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Bliss Perry, The American spirit in lierature: a chronicle of great interpreters, Chapter 7: romance, poetry, and history (search)
t it is felt in most of his longer efforts in prose, and accounts for a certain dissatisfaction which many grateful and loyal readers nevertheless feel in his criticism. Lowell was more richly endowed by nature and by breadth of reading than Matthew Arnold, for instance, but in the actual performance of the critical function he was surpassed in method by Arnold and perhaps in inerrant perception, in a limited field, by Poe. It was as a poet, however, that he first won his place in our literaArnold and perhaps in inerrant perception, in a limited field, by Poe. It was as a poet, however, that he first won his place in our literature, and it is by means of certain passages in the Biglow papers and the Commemoration Ode that he has most moved his countrymen. The effectiveness of The present crisis and Sir Launfal, and of the Memorial Odes, particularly the Ode to Agassiz, is likewise due to the passion, sweetness, and splendor of certain strophes, rather than to the perfection of these poems as artistic wholes. Lowell's personal lyrics of sorrow, such as The Changeling, the first Snowfall, after the Burial, have touche
Thomas Wentworth Higginson, John Greenleaf Whittier, Chapter 1: childhood (search)
his life is no game of chance, and his investments in the earth are better than in stock companies and syndicates. As to profits, if our farmers could care less for the comfort of themselves and their families, if they could consent to live as their ancestors once lived, and as the pioneers in new countries now live, they could, with their present facilities, no doubt, double their profits at the expense of the delicacies and refinements that make life worth living. No better proof of real gains can be found than the creation of pleasant homes for the comfort of age and the happiness of youth. When the great English critic Matthew Arnold was in this country, on returning from a visit in Essex County, he remarked that while the land looked to him rough and unproductive, the landlords' houses seemed neat and often elegant. But where, he asked, do the tenants, the working people live? He seemed surprised when I told him that the tenants were the landlords and the workers the owners.
Thomas Wentworth Higginson, John Greenleaf Whittier, Chapter 11: early loves and love poetry (search)
s not quite loyal to his memory; and was known to criticise him as rustic, untravelled, without various experience; but she must remain in the world's memory, if at all, like so many Italian women in the past, as the possible retrospective candidate for the glory of a poet's early love. However this may be, it is deeply interesting to trace, through Whittier's earlier and later poems, this dawning of pure and high emotion. We find it first, in one of his best known poems; that which Matthew Arnold recognised as one of the perfect poems, which must live :-- Still sits the schoolhouse by the road, A ragged beggar sleeping; Around it still the sumachs grow, And blackberry vines are creeping. Within, the master's desk is seen, Deep-scarred by raps official; The warping floor, the battered seats, The jack-knife's carved initial; The charcoal frescos on the wall; It's door's worn sill, betraying The feet that, creeping slow to school, Went storming out to playing! Long years ago a
Thomas Wentworth Higginson, John Greenleaf Whittier, Index. (search)
cis Greenleaf, Whittier's poem My namesake addressed to, 131, 132. America, 23, 57, 71, 94, 153, 175. American Manufacturer, the, mentioned, 25, 34, 137. Amesbury, Mass., 4, 10, 46, 77, 82, 87, 89, 92, 93, 98, 99, 107, 109, 111, 122, 124, 136, 137, 167, 179, 180, 183; Ten Hour Bill at, 86, 87; Derby strike at, 87, 88. Amy Wentworth, 3, 142. Antislavery Society, American, 71, 72, 74, 77. Antoninus, Marcus Aurelius, 129. Appledore Island, 179. Armstrong, Gen. S. C., 98. Arnold, Matthew, 20, 140. Asquam House, 169. Athenaeum Gallery, 135. Atlantic Club, 89, 104. Atlantic Monthly, cited, 50; mentioned, 143, 176, 177; quoted, 153, 154. Aubignd, da, J. H. M., 166. Augustine, Saint, 116. Austin, Ann, 84. B. Bachiler, Rev., Stephen, 5, 6. Bacon, Francis, 38, 179; quoted, 150. Baltimore, Md., 48, 79. Bancroft, George, 100, 181. Banks, Gen. N. P., 47. Barbadoes, 85. Barclay of Ury, 56. Barefoot boy, the, quoted, 14-16. Barnard, F. A. P., 35.
Thomas Wentworth Higginson, John Greenleaf Whittier, English men of letters. (search)
Mason. Dickens. By A. W. Ward. Dryden. By G. Sainksbury. Fielding. By Austin Dobson. Gibbon. By J. Cotter Morison. Goldsmith.. By William Black. gray. By Edmund Gosse. Hume.. By T. H. Huxley. Johnson. By Leslie Stephen. Keats. By Sidney Colvin. Lamb. By Alfred Ainger. Landor. By Sidney Colvin. Locke. By Prof. Fowler. MacAULAYulay. By J. Cotter Morison. Milton. By Mark Pattison. Pope. By Leslie Stephen. SCOlTT. By R. H. Hutton. Skelley. By J. A. Symonds. Sheridan. By Mrs. Oliphant. Sir Philip Sidney. By J. A. Symonds. Southey. By Prof. Dowden. Spenser. By R. W. Church. Sterne. By H. D. Traill. Swift. By Leslie Stephen. Thackeray. By A. Trollope. Wordsworth. By F. W. H. Myers. New volumes Cloth. 12mo. Price, 75 cents net George Eliot. By Leslie Stephen. William Hazlitt. By Augustine Birrell. Matthew Arnold. By Herbert W. Paul. John Ruskin. By Frederic Harrison. Alfred Tennyson. By Alfred Lyall.
Francis Jackson Garrison, William Lloyd Garrison, 1805-1879; the story of his life told by his children: volume 4, Chapter 8: to England and the Continent.—1867. (search)
of the trials of the illness, to be accepted cheerfully. If you should come this way, after all, it would be a true kindness in you to call at Fox How, where the Arnolds will be at home for some time to come. The eldest son once told me Matthew Arnold. that he remembered the impression made on him in childhood, one winter evening early in 1839, by his father's voice in reading to Mrs. A. The Martyr Age, then just out in the Westminster Review. The boy was too young to enter into the story, but the deep emotion of his father's voice thrilled him, and that has been the association with your name in his mind ever since. Then, again, you know W. E. Forster is the husband of Dr. Arnold's eldest daughter; and you can be in no doubt how he feels towards you. I do hope you are seeing him in London, in spite of his anxious business in Parliament. . . . My dear friend, there is one word more that I must say. I value unspeakably your sympathy, and your sense of my sympathy, in the great
Cambridge History of American Literature: volume 3 (ed. Trent, William Peterfield, 1862-1939., Erskine, John, 1879-1951., Sherman, Stuart Pratt, 1881-1926., Van Doren, Carl, 1885-1950.), Book III (continued) (search)
inced by the same. To Gentiles objecting to any new revelation beyond the Bible, the Book of Mormon, offering itself as proof that it is valid, reports Jesus as saying, Wherefore murmur ye, because that ye shall receive more of my word? The Book was launched at a moment favorable to its acceptance by a certain type of the well-meaning but unschooled. The modern interpretation of the Bible had not begun. Literalism was still in the saddle. Books such as Lux Mundi had not appeared. Matthew Arnold was not yet startling the conventional with his counsel to rest heavily on some things in the Bible, on others lightly. The revisers of the King James version, were still a half century from their work which was to be followed by successive revisions until every little while sees a new translation of at least the New Testament. It is with such a background that the man of modern training approaches the Bible, and to him the Book of Mormon seems something born out of due season. Agai
Thomas Wentworth Higginson, Atlantic Essays, Americanism in literature. (search)
ne, a hygiene; but we cannot remain always Puritans. The world needed that moral bracing, even for its art; but, after all, life is not impoverished by being ennobled; and in a happier age, with a larger faith, we may again enrich ourselves with poetry and passion, while wearing that heroic girdle still around us. Then the next blossoming of the world's imagination need not bear within itself, like all the others, the seeds of an epoch of decay. I utterly reject the position taken by Matthew Arnold, that the Puritan spirit in America was essentially hostile to literature and art. Of course the forest pioneer cannot compose orchestral symphonies, nor the founder of a state carve statues. But the thoughtful and scholarly men who created the Massachusetts Colony brought with them the traditions of their universities, and left these embodied in a college. The Puritan life was only historically inconsistent with culture; there was no logical antagonism. Indeed, that life had in it mu
Thomas Wentworth Higginson, Carlyle's laugh and other surprises, XXIV. a half-century of American literature (1857-1907) (search)
nd make the American. With that drop, a new range of promise opened on the human race, and a lighter, finer, more highly organized type of mankind was born. This remark, which appeared first in the Atlantic Monthly, called down the wrath of Matthew Arnold, who missed the point entirely in calling it tall talk or a species of brag, overlooking the fact that it was written as a physiological caution addressed to this nervous race against overworking its children in school. In reality, it was a rely duplicate Englishmen, Nature might have said, the experiment is not so very interesting, but if they are to represent a new human type, the sooner we know it, the better. No one finally did more toward recognizing this new type than did Matthew Arnold himself, when he afterwards wrote, in 1887, Our countrymen [namely, the English], with a thousand good qualities, are really, perhaps, a good deal wanting in lucidity and flexibility ; and again in the same essay, The whole American nation ma
Laura E. Richards, Maud Howe, Florence Howe Hall, Julia Ward Howe, 1819-1910, in two volumes, with portraits and other illustrations: volume 1, Chapter 4:
241 Beacon Street
: the New Orleans Exposition 1883-1885; aet. 64-66 (search)
ndly and comfortable, and I hope, after a few more flights, to enjoy it very much. These will now be very short.... Boston is all alive with Irving's acting, Matthew Arnold's lectures, Cable's readings, and the coming opera. Pere Hyacinthe also has been here, and a very eminent Hindoo, named Mozumdar. I have lost many of these doings by my journeys, but heard Arnold's lecture on Emerson last evening. I have also heard one of Cable's readings. Arnold does not in the least understand Emerson, I think. He has a positive, square-jawed English mind, with no super-sensible aperg2s. His elocution is pitiable, and when, after his lecture, Wendell Phillips Arnold does not in the least understand Emerson, I think. He has a positive, square-jawed English mind, with no super-sensible aperg2s. His elocution is pitiable, and when, after his lecture, Wendell Phillips stepped forward and said a few graceful words of farewell to him, it was like the Rose complimenting the Cabbage ... The year 1883 closed with a climax of triumphant fatigue in the Merchants' and Mechanics' Fair, in which she was president of the Woman's Department. This was to lead to a far more serious undertaking in the au
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