1856 ENGLISH POETRY 1579-1830: SPENSER AND THE TRADITION

Adam Smith

Samuel Rogers, in Table Talk (1856) 43-44.



When a young man, I went to Edinburgh, carrying letters of introduction (from Dr. Kippis, Dr. Price, &c.) to Adam Smith, Robertson, and others. When I first saw Smith, he was at breakfast, eating strawberries; and he descanted on the superior flavour of those grown in Scotland. I found him very kind and communicative. He was (what Robertson was not) a man who had seen a great deal of the world. Once, in the course of conversation, I happened to remark of some writer, that "he was rather superficial, a Voltaire." — "Sir," cried Smith, striking the table with his hand, "there has been but one Voltaire!"