previous next
[198] (Toute l'amerique ne possede pas un humoriste), one can place it to the credit of Longfellow that he had already won for himself some sort of literary standing in the presence of one Frenchman. At the time of this complaint, it may be noticed that Mr. S. L. Clemens was a boy of fifteen. The usual European criticism at the present day is not that America produces so few humorists, but that she brings forth so many.

The work which came next from Longfellow's pen has that peculiar value to a biographer which comes from a distinct, unequivocal, low water mark in the intellectual product with which he has to deal. This book, ‘Kavanagh,’ had the curious fate of bringing great disappointment to most of his friends and admirers, and yet of being praised by the two among his contemporaries personally most successful in fiction, Hawthorne and Howells. Now that the New England village life has proved such rich material in the hands of Mary Wilkins, Sarah Jewett, and Rowland Robinson, it is difficult to revert to ‘Kavanagh’ (1849) without feeling that it is from beginning to end a piece of purely academic literature without a type of character, or an incident—one might almost say without a single phrase—that gives quite the flavor of real life. Neither the joys nor the griefs really reach the reader's heart for one

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.
New England (United States) (1)
Europe (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.
Samuel Longfellow (2)
Kavanagh (2)
Mary Wilkins (1)
Rowland Robinson (1)
Sarah Jewett (1)
W. D. Howells (1)
Nathaniel Hawthorne (1)
Samuel L. Clemens (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.
1849 AD (1)
hide Display Preferences
Greek Display:
Arabic Display:
View by Default:
Browse Bar: