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I am not great-minded enough to remain
poor for the love of my profession; so I
have made up my mind to leave off
cultivating that and cultivate the public." Burdle
did as he threatened, and is growing rich.
It is quite true in his case that the patients
who have gone to him, have gone to a most
competent and able man, whose knowledge
can repay their confidence. It is not,
however, for that reason that he prospers; he
has put a restraint on himself and thrown
a bushel over the light that was in him.
He means, in fact, to be rich in spite of all
his talents and attainments.

This is not the whole case that I, as an
apothecary of the world, wish to lay before
you, ladies and gentlemen, but there is here
perhaps enough of it. Some men there are,
who have in them a spark of that high energy
by which they are enabled not only to merit
much, but to secure also the attainment of
their full deserts. That energy belongs to
genius; for I have no faith at all in obscure
Hampdens. But the great mass of a profession
does not consist of men gifted with
extraordinary powers; and, in the discriminating
between its respective members
in the case of medical men certainly
very great mistakes are made by the public.
It is not my intention to be metaphysical.
I own my wit to be too shallow
to enable any one to dive at all deeply
into the causes of these facts that I have
pointed out. I only state them and affirm
their truth. I think I can affirm also that a
knowledge of these things is acquired very
early by our students of Medicine, if they do
not at the very outset bring it with them to
the hospitals. I believe, also, that the errors
of the public, when the students are
transformed into practitioners, tend in the highest
degree to induce young and struggling men
to adopt a tone of feeling or a line of conduct
that is very much at odds with the spirit of
a philosophical and liberal profession. I think
that there would be more study among pupils,
and a great deal less that is disreputable
among the practices of surgeons and
physicians, if we all knew that the public took
some pains to judge us on our own respective
merits.

To do this gentlemen and ladies must not
learn for themselves the whole art of healing
from a pamphlet or a handbill, and then
choose to be attended by that person among
us whose stock of knowledge seems to be
most nearly level to the contents of such a
manifesto. Neither must we be chosen for
any supposed merit in our coats, our carriages,
our persons. If Smith has a greyer head, and
perhaps, a thicker skull than mine, let not his
hair give him a start in the race with me for
public confidence. I cannot undertake to tell
in what way people ought to use, in regard
to us, the judgment they possess; nevertheless,
I think that, on the whole, they could do
better than they now do, if they tried. I
may be lecturing to the winds, or I may not.
Should, however, any amendment take place
in the public understanding of the respective
merits of practitioners, I shall not fail to
become aware of it. For I am afraid that it
will cause me to put down my brougham.

         THE EVE OF A JOURNEY.

A RESPECTABLY dressed middle-aged woman
sat in the window-seat in the fine old hall
of Chedbury Castle. There was nothing
remarkable in her appearance, except a look
of settled yet patient anxiety, which deepened,
as the short October's day drew near to its
close and broad slanting sunset gleams and
shadows stole across the quiet little shrubbery
and grass plot, upon which she looked out
fixedly. The servants, after having made her
the offer of refreshmentwhich she declined
came and went upon their various errands,
without any apparent consciousness of her
presence. And this was an occasion upon
which a personage of higher note might very
easily have been overlooked: one of those
times of general bustle, preparation, and
delightful confusion, when everybody seems to
be busy helping somebody else; and the
bonds of discipline undergo a not unpleasing
relaxation. The family were going abroad.

Two or three men servants, under the
direction of an elderly duennawith respectability
imprinted on every wrinkle of her
countenance and rustling out of every fold
of her black silk dresswere busily cording
trunks and portmanteaus. She stood over
them proud, pleased, and important; for she
was one of the travelling party; my young
lady's own woman, who had waited upon her
from her childhood. She looked upon her
own trunk complacently; for it carried her
fortune; and, had she ever heard of Caesar,
she could have made a very apt quotation.
As it was, she unbent in a little stately chat
with a man who wore, like herself, the aspect
of an old, privileged retainer.

"Well, Mrs. Jenkyn," he remarked, "I cannot
but say that I wish you were well across
the seas and back again, to tell us all that you
have met with among the Mounseersfor I
reckon you will come back to Chedbury, and
so perhaps will my lord, and so will Mrs.
Moreton; but, as to our young lady, we
shall have seen the last of her when she leaves
the Park gates behind her to-morrow. There
are not so many like her, from all I've heard
of foreign parts; so good and so pretty; with
so many acres at her back, that they'll let
her away from among them so easily. Take
my word for it, some prince of the blood, or
duke at the very leastfor where you're
going they're as thick as blackberries at
Martinmaswill take and marry her, whether
she likes it or not. Besides," he added,
sinking his voice into a confidential whisper,
"old stories'll be left on this side of the salt
water. They won't cross it after her."

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