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[220] manes, and tails tied up; a practice which seems to be universal here with regard to horses. Their tails are not docked, but suffered to grow to their natural length, and then tied up to about the same shortness with the docked tail. On our way to Rouen, which was fifty-four miles, we changed horses as many as a dozen times. I succeeded on the way so well with my little French as to extract considerable information from le conducteur, and also to add to my facility in the use of the language. Now, indeed, I feel the situation of a foreigner, who cannot speak the language of the country where he is. He is cut off from society and from a great source of knowledge, and his thoughts are all imprisoned within himself. In the few hours during which I have been in France, my mind has been chafing in the chains by which it is now confined. I feel sensibly the advantages which I lose from not being able to speak the language, and I feel mortified at being restrained to the uttering of a few sentences, and that in such a stammering uncouth way, that the very postilion stares at me. However, I shall not be deterred. My rule is to practise upon everybody; to take every opportunity to speak the language, even if it be but a word; for every time of trial gives me assurance, and also adds to my stock of words or phrases. Accordingly I did not hesitate all the way from Havre to Rouen to interrogate le conducteur to the full extent of my knowledge; and he was pleased to endure me with great grace.

The road from Havre to Rouen (the upper one) which I travelled was mostly through a level champaign country. It was very smooth, and made easy going for the horses compared with our roads; though the lowness of the wheels of the diligence, and its general cumbersomeness, went far to counterbalance the facilities of the road. Within a few miles from Havre we passed through Harfleur, the same, I suppose, which Harry V. of England besieged. It is a small but very ancient place, with streets so narrow that it seemed as if I could span them, and surrounded by a decayed wall and moat. It was the last part of the month of December, and yet the plough and harrow were seen constantly in the fields, and sheep grazing, with a shepherd and dog in attendance. How the romance of poetry and bucolics was dashed by the appearance of these men! Their flocks did not appear to consist of more than forty or fifty sheep; and they were rude-looking men, who lounged about with a cane instead of a shepherd's crook. Their vocation arises from the absence of fences to separate different parcels of land. Here and there you may see a thin ridge or mound of earth, or a hedge, in the neighborhood of a house, and surrounding some choice field; but nearly all the lands are without any kind of fence. This gives the country a very open appearance to one accustomed to the stone walls and rail fences of New England. By the wayside I constantly saw cottages and barns covered with thatch, which was generally overgrown with moss. The thatch appears to be straw matted on the roof quite thickly. In observation of the country, and in reflection upon what I saw, the time passed away until, after descending a long and steep hill, we entered Rouen,—time-honored Rouen. If Havre appeared ancient, what shall I say of Rouen? I seemed among catacombs. Nothing

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