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Sumner was at this time a great favorite in Boston society. He was welcomed to the best houses as soon as he reached home. He frequented those of Mr. Ticknor, Nathan Appleton, Harrison Gray Otis, Abbott Lawrence, the Austins, Eliots, Dwights, and Guilds. He was always glad to meet the Calderons during their visits to their relatives on Chestnut Street. He passed long evenings with Jeremiah Mason, talking of law and lawyers and the topics of the day. He was often a visitor at Dr. Channing's, and held much grave discourse with him on war and slavery, and whatever concerned the progress of the race. Of the new friendships which Sumner formed at this time, the one he most cherished was that with William H. Prescott, then living with his venerable parents on Bedford Street. He met, on his return, with a very friendly reception from the historian, who had already gratefully recognized his interest while abroad in the success of the ‘Ferdinand and Isabella.’ He often dined with Mr. Prescott; usually joined him at his Sunday-evening supper, and was one of the family party on Thanksgiving Day.1 He was always among the guests when the historian gathered about him the scholars of the day,—Sparks, Ticknor, Palfrey, Bancroft, Felton, Longfellow, and Hillard.2 Mr. Prescott, while a conservative in politics, was always catholic in his friendships; and his relations with Sumner were never affected by the differences upon the slavery question, which afterwards alienated many others.3 On Saturday afternoons, Sumner went to Cambridge to dine and pass the night with Longfellow at the Craigie House, where Felton usually joined them at dinner. At Judge Story's and Professor Greenleaf's he was, as before his visit to Europe, received with a hearty greeting and cherished with tender interest. With the Nortons, also, he found congenial company. Nor did he forget his early and constant friend, Mrs. Judge Howe, with whom, in a half-serious, half-jesting way, he talked, as in earlier days, of the happy period when he might have a fireside of his own.

1 A note of Mr. Prescott's father, Nov. 16, 1840, invited Sumner to join ‘our family party of grandparents, parents, and children at a Thanksgiving dinner at four o'clock.’ ‘Blind-man's-buff’ was played in the evening, in which Sumner took part.

2 Mr. Everett left for Europe in the summer of 1840.

3 See Ticknor's ‘Life of Prescott,’ p. 336. Letters of Prescott to Sumner are printed on pp. 339, 348, 349, 351-354. Other references to Sumner are made on pp. 225, 246, 330, 332, 395. Mr. Prescott was born May 4, 1796, and died Jan. 28, 1859. His father, Judge William Prescott, died Dec. 8, 1844, at the age of eighty-two.

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