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[33] could hardly eat enough to support us; but we could not complain, with such misery about us. Two miles farther we came to another stream; we had to break the ice, and, after an hour's delay, make our way to the opposite bank as we could. There, from a hill, we saw two saddle-horses and a tandem chaise coming to our relief; Gray and I took the horses, thinking a horse for each a luxury indeed. We soon reached this place, having in fifty-six hours had but one proper meal! We are in very good lodgings, and are promised better roads to Richmond. . . . . On many accounts I am not sorry that I have gone through these difficulties. You, my dear father, often talk to me of your sufferings as a Revolutionary soldier, and you, my dear mother, look down a little on the pet your indulgence has made.— but now I can answer you both.


To Mr. E. Ticknor.

Richmond, February 1, 1815.
You will expect from me some account of Mr. Wickham, and of the Chief Justice of the United States, the first lawyer—if not, indeed, the first man—in the country. You must then imagine before you a man who is tall to awkwardness, with a large head of hair, which looked as if it had not been lately tied or combed, and with dirty boots. You must imagine him, too, with a strangeness in his manners, which arises neither from awkwardness nor from formality, but seems to be a curious compound of both; and then, perhaps, you will have before you a figure something like that of the Chief Justice. His style and tones in conversation are uncommonly mild, gentle, and conciliating; and, before I had been with him half an hour, I had forgotten the carelessness of his dress and person, and observed only the quick intelligence of his eye, and the open interest he discovered in the subjects on which he spoke, by the perpetual variations of his countenance.

Mr. Wickham, who has long been at the head of the Virginia bar, was by far too well bred to let me learn anything more of him in the course of a visit of twenty minutes, than that he was an uncommonly courteous, elegant gentleman. Mr. Wirt, who is the author of ‘The British Spy,’ etc., seems a little more reserved, and perhaps affected, in his manners and remarks. Indeed, on the whole, if I had not known better, I might have set him down for one of those who were ‘pretty fellows in their day,’ but who were now rather second-hand in society. But this is all wrong. He is undoubtedly a powerful advocate and a thorough lawyer, by general consent.


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