Language is sometimes a most treacherous guide for the his tor ian. I t m i g h t seem that , since the French bor­ rowed the word "c lub" f rom England, they borrowed the t h i n g as w e l l ; and essayists have often brought forward th is detai l to help contrast the ease and frequency w i t h which the Anglo-Saxon creates a l l sorts of vo lun ta ry groups and the social pover ty of the Frenchman, w i t h on ly the fami ly between himself and the state. B u t any a t t empt to discover the origins of the Jacobin clubs w i l l soon show tha t this sort of association was qui te i n ­ digenous to eighteenth century France. I t is no t un l ike ly t ha t a Frenchman spoke of "le club," when he m i g h t have spoken of "le cercle," " l a chambre" or " l a société," much as the Engl ishman migh t say "rendezvous" for "appoin tment" or "assignation," because i t sounded dis­ t inguished and a tr if le romantic .