South. Perhaps her book may be burned by the hangman; certainly it will be placed on the Index Expurgatorius of the South. I wonder that your free spirit can endure the bondage to which opinion at the South must subject you, tying your tongue and taming all your expressions. I ask pardon for this language, for perhaps I mistake your views and situation. You speak of studying law. I should hesitate long before encouraging you in such a step. Why study law? For money? Considering your age and country of birth, is it not doubtful whether you could reap more from it than from your present exertions? For office? There is no political office in the United States worth your acceptance. I say in all sincerity that I would take your literary reputation in preference to any office in my country. For reputation? In my view, the reputation of no lawyer is equal to yours. Then, you must not expose yourself to the imputation of fickleness, of changing your employment for ever, and of being, as Dryden says of some one, ‘all things by starts and nothing long;’ or, of the lines of Juvenal,—Your attainments and reputation are already quite encyclopaedic; but such a change as you propose would excite surprise. Do not abandon your present vantage ground in the field of literature. At the bar you would be for the present on a level with the vast herd. You would be obliged to push your way through the thick and serried ranks of the profession, jealous perhaps of a new comer with such a reputation as yours. In literature you are on your native heath, and your name is MacGregor. Faithfully yours,
Grammaticus, rhetor, geometres, pictor, aliptes,
Augur, schoenobates, medicus, magus: omnia novit.Juvenal. Sat. III. 76, 77.C. S.
4 Court St., Saturday, July, 1837.my dear George,—Yours came to hand last evening, and I shall write a line which I hope you will get on Sunday. All things are calm as a mirror. I sit, like Nicholas Biddle ‘of a summer morning,’ in the shaded recess of an office, nor am I disturbed by many new or urgent applications. The——s vex me with daily notes and requests to call upon them, and some little affairs—trustees-answers, &c.—consume much of my time. There is an utter dearth of all event in our circle. The news from Europe has filled all ears, and people talk foolishly about the Queen, Victoria, and anticipate a chivalric court, because forsooth there is a youthful maiden queen. The Morning Chronicle is in black lines, and all the papers abound in those particulars of the death and character of the old king, and of the proclamation of the girl, which you know are so greedily devoured by English readers.
This text is part of:
Table of Contents:
Chapter 2 : Parentage and Family.—the father.
Chapter 3 : birth and early Education.— 1811 - 26 .
Chapter 4 : College Life.— September , 1826 , to September , 1830 .—age, 15 - 19 .
Chapter 5 : year after College.— September , 1830 , to September , 1831 .—Age, 19 - 20 .
Chapter 6 : Law School .— September , 1831 , to December , 1833 .—Age, 20 - 22 .
Chapter 7 : study in a law office .—Visit to Washington .— January , 1854 , to September , 1834 .—Age, 23 .
Chapter 8 : early professional life.— September , 1834 , to December , 1837 .—Age, 23 - 26 .
Chapter 9 : going to Europe .— December , 1837 .—Age, 26 .
Chapter 10 : the voyage and Arrival.— December , 1837 , to January , 1838 — age, 26 - 27 .
Chapter 11 : Paris .—its schools.— January and February , 1838 .—Age, 27 .
Chapter 12 : Paris .—Society and the courts.— March to May , 1838 .—Age, 27 .
Chapter 13 : England .— June , 1838 , to March , 1839 .—Age, 27 - 28 .
Chapter 14 : first weeks in London .— June and July , 1838 .—Age, 27 .
Chapter 15 : the Circuits .—Visits in England and Scotland .— August to October , 1838 .—age, 27 .
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 United States License.
An XML version of this text is available for download, with the additional restriction that you offer Perseus any modifications you make. Perseus provides credit for all accepted changes, storing new additions in a versioning system.