporation of
the City of London, and ascended their noble
Monument on Fish Street Hill, coming down
to mingle in the world once moreafter a
period of seventeen hoursat nine o'clock on
the morning of the first day of this present
January, eighteen hundred and fifty-eight.
I  have nothing to urge in complaint of the
want of readiness and courtesy displayed by
the City authorities in acceding to my wishes.
With the same hospitality which distinguishes
the Guildhall and the Mansion House, Mr.
Bunning, the City Architect, exerted himself,
at a very short notice, to welcome
me to the bleak column of sixteen hundred
and seventy-seven. Mr. John Bleaden, the
official keeper of the Monument, also insisted
| upon his deputy staying up all night. Below
there was a fire in the event of my wanting

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