- Project Runeberg -  America of the Fifties: Letters of Fredrika Bremer /
127

(1924) [MARC] Author: Fredrika Bremer
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so far from earth, at least from its homes; for
how would it be possible otherwise to keep up an
intercourse with people altogether strangers as
unreservedly and as delightfully as one could with
the angels of God?

There are various features of family life here
that I wish were more general in Sweden. To
these belong family worship morning and evening,
and the simple prayer with which the meal is
commonly sanctified by the father or mother of the
household, “O God, bless these Thy gifts to our
profit, and us to Thy service!” With us it is
usually the youngest child of the family that says
grace before meals, if it is said aloud; and this also
is beautiful, excepting that it seldom has or can
have the true spirit given to it. Most frequently,
however, our form of grace is a silent inclination
of the body, but the thought is of nothing but the
meal before us.

On the other hand, I like our table customs
better than in this country. With us the people
may enjoy the pleasures of conversation, and need
not think about the dishes, except in so far as
consuming them goes. Everything is done silently
and in due order by the attendants. At a glance
from the hostess you are offered a second supply,
but this also silently; the dishes come round to the
guests, each in his turn, and after that they are not

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