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is out of the question.' So we laughed ourselves into good order again. To myself, at least, the conversation was very interesting, nor did I fail to take mental notes.

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39. Mr. Cummins, a facetious excellent man, thought he would supply a salvo. He had 'heard it said that black hair was indicative of good temper.' This luckily fitted several of our caputs. 'What do you think of it, Mr. Blank?' sounded from all sides of the room. But, my own head coming under this favourable description, I really had a struggle to put on a sufficiently grave countenance. I replied, If Mr. Cummins' remark be true, it is flattering to myself; and as you perceive my own covering is of the colour under consideration, you must see how difficult it is for me to answer the question impartially. I will however assure you, that, although I lay claim to some portion of good temper, yet I must own it is intermixed with considerable alloy. This probably may be accounted for by the remark of Miss Bate as to sandy hair; for though my head is black, my whiskers are sandy, which I have often regarded as a defect in my appearance; and I am now resolved to shave them off. But here is our good friend, Mr. Tart, whose sable head and bushy whiskers appear uniform, and I should wish we may be favoured with his opinion, or his wife's.' Instantly, Mrs. Tart, forgetting matrimonial propriety, exclaimed, ‹ O, Mr. Blank, I'm sure it's not true, for my husband is as tutty and as cross as any body; but you don't know that he blacks his whiskers, for they are more sandy than your own.' Just then the servant brought in the tea.

CHAPTER IV.

TEMPER AS WE FIND IT BY DAILY OBSERVATION AND READING.

'Nothing extenuate, nor set down aught in malice.'

LET my reader now have recourse to his own personal observation within the compass of his short life, and his brief reading. The examples I shall introduce may assist his recollection of similar and dissimilar instances. Every reader of the public papers is well aware that their general contents are little else than an exposé of ungoverned tempers. What fierce disputes, what overbearing insolence, angry litigations, bullying, taunting, furious outrage, cruel revenge, robberies, murders, &c. do we behold in these daily intelligencers!

2. Some have made comparisons of the prevailing temperament of different nations, but upon what data or evidence, I am at a loss to conceive, except it be the different degrees of temperature in the climates. Were it not that I should exceed my intended limits, I could easily multiply facts from the histories of all nations to confirm this

truth, that, whatever distinctions may exist in other respects, there is no radical difference as to the constitutional nature and propensities of

men.

3. The Chinese at one time measured the irritable feelings of the English nation by the quantity of their ware broken in a year. A Chinese historian observes: The merchants of Canton make the sale of their brittle ware the barometer of European passions, and as often as the sale augments, they say,The last year has been a passionate one in England." China-ware is not imported to the extent it was some years ago. Our own manufactured articles and those of the continent have superseded the demand for the brittle ware of Asia; and the wise men of the celestial empire now say, The English have subdued all their anger, and have no matrimonial strife, and seldom break cups and saucers.'

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4. The Welsh and their more northerly neighbours of Scotland have each their full share of froward tempers. I regret to say that Ireland contains a vast number, who, owing to ignorance, whisky and popery, have rendered their country almost proverbial throughout the world. It is however a comfort to know that it possesses many in all classes of the most excellent and amiable tempers. 5. In short, wherever we turn our eyes throughout the great world, or the page of its history, the same features of fallen nature present themselves to our view. Asiatics and Europeans, Americans and Africans, Jews and Gentiles, Greeks and Romans, people of all climes and of all tongues, uniformly evince the same infection of nature,' and the same indomitable and external habitude

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of unhallowed tempers. Comparisons are odious,' therefore, because unnecessary.

6. The French can boast of little above the Irish except their effeminate refinements. Their revolutionary history is one of the first books in the world for the student in temper. The ungovernable temper of their Corsican leader was deemed no disqualification in the representative of their wills. Bonaparte's paroxysms of passion sometimes amounted even to fury, and his anger was often so sudden and uncontrollable that few of his comrades would venture to hazard his displeasure. . . . His temper was overbearing and irritable. . . . His aversion to sociality was much increased by his excessive indulgence in habits of suspicion..... Sternly independent, confiding in himself alone, respecting no talent in another, which he could not employ to his own purposes, intriguing where he could not command, firm in his resolves, impatient of restraint, and disdainful of authority. 1

7. The Russians supply their full quota of bad examples. Not long since the papers informed us that one of their princes killed his servant in a fit of passion. Their treatment of the Poles is their indelible disgrace. Even their renowned founder, Peter the Great, affords a melancholy instance how far a prince may reform a people without reforming himself:' a remark, indeed, which Peter had the honesty and good sense to make, but without having the magnanimity to profit by his own observation. This monarch, who, like Alexander, perpetuated his name by a superb

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1 Hist. Fr. Revolution, vol. i. See chap. vii. infra.

city which he built, who refined barbarianism into policy; who so far tamed the rugged genius of an almost polar clime, as not only to plant arts and manufactures, but colleges, academies, libraries, observatories, in that frozen soil, which had hitherto scarcely given any signs of intellectual life; who improved, not only the condition of the people, but the state of the church, and considerably raised its religion, which was before scarcely Christianity: this founder, this patriot, this reformer, was himself intemperate and violent, sensual and cruel, and slave to passions and appetites as gross as could have been indulged by the rudest of his Muscovites before he had civilized them.' The Slavonians, after conquering the Varangi in battle, fell into desperate confusion from internal dissensions; and the chiefs thought it right to take the dying advice of Gostomielz, who said, 'I see no union among you; you wish to be your own governors, but you are governed by your passions.'

8. Whatever be the Chinese opinion of English tempers, the Americans affect to have little predilection for John Bull. It is not easy to define the exact limits which a traveller should observe, while the sensitiveness and irritability of the Americans imposes the necessity of unceasing vigilance on those who desire to avoid unnecessary offence.'3 Be it so: but the Americans have yet to convince the world, and John Bull in particular, that their liberal hearts are less proud and selfish than the rest of their fellow-mortals. They may hoot at titles and liveries, and every thing 2 Penny Magazine, 1835, p. 466. 3 Christian Guardian, 1835, p. 425.

1 Mrs. More.

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