Wlliam Gilmore Simms
Southward Ho! A Spell of Sunshine >> Chapter II >> Page 14

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Novel (Romance) | Redfield | 1854
Transcription 14 SOUTHWARD HO!
enlarging the sphere of our observation by overleaping the
boundaries of a narrow education leaving the ten-mile horizon
in which we were born, and to which our errors are peculiar,
and opening our eyes upon a true picture of the character of
the various man.
Of all tyrants, home ignorance is the worst.

" Home-keeping youth have ever homely wits,"

which subjugate the understanding, enthral the heart, minister
to a miserable sectarianism, as well in society as in politics and
religion, and which, in the denial to the individual of any just
knowledge of his fellows, leaves him in most lamentable igno-
rance of the proper resources in himself. We should know our
neighbor if only in order to know ourselves, and home is never
more happily illustrated than when we compare and contrast it
with what we see abroad. It is surprising how soon we lose the
faculty of reasoning when the province which we survey is con-
tracted to the single spot in which we sleep and eat. We cease
to use our eyes when the sphere is thus limited. The disease
of moral nearsightedness supervenes, and the mind which, in a
larger field of action and survey, might have grasped all human-
ity within its range, grows, by reason of this one mishap, into
the wretched bigot, with a disposition to be as despotic, in de-
gree with the extreme barrenness of his mental condition.
All ! clearly," concluded my companion, after we had worked
out the meditations together which I have thrown together above
as a sort of essay�" clearly, there is no more moral practice in
the world than is found in vagabondage ; yet if you try to prove
its morality, you take from it all its charm. I am for enjoying
the vice as such, without arguing for the necessity of evil
which I yet admit.�But, look you, we are to have some lady
passengers. That's a graceful creature !"
I soon discovered in the group to which my companion called
my attention, some old acquaintances.
"Ay, indeed ; and when you have seen her face, and chatted
with her, you will account her beautiful as graceful. She is a
sweet creature to whom I will introduce you. The family is
one of our oldest, highly-esteemed and wealthy. You want a
wife � she is the woman for you. Win her, and you are a favor-