Thus, wherever he goes, his natural good spirits prevail over everything. Washington Irving, in his diary, speaks of Longfellow at Madrid as having ‘arrived safely and cheerily, having met with no robbers.’ Mrs. Alexander Everett, wife of the American minister at Madrid, writes back to America, ‘His countenance is itself a letter of recommendation.’ He went into good Spanish society and also danced in the streets on village holidays. At the Alhambra, he saw the refinement of beauty within the halls, and the clusters of gypsy caves in the hillside opposite. After eight months of Spain he went on to Italy, where he remained until December, and passed to Germany with the new year. He sums up his knowledge of the languages at this point by saying, ‘With the French and Spanish languages I am familiarly conversant so as to speak them correctly and write them with as much ease and fluency as I do the English. The Portuguese I read without difficulty. And with regard to my proficiency in the Italian, I have only to say that all at the hotel where I lodge ’
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