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peculiar I have ever known. He can accurately repeat many celebrated speeches, which he retains in his memory for a long period of time; whilst he would forget in three minutes any passage in Horace, unless, perchance, it had been used in the shape of a quotation by some distinguished statesman. In addition to the singularities I have already mentioned, a particular dislike to all exertion which is not absolutely necessary is, I think, somewhat remarkable : I have often known him remain within doors on the most beautiful day in order to write out the lists of the majority and minority on some question. If, however, he is induced to make a perambulation, it never can be extended beyond the limits of Salt Hill, where he generally regales himself with a melon and some strawberries and cream. It would be unjust to Mr. Willoughby to omit mentioning the grand theatre of his action--the Eton Soeiety-which, in a former Number, I acquainted my readers had existed here for fifteen years. It is here that his talents are displayed to their best advantage, and I will venture to assert, what indeed is very generally acknowledged, that he is, in this respeet, much superior to his companions, though they may surpass him in other pursuits. One of the principal failings which


friend possesses (if it deserves the name) is, a natural timidity, which frequently prevents him from openly asserting his opinion ; indeed, I know of few things which would tend so much to diminish (I will not say weaken) his arguments, as an opponent rendered formidable by broad shoulders or a powerful arm.

With all these singular propensities, which may bear the appearance of eccentricity in this our lesser world, he has

qualities, which, the more you know of them, the more you can appreciate, and which render him both an agreeable companion, and a valuable friend. When in the presence of those, whom, from the difference of their pursuits, and inclinations he may consider as not well disposed towards him, he maintains a somewhat reserved manner, but with his friends he assumes quite a different character, and does not hesitate to give his opinion upon any subject. He makes no scruple in pointing out any deficiency which he thinks he can discover on your part, but one caneasily overlook these ingenious discoveries; indeed, the undeviating good humour he preserves, and in which spirit these discoveries are generally made, is more calculated to excite a laugh than to provoke your anger. As he has a happy command of language, to which is joined a competent knowledge of history, he is enabled to talk freely on any subject; indeed to so great a degree does he excel in this, that I know not whether the volubility of his tongue or the generosity of his heart is most pre-eminent. Mr. Willoughby has now been at Eton three years; still has the same propensities and inclinations; and still maintains the same somewhat eccentric character. He lives, comparatively speaking, rather secluded, and is considered as the political phenomenon of the day; he has often been censured for his seclusion, and praised for his eloquence ; but, however, though he may not possess the substantial qualities of a Heaviside, the pedigree of a Rice, or the poetical talents of a Jermyn, he has qualities which, if sufficiently exerted, and properly directed, may enable him to distinguish himself, perhaps in no inconsiderable manner, in after-life.


That our lot in life is cast by chance and confirmed by habit, is a frequent and obvious remark.

But few are willing to apply the full force of this truism to themselves ; few are ready to admit that the tone of their character and tenor of their pursuits have resulted from other causes than the free choice and natural inclination of their mind. Still less is it flattering to the vanity of any one, to confess that he has casually entered

upon the pursuit of objects, to the attainment of which his best endeavours and fondest hopes are now directed, and that he has blindly touched the spring which now gives an impulse to his energies, and points out the motive of his exertions. Yet it must be owned, if we proceed to examine the extent and influence of this principle, that the pursuits and profession of future life are generally decided at an age so early, as far to precede the development of character, still more the possibility of free choice, in the individual whose course is thus predetermined.

The mind of youth, while yet pliant and susceptible, receives impressions too deeply traced, and on too clear a tablet, to be easily obliterated; it sees through a foreign medium, appropriates to itself the hereditary opinions and perhaps prejudices of its forefathers, and often closely copies the peculiar features and characteristic colouring of those minds in casual collision with its own.

Reared in such a soil, and trained by such culture, the youthful plant, when arrived at maturity, and capable of self-support, will make use of the vigour of its shoots and beauty of its blossoms, solely for those purposes pointed out by the hand which guided its infant growth. No doubt, many benefits arise from this all-pervading system ; without it the unaided power of reason would perhaps be inadequate to the task of impressing on the rising generation a due respect for the memory, and obedience to the institutions, of their fathers. If, then, these barriers to innovation were removed, to what an extent would the established harmony and organized principles of society be endangered. On the other hand, a venial doubt may be entertained, whether mere partial respect for antiquity may not sometimes induce us to cling too closely to its institutions, and oppose with too narrow a jealousy, the introduction of those improvements which the extended views, or pressing exigence of the time may suggest. On such adoption of principles and accommodation to circumstances, rests the welfare and indeed existence of every community, no less than the pureness of the ocean depends on the fluctuation of its waters.

It may perhaps be objected, that the different usages of society are originally suggested by the dictates of nature, and regulated by the peculiar character of their respective climates, and that consequently the customs handed down from early, and held in respect by succeed. ing, ages, would have been equally observed, had posterity been left to follow the unbiassed impulse of their genius. But if among the imperceptible revolutions and progressive expansion of the mind, such a principle were to become prevalent, who could analyse its powers, or who could appoint the limits of its action? Where must we fix the boundary, within which, it would merely tend to confirm the natural tenor of our energies, but beyond it, would prove a fatal obstruction to the spirit of enterprise and improvement ?

But are national customs always the offspring of nature, harmonizing with the temper and complexion of their climate? Do the banks of the Niger enforce any indispensable necessity of the tattoo ? Do the forests of Germany inculcate the use of the segar, or the summer skies of Constantinople that of opium? Has oriental scenery alone superinduced that elaborate barbarism, that immutable bigotry to their own and abhorrence of foreign institutions, which has for ages rendered China the historical phenomenon of the world ? All-powerful, then, as that feeling appears to be, which has reconciled the captive to his dungeon, and the Indian widow to the pile of her husband, with what daring and capacious energies must those master-minds have been endowed, which, throwing off the shackles forged by chance, and rivetted by habit, have pointed, from time to time, the path of progressive improvement-a task, for which even their powers would perhaps have proved inadequate, could they not have called to their aid that love of novelty, which induces us to turn from happiness at our door, to pursue those visionary prospects, only bright from their uncertainty.

To this latter passion may be ascribed the evils of licentious innovation, as well as to the former those of narrow-minded bigotry ; while from a just amalgamation of the two, that tranquillity may truly claim its origin,


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