previous next
[283]

Chapter 14:


To C. S. Daveis, Portland.

Boston, October 30, 1852.
My dear Charles,—I received your letter, in your old familiar hand,—always welcome to my eyes,—when I returned last evening from the funeral.1 It was refreshing to me, and I needed some refreshment. The scene had been inexpressibly solemn and sad. The family had declined from the President and the Governor everything like the ceremonial observances customary on such occasions, and he was buried simply as a Marshfield man, with Marshfield pall-bearers; his kin—and servants, chiefly black—following next, and then all who had come uninvited to see him laid in his grave. How many of them were there I know not. The procession—wholly on foot—was above half a mile long, and we walked about a mile to the tomb, through a line of saddened forms and faces on each side of us, the eminence to which we advanced being all the while black with the crowds on it, and the crowd on the lawn before the house seeming, as we looked back, not to be diminished in numbers. I do not doubt more than ten thousand persons were there.

And yet it was, in all other respects, a mere New England funeral; no change in the house, no change in the ceremonies. He was buried, as his will prescribed, merely ‘l in a manner respectful to his neighbors’; and if any came to share in their sorrow, it was because they had sorrow of their own to bring them. No military display on earth was ever equal to this moral display of the feeling of a whole people; no ceremonies ordained by imperial power could ever so strike on the hearts of men. . . . .

We are all well, but I have been very much cut up the last fortnight,


1 The funeral of Mr. Webster, who had died on the 24th. Late in September Mr. Ticknor had visited him at Marshfield.

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 United States License.

An XML version of this text is available for download, with the additional restriction that you offer Perseus any modifications you make. Perseus provides credit for all accepted changes, storing new additions in a versioning system.

hide Places (automatically extracted)

View a map of the most frequently mentioned places in this document.

Sort places alphabetically, as they appear on the page, by frequency
Click on a place to search for it in this document.
Marshfield (Massachusetts, United States) (2)
Saxony (Saxony, Germany) (1)
New England (United States) (1)

Download Pleiades ancient places geospacial dataset for this text.

hide People (automatically extracted)
Sort people alphabetically, as they appear on the page, by frequency
Click on a person to search for him/her in this document.
D. Webster (2)
Charles S. Daveis (2)
George Ticknor (1)
Charles Lyell (1)
Edmund Head (1)
Edward Everett (1)
hide Dates (automatically extracted)
Sort dates alphabetically, as they appear on the page, by frequency
Click on a date to search for it in this document.
October 30th, 1852 AD (1)
September (1)
24th (1)
hide Display Preferences
Greek Display:
Arabic Display:
View by Default:
Browse Bar: