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[238] and those who did not appreciate his finer qualities could yet perceive his solid steadiness of purpose, or admire the regularity of his physical life, and the perfection of his athletic strength. The ordinary opportunities in college life for vigorous exercise are many, and Willard made the most of them. He became a tough and expert rower; he was the best walker, leaper, and vaulter of his Class, or perhaps of the college during his day; and in fencing and boxing, his coolness and perfect self-control, his untiring muscular strength, his supple frame, and great length of limb, made him a most formidable antagonist.

These were qualities sure of appreciation in college; but this always a little annoyed him. He could not but feel the unthinking injustice done to higher qualities by the exclusive applause bestowed upon humbler ones; and it was not his aim, in the education of his body, to be praised as a gymnast. In his last year at Harvard the boating contests between Harvard and Yale began, and in the first—on Lake Winnipiseogee— he was selected to pull the heaviest oar. The victory gave a great stimulus to boating at Cambridge, and to that hardy culture which formed a school for the war, and sent forth many of those who had contended manfully together for the prize of endurance and strength, to fight and die side by side on the battle-field.

He graduated in 1852, in the same class with Paul Revere and Foster Haven, the former a companion at the Latin School, the latter an old acquaintance before college days, and a friend almost as it were by inheritance. Endeared by many ties, and often familiarly associated, Willard and Haven met their end on the same bloody field of battle, and almost at the same moment.

After graduation, Willard entered the Law School at Cambridge, coming to the study of the law in pursuance of long-settled plans. He was eminently fitted for this career. His judgment was cool, and he inspired all who dealt with him with confidence. He was able to meet every emergency that might arise,—not by immediate preparation, but from acquirements

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