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the unfortunate-The monk made me a bow-but of all others, resumed I, the unfortunate of our own country, surely, have the first rights; and I have left thousands in distress upon our own shore-The monk gave a cordial wave with his head as much as to say, No doubt, there is misery enough in every corner of the world, as well as within our convent-But we distinguish, said I, laying my hand upon the sleeve of his tunic, in return for his appeal-we distinguish, my good Father! betwixt those who wish only to eat the bread of their own labour-and those who eat the bread of other people's, and have no other plan in life, but to get through it in sloth and ignorance, for the love of God.
The poor Franciscan made no reply: a hectic of a moment pass'd across his cheek, but could not tarryNature seemed to have done with her resentments in him; he shewed none-but letting his staff fall within his arm, he press'd both his hands with resignation upon his breast, and retired,
My heart smote me the moment he shut the door-Psha! said I, with an air of carelessness, three several times-but it would not do: every ungracious syllable I had utter'd, crowded back into my imagination: I reflected, I had no right over the poor Franciscan, but
to deny him; and that the punishment of that was enough to the disappointed without the addition of unkind language-I consider'd his grey hairs-his courteous figure seem'd to re-enter and gently ask me what injury he had done me?-and why I could use him thus-I would have given twenty livres for an advocate→→→ I have behaved very ill, said I within myself; but I have only just set out upon my travels; and shall learn better manners as I get along.
WHEN a man is discontented with himself, it has one advantage however, that it puts him into an excellent frame of mind for making a bargain. Now there being no travelling through France and Italy without a chaise —and nature generally prompting us to the thing we are fittest for, I walk'd out into the coach-yard to buy or hire something of that kind to my purpose: an old Desobligeant* in the furthest corner of the court, hit my fancy at first sight, so I instantly got into it, and finding it in tolerable harmony with my feelings, I ordered the waiter to call Monsieur Dessein, the master of the hôtel-but Monsieur Dessein being gone to vespers, and not caring to face the Franciscan, whom I saw on
* A chaise, so called in France, from its holding but one person.
the opposite side of the court, in conference with a lady just arrived at the inn-I drew the taffeta curtain betwixt us, and being determined to write my journey, I took out my pen and ink, and wrote the preface to it in the Desobligeant,
IN THE DESOBLIGEANT
It must have been observed by many a peripatetic -philosopher, That nature has set up by her own unquestionable authority certain boundaries and fences to circumscribe the discontent of man: she has effected her purpose in the quietest and easiest manner, by laying him under almost insuperable obligations to work out his ease, and to sustain his sufferings at home. It is there only that she has provided him with the most suitable objects to partake of his happiness, and bear a part of that burden which in all countries and ages has ever been too heavy for one pair of shoulders. 'Tis true, we are endued with an imperfect power of spreading our happiness sometimes beyond her limits, but 'tis so ordered, that from the want of languages, connections, and dependencies, and from the difference in education, customs, and habits, we lie under so many impediments in communicating our sensations out of our own sphere, as often amount to a total impossibility.
It will always follow from hence, that the balance of sentimental commerce is always against the expatriated adventurer: he must buy what he has little occasion for,
at their own price-his conversation will seldom be taken in exchange for theirs without a large discountand this, by the bye, eternally driving him into the hands of more equitable brokers, for such conversation as he can find, it requires no great spirit of divination to guess at his party—
This brings me to my point; and naturally leads me (if the see-saw of this Desobligeant will but let me get on) into the efficient as well as the final causes of travelling
Your idle people that leave their native country, and go abroad for some reason or reasons which may be derived from one of these general causes
Infirmity of body,
Imbecillity of mind, or
The two first include all those who travel by land or by water, labouring with pride, curiosity, vanity, or spleen, subdivided and combined in infinitum.
The third class includes the whole army of peregrine martyrs; more especially those travellers who set out upon their travels with the benefit of the clergy, either as delinquents travelling under the direction of governors recommended by the magistrate-or young gentlemen transported by the cruelty of parents and guardians, and travelling under the direction of governors recommended by Oxford, Aberdeen, and Glasgow.
There is a fourth class, but their number is so small, that they would not deserve a distinction, was it not necessary in a work of this nature to observe the greatest precision and nicety, to avoid a confusion of character.
And these men I speak of, are such as cross the seas and sojourn in a land of strangers with a view of saving mo
ney for various reasons and upon various pretences: but as they might also save themselves and others a great deal of unnecessary trouble by saving their money at home-and as their reasons for travelling are the least complex of any other species of emigrants, I shall distinguish these gentlemen by the name of
Thus the whole circle of travellers may be reduced to the following Heads :
Then follow the Travellers of Necessity,
And last of all (if you please) The Sentimental Traveller (meaning thereby myself) who have travell'd, and of which I am now sitting down to give an accountas much out of Necessity and the besoin de Voyager, as any one in the class.
I am well aware, at the same time, as both my travels and observations will be altogether of a different cast from any of my fore-runners; that I might have insisted upon a whole nitch entirely to myself-but I should break in upon the confines of the Vain Traveller,