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.’