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THE return of spring, or rather of the first phenomenon which admonishes us of its approach, - early prayers, - brings with it, to the closely confined student, the temptation and the opportunity to break loose from his hibernal retirement, and to spend at least some portion of his existence in fresh air and sunlight.

At the commencement of this season, before the sports on the river or on Jarvis can begin, walking is the only available out-door recreation; and the goodly number of pedestrians that patrol the brick sidewalks of North Avenue on a fine afternoon bear witness to its popularity. But as soon as the snow clears off, and overshoes can be discarded, the time will have come for long walks. That happy afternoon when the hieroglyphics on your tabular view are not underscored will be devoted to exploring the surrounding country. When the interest of sight-seeing is added to the exhilarating effects of bodily exercise, we have every quality that can make an-out-door sport attractive; and long walks take a deservedly prominent place in the catalogue of our amusements.

Unfortunately, at the beginning of the present year I had thoroughly "done" Cambridge and all the surrounding towns, with the exception of Concord and Lexington, to which I propose to make a pilgrimage on the coming 19th of April. While I was thus sighing for new worlds to conquer, I suddenly discovered a new continent of untried possibilities in the editorial columns of a last year's Magenta. I resolved never again to omit the reading of that invaluable paper. What I had discovered was no less than a new and practical idea on the subject of walking. I perceived that Middlesex County was a historic locality, that the philosophical walker should view it in this new light, and that the interest of his walks might centre not only on what has been beautified by nature, but also on what has been dignified by history. I need not state how I immediately purchased the guide-book recommended by the editorial pen, or how my chum ridiculed my enthusiasm. He consented, however, to humor me in my harmless delusion; and on the appointed afternoon, accompanied me, guide-book in hand in search of historic notoriety. I do not intend to describe the interesting places that I visited; that feat has been eloquently achieved by the before-mentioned guide-book. It is only of their influence on my character that I mean to speak. I had always been lukewarm on the subject of the fighting and bleeding of my grandsires. To tell the truth, it is said that one of my numerous grandsires (how they multiply in three generations: it beats Malthus!) fought on the wrong side and had a commission from his majesty King George. But when I see the very identical earthworks thrown up by the Americans, and the spot where the British marched up and the Americans marched down; where the American fort bombarded the British fleet, and the British fleet bombarded the American fort; and where many other memorable things occurred (all of which are related in the guide-book), my feelings make ample amends for the defection of my red-coated ancestor. My enthusiasm for everything revolutionary or colonial is something extraordinary. I know the stories and gossip about those stately old houses that were the residences of the governor "in the good old colony times." I know how the "Indian lover" used to leave off "wooing his dusky mate" and fire bullets through his Excellency's parlor windows; and how, in a later and more peaceful period, the high-heeled and powdered bevy of colonial beauties, whose memory Copley has perpetuated, filled these parlors. In short, I have become a thoroughgoing antiquarian, and am continually recommending to my friends the attractions of the historic walk.

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