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ground;" after his own country, it is the one which interests him most; he, by the study of its history, is familiar with the great events and great names of former times ; he knows with what places they are associated, and coming to England full of this fervor, expects to find the natives of the country as well informed at least, if not as ardent as himself. Every rood of ground, in the vicinity of London, more especially, is replete with historical associations, and perhaps no part of it more so, than from London to Richmond. But one often inquires in vain, for that minute local information which he needs; and indeed you would be surprised to find, how few people here are even tolerably informed concerning the history and antiquities of their own country, or even concerning its present state, I have often been distressed, when on some celebrated spot, for want of a companion thoroughly versed in affairs of this kind, and possessing that almost religious veneration for antiquity, which, if a weakness, is one both innocent and venial.
After leaving Westminster-bridge, there are four others over the Thames before you pass Richmond. At the latter place and at Kew are elegant structures of stone,
but at Putney and Battersea they are of wood. Above London, the Thames becomes a very beautiful river, growing sensibly narrower as we proceed up the stream.
We arrived opposite to Richmond about two o'clock P. M. and landed on a delightful lawn, where, in a few minutes, as if from the effects of magic, a large tent, and a table covered with good things, appeared on the green bank. We dined, sumptuously, upon food which had been brought ready prepared from London in our barge, and we had the fruits of the season for a desert. As we sat
in our tent, 6 the silver Thames,” the bridge, the numerous seats on the opposite bank, and the beautiful hill of Richmond, were in full view before us.
On this fine lawn a dutchess, whose title I have forgotten, was taking the air in a very singular vehicle. She was advanced in life--very infirm and very heavy, so that it would have been obviously difficult to have placed her in a common carriage. To suit her case exactly, a carriage had been constructed, whose floor was about one foot from the ground, so that one step was all that was requisite to get into it; it was entirely open with a single low and broad seat, and was drawn on four wheels by a pair of superb bay horses which the coachmar managed with perfect ease. The aged and venerable appearing lady, with a parasol to protect her from the sun, was thus rolled
and down on the rich green carpet, spread on the banks of the Thames, and I presume never attempted in this vehicle to travel in the open high way. Probably there are in England, more contrivances for comfort, than in any other country.
After dinner, in walking over Richmond Bridge, we met one of the Royal equipages. It was a Barouche, and occupied principally by ladies. The livery of the servants is scarlet; this is appropriate to the royal family, and thus their equipages are with certainty known, even by strangers. Our position on the bridge brought us close to them, but there was nothing in their dress and personal appearance to distinguish them from genteel people generally.
We next ascended Richmond-Hill, so long a favourite subject of poetical eulogium.
I had no time to examine into the antiquities of this celebrated place; Edward the third-Ann, wife of Richard the second-Henry the seventh Queen Elizabeth and the poet Thomson all died here, and I shall be much disappointed if I do not visit Richmond again, when I shall not fail at least to find out Thomson's grave. I had his Seasons in my pocket, and took the volume out, and read on the spot his description of the view from Richmond-Hill ;—his lines do so much better justice to this truly beautiful prospect, than my hurried prose, that I shall make use of them on this occasion :
* Shene, the Saxon name of this place. + London,
#Hamstead and Highgate.
In Twit'nam's bow'rs, and for their Pope implore
Heav'ns ! what a goodly prospect spreads around,
To this description, almost all the objects of which may be at this moment distinguished from Richmond-Hill, as well as they could in Thomson's time, I have nothing to add, except the assurance, whose truth you will not doubt, that it gave me great pleasure to view, what I had long admired in imagination only.
On the subject of English landscape, I would remark, that comparing it with ours, it generally exhibits less boldness, but more beauty and finish. I am now speaking of populous and cultivated districts, in both countries, and not of mountain and alpine scenery. In England, there is an unrivalled neatness in their fields and hedges, and an intenseness in the verdure, which is not seen, in an equal degree, in countries scorched by a fervid summer sun. The most populous parts of our country still abound so much with forest, that England, in comparison, looks naked. From Richmond-Hill, however, there are more
In his last sickness.
trees seen, than from most places in England. Trees abound in the numerous parks and pleasure grounds attached to the palaces, or at least, to what have been, or still are royal domains; the innumerable villas are rich in plantations of trees, and in the hedge-rows, they are also numerous, so that in the prospect from Richmond-Hill, even an American will say there are trees enough, while there are not many prospects in America in which an Englishman would not find too many for his taste.
Our return to London presented nothing particularly interesting, and we arrived at Westminster-bridge at half past eight o'clock in the evening, in a shower of rain.
August 9.--I have already remarked that celibacy is very common in England among men in easy circumstances, till a period of life when, from various reasons, they find it difficult to change their situations. I have known a considerable number of instances where gentlemen of polished manners and cultivated minds, live as bachelors, in a style of much elegance and independence.
I have dined today a few miles from London with a gentleman of this description. He has a charming rural situation, just on the declivity of a hill, which commands an extensive view of a wide and beautiful vale, intersected by a wiuding river, and bounded by verdant hills. This is only one instance out of thousands of that rural beauty with which England abounds.
Cowper, smitten both with love of rural scenery, and with veneration for the Creator, exclaimed, “God made the country, man the town," and no one who has been conversant with the beauty of English country scenes will wonder at Cowper's ardent admiration of them. With competent pecuniary resources (and they need not be