Thou art to us still more the Man, though less the Genius, than Shakspeare; thou dost not evade our sight, but, holding the lamp to thine own magic shows, dost enjoy them with us.
My third friend was Moliere, one very much lower, both in range and depth, than the others, but, as far as he goes, or the same character.
Nothing secluded or partial is there about his genius,— a man of the world, and a man by himself, as he is. It was, indeed, only the poor social world of Paris that he saw, but he viewed it from the firm foundations of his manhood, and every lightest laugh rings from a clear perception, and teaches life anew.
These men were all alike in this,—they loved the natural history of man. Not what he should be, but what he is, was the favorite subject of their thought.
Whenever a noble leading opened to the eye new paths of light, they rejoiced; but it was never fancy, but always fact, that inspired them.
They loved a thorough penetration of the murki