The desire of visiting the institutions in Denmark for the education of the defective classes was aroused in me by the praises bestowed upon them by my friend Jakob Soethre and Dr. Frederick Starr.∗ I knew that they were both men well fitted to judge correctly, and not likely to be misled by appearances, which are often deceptive and sometimes are meant to be so. What indeed struck me was the statement that there was no attempt at show in the Danish Asylums. They must, therefore, I thought, depend upon their intrinsic merits. I crossed the North Sea from Hull to Amsterdam in the “Professor Buys,” a route which I can recommend for those who prefer a short sea passage. I travelled through Northern Germany, stopping with some friends at Bremen, where I visited several institutions. In the beginning of July I reached Copenhagen, and soon got into communication with my friend, A. Friis, the Medical Superintendent of the Custodial Asylum for Imbeciles at Ebberödgaard. Besides his eminent qualities as a physician and a man of literary culture, Dr. Friis has the especial merit of speaking English fluently, and, through his kind attentions, I escaped the difficulties and perplexities to which I should have been otherwise exposed.
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