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[291] Paris. It seems that Sismondi had just received a copy without note or any indication from whom it came; but he supposes it, perhaps rightly, from the author. He requested me, when writing home, to let Mr. Prescott know that he had received it; that he had glanced through its pages with the greatest pleasure, and had found masses of authorities cited in the notes with which he had been hitherto entirely unacquainted. He added that, as he was in Paris for only a short time, he should not read the work till his return to Geneva, when he should address the author a letter. I recounted to him the circumstances so discouraging under which the work had been composed, and I assure you he received them with the liveliest interest. He said that he could never have struggled against such difficulties himself, and that he should fall asleep at once on hearing a foreign language read. I trust you to mention to Mr. Prescott what Sismondi requested I should write him. I regret that I have not been able to procure here a couple of copies of Prescott's book, as there are two Spaniards now here, whom I have met several times and feel considerably acquainted with, who are prepared from my conversation to be interested in the work; one is the Procureur-General of Spain, and the other is a Deputy of the Cortez. If I could sow the seed with them, it might add to the author's just reputation and to the character of our country. This last consideration is one which I bear not a little in mind in my intercourse with foreigners. Much were my Spanish friends astonished, that the great sovereigns of their country should find a historian on the other side of the water.

Sismondi talked much and with great ardor of slavery. He is a thorough abolitionist, and is astonished that our country will not take a lesson from the ample page of the past and eradicate slavery, as has been done in the civilized parts of Europe. The serfs of the feudal system have entirely disappeared, and a better state of society has taken their place. I had heard in America that the little history of the Italian Republics in Lardner's ‘Cyclopaedia’ had been composed in English by him; he told me that it was translated under his eyes, but not by him, for that he cannot write English. The ‘Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire’ was translated by Mrs. Austin. He inquired after Dr. Channing particularly, and expressed his admiration of his sermons, but, above all, of his work on slavery. The brochure on Texas he had not yet received. He is anxious for some provision in our country securing a copyright to authors, but he would be content with a moderate allowance; he says there is a middle ground on which the rights of the public might be respected, as well as those of authors. He thought Sergeant Talfourd had gone too far.

Have I written you that De Gerando is preparing a large work in three volumes on the ‘Charitable Institutions of the World?’ What he says about those of the United States I was asked to read in manuscript. I have no doubt the work will contain much valuable matter. De Gerando has been made a peer this winter. He is rather old, and appears (if I may use the expression) a little fussy in his manner. His mind seems filled by his book, whether he is in his professor's chair, his seat as peer, his salon, or at the head of his table; in all of which places I have seen him. He is quite

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