- Project Runeberg -  Letters written during a short residence in Sweden, Norway, and Denmark /

(1889) [MARC] Author: Mary Wollstonecraft With: Henry Morley
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astonishing rapidity. But I shuddered at the thought
of receiving existence, and remaining here, in the
solitude of ignorance, till forced to leave a world of
which I had seen so little, for the character of the in-
habitants is as uncultivated, if not as picturesquely
wild, as their abode.
Having no employment but traffic, of which a contra-
band trade makes the basis of their profit, the coarsest
feelings of honesty are quickly blunted. You may sup-
pose that I speak in general terms ;
and that, with all
the disadvantages of nature and circumstances, there
are still some respectable exceptions, the more praise-
worthy, as tricking is a very contagious mental disease,
that dries up all the generous juices of the heart.
Nothing genial, in fact, appears around this place, or
within the circle of its rocks. And, now I recollect,
it seems to me that the most genial and humane cha-
racters I have met with in life were most alive to the
sentiments inspired by tranquil country scenes. What,
indeed, is to humanise these beings, who rest shut up
(for they seldom even open their windows), smoking,
drinking brandy, and driving bargains ? I have been
almost stifled by these smokers. They begin in the
morning, and are rarely without their pipe till they go
to bed. Nothing can be more disgusting than the
rooms and men towards the evening breath, teeth,
clothes, and furniture, all are spoilt. It is well that
the women are not very delicate, or they would only
love their husbands because they were their husbands.
Perhaps, you may add, that the remark need not be
confined to so small a part of the world; and, entre

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