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[204] consequence of a difference that had thus arisen in the amphitheatre in the morning1 . . . . .

It is a curious and interesting sight to see the people, when, from their union in a great mass, they feel their own strength, and when, from their excitement, they enter into the rights of their own importance and power,—when, in fact, they feel themselves to be what they are, and become for the moment free in consequence of it. Royalty is little respected on Mondays in Madrid, and therefore whatever the people persist in requiring in the amphitheatre,—even to the extreme cruelty of putting fire upon the bull's back to goad his fury,—is always granted, to avoid unpleasant consequences. Their exclamations and cries, too, which from the excitement under which they are uttered often seem revolutionary, are sometimes curious, and such as on any other occasion would be found offensive and dangerous. Of an uncommonly brave and persevering bull, several young men in my neighborhood cried out repeatedly that he was fit to be the president of the Cortes, and of another, who shrunk from the contest after receiving only two blows from the picador, apparently the same persons kept shouting,. . . . that he was as cowardly as a king. . . . The bull-fights are, indeed, a warrant and apology for all sorts of licentiousness in language, in the same way the Roman shows were; and, like the amphitheatre of Flavius, that of Madrid would furnish a little anthology of popular wit, which, though it might strongly savor of vulgarity, could hardly fail to be very characteristic and amusing. . . . .

After all, however, the people are not so bad as might reasonably be anticipated from all the means that seem to be studiously taken to corrupt them. The lower class especially is, I think, the finest materiel I have met in Europe to make a great and generous people;

1 Talking about bull-fights with the Duke de Laval, he spoke of the women's love of them, and said that, at the last, one of the royal princesses had driven the pica into the bull's neck,—the nail to which are attached the colors of the province from which the bull came. Mr. Ticknor said that he could scarcely believe that of any woman, but that she was a Portuguese, and might be pretty coarse. ‘Well,’ said the Ambassador, ‘you are going to court, of course,’ naming the day; ‘come and stand by me when the royal family pass, and I will make her boast of it.’ When the time came, Mr. Ticknor took his place by the Duke; the ladies of course stopped to speak with the Ambassador of France. When the Portuguese princess came, the Duke said to her that he heard they had a fine bull-fight on Monday. ‘O yes,’ she said; ‘and I did something towards its success, for I drove in the pica

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