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Thomas Wentworth Higginson, Atlantic Essays 2 0 Browse Search
James Russell Lowell, Among my books 2 0 Browse Search
Mary Thacher Higginson, Thomas Wentworth Higginson: the story of his life 1 1 Browse Search
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Mary Thacher Higginson, Thomas Wentworth Higginson: the story of his life, XV: journeys (search)
us to approach you with some slight offering of our regard, feeling quite sure that you would interpret aright the significance of the act. Whatever form the memento may take I trust, my dear Sir, it will ever speak to you of the disimprisoned spirits; and ever stimulate you to use your rare and noble gift of persuasive eloquence in the cause of truth and freedom. Colonel Higginson went abroad twice more, in 1897 and 1901, on both of these occasions taking his family with him. From Tintern, England, one of the party wrote:— Wentworth is too soft-hearted to travel in Europe. He has discovered great holes in the roofs of some of the cottages near us, and heard that one old woman has to put up an umbrella in the night when it rains, and this makes him unhappy. The 1897 visit brought us to London at the time of the Queen's Jubilee, and Colonel Higginson wrote:— London seems so confoundedly empty to me without the circle of great men whom I met twenty years ago . . . .
Thomas Wentworth Higginson, Atlantic Essays, On an old Latin text-book. (search)
very gods must be, like those of the Greeks and Romans, men and women. He is poetic, but it is according to Milton's definition, simple, sensuous, passionate ; the boy's poetry is classic, it is the youth only who is romantic. Give him time enough, and every castle on the Rhine will have for him a dream, and every lily of the Mummelsee an imprisoned maiden; but his earlier faith is in the more definite dramatis personae of this old text-book. Wordsworth, in one of his profoundest poems, Tintern abbey, has described the difference between the glad animal movements of a boy's most ardent love of nature, and the more meditative enjoyment of later years; and the child approaches literature as he does nature, with direct and vehement delight; the wildest romances must have in some sort definite outlines, as in the Arabian Nights. The epoch of vague dreams will come later; up to the age of thirteen he is a Roman or a Greek. I must honestly say that much of the modern outcry against
James Russell Lowell, Among my books, Wordsworth. (search)
that its progress to oblivion seemed to be certain. But the notices in the Monthly and Critical Reviews (then the most influential) were fair, and indeed favorable, especially to Wordsworth's share in the volume. The Monthly says, So much genius and originality are discovered in this publication that we wish to see another from the same hand. The Critical, after saying that in the whole range of English poetry we scarcely recollect anything superior to a passage in Lines written near Tintern Abbey, sums up thus: Yet every piece discovers genius; and ill as the author has frequently employed his talents, they certainly rank him with the best of living poets. Such treatment cannot surely be called discouraging. Lord Byron describes himself as waking one morning and finding himself famous, and it is quite an ordinary fact, that a blaze may be made with a little saltpetre that will be stared at by thousands who would have thought the sunrise tedious. If we may believe his biogra