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SATIRISTS have said that all the concerns, great and small, of this bustling world, its love and war, laws, literature, and business, have self for their beginning and self for their end; and that even charity to others is only a more refined species of self-love. Whether these suppositions be correct or not, will, like the destiny of the lost pleiad, and the powers of the general government, always remain matters of opinion; and far be it from me to attempt to settle, and thereby render of no effect, such interesting topics of conversation and speculation.

In putting pen to paper, it is certainly best to avoid all new and hazardous assertions, and to content one's self with advancing, in a fearless manner, what no one can possibly doubt. I may, therefore, in the language of some writers, who display a large quantity of superfluous valor and determination when there is no occasion for it, boldly

assert, without fear of contradiction, that self-love is no rarity in this world of ours. It manifests itself in a variety of ways, some of which are exceedingly curious and amusing, and as pleasant to laugh at as a friend's misfortunes. One of its most ludicrous forms is the way in which men interest themselves in little localities, the pride they feel in them, and the additional importance which they imagine attaches to themselves, in consequence of the celebrity of the city or district to which they belong, for some small matter or other. Thus, a Philadelphian identifies himself with the breed of horned cattle in the vicinity of that city-he considers their fame and his own as inseparable, and looks down upon a citizen of New-York because the cows of Pennsylvania give richer milk than those of Long Island ; a Bostonian thinks he ranks considerably higher in the scale of creation on account of the occult mystery of making pumpkin pies having attained a state of perfection in Boston as yet unknown in the regions of the south, north, and west ; while a New-Yorker is apt to be dogmatical on all things connected with canals, though perhaps he never saw one in his life, merely because the longest one in the world was accomplished in his native state.

They say "there is but one step from the sub

lime to the ridiculous.” Now the feelings of pride and love with which a man looks upon his native country, are very proper and natural; and though, in the eye of cold-blooded philosophy, a person is neither any thing the better nor the worse for the spot of earth which he may chance to have been born upon, yet men generally never have been, nor ever will be of that opinion. The laws and institutions of a country, the fame of its literature and science, and the long train of glorious deeds that have been accumulating for ages, descend to a man as a species of national property, and there is no one but who values himself so much the more for his share in it, and looks upon himself as braver and wiser on account of the brave and wise men his native land has bred. There is something noble in this feeling in the aggregate ; but when it comes to be frittered away upon small matters—to be divided and subdivided into counties, towns, and villages, it is simply ridiculous. carry their local feelings to an extraordinary extent: not only is their own country the greatest in the world, but their city, for some reason or other, is the best in the country; the street in which they reside the best in the city, the house they occupy the best in the street, their room the best in the house, and themselves, by all odds, the best in the

Some persons

room. Nay, some do not even stop here. There are people who form little local attachments about their own persons, and fall in love with an eye, a nose, a cheek, a chin, or a finger-nail. One of the first vocalists on the British stage, is known absolutely to doat on the construction of his leg; he thinks, that since legs were made, nature never constructed such a pair as he is the possessor of, and he accordingly takes every opportunity of obtruding them upon the observation of the audience. The earnestness with which he details their circumference, in various parts, to his friends and acquaintance, and the complacency with which he regards them when only covered with thin black silk stockings, would be a fine subject for any clergyman who wished to preach a sermon on the vanities of this world. Unfortunately the costume of English opera but seldom affords an opportunity for the display of the pedestals on which the musical hero's body is erected, and those of Mr. were too often doomed to be secluded in long wide trowsers, from the admiration of the public. But the fates were not always averse, and times would occur when thin black silk stockings were not at variance with the stage regulations. Alexander the Great was a proud and happy man when he crossed the Granicus; Henry the Fifth when the battle of Agincourt VOL. I.


brought the French nobles, who had been playing at dice for him, captives at his feet; Apelles when his rival mistook his curtain picture for reality, and Brigadier General --- the tailor, when surrounded by the best dressed staff in the militia, arrayed in coats of superfine cloth of his own making ; but none of thein were so proud and happy as this vocalist when he at last obtained an opportunity of submitting his unexceptionable pair of legs to the public view. He would rush upon the stage and pour forth his excited feelings in song, and there were few who could entrance an audience with the melody of sound like him—they would hang with breathless attention upon every accent, and he never failed to make his exit amid the most deafening applause. This he was far from attributing altogether to his vocal powers. “Ah !” he would say, as he reached the side wing, at the same time slapping the objects of his admiration with affectionate familiarity—“Ah! it is some time since they have seen such a leg as that !"

This is a long episode, but as it is a fact, and at the same time shows the length to which men will carry their local partialities, it may perhaps be excused. I was greatly amused last week on board a steam-boat, by listening attentively to a disputatious conversation between a Bostonian, a New

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