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[84] provincialism is best to be seen in the little French town, some imaginary Tarascon or Carcassonne, where the notary and the physician and the rentiers sit and play dominoes and feebly disport themselves in a benumbed world of petty gossip. But what the Parisian or the Londoner would assume to be provincial among us is an American town, perhaps of the same size, but which has already its schools and its public library well established, and is now aiming at a gallery of art and a conservatory of music. To confound these opposite extremes of development under one name is like confounding childhood and second childhood; the one representing all promise, the other all despair. Mr. Henry James, who proves his innate kindness of heart by the constancy with which he is always pitying somebody, turns the full fervor of his condolence on Hawthorne for dwelling amid the narrowing influences of a Concord atmosphere. But if those influences gave us ‘The Scarlet Letter’ and Emerson's ‘Essays,’ does it not seem almost a pity that we cannot extend that same local atmosphere, as President Lincoln proposed to do with Grant's whiskey, to some of our other generals?

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