to the combatants.
I have told the story as illustrative of the quick imagination that distinguished Frank from his childhood.
Of his personal traits at this time I recall with pleasure a chivalrous generosity.
He was far the most quick-tempered boy among us. But although he was quick as a flash to feel an injury, he was equally ready to forgive one.
His was not a nature that sprang up quickly, because there was no earth.
When the sun was up, it found him securely planted and safely grown.
While fitting for college, in the Boston Latin School, he easily maintained that scholarly preeminence among his companions which was so marked in his childhood.
One of his schoolmates says of him:—
His genius and scholarship dazzled me. I remember the awe with which I received the announcement that he could cap over twelve hundred lines of Latin verse.
We both belonged to the “Eagle Draughts Club,” in which he excelled the rest of us, and to the “Franklin Literary Association,” in which his debating powers excited the admiration of all and the envy of not a few.
One bright July morning, in the summer of 1855, the writer of this memoir was standing with lexicon and grammer under his arm, in Brattle Street, waiting for the Cambridge
omnibus to come and take him out to the dreaded examination.
Foremost in the group of confident Latin-School boys, who went out in the same coach, I remember one dressed in pure white, candidatus
, talking and laughing with a freedom from care which amazed my anxious mind.
It so happened that he sat on the form directly in front of me all through the first day's examination; and the ease and rapidity with which he disposed of his papers filled me with a kind of dismay.
He never seemed at a loss.
That dark head of wavy hair never once sank with a fear or vacillated with a doubt.
Long before any other had finished his papers, he was leisurely scanning the young men about him, his own work all done.
‘That's Hopkinson,’ said one of his schoolmates to whom I gave the description soon afterwards.
The more intimate acquaintance which ensued during our college course only deepened this first impression of his extraordinary gifts.