Those sullen English

GA Walker Arnott, A tour to the south of France and the Pyrenees in the year 1825:

As far as regards the natural productions, the fine climate of the coast of Catalonia gives to them a vigour unknown even in the south of France. The Agave Americana planted here along the road-sides as hedge-rows, flowers at the ninth or tenth year, whereas at Perpignan it flowers so very seldom, as to bear the appellation of “the plant that flowers as often as an Englishman smiles.”

Apart from being an excellent botanist, Arnott is good too on humans, although I wonder whether Barcelona’s dancing giants really determined feminine fashion.

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