two worlds in one
WHEN THE LAST FRENCH TROOPS and the last French officials had disappeared down the river, Canadians must have felt much like the prisoner in his cell when he hears the bolt shot on the door, the unfriendly guard outside. Yet even between guard and prisoner there springs up sooner or later a species of intimacy--they at least come to know each other's shortcomings. So with a conquered and a conquering people. At first suspicion, sullen looks from the one, arrogance from the other. Gradually, little acts of accommodation, such as everywhere pass between humans thrown together. Then, here and there some knowledge, individual friendships like that between John Fraser and Dr. Badelart, the Highlander the patient of the French doctor on the actual field of battle that fateful September day of 1759, the French doctor the prisoner of the Highlander, close friends for forty years thereafter.1
It was not, however, merely a matter of individuals meeting, but of two societies totally different from each other and neither uniform within itself. Both had their ranks and classes. French society was uniform in religion and in outlook, but from the top of its 'gentry' to the bottom of its peasantry, the distance was great. English society was hardly uniform in a single particular, for not only was there the traditional gulf between the aristocrat and his 'inferiors,' but there was also a wide, vocal and powerful layer inserted between the 'gentleman' and 'the lower orders.' This middle class was powerful and constantly challenged the ruling class. Moreover, its members were often pitted against the ruling class by denominational differences.
The English ruling class, in which were comprised prac-