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[155] party at Mad. Necker's,1 a cousin of Mad. de Stael, who is considered in Geneva but little her inferior in original power of mind, and of whom Mad. de Stael once said, ‘Ma cousine Necker a tous les talens qu'on me suppose, et toutes les vertus que je n'ai pas.’ She is about fifty, and resembles Mad. de Stael a little, and is interesting in conversation from a certain dignity and force in her remarks.

To Elisha Ticknor.

Geneva, September 19, 1817.
I left Paris, as I told you I should, September 2d, with the Duke de Broglie and the Baron de Stael, who were to pass a week with the Marquis de Lafayette. My time was more limited, and when, after a visit of three days, I found I must leave his venerable castle, I felt that it had been much too short, for since I have been in Europe I have seen nothing like the genuine hospitality and patriarchal simplicity of his establishment.

From there I came directly to Switzerland, and when I first saw the Lake of Geneva at Lausanne recognized all the traits that poetry and romance have not been able to exaggerate. Such a view, such a variety and prodigality in the beauties of nature as I saw there, I never saw before. The day that I passed there—gazing with unwearied delight on the rocks of Meillerie, the mountains of Savoy, the Pays de Vaud, and, above all, the lake that rolls in the midst of them—is one I shall never forget.

By the kindness of friends in Paris, and especially the family of Mad. de Stael, I brought many letters here, so that from the evening I arrived I have hardly been a moment alone. The society is such as I most like; much more to my taste than the gayer and more witty circles in Paris, of which I had a complete surfeit.

Almost every person I know here is an important man in the government of their little republic, and yet, such is the genius of the government and the tendency of society, that, except Sir Francis d'ivernois, all are men of letters. For instance, Prof. Pictet, the worthy successor of Saussure, Prof. De Candolle, and Prof. Prevost, the three great pillars of the University, are at the same time important members of the Council of State. M. Favre, the richest man in the city,

1 This lady, known as Mad. Necker de Saussure, published in 1828 a work in three volumes, called ‘L'Education Progressive, ou Etude du Cours de la Vie’; which for wisdom, delicacy of discernment, and acute observation is superior to any study of the subject of the time.

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