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Philip Thicknesse
This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 140 pages of information about A Year's Journey through France and Part of Spain, 1777.
more prevalent than either, the chagrin he may feel at not being rated in the estimation of others, according to that value he puts upon himself.  Could Dr. Smollett rise from the dead, and sit down in perfect health, and good temper, and read his travels through France and Italy, he would probably find most of his anger turned upon himself.  But, poor man! he was ill; and meeting with, what every stranger must expect to meet at most French inns, want of cleanliness, imposition, and incivility; he was so much disturbed by those incidents, that to say no more of the writings of an ingenious and deceased author, his travels into France, and Italy, are the least entertaining, in my humble opinion, of all his works.  Indeed I have observed that most travellers fall into one extreme, or the other, and either are all panegyric or all censure; in which case, all they say cannot be just; for, as all nations are governed by men, and the bulk of men of all nations live by artifice of one kind or other, the few men who pass among them, without any sinister views, cannot avoid feeling, and but few from complaining of the ill treatment they meet with; not considering one of Swift’s shrewd remarks; I never said he, knew a man who could not bear the misfortunes of another perfectly like a Christian.

Remember therefore, when I tell you how ill I have been treated either by Lords or Aubergists, or how dirtily served by either, it is to prepare myself and you too, to be content with neighbours’ fare.

When a man writes remarks upon the manners and customs of other nations, he should endeavour to wean himself from all partiality for his own; and I need not tell you that I am in full possession of that single qualification, which I hope will make you some amends for my defects in all the others; for it is certainly unjust, uncandid, and illiberal, to pronounce a custom or fashion absurd, because it does not coincide with our ideas of propriety.  A Turk who travelled into England, would, upon his return to Constantinople, tell his countrymen, that at Canterbury; (bring out of opium,) his host did not know even what he demanded; and that it was with some difficulty he found out, that there were shops in the town where opium was sold, and even then, it was with greater, he could prevail upon the vender of it to let him have above half an ounce:  if he were questioned, why all these precautions? he would tell them, laughingly, that Englishmen believe opium to be a deadly poison, and those people suspected that he either meant to kill himself, or to poison another man with it.

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