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Emilia Galeotti (search for this): chapter 3
analysis of language. With more advanced pupils I read, in twenty-four weeks, Schiller's Don Carlos, Artists, and Song of the Bell, besides giving a sort of general lecture on Schiller; Goethe's Hermann and Dorothea, Goetz von Berlichingen, Iphigenia, first part of Faust,—three weeks of thorough study this, as valuable to me as to them,— and Clavigo,—thus comprehending samples of all his efforts in poetry, and bringing forward some of his prominent opinions; Lessing's Nathan, Minna, Emilia Galeotti; parts of Tieck's Phantasus, and nearly the whole first volume of Richter's Titan. With the Italian class, I read parts of Tasso, Petrarch,—whom they came to almost adore,—Ariosto, Alfieri, and the whole hundred cantos of the Divina Commedia, with the aid of the fine Athenaeum copy, Flaxman's designs, and all the best commentaries. This last piece of work was and will be truly valuable to myself. I had, besides, three private pupils, Mrs.——, who became very attractive to m
dispense with feeling them constantly near me, at least their remembrance can never, never be less dear. I suppose I ought, instead of grieving that we are soon to be separated, now to feel grateful for an intimacy of extraordinary permanence, and certainly of unstained truth and perfect freedom on both sides. As to my feelings, I take no pleasure in speaking of them; but I know not that I could give you a truer impression of them, than by these lines which I translate from the German of Uhland. They are entitled Justification. Our youthful fancies, idly fired, The fairest visions would embrace; These, with impetuous tears desired, Float upward into starry space; Heaven, upon the suppliant wild, Smiles down a gracious No!—In vain The strife! Yet be consoled, poor child, For the wish passes with the pain. But when from such idolatry The heart has turned, and wiser grown, In earnestness and purity Would make a nobler plan its own,— Yet, after all its zeal and care, Must of its
d. I have been to hear Neukomm's Oratorio of David. It is to music what Barry Cornwall's verses and Talfourd's Ion are to poetry. It is completely modern, and befits an age of consciousness. Nothing can be better arranged as a drama; the parts are in excellent gradation, the choruses are grand and effective, the composition, as a whole, brilliantly imposing. Yet it was dictated by taste and science only. Where are the enrapturing visions from the celestial world which shone down upon Haydn and Mozart; where the revelations from the depths of man's nature, which impart such passion to the symphonies of Beethoven; where, even, the fascinating fairy land, gay with delight, of Rossini? O, Genius! none but thee shall make our hearts and heads throb, our cheeks crimson, our eyes overflow, or fill our whole being with the serene joy of faith. * * I went to see Vandenhoff twice, in Brutus and Virginius. Another fine specimen of the conscious school; no inspiration, yet much ta
med so prematurely humbled in her parent dust. I burst into tears; and, with the stifled, hopeless feeling of a real sorrow, continued to weep till the very end; nor could I recover till I left the house. That is genius, which could give such life to this play; for, if I may judge from other parts, it is defeced by inflated sentiments, and verified by few natural touches. I wish I had it to read, for I should like to recall her every tone and look. I have been studying Flaxman and Retzsch. How pure, how immortal, the language of Form! Fools cannot fancy they fathom its meaning; witless dillettanti cannot degrade it by hackneyed usage; none but genius can create or reproduce it. Unlike the colorist, he who expresses his thought in form is secure as man can be against the ravages of time. I went to the Athenaeum in an agonizing conflict ot mind, when some high influence was needed to rouse me from the state of sickly sensitiveness, which, much as I despise, I cannot whol
Thomas Carlyle (search for this): chapter 3
atter, approve such overstatement, such a crude, intemperate tirade as you have been guilty of about Mr. Alcott;—a true and noble man, a philanthropist, whom a true and noble woman, also a philanthropist, should have delighted to honor; whose disinterested and resolute efforts, for the redemption of poor humanity, all independent and faithful minds should sustain, since the broadcloth vulgar will be sure to assail them; a philosopher, worthy of the palmy times of ancient Greece; a man whom Carlyle and Berkely, whom you so uphold, would delight to honor; a man whom the worldlings of Boston hold in as much horror as the worldlings of ancient Athens did Socrates. They smile to hear their verdict confirmed from the other side of the Atlantic, by their censor, Harriet Martineau. I do not like that your book should be an abolition book. You might have borne your testimony as decidedly as you pleased; but why leaven the whole book with it? This subject haunts us on almost every page.
ssarily broken up. I have with me the works of Goethe which I have not yet read, and am now engaged d with increased pleasure, by this new light. Goethe, too, studied architecture while in Italy; so s letters twice, Sartor Resartus once, some of Goethe's late diaries, Coleridge's Literary Remains, , and threatens to break it. I do not know our Goethe yet. I have changed my opinion about his relighy is checked, my admiration for the genius of Goethe is in nowise lessened, and I stand in a scepti giving a sort of general lecture on Schiller; Goethe's Hermann and Dorothea, Goetz von Berlichingenmuch to me. As you may imagine, the Life of Goethe is not yet written; but I have studied and thoerature,—has invited me to prepare the Life of Goethe, on very advantageous terms. This I should mun Hamlet, and have reviewed in connection what Goethe and Coleridge have said. Both have successful of the unhappy, was all he craved at last. Goethe, too, says he has known, in all his active wi[5 more...]
g months, that I cannot yet tell whether I shall have the time and tranquillity needed to write out the whole course, though much tempted by the promise of perfect liberty. I could engage, however, to furnish at least two articles on Novalis and Korner. I trust you will be interested in my favorite Korner. Great is my love for both of them. But I wish to write something which shall not only be free from exaggeration, but which shall seem so, to those unacquainted with their works. I have Korner. Great is my love for both of them. But I wish to write something which shall not only be free from exaggeration, but which shall seem so, to those unacquainted with their works. I have so much reading to go through with this month, that I have but few hours for correspondents. I have already discussed five volumes in German, two in French, three in English, and not without thought and examination. * * Tell —— that I read Titan by myself, in the afternoons and evenings of about three weeks. She need not be afraid to undertake it. Difficulties of detail may, perhaps, not be entirely conquered without a master or a good commentary, but she could enjoy all that is most valuab
R. H. Dana (search for this): chapter 3
thod. His is the unpremeditated art, and therefore successful. He is full of intellectual life; his mind has not been fettered by dogmas, and the worship of beauty finds a place there. I am much interested in this truly animated being. Mr. R. H. Dana has been giving us readings in the English dramatists, beginning with Shakspeare. The introductory was beautiful. After assigning to literature its high place in the education of the human soul, he announced his own view in giving these reeciation. But when he has told you what he likes, the pleasure of intercourse is over; for he is a man of prejudice more than of reason, and though he can make a lively expose of his thoughts and feelings, he does not justify them. In a word, Mr. Dana has the charms and the defects of one whose object in life has been to preserve his individuality unprofaned. Art. While residing at Providence, and during her visits to Boston, in her vacations, Margaret's mind was opening more and more
tience, labor, to their hearts and hands, From thy hands, and thy heart, and thy brave cheer, And God's grace fructify through thee to all. Elizabeth B. Barrett. While I was restless, nothing satisfied, Distrustful, most perplexed—yet felt somehow A mighty power was brooding, taking shape Within me; and this lasted till one night When, as I sat revolving it and more, A still voice from without said,—‘Seest thou not, Desponding child, whence came defeat and loss? Even from thy strength.’ Browning. Heaven's discipline has been invariable to me. The seemingly most pure and noble hopes have beer blighted; the seemingly most promising connections broken. The lesson has been endlessly repeated: Be humble, patient, self-sustaining; hope only for occasional aids; love others, but not engrossingly, for by being much alone your appointed task can best be done! What a weary work is before me, ere that lesson shall be fully learned! Who shall wonder at the stiff-necked, and rebellious
Coleridge (search for this): chapter 3
uences in some degree. I think, in reading, I shall place him next to Wordsworth. I have finished Herschel, and really believe I am a little wiser. I have read, too, Heyne's letters twice, Sartor Resartus once, some of Goethe's late diaries, Coleridge's Literary Remains, and drank a great deal from Wordsworth. By the way, do you know his Happy Warrior? I find my insight of this sublime poet perpetually deepening. Mr.—— says the Wanderjahre is wise. It must be presumed so; and yet one is introverted eye, and the almost childlike simplicity of his pathos, carry one back into a purer atmosphere, to live over again youth's fresh emotions. I greatly enjoyed his readings in Hamlet, and have reviewed in connection what Goethe and Coleridge have said. Both have successfully seized on the main points in the character of Hamlet, and Mr. D. took nearly the same range. His views of Ophelia, however, are unspeakably more just than are those of Serlo in Wilhelm Meister. I regret that
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