evenings, when a very little boy, he would sit at the table and fight the battles of the Moors and Spaniards, using spools to represent the contending knights and squadrons. Of the early display of this martial spirit and other manifestations of character a picture is given in the following letter from his teacher, Mr. George Fowle, whose kindly sympathy James ever remembered with gratitude.
You could not have made me a more pleasing gift than that of the likeness of our loved and loving James. . . . . He was always prompt and ready for all our school doings, whether of frolic or labor, picnic or exhibition. He showed his military turn at an early age. At one time when English history had warmed up the boys into a military ardor, they divided themselves into Saxons and Normans, and James was chosen commander of the latter. Our old Scotch carpenter, whom you may remember, Mr. Troup, was called upon to furnish us with wooden swords and shields, and I was laboriously engaged in making devices and mottoes to be placed upon the shields. I had the shield of James in my possession till I lost it on my removal to my present rooms. The device was a bull in wild career and the motto,His relish for the heroic made him delight in the poetry which recounts the deeds of valor in stirring verse; and he seemed never weary, even when he became a man, of reading Macaulay's Lays, Aytoun's Border Minstrelsy, and Scott's Poems. On the eve of actual battle, James was heard quoting from ‘Henry of Navarre.’ Being so full of romantic feeling, it was to be expected that he would have a vivid perception of beauty, and so, indeed, he had; it was to him the manifestation of God in the world. He had a fine ear, and his musical taste was apparent when so small that he had to climb upon the music-stool before the piano, and twine his legs around its stem to keep from falling off. Thus perched, he would study out simple tunes, and then practise them untilWhen I wave my sword on high,We had been reading “Ivanhoe” at the time, as illustrative of the reign of Richard Coeur-de-Lion, and James hit upon Front-de-Boeuf as his pattern.
See the Saxon porkers fly.