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[587] had put but one restriction on the press,—which was not to publish news about the war, except sanctioned by the regular bulletins.

Sumner bade farewell to Italy on the 21st,—unhappy, as he wrote to Dr. Howe, at the thought that he should not see the country again, a presentiment which proved true.1 He drove by way of Susa in an open carriage, hired only by himself, at the price of two hundred and twenty francs, across the mountains, meeting on the way the French troops marching to Italy. He wrote to Dr. Howe:—

On the way, gleaming at each turn in the defiles of the Alps, I met the French forces—a squadron of the line, flying artillery, and the lancers—descending. Nothing could be more picturesque. Then would come a solitary soldier, foot-sore. When I encountered the lancers,—all beautifully mounted, each with a lance and pennon, the officers dressed as completely as on the streets of Paris, stretching farther than the eye could reach,—my postilion seemed confused as to the law of the road, and I hesitated which side to take. The officer cried out, “au milieu, au milieu!” the postilion at once struck into the middle, while the lancers parted, and I drove between these two long lines. Of course I took off my hat as I passed the officers, and they all returned my recognition,—sometimes by taking off the hat, and sometimes by the military salute. The day was charming, and I seemed to be travelling in a picture.

Comparing his condition on his arrival at Paris with what it was when he was under medical treatment in that city, he felt assured that he had made a certain advance in health since he entered it a year before. He wrote to Dr. Howe, May 25, the day after his arrival:—

Now for the first time I have a clear and most appreciable measure of my improvement. I am in the same rooms where I suffered so much, and I daily descend stairs and walk pavements where at each step was a smart, an ache, or a strain. Now all is changed; I walk naturally and unconsciously. I sit down in a chair without thinking how I am to get up; and I get up without an effort or a pain. It is only when I walk a little fast that I am reminded of coming trouble on the chest, that the abnormal sensibility is not yet all gone. But this summer and autumn will do the business. Of course, I must make thorough work of my cure, and continue to stave off active labor that I may be in condition for my public duties in December. I shall not return until I can announce myself as recovered, without being obliged to make any reserves.

He remained in Paris a month, meeting there Bemis, Motley, Bigelow, and Joseph Lyman, and seeing much of Theodore

1 His love for Italy appears in his letter to a public meeting in New York. Feb. 17, 1860. (Works, vol. IV. pp. 413-415.) His interest in Italian unity was often shown. Letters of Jan. 10 and Feb. 27, 1871; Works, vol. XIV. pp. 139-141; Ibid., p. 167.

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