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[43]

My last example is similar to this one. In enumerating the Grecian heroes, and assigning them their several qualities and virtues, he gives Nereus beauty.

Here it is again. Milton is a fool to this! The example is tangible,—it cannot be evaded; you may as well try to jump clear of space, or forget yourself into nonentity, as to run away from it. To make assurance doubly certain, however, I will show you, on the authority of Pope, that I have not mistaken the meaning of the passages I cite. The first is done badly enough, to be sure:—

Some mark of honor on my son bestow,
And pay in glory what in life you owe.
Fame is at least by heav'nly promise due
To life so short, etc.

This is miserable enough; the other is better:—

Nereus, in faultless shape and blooming grace,
The loveliest youth of all the Grecian race.

I suppose you are convinced against your will; and I know from Hudibras what I am to expect in such a case; but still, in spite of precedent and authority, I calculate on your submission to Horace, Homer, Milton, and George Ticknor! Vive atque vale.


To Charles S. Daveis, Portland.

Boston, February 8, 1814.
‘If all the world had their deserts,’ said the heir-apparent of Denmark in my hearing last night, ‘who should escape whipping?’ And so, my dear Charles, though I knew when I received your letter, a few moments ago, that it was a great deal more than I deserved, yet I felt much less compunction, I fear, than I ought, and less than I should have felt, if I had not been persuaded that other people were the objects of greater kindness than they merit. . . . .

I had seriously intended to send you a sketch of the Abraham of the ‘Edinburgh Review,’ while I was running over with speculations and opinions about him; and as you seem to regret that I did not, and as it is impossible to hear too much about a man who exercises some influence over every one of us, I think I may venture to give you a page about him.

You are to imagine, then, before you, a short, stout, little gentleman, about five and a half feet high, with a very red face, black hair, and black eyes. You are to suppose him to possess a very gay and animated


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