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[8] scholar in the class, and with whom my intimacy, for sixty years, has never been at any time impaired. He made West Point what it has been to the military character of the country, and is still alive (1869) at a great age,—a man of very great ability, of the highest distinction in his profession, and of the purest and truest honor and virtue.1

Soon after I left college,—in 1807,—my father, who had a great regard for classical learning, and knew that I had acquired very little of it, proposed to me to study with the Rev. John Sylvester John Gardiner, Rector of Trinity Church, who was in the habit of preparing a few pupils for Harvard College, and instructing others who had left college. Dr. Gardiner was a very good scholar, bred in England under Dr. Parr, and his teaching was undoubtedly better of the sort than any to be had elsewhere in New England. He received his pupils in his library, in his slippers and dressing-gown. I went to him after the other scholars had left him, from twelve to one o'clock, but sometimes a little earlier, in order to hear some of the recitations. He was a strict and accurate teacher, stern and severe to the inattentive and stupid, but kindly and helpful to willing workers.

I prepared at home what he prescribed, and the rest of the time occupied myself according to my tastes. I read with him parts of Livy, the Annals of Tacitus, the whole of Juvenal and Persius, the Satires of Horace, and portions of other Latin Classics which I do not remember. I wrote Latin prose and verse. In Greek, I read some books of the Odyssey, I don't remember how many; the Alcestis, and two or three other plays of Euripides; the Prometheus Vinctus of Aeschylus; portions of Herodotus, and parts of Thucydides,—of which last I only remember how I was tormented by the account of the Plague at Athens. This was the work of between two and three years.

Dr. Gardiner's manners were kind and conciliating to me, and he always received me good-naturedly. He was fond of having a small circle at supper, and often invited me,—an attention which he showed to no other of his pupils, most of them being too young. I was then seventeen. I met, at these pleasant suppers, Mr. William S. Shaw, the founder of the Athenaeum; Mr. William Wells, a pretty good classical scholar, bred in England, from 1798 to 1800 a tutor in Harvard College; the Rev. Joseph Buckminster, the most brilliant and cultivated preacher of the time; James Ogilvie, a Scotchman, who gave very striking lectures in Boston, on various subjects, and

1 General Thayer died September 7, 1872.

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