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will be the consequence, and though the public may be saved from pecuniary loss in particular instances, the class of servants will be deteriorated. They have other duties to perform beside receiving money; but, provided they can get security considered sufficient, those other duties will be comparatively little thought of by those who have to appoint. They will easily justify to themselves a bad appointment with a good security. But if character were the only security, it would be otherwise, and the public would have the chance of being well served in every particular. Suppose a situation vacant, where security is required. The most likely person to obtain it, is some one with a large family, who, by improvidence or mismanagement, has become an unceasing burden to his connexions, They exert all their influence, and most strenuously, to get rid of him, and are quite willing to run the risk of finding him security, in order to relieve themselves from the present pressure. What chance has an independent man, who is a burden to nobody, with such a competitor ? and what chance has the public of being considered ? The meritorious are generally too backward in urging their claims, and it is not to be expected that their friends will be as zealous as the interested supporters of a hanger-on. As I can conceive nothing much more irksome to a man of honest intentions and high feeling, than to have to ask his friends to become his sureties, I believe that very circumstance has often prevented the most fitting applications; and, after all, the securities taken for the undeserving, when they have been recurred to, have often proved unavailing, or, on the other hand, have caused the ruin of innocent persons, after world of previous anxiety. There is also this evil in the system, that it frequently induces neglect in those whose place it is to see to the punctual discharge of official duties; and their reliance upon the security produces the very inconvenience meant to be guarded against. Though the practice of requiring security is undoubtedly not uniform in its evil
tion, I believe its general tendencies to be--to encourage the improvident and mismanaging by opening to them situations, of which otherwise they would have no chance-to promote jobbing amongst the connexions of such-to discourage merit, and to lower the value of character-- to increase carelessness and corruption in the dispensation of patronage, and to defeat its own particular end by injuring the public service, instead of promoting it. The true principle is, to make character the only security, and a few departures in practice would only work their own cure; but a departure from the principle produces a permanent deterioration.
ART OF TRAVELLING.
Before setting out upon a journey, it is advantageous to be rather more abstemious than usual for a day or two, as the sudden change of habits, even with the most regular livers, is apt to produce some derangement of system ; and at any rate such a course makes the body accommodate itself better to the motion and confinement of a carriage, upon which I have made some remarks in my articles on the Attainment of Health. It is particularly desirable to make the necessary arrangements with respect to luggage, passports, &c. a little beforehand, and not to be in a feverish hurry and bustle at the last moment, with the chance of forgetting something of importance. Setting out at one's ease is a good omen for the rest of the journey. With respect to luggage, I recommend the greatest compactness possible, as being attended with constant and many advantages, and in general I think people are rather over-provident in taking more than they want. Avoid being entrusted with sealed letters, or carrying anything contraband,
for yourself or others. A necessity for concealment causes a perpetual anxiety, and has a tendency to destroy that openness of manner, which is often very serviceable in getting on. Avoid also commissions, except for particular reasons; they are generally very troublesome and encumbering. When the weather will permit, avail yourself of opportunities of quitting your carriage to take exercise ; as, whilst the horses are changing, walk about, or walk forward, taking care only not to get into a wrong road, of which sometimes there is danger. If you pay yourself, a great deal of your comfort will depend upon management. I once posted a considerable distance through France, with a Bohemian courier, who did not understand paying, so I undertook it for my companion. As I wished always to walk forward on changing horses, it was an object to me to save time, and the course I pursued was this: I took care to have a constant supply of change of every necessary denomination, and to ascertain what it was usual in the different parts of the country to give the postilions. Before arriving at each post-house, I calculated by the post-book the charge for the horses, and on arrival I had the exact sum ready, which I put in the postilion's hand, saying, with a confident air, so much for the horses, so much for driving, and so much to drink. The consequence was, I lost no time; the money was received without any objection, and almost always with thanks. By a less decided, or less accurate method, the trouble and vexation are great, and you have to do with a set of people who are never satisfied. If you do not know what the amount is, or hold your purse in your hand, or exhibit any hesitation or doubt, you are immediately attacked and pestered in the most importunate and tormenting manner. It has a great effect, I believe, with the postilions, to separate their gratuity into the driving and the drink money. They consider it, I was told, as a sort of attention, and certainly I found the observance of the rule very useful. A certain sum for driving, with four or five sous to drink, will elieit thanks,
when a larger amount, not distinguished, will only excite importunity. I am speaking of what was the case fifteen years since, and I think it was the same in Italy. Decision of manner in paying has universally a very good effect, but then it is necessary to make the best inquiries as to what is right.
An Englishman in foreign countries need have no fear that any courtesy he may be disposed to show, will not meet with an adequate, or more than adequate, return. A foreigner connects with his idea of an Englishman, wealth, freedom, and pride. The two former qualities inspire him with a feeling of his own inferiority, whatever he may profess to the contrary, and the last has the effect of preventing him from hazarding the first advance, or if he does venture, it is generally with caution and distrust. For the same reason he will not unfrequently receive an advance with a degree of suspicion, which has the appearance of dislike; but the moment he feels any thing approaching to a confidence of courteous treatment, he is eager to meet it more than half-way. English reserve and this foreign suspicion combine to keep up a distance and sort of alienation in appearance, which do not exist in reality, and which it is in an Englishman's power to dispel whenever he pleases. All things considered, it is next to impossible that foreigners should not feel that Englishmen enjoy a decided superiority, and it is useful in travelling to bear in mind this fact, not for the purpose of gratifying pride, but of showing a disposition above it. English courtesy bears a high premium everywhere, and the more so, because it has universally the credit of being sincere. An habitual exercise of it in travelling is an excellent passport. I do not at present recollect any other observations on the Art of Travelling, which are not commonly to be met with, but I feel confident that the few I Have given, if attended to, may be of considerable service.
ART OF DINING.
I shall begin this article with stating that the dinner at Blackwall, mentioned in my last number, was served according to my directions, both as to the principal dishes and the adjuncts, with perfect exactness, and went off with corresponding success. The turtle and white-bait were excellent; the grouse not quite of equal merit ; and the apple-fritters so much relished, that they were entirely cleared, and the jelly left untouched. The only wines were champagne and claret, and they both gave great satisfaction. As soon as the liqueurs were handed round once, I ordered them out of the room ; and the only heresy committed was by one of the guests asking for a glass of bottled porter, which I had not the presence of mind instantly to forbid. There was an opinion broached that some flounders water-zoutcheed, between the turtle and white-bait, would have been an improvement,—and perhaps they would. I dined again yesterday at Blackwall as a guest, and I observed that my theory as to adjuncts was carefully put in practice, so that I hope the public will be a gainer.
In order to bring the dinner system to perfection according to my idea, it would be necessary to have a room contrived on the best possible plan for eight persons, as the greatest number. I almost think six even more desirable than eight; but beyond eight, as far as my experience goes, there is always a division into parties, or a partial languor, or sort of paralysis either of the extremities or centre, which has more or less effect upon the whole. For complete enjoyment a company ought to be One; sympathizing and drawing together, listening and talking in due proportions—no monopolists, nor any ciphers. With the best arrangements much will depend upon the chief of the feast giving the tone, and keeping it up. Paulus Æmilius, who was the most successful general, and best entertainer of his time, seems to have understood this