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Chapter 9: going to Europe.—December, 1837.—Age, 26. From his boyhood Sumner had longed to visit Europe, and with his reading of history this desire grew into a passion. The want of the necessary funds compelled him to postpone its gratification until he had in part earned them, and won friends who would advance the rest. A circumstance gleaned from the letters of Browne and Hopkinson, which occurred during his last year in the Law School, is significant of his earnestness in this direction. He nearly completed, at that time, a negotiation by which a gentleman was to defray his expenses for a year's travelling abroad, in consideration of certain personal services to be rendered at home. Its details are not preserved; but the two classmates, who did not hear of the proposed arrangement until it had fallen through, upbraided him in a friendly way for proposing to assume an obligation which they thought would compromise his personal independence. This strong desire, increasing