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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 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 valuable alone. I should be very unwilling to read it with a person of narrow or unrefined mind; for it is a noble work, and fit to raise a reader into that high serene of thought where pedants cannot enter. Farewell to Groton. The place is be
aret went to Boston, with the two-fold design of teaching Latin and French in Mr. Alcott's school, which was then highly prosperous, and of forming classes of young ladies in French, German, and Italian. Her view of Mr. Alcott's plan of education was thus hinted in a journal, one day, after she had been talking with him, and trn abstractions, and cannot illustrate your principles. On the other hand, Mr. Alcott's impressions of Margaret were thus noted in his diaries:— She is clearly for ten weeks, and was very interesting, though very fatiguing. The labor in Mr. Alcott's school was also quite exhausting. I, however, loved the children, and had in some instances, makes me comprehend, better than before, how such a man as Mr. Alcott could devote his life to renovate elementary education. I have pleasant feelrstatement, 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
John Neal (search for this): chapter 3
be distinctly heard, must have been very strong. Yet there is too much apparent trickery in this, to bear frequent repetition. His manner is well adapted for argument, and for the expression either of satire or of chivalric sentiment. Mr. John Neal addressed my girls on the destiny and vocation of Woman in this country. He gave, truly, a manly view, though not the view of common men, and it was pleasing to watch his countenance, where energy is animated by genius. He then spoke to thepression produced by his magnetic genius and independent character. In the evening we had a long conversation upon Woman, Whigism, modern English Poets, Shakspeare,—and, in particular, Richard the Third,—about which we had actually a fight. Mr. Neal does not argue quite fairly, for he uses reason while it lasts, and then helps himself out with with sentiment and assertion. I should quarrel with his definitions upon almost every subject, but his fervid eloquence, brilliancy, endless resourc
—I have just been reading Goethe's Lebensregel. It is easy to say Do not trouble yourself with useless regrets for the past; enjoy the present, and leave the future to God. But it is not easy for characters, which are by nature neither calm nor careless, to act upon these rules. I am rather of the opinion of Novalis, that Wer sich der hochsten Lieb ergeben Genest von ihnen Wunden nie. But I will endeavor to profit by the instructions of the great philosopher who teaches, I think, what Christ did, to use without overvaluing the world. Circumstances have decided that I must not go to Europe, and shut upon me the door, as I think, forever, to the scenes I could have loved. Let me now try to forget myself, and act for others' sakes. What I can do with my pen, I know not. At present, I feel no confidence or hope. The expectations so many have been led to cherish by my conversational powers, I am disposed to deem ill-founded. I do not think I can produce a valuable work. I do
ong the first of the second class of men who apply their powers to practical purposes,—and that is saying much. I went to hear Joseph John Gurney, one of the most distinguished and influential, it is said, of the English Quakers. He is a thick-set, beetle-browed man, with a well-to-do-in-the-world air of pious stolidity. I was grievously disappointed; for Quakerism has at times looked lovely to me, and I had expected at least a spiritual exposition of its doctrines from the brother of Mrs. Fry. But his manner was as wooden as his matter, and had no merit but that of distinct elocution. His sermon was a tissue of texts, illy selected, and worse patched together, in proof of the assertion that a belief in the Trinity is the one thing needful, and that reason, unless manacled by a creed, is the one thing dangerous. His figures were paltry, his thoughts narrowed down, and his very sincerity made corrupt by spiritual pride. One could not but pity his notions of the Holy Ghost, and
mmer's bloom shall drive away; Nature's wide temple and the azure dome Have plan enough for the free spirit's home! Your Schiller has already given me great pleasure. I have been reading the Revolt in the Netherlands with intense interest, and have ements of Architecture; the works of Alfieri, with his opinions on them; the historical and critical works of Goethe and Schiller, and the outlines of history of our own country. I chose this time as one when I should have nothing to distract or dg, except in the way of observation and 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 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 opin<
The Stranger. The first night I felt much disappointed in Miss K. In the gay parts a coquettish, courtly manner marred the wild mirth and wanton wit of Beatrice. Yet, in everything else, I liked her conception of the part; and where she urges Benedict to fight with Claudio, and where she reads Benedict's sonnet, she was admirable. But I received no more pleasure from Miss K.'s acting out the part than I have done in reading it, and this disappointed me. Neither did I laugh, but thought all Benedict's sonnet, she was admirable. But I received no more pleasure from Miss K.'s acting out the part than I have done in reading it, and this disappointed me. Neither did I laugh, but thought all the while of Miss K.,—how very graceful she was, and whether this and that way of rendering the part was just. I do not believe she has comic power within herself, though tasteful enough to comprehend any part. So I went home, vexed because my heart was not full, and my brain not on fire with enthusiasm. I drank my milk, and went to sleep, as on other dreary occasions, and dreamed not of Miss Kemble. Next night, however, I went expectant, and all my soul was satisfied. I saw her at a favo
forgot to throb with youthful love. This character,—which did actual fathers know how to be, they would fulfil the order of nature, and image Deity to their children,—Vandenhoff represented sufficiently, at least, to call up the beautiful ideal. Fanny Kemble. When in Boston, I saw the Kembles twice,— in Much ado about Nothing, and The Stranger. The first night I felt much disappointed in Miss K. In the gay parts a coquettish, courtly manner marred the wild mirth and wanton wit of Beatrice. Yet, in everything else, I liked her conception of the part; and where she urges Benedict to fight with Claudio, and where she reads Benedict's sonnet, she was admirable. But I received no more pleasure from Miss K.'s acting out the part than I have done in reading it, and this disappointed me. Neither did I laugh, but thought all the while of Miss K.,—how very graceful she was, and whether this and that way of rendering the part was just. I do not believe she has comic power within h
Virginius (search for this): chapter 3
ere 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 taste. Spite of the threadpaper Tituses, the chambermaid Virginias, the washerwoman Tullias, and the people, made up of half a dozen chimney-sweeps, in carters' frocks and red nightcaps, this man had power to recall a thought of the old stately Roman, with his unity of will and deed. He was an admirable father, that fairest, noblest part,— with a happy mixture of dignity and tenderness, blendking the delicate sympa
Wordsworth (search for this): chapter 3
my affections. As to Southey, I am steeped to the lips in enjoyment. I am glad I did not know this poet earlier; for I am now just ready to receive his truly exalting influences 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 wayWordsworth. 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 not satisfied. I was perfectly so with my manner of interpreting the Lehrjahre; but this sequel keeps jerking my clue, and threatens to break it. I do not know our Goethe yet. I have changed my opinion about his religious views many times. Sometimes I am tempted to think that it is only his wonderful knowledge of human n
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