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Edward L. Pierce, Memoir and letters of Charles Sumner: volume 4, Chapter 57: attempts to reconcile the President and the senator.—ineligibility of the President for a second term.—the Civil-rights Bill.—sale of arms to France.—the liberal Republican party: Horace Greeley its candidate adopted by the Democrats.—Sumner's reserve.—his relations with Republican friends and his colleague.—speech against the President.—support of Greeley.—last journey to Europe.—a meeting with Motley.—a night with John Bright.—the President's re-election.—1871-1872. (search)
rs came. There were a dozen of us, all over sixty. It was like a dinner at some Old Man's Home or Hotel des Invalides. Emerson sat next to me. He was emphatic in his praise of you. Such elegant and easy hospitality; such a worker; such agreeable company; and so on to the end of the chapter. Emerson had been entertained by Sumner in Washington. On reaching home he at once, as was his custom at this season, sought Longfellow at Nahant, where he found as a guest his old companion George W. Greene. One day he drove from the city to Mr. Winthrop's at Brookline. Another day he entertained R. Schleiden, who was on a visit to this country. Sumner overworked himself at this session, as indeed he was almost always doing. In addition to the controversies in the Senate, which taxed severely his nervous system, he was engaged in the preparation of notes to his Works, of which four volumes had been issued and three more printed; and he was beginning to prepare the eighth and ninth. Tw
Thomas Wentworth Higginson, Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, Chapter 5: first visit to Europe (search)
his admirable paper on Longfellow and his Art, the young poet was really preparing himself in Europe for his literary work as well as for his professional work, and half consciously. This is singularly confirmed by his lifelong friend, Professor George W. Greene, who, in dedicating his The Life of Nathanael Greene to his friend, thus recalls an evening spent together at Naples in 1828:— We wanted, he says, to be alone, and yet to feel that there was life all around us. We went up to the flat lectures on French, Spanish, and Italian literature, but there seems to have been no reference to German, which had not then come forward into the place in American education which it now occupies. As to literature, he wrote to his friend, George W. Greene, Since my return I have written one piece of poetry, but have not published a line. You need not be alarmed on that score. I am all prudence now, since I can form a more accurate judgment of the merit of poetry. If I ever publish a volume
Thomas Wentworth Higginson, Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, Chapter 6: marriage and life at Brunswick (search)
eriod in Lowell's life, for instance, brought what seemed almost a transformation of his nature, making an earnest reformer and patriot of a youth who had hitherto been little more than a brilliant and somewhat reckless boy. In Longfellow's serener nature there was no room for a change so marked, yet it is important to recognize that it brought with it a revival of that poetic tendency which had singularly subsided for a time after its early manifestation. He had written to his friend, George W. Greene, on June 27, 1830, that he had long ceased to attach any value to his early poems or even to think of them at all. Yet after about a year of married life, he began (December 1, 1832) the introduction to his Phi Beta Kappa poem, and during the following year published a volume of poetical translations from the Spanish; thus imitating Bryant, then in some ways his model, who had derived so much of his inspiration from the Spanish muse. It is not unreasonable to recognize something of hi
Thomas Wentworth Higginson, Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, Chapter 7: the corner stone laid (search)
s, and we also know that he then as always took this work very seriously and earnestly. What his favorite employment was, we learn by a letter to his friend George W. Greene (March 9, 1833) about a book which he proposes to publish in parts, and concerning which he adds, I find that it requires little courage to publish grammars heir original form, but often left anonymous, and sometimes signed only by his initial (H.). In the list of his own early publications given by Longfellow to George W. Greene under date of March 9, 1833, he includes, 7. In The Token for 1832, a story. . . . 8. In the same, for 1833, a story. To identify the contributions thus aion of his Complete Poetical Works, yet the initials leave hardly a doubt that it was written by him. Why, then, was it not mentioned in this list sent to Mr. George W. Greene, or did he by a slip of the pen record it as a story and not as a poem? Perhaps no solution of this conundrum will ever be given, but it would form a valu
Thomas Wentworth Higginson, Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, Chapter 9: illness and death of Mrs. Longfellow (search)
taire, not in genius and industry only, but still more in morality. He says of him farther, He imitates, he reproduces, he does not create and he does not build up. . . . His chances at popularity are diminishing. Twaddle will not pass long for wisdom. The active spirit of movement and progress finds in his works little that attracts sympathy. Christian Examiner , July, 1839, XXVI. 363-367. It is to be remembered in the same connection that Longfellow, in 1837, wrote to his friend, George W. Greene, of Jean Paul Richter, the most magnificent of the German prose writers, Life, i. 259. and it was chiefly on Richter that his prose style was formed. In June he left Heidelberg for the Tyrol and Switzerland, where the scene of Hyperion was laid. He called it quite a sad and lonely journey, but it afterwards led to results both in his personal and literary career. He sailed for home in October and established himself in Cambridge in December, 1836. The following letter to his wife
Thomas Wentworth Higginson, Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, Chapter 12: voices of the night (search)
for colors in coats, waistcoats, and neckties. It will be remembered that in Hyperion he makes the Baron say to Paul Flemming, The ladies already begin to call you Wilhelm Meister, and they say that your gloves are a shade too light for a strictly virtuous man. He wrote also to Sumner when in Europe: If you have any tendency to curl your hair and wear gloves like Edgar in Lear, do it before your return. It is a curious fact that he wrote of himself about the same time to his friend, George W. Greene, in Rome: Most of the time am alone; smoke a good deal; wear a broad-brimmed hat, black frock coat, a black cane. Life, i. 256, 304. Of the warmth of heart which lay beneath this perhaps worldly exterior, the following letter to his youthful sister-in-law gives evidence:— Friday evening [1837]. My good, dear Madge,— you do not know how sorry I am, that I cannot see you. But for a week past I have hardly left my chamber. I have been so ill as to give up all College duties, Le
Thomas Wentworth Higginson, Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, Chapter 21: the Loftier strain: Christus (search)
o pack. I wish it were over and I in Cambridge. I am impatient to send The Divine Tragedy to the printers. On the 18th of October he wrote: The delays of printers are a great worry to authors; on the 25th, Get the last proof sheet of The Divine Tragedy; on the 30th, Read over proofs of the Interludes and Finale, and am doubtful and perplexed; on November 15, All the last week, perplexed and busy with final correction of The Tragedy. It was published on December 12, and he writes to G. W. Greene, December 17, 1871, The Divine Tragedy is very successful, from the booksellers' point of view—ten thousand copies were published on Tuesday last and the printers are already at work on three thousand more. That is pleasant, but that is not the main thing. The only question about a book ought to be whether it is successful in itself. It is altogether probable that in the strict views then prevailing about the very letter of the Christian Scriptures, a certain antagonism may have pr
Thomas Wentworth Higginson, Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, Index (search)
Grant, General Ulysses S., 6. Granville, Earl, 254; offers Longfellow bust to the Dean, 250, 251. Gray, J. C., 86. Gray, Thomas, 62, 252. Great Britain, 8. Greece, 31, 33. Green, Priscilla, 210. Green, Samuel S., 118 note. Greene, George W., 72, 74, 113,148; his Life of Nathanael Greene, quoted, 53, 54; Longfellow writes to, 57, 59, 67, 244. Greenleaf, Mrs. Mary (Longfellow), 92. Griffin, J., 69. Griswold, Rufus W., his Correspondence, cited, 143 note, 145 note, 168 notssor of modern languages at Bowdoin College, 56; prepares his own text-books, 57; contributes to the North American Review, 58; publishes translations, 60; marries Mary S. Potter, 60; salary at Bowdoin, 64; life at Brunswick, 65, 66; writes to G. W. Greene, 67; publishes sketches in New England Magazine, 67; early sketches, 68; comparison of the Sketch Book and Outre-Mer, 69-71; a puzzle about his writings, 72-74; his Defence of Poetry, 75-80; project of taking the Round Hill School, 81, 82; pos
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