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the power of expression commensurate with their other powers; and it is the want of this, to which abstract students are too apt to be inattentive, that gives a foundation for Mr. Stewart's remark. A ready command of language for the thoughts as they arise can only be acquired by practice; and no man can excel in conversation who neglects to converse. I dare say Mr. Stewart will agree to every word of this.

In regard to absorption, I can only say that my experience has been the very reverse of what is mentioned by Professor Robison. I have made at least a hundred direct experiments to ascertain whether the body is augmented in weight after immersion in water, and I did not find that it was in a single instance. My trials were with fresh water of various degrees of temperature from 98° to 40°. Yours most affectionately,

JAMES CURRIE.

No. 71.

Bath, March 26. 1805. MY DEAR WALLACE, If I do not write oftener, or longer letters to you, this arises not from neglect on my part, but from a degree of attachment that at the present moment makes the task of writing to you rather difficult. I think of you much and tenderly. Of all the privations which my present decision involves, I need not tell you which is by far the most painful : yet I often check myself when I feel this too sensibly. It has pleased God to allow us to enjoy each other's society much longer than is usual for fathers and sons; and now that we are parted, you are not gone from me to a far distant or unhealthy country, or into a service of danger or hazard, but you remain where you were born, in the midst of old connections, and I am removed from you a comparatively short distance, which may be run over in twentyfour hours, if necessary. I am where I can command your society at any time, and where I hope confidently to see you before many months are past. Let us take comfort then, my dear boy. What is chiefly to be wished for is my health, which I hope a milder climate will restore.

Adieu, my dearest son,

JAMES CURRIE.

No. 72.

To his Daughter *, at School at Newcastle

on-Tyne.

Liverpool, April 26. 1803. MY DEAR JEAN, I have long intended to write to you; but the extreme occupation of my time, and the reflection that my deficiencies were supplied by your mother, have hitherto prevented me. This, however, is your birthday, and I am not willing that it should pass over without giving you some proof of my remembrance, and of my affection. I shall therefore begin a letter, though I doubt whether I shall be able to finish it. As we are to meet so soon, and not, I hope, for a short time, I might perhaps have found a sort of apology for giving up entirely what I have delayed so long ; but this very circumstance makes me wish to write to you, that I may communicate to you beforehand some particulars which you may make the subject of your reflections. You are now come to a most interesting period

* Now the wife of John Trench, Esq., of Woodlawn, in the County of Galway.

part with

of your life. You are about to return to your father's family as a young woman, which you left when a child; and to enter more or less into general society. On the first impressions which you make, your character will in a considerable degree depend; and I need not say how desirous your mother and I shall be, that these impressions should be favourable. On your leaving school, you will no doubt many

of your companions with regret : and there are perhaps several with whom you will wish to establish a correspondence. You will perhaps be surprised when I tell you, that I am not disposed to encourage generally the correspondence of young ladies of your period of life, especially when it is carried on without the superintendence or control of their parents or friends. I have a very favourable opinion of your prudence and steadiness, and I know that the general opinions of life and conduct, which you have received from Mrs. Wilson, are likely to correspond entirely with my own; but you are young, my dear child, with a good deal of warmth of heart and of imagination, and the views which

you have, must necessarily be characterised more or less with the qualities of your own mind. These experience will in many instances correct. All this is in the usual, and indeed inevitable,

If no

order of things; but there is, perhaps, no period in the whole of our lives that man or woman is less disposed to be doubtful of themselves than that at which you have arrived. And two young women, pouring out to each other the unrestrained effusion of their hearts, often fortify each other in faults and errors. I shall therefore advise you to be as choice in your correspondents as in your companions; to keep up an intercourse by letter with one or two only, and those only the most respectable. such offer, it is far better to have none. Miss B-would, I dare say, be valuable as a correspondent, or such a woman as Lady — She would be most valuable, but must not be hoped for. But unless you have such, or nearly such correspondents, your time may be better engaged in other occupations. Nothing in nature is more frivolous than the intercourse by letter between two giddy or romantic misses, to say the best of it. But sometimes it is not merely frivolous ; it is mutually injurious. You see my opinion on this subject. I do not mean to lay down a positive rule for you; but I give you the result of my observations for your serious consideration.

When you return to us, my dear Jean, we shall not wish to introduce you at once into the whole circle of our acquaintance.

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