LINES OF GREETING TO DR. OLIVER WENDELL HOLMES.
And bear our blessing with you as you go."
I own, also, to having something of the melodramatic taste so notable in Victor Hugo. I admired the noble fa?ade of Wells cathedral and the grand old episcopal palace, but I begged the bishop to show me the place where his predecessor, Bishop Kidder, and his wife, were killed by the falling chimney in the "Great Storm."--I wanted to go to Devizes, and see the monument in the market-place, where Ruth Pierce was struck dead with a lie in her mouth,--about all which I had read in early boyhood. I contented myself with a photograph of it which my friend, Mr. Willett, went to Devizes and bought for me.
We must not forget that our fathers were exiles from their dearly loved native land, driven by causes which no longer exist. "Freedom to worship God" is found in England as fully as in America, in our day. In placing the Atlantic between themselves and the Old World civilizations they made an enormous sacrifice. It is true that the wonderful advance of our people in all the arts and accomplishments which make life agreeable has transformed the wilderness into a home where men and women can live comfortably, elegantly, happily, if they are of contented disposition; and without that they can be happy nowhere. What better provision can be made for a mortal man than such as our own Boston can afford its wealthy children? A palace on Commonwealth Avenue or on Beacon Street; a country-place at Framingham or Lenox; a seaside residence at Nahant, Beverly Farms, Newport, or Bar Harbor; a pew at Trinity or King's Chapel; a tomb at Mount Auburn or Forest Hills; with the prospect of a memorial stained window after his lamented demise,--is not this a pretty programme to offer a candidate for human existence?
Bond Street, Old and New, offered the most inviting windows, and I indulged almost to profligacy in the prolonged inspection of their contents. Stretching my walk along New Bond Street till I came to a great intersecting thoroughfare, I found myself in Oxford Street. Here the character of the shop windows changed at once. Utility and convenience took the place of show and splendor. Here I found various articles of use in a household, some of which were new to me. It is very likely that I could have found most of them in our own Boston Cornhill, but one often overlooks things at home which at once arrest his attention when he sees them in a strange place. I saw great numbers of illuminating contrivances, some of which pleased me by their arrangement of reflectors.
and all the masterpieces of its wonder-working artisans.
When I was called up to receive my honorary title, the young voices were true to the promise of the young faces. There was a great noise, not hostile nor unpleasant in its character, in answer to which I could hardly help smiling my acknowledgments. In presenting me for my degree the Public Orator made a Latin speech, from which I venture to give a short extract, which I would not do for the world if it were not disguised by being hidden in the mask of a dead language. But there will be here and there a Latin scholar who will be pleased with the way in which the speaker turned a compliment to the candidate before him, with a reference to one of his poems and to some of his prose works.
for whom Ben Jonson wrote the celebrated epitaph. I am almost afraid to say it, but I never could admire the line,
To Westminster Abbey. What a pity it could not borrow from Paris the towers of Notre Dame! But the glory of its interior made up for this shortcoming. Among the monuments, one to Rear Admiral Charles Holmes, a descendant, perhaps, of another namesake, immortalized by Dryden in the "Annus Mirabilis" as