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MY FIRST VISIT TO EUROPE:
OR, SKETCHES OF
SOCIETY, SCENERY, AND ANTIQUITIES,
IN ENGLAND, WALES, IRELAND, SCOTLAND,
Author of “ The City of the Dead, and other Poems."
From the blooming store
PUBLISHED FOR THE PROPRIETOR BY
GEORGE P. PUTNAM, 155 BROADWAY.
THE NEW YORK FUZLI OLUSTRY
Astor, Lenoy no tienen
Hobart Press : JOHN R. M'GOWN, PRINTER,
To those who deem it necessary for a writer to appear before the public with a laboured Apology in one hand and his book in the other, the author of these sketches has nothing to say. Unconscious of aught but a desire to please, he is not aware that such an effort, however humble it may be, requires more than a word of explanation—a knock at the door of his friends, not a herald of formal and mistrustful approach.
Those who object that enough has been written, do not consider, that Europe is like a vast mine; the more it is explored, the more inviting it becomes. Gems of beauty, ruins, or scenery, present an ever-varying phase to the eye of travellers, because never viewed from the same point of light. Thus minds, like mirrors of different shape, reflect a hundred images of one object. Who does not love to look often at pictures of friends and favourite scenes ?
That the field from which these unpretending sheaves are brought has been often gleaned, who knows not? Yet it is the fertile field that feels the frequent sickle. Freshness, not variety, gives value to the grain. Besides, did the reaper bear his burden to a foreign mart, to unsympathizing strangers, he might well tremble lest his little load might no buyer: but now he brings the harvest home, where, few though the sheaves may be, they are welcome, because gathered by his hand, and laid by him at friendly feet. Far be it from him to refuse a welcome from the stranger; but he has no wish to intrude : and is thus armed with hope on one side, and with confidence on the other.
With suffering body and dejected mind, he set forth on a pilgrimage over the sea in search of relief. And now that he has found the lost pearl in more than its former lustre, and so many added treasures of delight, he feels that it would be ungrateful indeed, to make no effort to impart to others a taste of what was so freely granted to himself. To those who are willing to accept in sympathy what is offered in good-will, the writer proffers his book, without a single sigh for fame. And as its merits are not likely to subtract from the stock of approbation reserved for the few select spirits, so the faults of this little work are not worthy of that severe censure which the failings of more ambitious authors sometimes deserve. The praise which the writer covets is that of generous minds, whom he has ever found more liberal of approval than those critics, who, like quack doctors, are always certain to kill
-alternatives more satisfactory to patients than to authors.