that day. Many of them were sold in his adversity, yet nearly a thousand volumes remained, chiefly of English literature and history of the eighteenth century; and most of these I read.
There was a fine set of Dr. Johnson's works in a dozen volumes, with an early edition of Boswell; all of Hoole's Tasso and Ariosto; a charming little edition of the British essayists, with pretty woodcuts; Bewick's Birds and Quadrupeds; Raynal's Indies; the Anti-Jacobin; Plutarch's Lives; Dobson's Life of Petrarch; Marshall's and Bancroft's Lives of Washington; Miss Burney's and Miss Edgeworth's works; and Sir Charles Grandison.
There were many volumes of sermons, which my mother was fond of reading,--she was, I think, the last person who habitually read them,--but which I naturally avoided.
There were a good many pretty little Italian books, belonging to one of my elder sisters, and a stray volume of Goethe which had been used by another.
In out-of-the-way closets I collected the disused classica
cupied by Judge Fay.
And as my friend Maria Fay was a cousin of some of the Brothers and Sisters, they made the house an occasional rendezvous; and as there were attractive younger kindred whom I chanced to know, I was able at least to look through the door of this paradise of youth.
Lowell's first volume had just been published, and all its allusions were ground of romance for us all; indeed, he and his betrothed were to me, as they seemed to be for those of their circle, a modernized Petrarch and Laura or even Dante and Beatrice; and I watched them with unselfish reverence.
Their love-letters, about which they were extremely frank, were passed from hand to hand, and sometimes reached me through Thaxter.
I have some of Maria White's ballads in her own handwriting; and I still know by heart a letter which she wrote to Thaxter, about the delay in her marriage,--It is easy enough to be married; the newspaper comers show us that, every day; but to live and to be happy as simple Kin