critic says more truly of it, I think, ‘Plainly in the style of Richter
, with all the mingled grandeur and grotesqueness of the German romanticists, it is scarcely now a favorite with the adult reader; though the young, obedient to some vague embryonic law, still find in it for a season the pleasure, the thrilling melancholy, which their grandfathers found.’1
But Professor Carpenter
, speaking from the point of view of the younger generation, does not fail to recognize that Paul Flemming
's complaints cease when he reads the tombstone inscription which becomes the motto of the book; and I recall with pleasure that, being a youth nurtured on ‘Hyperion,’ I selected that passage for the text of my boyish autobiography written in the Harvard
‘Class Book’ at the juvenile age of seventeen.
Dozens of youths were perhaps adopting the motto in the same way at the same time, and it is useless to deny to a book which thus reached youthful hearts the credit of having influenced the whole period of its popularity.
Apart from the personal romance which his readers attached to it, the book had great value as the first real importation into our literature of the wealth of German romance and song.
So faithful and ample are its local descriptions that a cheap edition of it is always on sale at