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his family, and his friend. It required all Boswell's invincible good humour to withstand the sarcasm that assailed him. Dr. Johnson certainly repaid with interest the prejudice and ill-will he encountered, but it remains surprising that so good and intelligent a company did not better recognise so great a man. We did not so receive Burns and Walter Scott. The agreeable reminiscences of Lord Cockburn and Dean Ramsay have given us the evening lights of the long day of social brightness which Scotland, and especially Edinburgh, enjoyed; and if this pleasantness is now a thing of the past, the citizens of the modern Athens have only shared the lot of other sections of mankind, even of France, par excellence, the country of Conversation.*

* This opinion receives an accidental confirmation of its events by the publication of the Life of Sir Gilbert Eliot-a work highly honourable to a Scottish house by the dignity of its records and the talent of their reproduction. This cannot be better expressed than in the words of Lady Minto, writing from Edinburgh, February 21, 1802:


"This country has arrived at the true pitch of comfort and happiThe people are full of information, are natural, unassuming, and social, but with a great mixture of occupation. People meet. together to be pleased, cheerful, and easy; even the Scotch pride has its uses by putting the poor often on an equal footing with the rich. A Douglas or a Scott would consider himself on a par with persons of the highest title and rank; their education is equally good, their society the same, their spirit and love of their country possibly much greater. Almost every family can boast of heroes in some generation, which excites emulation; and nothing is so uncommon as to see idle men and listless manners. All is energy, and every one

This decadence in the art and practice of the communication of ideas, and in the cultivation of facile and coloured language, is commonly attributed to the wide extension of literature and the press, which give to every man all the knowledge of matters of interest which he can require without the intervention of a fellow-creature. It may be that men may now read and think too much to talk, but the change is, perhaps, rather the effect of certain alterations in the structure of society itself, accompanied by the fastidiousness that tries to make up by silence and seclusion for the arbitrary distinctions and recognised barriers, which limited and defined the game of life, but admitted so much pleasant freedom within the rules. We can however, still acknowledge the value of such records as those of the late Mr. Nassau, Senior, whose "Conversations" with the most eminent politicians and men of action of his time, especially in France, afford trustworthy and interesting materials for the future historian, and where a legal mind and well-trained observation take the place of vivid representation and literary skill. Quand un bon mot," writes Monsieur L.'Enfant in one of his prefaces to his "Poggiana'


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has some object in view to exercise his faculties and talents.. I must at the present time I think the race very superior to the English, who are too far gone in luxury and dissipation to be agreeable or happy. Morals here are certainly very good, and yet the manners are much more free, and one scarcely ever meets with affectation and airs. People meet like friends, and not with a cold bow and a distant curtsey."

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en même temps un trait d'Histoire, on fait aisèment grace à'ce qui peut lui manquer du côté de la force et du sel.'

The title of "Boswelliana," which the editor has taken from the original manuscript, is hardly correct. This is, in fact, one of the note-books of the anecdotes and facetia of the society in which Boswell lived; and though such a use of the termination may find some analogy in the Luculliana, cherries that Lucullus brought from Pontus-and the Appiana-apples introduced into Rome by him of the Appian way,-yet the term "Ana," in its most important applications, has always referred not to the collector, but to the personage or at any rate to the subject-matter of the book. Some vindication for its use on the present occasion may, however, be found in those instances in which Boswell acts as Bozzy to himself, and where the opinions and the mode of enunciating them are so thoroughly Boswellian that they give a characteristic flavour to the whole. What can be more delightfully his own than the prefixes "Uxoriana," and "My son Alexander ?"

There is some mystery in the insertion of certain occasional Johnsoniana, which could hardly have found their way into this collection, if Boswell had at the time been keeping special memoranda of his great Oracle. They are not very numerous nor consecutive, nor do they imply that at the time they were taken down they were intended as portions of the magnum opus. Most

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of them, however, are incorporated in it, and are only repeated here to preserve the integrity of the manuscript. The few omissions, such as they are, are of the same character as the lacunæ in the Temple letters.

The historical and biographical annotation of these anecdotes has been a work requiring considerable local knowledge and antiquarian research. Executed, as it is, by Dr. Rogers, it affords an interesting social picture of the Scotland of the day, and there are many families still living, who will here gladly recognise and welcome the words and thoughts of their ancestors.

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