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A Book of travels is no longer a book of marvels. There remain but small portions of terra incognita. Asia and the Americas are pouring in their tributes to the curiosity of this locomotive age. Africa, even, in the page of Cummings and others, peers from behind her veil of mystery, and the Arctics are melting their frigid bonds, to flow in the channels of literature. The only merit reserved for a volume of travels is, either that the ground is untrodden, or that the mode of observation is new and peculiar. The author can lay no claim to the former. Something may be conceded to him, from the fact imported by the title-A Buckeye Abroad. A native of the west, and of that part, familiarly known as the Buckeye State, -may be supposed to look upon the scenes and mingle with the throngs of the Old World with new and peculiar sensations, which may find sympathy, if not with the general reader, at least with readers in Ohio. Indeed it was such an interest at home that called for the revision and the publication of these passages of travel. They embrace a tour through France, Italy, Germany, Belgium, Scotland, England and Ireland ; delightful sojournings at Rome, Naples, Malta, Venice, Athens, Smyrna,
Constantinople, Geneva, and amid the Alps; and observations along the Mediterranean, amidst the isles of Greece.
The pleasure of travelling was enhanced by companionship. We numbered four in our company, two ladies and a gentleinan, Mr. Philo Buckingham, and myself—just the number for convenience and unity of movement, as well as for pleasure. The time, too, was propitious. The year 1851 may be truly called annus mirabilis, at least so far as travellers were concerned. The Great Exhibition—that novel phaze of our civilization - was enough to entitle the year to the honor, as a special wonder.
Each observer is a type of a large class of observers, mankind generally; and it is not to be accounted egotistical that the writer perpetually speaks of himself.
Of necessity he must use his own senses and reason; but through these, others, especially if educated and governed by similar influences, may perceive and reflect, by virtue of the common vinculum, which binds mankind together. The impressions herein recorded were mostly taken upon the spot, and the allusions, historical, classical, or otherwise, were not sought for, but sprung out of the time and locality. Each lineament of cach form in Nature or Art, each custom and characteristic were daguerreotyped, though somewhat rapidly, if not imperfectly, from the original, as it appeared in itself and in its environment. Well knowing the inferior rank in literature to which a work of this kind is entitled, I reluctantly commit it to the public, trusting that it may be read as it was written, more for enjoyment than profit.
S. S. C. ZANESVILLE, Ono, Jan. 1, 1852.