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[118] with you at home, and easily earn in some other way the support that may be necessary for me. If, however, you, of your own accord, desire me to accept this office, and willingly make the sacrifices that are necessary to it; if you are disposed to add to the income what is necessary to support a family; if you are disposed to have me yet another half-year absent, so as to make in all four years; and, finally, if you are willing that I should live separated from you the greater part of the year,—I will accept. I send you, therefore, two letters for the President: one affirmative, one negative. Choose, dear father and mother, whichever you please, and be assured your choice will make me happy.

If you had mentioned the subject in your letters, or if from Cogswell I could have gained a hint of your wishes, I should have sent but one of them. As it is, your decision cannot be difficult, since in either case it must be proper.

Your affectionate child,

To Edward T. Channing.

Gottingen, November 16, 1816.
Two months ago, my dear Edward, I wrote you from Leipsic, and on my return here found your letters of August 9th and September 14th. I thank you for them, as I do in my heart for all your letters, and read them with grateful pleasure throughout, even that part of your last in which you abuse the German literature. You must, however, permit me to answer this. ‘I am an elder soldier, not a better,’ and may claim to be heard on the ground of experience, if not of disinterestedness. If anybody chooses to say the literature of Germany is poor, feeble, good for nothing, etc., I have no disposition to disturb him in his opinion,—chacun à son gout. He cannot enjoy what I can,—and I, on the other hand, no doubt, am incapable of some pleasures which he perceives. But when a man comes out like the author of a ‘Review of Goethe's Life,’ and says Schiller is the first genius Germany has produced, or, like yourself, that German poetry is obscure, artificial, etc., I am bold to say, with all due respect, the man knows nothing about the matter. Again, if a man says, ‘I am going to give an account of Goethe's life, as he himself represents it,’ and then draws a caricature of it, as is done by the Edinburgh Review, I say he is dishonest, without entering into the question whether the book is defensible. Or, if, like the author of the ‘Review of the Ancient German Poetry,’ he says, Bouterweck's book on this subject is indifferent,

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