And Lamb, the frolic and the gentle,So, in one of the sweetest and most pathetic of his poems touching the loss of his literary friends, sang Wordsworth. We well remember with what freshness and vividness these simple lines came before us, on hearing, last autumn, of the death of the warm-hearted and gifted friend whose name heads this article; for there was much in his character and genius to remind us of the gentle author of Elia. He had the latter's genial humor and quaintness; his nice and delicate perception of the beautiful and poetic; his happy, easy diction, not the result, as in the case of that of the English essayist, of slow and careful elaboration, but the natural, spontaneous language in which his conceptions at once embodied themselves, apparently without any consciousness of effort. As Mark Antony talked, he wrote, ‘right on,’ telling his readers often what ‘they themselves did know,’ yet imparting to the simplest commonplaces of life interest and significance, and throwing a golden haze of poetry over the rough and thorny pathways of every-day duty. Like Lamb, he loved his friends without stint or limit. The ‘old familiar faces’ haunted him. Lamb loved the streets and lanes of London—the places where he oftenest came in
Has vanished from his kindly hearth.