Bayard Taylor’s Description of the Sailing Conditions
The Middle Kingdom by S. Wells Williams

November 24th

Today at 12 o’clock found us within a few miles of the Equator. I trust with all my heart that we shall have no calms. I do so long to reach home. How very, very much I long to see our children and Molly dear.

I spend much of my time in reading; a part in sewing, etc. This morning finished the first volume of Mr. Williams’ book on China – six hundred closely printed pages. The latter part of this volume has a number of translated extracts from the Chinese literature. I have found them very interesting. There are some from the writings of Confucius, also of his disciple Mencius. Mr. Williams says Mencius flourished about eighty years after the death of his master and although in estimating his character it must not be forgotten that he had the advantages of his example, still in most respects he displayed an originality of thought, inflexibility of purpose and extensive view superior to Confucius and must be regarded as one of the greatest men Asiatic nations have ever produced. Mencius was born 400 B.C. in the city Tsan, now in the province of Shantung.