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cleared charcoal beds in the neighbouring forests, spaces difficult to utilise in any other way, as the young plants of green peas, potatoes, Freuch beans, and the like, would inevitably be devoured by the rabbits, wild boars, and other animals, who will on no account touch the mustard plant. The soil gives one peculiar flavour to the mustard, another is differently to be accounted for.

The mustard when in powder is mixed with the juice of new wine, lending that pleasant acidity with which we are familiar. But in order to obtain precisely the degree of acidity it is necessary that the grape be always in precisely the same state of unripeness, a degree more or less making all the difference. Amateurs of this celebrated condiment, of which the consumption is enormous in France and elsewhere, will like to have these few particulars concerning it.

We next come to the no less famous Dijon gingerbread, or pain d'épice, of which most travellers carry a sample home for their little friends. The nonnettes, as these cakes are generally called, figure constantly on French dinner-tables with the dessert, but few people, perhaps, suspect their origin. The pain d'épice is made of honey, rye-flour, and spice, no treacle entering into its composition as in our own gingerbread. But honey possesses, as we all know, besides its agreeable sweetness, a medicinal quality, rendering the pain d'épice as useful as it is ornamental on the family table. tors were, oddly enough, neither bakers nor cooks, but the former grands seigneurs of Burgundy. These seigneurs set the example of curing disorders of frequent occurrence by means of palatable cakes; the bourgeoisie and, in their turn, the peasants, followed their example. Huge bakeries of the pain d'épice were set up at Dijon. The bakers made large fortunes, and to this day it is as flourishing a trade as any in Dijon, seven large manufactories now existing there.

I also visited a bookbinding and leather-work manufactory, but here the firm gave us less flourishing accounts than the heads of those before mentioned. Whether things go well or ill, people will have their pills, mustard, and gingerbread. They cut off such luxuries as missals, pocket-Looks, photographic albums, &c. We were assured by our friends here that the slackness of trade in France equals ihat in England. Nothing is stirring. No orders come in. Of course the anti-Republicans affirm that this chômage is the result of want of confidence in the Government, but there is no doubt whatever that France, like England and Germany, is going through a commercial crisis with which politics have little or nothing to do. The question is too vast to be entered upon here. There are one or two points worth mentioning concerning the process of binding, say, a photographic album; from the beginning to the end, twenty-five or thirty processes being gone through before the raw skin is converted into the polished, perfumed leather cover so familiar to us. The agreeable perfume of Russia leather does not depend on the skin of the Russian birch-tree. Such being the case, we may have at some future time leather-work perfumed with the aromatic eucalyptus, or blue-gum tree, and other antiseptic and health-giving essences, our very books being made thereby proof against contagion of all kinds. This bookbinding and leather-work manufactory is a model in its sanitary and economic arrangements. The working hours of men, women, and young people—boys and girls being only permitted to enter factories after passing their first communion-are eleven; but one hour and a half of these are deducted for meals and recreation. In order to maintain a good moral tone among the young people of different sexes, the strictest surveillance is exercised over them, and immediately anything approaching courtship is observed, the pair are summoned to the master's presence, and unless they consent to be married at once, are forthwith dismissed. This wholesome régime accounts for the respectability of the entire personne', all of whom looked particularly clean, well dressed, and contented. I must admit, however, that the character given by heads of firms at Dijon of their workpeople was not reassuring. The French artisan is gradually losing, they say, those habits of economy which once characterised him, and still characterise the peasant. The political ferments through which France has passed of late years have had an exciting and pernicious effect upon the working classes generally. Both artisan and peasant take a feverish interest in all that goes on in the political world, and are said to spend an extravagant amount of time in reading the newspapers and discussing politics. Doubtless a decade of peace within and without would serve to calm this unnatural excitement; but in the meantime I am assured by those who know the country folk well, that even their habits of thrift and laboriousness are considerably impaired by the halfpenny journals. The ploughman stops his plough, the vintager lays down his knife, the reaper his sickle, at the approach of the postman with his packet of journals, and work is not resumed till the contents are devoured. Indeed, one cannot walk or drive in the country without observing instances in point.

One word more about the products of Dijon. It may interest many readers to know that wood vinegar was discovered by a Dijonnais named Molrat, a friend of Napoleon the First, who came to the aid of the discoverer when he had ruined himself by his investigations. Wood vinegar, so useful in medicinal and chemical processes, is largely manufactured at Dijon. Travellers in hot climates should never be without a small quantity of this valuable antiseptic. A few drops put in a bath heal the skin of all irritations caused by the bites or stings of insects, heat-boils, &c. A drop applied by the finger will cure a mosquito bite, and, applied more lavishly, an adder's sting. One pint, which costs a shilling, with the addition of a little perfume, will furnish a dozen bottles of toilette vinegar, and may be easily concocted by the traveller for himself.

indeed were the visits I paid to friends in their country houses, and to peasant folk of their acquaintance in the rich villages of the famous Côte-for Dijon lies at the base of the renowned Côte-d'Or, colloquially called the Côte, a region of vines unparalleled for flavour in the world, a region of luxuriance and wealth which must be seen to be realised. There is one curious feature about this country to be recommended to the notice of wine-lovers. Just as you may draw a line through France from west to east, which, roughly speaking, the English tourist stream may be said never to overflow, so you may draw a line here between the region of the vins ordinaires (good ordinary claret), and the region of wines that have no price, that is to say, the best red wines grown anywhere on the earth's surface. The Côte begins where the plain ends, and the line dividing vins ordinaires from the vins sans prix must be drawn between the two, just, indeed, where the ground rises. Now, there is no possibility of ever increasing the quantity of these peerless wines of the Côte-d'Or, because their quality depends entirely on the nature of the soil, which, covering a limited extent only, cannot by any possibility be increased artificially as much as by a hairbreadth. Thus, the famous vintage of the Côte will ever remain one of Nature's monopolies, unless indeed the dreaded phylloxera, already said to be within a few leagues of Beaune, comes like Attila's host to destroy it at a blow. It is only natural that the phylloxera is a subject on everybody's tongue, and that a yellow leaf on a vine plant is looked upon with fear and trembling. Up to the present time both peasant vignerons and the large wine-growers have been as prosperous as any class in France, and you have only to visit these villages along the Côte to be convinced of the fact. In company of two friends—one an officer, who kindly drove us in his break, the other a well-known resident of Dijon-I made my first acquaintance with this part of the country. Nothing can be more self-evident than the ease and wealth of the wine-growing population. The villages are well built, well kept, and ciean; there are vines and flowers 'in every garden and window, and

every house possesses a first-rate cellar. There may be no parlour, the kitchen and sleeping apartments may be small, the furniture more or less homely, but there is invariably a cellar built on a large scale, and admirably adapted to the proper conservation of the wine. The wine cellar is by far the most important part of the house. On every side are vineyards, and as we gaze we are reminded of the inimitable thrift of the French peasant. Not an inch of soil between vine and vine is wasted. Where room is not to be had for a fruit tree, you find a black-currant bush, and where a blackcurrant bush would be cramped, you find potatoes or salad. Any and everything is planted among the vines-asparagus, gooseberry bushes, artichokes, fruit trees—the great object being to waste no inch of soil.

At the foot of the Côte we quitted our carriage and climbed a

and Mont Blanc, although the atmosphere was not quite clear. Our host for the day, the captain, did the honours to perfection. With charming grace and gaiety he entertained us in his temporary residence adjoining one of the forts in construction, bringing out the best he had. The English lady was fêted with a bouquet, and then, chatting pleasantly of garrison life at Dijon, we drove home. Dullness and awkwardness are plants seldom found on French soil, but for amiability and agreeableness generally there is no one to be compared to a French officer belonging to the better ranks of society. The Dijonnais country folks, however, are noted for their good manners and geniality generally, as the following incident will testify. My host had taken me on foot one morning-starting at seven o'clock, in order to avoid the great heat that had burst upon us so suddenly—to the picturesque little village of Fontaine, celebrated as the birthplace of St. Bernard. After seeing everything that was to be seen under the ciceroneship of the curé, we started homeward, and were taking a short cut across the vineyards, when a heavy rain-storm came on. Wet, draggled, and bemired, we made what haste we could to a vintager's cottage by the roadside, receiving the heartiest welcome from both master and mistress, hale old peasant folk of a superior class, enchanted to make my companion's acquaintance, on account of his renown as a lion hunter in Algeria ; both also pleased to entertain the English lady under his protection. These good people were evidently rich, though as homely as possible, and could therefore talk resignedly, nay cheerfully, of the bad prospects of this year. The vines are ruined,' said the old man, and then immediately changing the subject, he begged us to follow him upstairs in order to see his clocks and stuffed birds. Here, in the salon of the vintager's cottage, were clocks that would have adorned a Parisian boudoir, and cases of stuffed birds, English and foreign, implying a taste little to be expected of their owners. That very day he had purchased an elegant time-piece, not to use, but to look at—as a work of art indeed, for so French time-pieces must be called. He no more wanted the clock than he wanted a crocodile; he had barely standing room for the new acquisition in the overcrowded little parlour ; but it had taken his fancy, so there it was, a thousand francs, I should say, hardly covering the purchase. After seeing the stuffed foreign and native birds, among them several beautiful orioles, common in the woods here, we took our leave, not easily getting away without having tasted of their good wine and liqueurs. Our host and hostess could not conceive why we were unable to enjoy a glass of wine or cassis at eight o'clock in the morning, their own hours being extremely primitive. Two days after our visit to Fontaine, my friend's street bell was rung at five o'clock a.m., and lo! on the servant peeping her head out of her upper window, she saw our peasant in his shirt sleeves. He had just walked over, thus dressed, from Fontaine, and fearing lest at a later hour his call might be fruit

indeed were the visits I paid to friends in their country houses, and to peasant folk of their acquaintance in the rich villages of the famous Côte-for Dijon lies at the base of the renowned Côte-d'Or, colloquially called the Côte, a region of vines unparalleled for flavour in the world, a region of luxuriance and wealth which must be seen to be realised. There is one curious feature about this country to be recommended to the notice of wine-lovers. Just as you may draw a line through France from west to east, which, roughly speaking, the English tourist stream may be said never to overflow, so you may draw a line here between the region of the vins ordinaires (good ordinary claret), and the region of wines that have no price, that is to say, the best red wines grown anywhere on the earth's surface. The Côte begins where the plain ends, and the line dividing vins ordinaires from the vins sans prix must be drawn between the two, just, indeed, where the ground rises. Now, there is no possibility of ever increasing the quantity of these peerless wines of the Côte-d'Or, because their quality depends entirely on the nature of the soil, which, covering a limited extent only, cannot by any possibility be increased artificially as much as by a hairbreadth. Thus, the famous vintage of the Côte will ever remain one of Nature's monopolies, unless indeed the dreaded phylloxera, already said to be within a few leagues of Beaune, comes like Attila's host to destroy it at a blow. It is only natural that the phylloxera is a subject on everybody's tongue, and that a yellow leaf on a vine plant is looked upon with fear and trembling. Up to the present time both peasant vignerons and the large wine-growers have been as prosperous as any class in France, and you have only to visit these villages along the Côte to be convinced of the fact. In company of two friends—one an officer, who kindly drove us in his break, the other a well-known resident of Dijon—I made my first acquaintance with this part of the country. Nothing can be more self-evident than the ease and wealth of the wine-growing population. The villages are well built, well kept, and clean ; there are vines and flowers 'in every garden and window, and every house possesses a first-rate cellar. There may be no parlour, the kitchen and sleeping apartments may be small, the furniture more or less homely, but there is invariably a cellar built on a large scale, and admirably adapted to the proper conservation of the wine. The wine cellar is by far the most important part of the house. On every side are vineyards, and as we gaze we are reminded of the inimitable thrift of the French peasant. Not an inch of soil between vine and vine is wasted. Where room is not to be had for a fruit tree, you find a black-currant bush, and where a blackcurrant bush would be cramped, you find potatoes or salad. Any and everything is planted among the vines--asparagus, gooseberry bushes, artichokes, fruit trees—the great object being to waste no inch of soil.

At the foot of the Côte we quitted our carriage and climbed a

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