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[5] rainy days, ready to do a little more than their share of drudgery? If so, memory holds them.

Some such unconscious selection as this has been at work in the classification of our representative men. The building of the nation and the literary expression of its purpose and ideals are tasks which have called forth the strength of a great variety of individuals. Some of these men have proved to be peculiarly fitted for a specific service, irrespective of the question of their general intellectual powers, or their rank as judged by the standard of European performance in the same field. Thus the battle of New Orleans, in European eyes a mere bit of frontier fighting, made Andrew Jackson a “hero” as indubitably as if he had defeated Napoleon at Waterloo. It gave him the Presidency.

The analogy holds in literature. Certain expressions of American sentiment or conviction have served to summarize or to clarify the spirit of the nation. The authors of these productions have frequently won the recognition and affection of their contemporaries by means of prose and verse quite unsuited to sustain the test of severe critical standards. Neither Longfellow's Excelsior nor Poe's Bells nor Whittier's Maud Muller

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