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Frenchmen in our streets, the French seem
really to know less of us every day. Balzac
said that there were only three Frenchmen
in France who could speak French: Victor
Hugo, Théophile Gautier, and himself. It
might almost be said without exaggeration
that there are only three people in France
who know England and the English: to wit,
M. Léon Faucher, M. Guizot, and that certain
Personage before alluded to, in connexion with
the elephant in the raffle.

There may perchance be found some little
excuse for the ridiculously false notion the
French have formed of our habits, institutions,
and literature, our good and bad
points, in the eccentricities of a certain class
of travellers who infest foreign seaports,
railways, and hotels, who are the bane and
nuisance and standing scoff thereof. Why
don't they stay at home? They go back
to their own country more ignorant (if
possible) than when they started. They
grumble at dinner, insult landlords and
waiters, pertinaciously cling together to
avoid learning the language of the country
they are in, and then abuse and vilify each
other, and moan and fret because they can't
speak it. They carry with them their
grievances and prejudices, and sectarian
hatreds and prejudices, their ladies' maids
(confound them!) and their physic bottles.
They are good friends and honest people,
but the worst travelling companions in the
world. It is not through any private or
personal griefs that I pass these strictures on
the conduct of some of my countrymen
travelling abroad; but it is, because I think
that if a certain section of them were to stay
at home, or, when they travel, were to think
of what the great ends of travelling should
beimprovement, observation, and sensible
recreation, with a reasonable deference to
peculiarities, a little subservience to custom, a
little less ill–temper, and a little more docility
and willingness to learnthe Milord Anglais
would be somewhat more fairly drawn.

   EXPLORING EXPEDITION TO THE
                ISLE OF DOGS.

WE have a theory that, if among the
metropolitans resident westward of Temple
Bar, all those who have travelled to the
Rhine were collected into one group, and all
those who have explored the Isle of Dogs
were to form another,—we have a theory, we
say, that the former group would constitute
the larger of the two. For this mythical Isle
has very much the character of a terra
incognita
. There is a vague supposition that it
lies somewhere opposite Greenwich; but, even
whether it be an island, is not by any means
well known. If from the top of Observatory
Hill we have a penny peep through a
pensioner's telescope, and direct it towards a
greenish–looking spot on the Middlesex shore,
we may learn that this is the Isle of Dogs;
but neither dogs nor men are to be seen
there, and we wonder how on earth such an
uninhabited island came to be pitched down
between busy Blackwall and busy Limehouse.
On further examination we find it to be a
low, level, marshy field, fringed with factories
and taverns, and inhabited by a few cows.
There may possibly be half a dozen trees on
this island of "the blessed." but we will not
positively assert it as a fact. Nevertheless, as
Robinson Crusoe's island was found on
examination to contain objects of some interest to
that admirable explorer, so, we hope, will
the Isle of Dogs be found not altogether a
desolate and profitless island.

The reader has, of course, been in Waterman
number twelve, and has probably heard
orders given to ease her (the Waterman), and
stop her (the Waterman), and put her (the
Waterman) a–starn, at Limehouse pier. He is
then on the western confines of the Isle of
Dogs. Or, he may be returning from a
review at Woolwich, in the Dryad, and may
be listening to the same mysterious instruction
concerning easing her, and stopping her,
and putting her a–starn, at Blackwall. He is
then on the eastern confines of the Isle of
Dogs. Or, he may be travelling over the
chimney–pots from Fenchurch Street to
Blackwall, and may have a magnificent view
of the sugar–warehouses belonging to the
West India Docks. He is then a little
beyond the northern or land–ward margin
of the Isle of Dogs. Or, lastly, he may cross
the river by the ferry for Greenwich, to take
that smallest of all metropolitan omnibuses
from Millwall to Limehouse. He is then
(at the Millwall Ferry House) on the
southern confines of the Isle of Dogs. Thus
have we, on the true principles of a
geographical Primer, marked out the limits and
boundary of the Isle of Dogs, as determined by
the four cardinal points.

But, now a grave difficulty stops our way.
Why is the Isle of Dogs called the Isle of
Dogs? What have the dogs to do with it?
Was it formed originally by or for dogs, or
is it going to the dogs? There appear to be
two different theories among antiquaries
learned in these matters. One of them, in
Strype's Stow, is to the effect that the Isle of
Dogs is "a low marshy ground near Blackwall,
so called, as is reported, for that a
waterman carried a man into this marsh, and
there murthered him. The man having a
dog with him, he would not leave his master;
but hunger forced him many times to swim
over the Thames to Greenwich; which the
waterman who plied at the bridge (probably
a sort of pier or jetty) observing, followed the
dog over, and by that means the murthered
man was discovered. Soon after the dog
swimming over to Greenwich, where there
was a waterman seated, at him the dog
snarled and would not be beat off; which the
other waterman perceiving (and knowing of

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