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[187] large; visitors and dinner parties constantly increase. His mother dies suddenly, and he sits all night alone by her dead body, a sense of peace comes over him, as if there had been no shock or jar in nature, but a ‘harmonious close to a long life.’ Later he gets tired of summer rest at Nahant, which he calls ‘building up life with solid blocks of idleness;’ but when two days later he goes back to Cambridge to resume his duties, he records: ‘I felt my neck bow and the pressure of the yoke.’ Soon after he says: ‘I find no time to write. I find more and more the little things of life shut out the great. Innumerable interruptions—letters of application for this and for that; endless importunities of foreigners for help here and help there—fret the day and consume it.’ He often records having half a dozen men to dine with him; he goes to the theatre, to lectures, concerts, and balls, has no repose, and perhaps, as we have seen at Nahant, would not really enjoy it. It was under these conditions, however, that the ‘Golden Legend’ came into the world in November, 1851; and it was not until September 12, 1854, that its author was finally separated from the University. He was before that date happily at work on ‘Hiawatha.’

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