Translated from the Norwegian by Anders Orbeck, A. M.
keep from expressing myself in the impassioned spirit of my poetic effusions, which meanwhile brought me nothing--from friends or non-friends--but a questionable reward; the former greeted me as peculiarly fitted for the unintentionally droll, and the latter thought it in the highest degree strange that a young person in my subordinate position could undertake to inquire into affairs concerning which not even they themselves dared to entertain an opinion. I owe it to truth to add that my conduct at various times did not justify any great hope that society might count on an increase in me of civic virtue, inasmuch as I also, with epigrams and caricatures, fell out with many who had deserved better of me and whose friendship I in reality prized. Altogether,--while a great struggle raged on the outside, I found myself on a war-footing with the little society where I lived cramped by conditions and circumstances of life.
Such was the situation when amid the preparations for my examinations I read through Sal