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while surrounded with all that is supposed likely to occupy or to distract the mind.

"It may be that I have a lurking doubt of your sympathy in the strange pleasure with which these solitudes inspire me;or, possibly, a cowardly fear of the ridicule which those who live in the fashionable world always attach to anything that approaches the romantic, whether in sentiment or action. A true enthusiast, however, would rather anticipate your speedy conversion; and, at worst, why should I dread your kind smiles? You could not, if you would, make me ashamed of my happiness, and I am sure you would not if you could.





"Our way of living just now is odd enough. John's house is so nearly finished, that he and Sophy live in it, and take our workpeople as boarders. This is quite convenient for us, since we could not obtain labourers on any other terms. But I find Sophy is sadly missed at the head of domestic affairs. (I forget whether Mr. Sibthorpe has mentioned in any of his nume

rous and lengthy epistles, that Chadwell has left us and returned to New York, because she couldn't abear the 'orrid beer as they makes in Michigan;' though this her chosen comforter was manufactured by a countryman of her own, who is considered quite an adept in the art.) Sophy's invention was all in all to Rose, whose materials are so limited as to require all Caleb Balderstone's ingenuity in order to set a table which shall in any degree accord with her ideas of propriety. Truth to say, I had a very unprac· tical idea of what sort of things would be useful for forest life. I forgot that our habits must be in some degree the standard, whatever be the circumstances; and, in planning for a simple country life, I did not take into account the fact that we had yet to learn to be country people. I find we must simplify our habits exceedingly, to make out at all with the moderate amount of household conveniences we thought it necessary to bring with us. But my good spouse is, as you know, tant soit peu fidgetty about small matters (he is looking over my

shoulder even now), and, instead of simplifying our habits, he is bent upon complicating our accommodations, as I think very needlessly; for we have already a list far longer than those of our neighbours, who, most philosophically, make one thing answer for a dozen different uses. Sophy has already caught the spirit of the country, and is beginning to keep house with a mere handful of the simplest utensils.

"Where we can possibly find places for all the articles Mr. Sibthorpe has ordered, remains yet to be discovered. Even after our new buildings are completed, I fear there will be many very excellent and desirable things in the lamentable case of the Primrose family picture.

"We have been very civilly treated by our neighbours of the village, and find several among them whom we can visit with pleasure. These seem delighted at having an addition to their little circle, and we are not at all disposed to exclude the cultivation of the social feelings from the enjoyments of country life. Here will, as I foresee, be the

grand difficulty after all. For want of congenial society, one is in such danger of becoming self-enclosed and unsympathising a most unlovely, inhuman, and wicked form of pride, and one which we must guard against, if we would not forfeit our share of that mercy which is our only hope, and which embraces alike the whole human family.

"I can already perceive that, for want of this companionship, one may in time become too bookish, too citatory and pedantic, through lack of that fusion by conversation which refines and naturalises one's literary stores. One is apt to read too much, and too miscellaneously. And as to writingit is so much more delightful to read other people's reveries than to put one's own thoughts into words! Doing nothing has so many charms, that even writing looks like work, by contrast. The very idea of an abundance of leisure makes us use our leisure unprofitably. I have sketched out many systems of regular employment, but never did society, even in my gayest days,

beguile me of my resolutions of improvement like the enticing quiet of the cool woods, with the certainty of long days of delicious reading and reverie, undisturbed by visiters and untrammelled by ceremony. I fear my reformation must wait for rainy weather, since I can never summon resolution to deny myself the pleasure of rambling under such skies and such moonlight

as ours.

"Dear little Charlotte feels all the delight of this charming season. Her eyes seem always full of gentle pleasure, and she often employs herself for whole hours in weaving wreaths of wild flowers, and dressing with them a great hollow tree, in which her large doll is seated, looking in its scarlet frock like. the lady in the lobster.

"As for your friend, my husband, it would require the pen of De Foe himself to give a just idea of his occupations, his plans, his expedients; his ingenuity in contriving, his zeal in executing, the various conveniences of our new dwelling. But most surprising is the exemplary patience with which he

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