htened to a miracle, but far removed from the ardent dreams and soft credulity of the world's youth.
Sometimes I think I would give all our gains for those times when young and old gathered in the feudal hall, listening with soul-absorbing transport to the romance of the minstrel, unrestrained and regardless of criticism, and when they worshipped nature, not as high-dressed and pampered, but as just risen from the bath.
Cambridge, May 14, 1826.—I am studying Madame de Stael, Epictetus, Milton, Racine, and Castilian ballads, with great delight.
There's an assemblage for you. Now tell me, had you rather be the brilliant De Stael or the useful Edgeworth——though De Stael is useful too, but it is on the grand scale, on liberalizing, regenerating principles, and has not the immediate practical success that Edgeworth has. I met with a parallel the other day between Byron and Rousseau, and had a mind to send it to you, it was so excellent.
Cambridge, Jan. 10, 1827.—As to my studies
ity far more naturally and rationally than——. A few friends should settle upon the banks of a stream like this, planting their homesteads.
Some should be farmers, some woodmen, others bakers, millers, &c. By land, they should carry to one another the commodities; on the river they should meet for society.
At sunset many, of course, would be out in their boats, but they would love the hour too much ever to disturb one another.
I saw the spot where we should discuss the high mysteries that Milton speaks of. Also, I saw the spot where I would invite select friends to live through the noon of night, in silent communion.
When we wished to have merely playful chat, or talk on politics or social reform, we would gather in the mill, and arrange those affairs while grinding the corn.
What a happy place for children to grow up in!
Would it not suit little—to go to school to the cardinal flowers in her boat, beneath the great oak-tree?
I think she would learn more than in a phalanx of juv<
ation will not, I trust, make me cold, ignorant; nor partial.
My history presents much superficial, temporary tragedy.
The Woman in me kneels and weeps in tender rapture; the Man in me rushes forth, but only to be baffled.
Yet the time will come, when, from the union of this tragic king and queen, shall be born a radiant sovereign self.
I have quite a desire to try my powers in a narrative poem; but my head teems with plans, of which there will be time for very few only to take form.
Milton, it is said, made for himself a list of a hundred subjects for dramas, and the recorder of the fact seems to think this many.
I think it very few, so filled is life with innumerable themes.
Sunday Evening.—I have employed some hours of the day, with great satisfaction, in copying the Poet's Dreams from the Pentameron of Landor.
I do not often have time for such slow, pleasing labor.
I have thus imprinted the words in my mind, so that they will often recur in their original beauty.