manuscript, or authority in a public or private library of England
, that was not at his command; everybody was ready to assist him in his more recondite researches; and for a whole Session he was an attentive listener to the debates of Parliament.
It was the same in Paris
, where, a perfect French scholar, he was in constant attendance in the Chamber of Deputies
, frequently visiting the lecture-rooms of the Sorbonne, and the College of France
, all of whose Professors acceded to his slightest wish to aid him with the fruits of their learning and experience.
, then our minister to France
, was engaged in the investigation of our claim to the Northeastern Boundary
, and at his request, Mr. Sumner
wrote that celebrated Treatise on the subject, which excited such great admiration in this country.
He went through Germany
, with the same objects in view; and being master of that language also, he accumulated vast stores of learning by conversations with the great scientists and statesmen of that nation.
He afterwards extended his journey to Italy
, where again his ripe scholarship, in that most beautiful of all modern tongues, multiplied his facilities for acquisition, and enhanced greatly the charms of his visit.
But his objects were not limited to the acquisition of mere learning.
Endowed by nature with a delicate sense of the beautiful, and having an intense relish for society, he often said that it was impossible for him to give to ordinary persons anything like an adequate idea of the exquisite pleasure he experienced in studying Art in the best galleries of Europe
, and enjoying the society of its most learned and gifted men and women.
These few years he always looked back upon as the most useful