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[481] and is, on the whole, an extremely good passport to general kindness and good-will. At any rate, I would not change my passport-signed by some little scamp of an under-secretary at Washington, whose name I have forgotten — for any one of the fifteen hundred that are lying with it at the Police in Dresden, from Russia, France, and England.

My own life here is, in the main, a quiet and very agreeable one. Society makes no claims till dinner-time, and even then few; for dinner-parties are rare. . . .. . Calls are made at five or six o'clock in the evening, and parties begin at eight or nine. . . . . . We have the whole day, and often the evenings, to ourselves. I read pretty hard, for I find a great deal to make up, and every moment of my time is occupied. I pick up, among other things, a good deal for my Spanish matters; but it is quite impossible to write out a book here, so importunate are the demands for mere reading and studying upon one who wishes to talk, in such society as I see constantly, upon anything like equal terms with the persons of which it is composed, or improve the advantages pressed upon him.


February 16.—To-day being Mardi-gras, the last day of Carnival, the King gave his last ball. It began at six o'clock, as usual; we had supper at half past 8, and the dancing continued until twelve, immediately after which all amusements and refreshments were stopped, the princes and princesses went round and spoke to as many of the company as they could, and then all came away. It is the only ball of the season which we have stayed through to the end, but this time we saw the whole of it,—the dance of the grossvater, with which these entertainments are ended, and all. It was brilliant and animated; the party being required to come in full dress, and the populace being admitted behind the barriers to see the show, as they were at the first ball. . . . .

Before supper, in a corner of the presence-chamber, I had an hour of most agreeable talk with Mad. de Luttichau, Prince John, Countess Bose, and Mad. de Blumner; a part of which was none the less piquant from being on the principle and feeling of loyalty, which I told them I supposed an American republican was not fairly capable of comprehending. Mad. de Luttichau managed the conversation with great dexterity and esprit.

February 20.—I was engaged this evening at Tieck's, but we were

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