25 MARCH 1882, Page 16



SIR,—What you have said of certain kinds of audacity strikes me as being very much to the purpose, especially in the hints you give (but which a hasty reader here and there might not take at once), that audacity is very often the mere accompani- ment of vanity, and not an associate of courage. Both in Lefroy and Lamson there seems to have been an immense amount of self-confidence, with no true intellectual or moral root to it. The same thing might be said of Guiteau, and of many religious enthusiasts whose sincerity and disinterested- ness cannot be doubted.

Some of the anecdotes in circulation about Lamson show him to be an intensely vain man, and in spite of any check from experience, a great believer in his own "luck ;" and the type appears frequently to turn up now-a-days, though why I should add this to what you have so excellently said, I hardly know.

I am not aware whether anybody has noticed the prominence given to aconite as a poison and a medicine in Mr. Charles Reade's " A Woman-hater." There is nothing new about it there, but it is lively and impressive, as how could it fail to be,

being Mr. Reade's P—I am, Sir, Jo., 0. E. D.