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Fredericksburg, Va. (Virginia, United States) (search for this): chapter 4
his sake left undone is to extract the very finest aroma of gratitude. He to whom the following letter was addressed-the Rev. Arthur Fuller-did not adopt that literary career to which his sister would fain have led him; but his was a life of unwearied labor and great practical usefulness; and when, after the resignation of his army chaplaincy, he took a musket from the hands of a wounded soldier, saying, I must do something for my country, and went forward to his death at the battle of Fredericksburg, he showed that his sister's influence had not been exerted in vain. You express gratitude for what I have taught you. It is in your power to repay me a hundred-fold, by making every exertion now to improve. I did not teach you as I would; yet I think the confinement and care I took of you children, at a time when my mind was so excited by many painful feelings, have had a very bad effect upon my health. I do not say this to pain you, or to make you more grateful to me (for, proba
North River (Virginia, United States) (search for this): chapter 4
oh, I hope will give you as much pleasure as it does me. Mr. and Mrs. Farrar propose taking me, with several other delightful persons, to Trenton Falls this summer. The plan is to set out about the 20th of July, go on to New York, then up the North River to West Point,--pass a day there; then to Catskill,--pass a day there; then on to Trenton, and devote a week to that beautiful scenery. I said I had scarcely a doubt of your consent, as you had said several times last winter you should like to have me take a pleasant journey this summer. Oh, I cannot describe the positive ecstasy with which I think of this journey! to see the North River at last, and in such society! Oh, do sympathize with me! do feel about it as I do! The positive expenses of the journey we have computed at forty-seven dollars; I shall want ten more for spending-money,--but you will not think of the money, will you? I would rather you would take two hundred dollars from my portion, than feel even the least
Providence, R. I. (Rhode Island, United States) (search for this): chapter 4
htly to the careless eye, but the same fire burns within and deeper than ever, and he may be conquered, but never subdued. But if these beautiful hills, and wide, rich fields saw this sad lore well learned, they also saw some precious lessons given too, of faith, of fortitude, of self-command, and of less selfish love. There, too, in solitude, heart and mind acquired more power of concentration, and discerned the beauty of a stricter method. There the heart was awakened to sympathize with the ignorant, to pity the vulgar, and hope for the seemingly worthless; for a need was felt of realizing the only reality, the divine soul of this visible creation, which cannot err and will not sleep, which cannot permit evil to be permanent or its aim of beauty to be eventually frustrated in the smallest particular. Fuller Mss. II. 721. Before these last letters were written, she had left Groton, for a time, and had entered on the life of a teacher, first in Boston and then in Providence.
Culpeper (Virginia, United States) (search for this): chapter 4
gene, who was her nearest companion, was now absent. Eugene and I, she writes in a later diary, were near of an age, and loved to wander out together, over the streams and through the woods, walking and talking or oftener silent. Ms. Diary, 1844. Eugene Fuller was not the most intellectual of her brothers, but the most winning and attractive; he had graduated at Harvard in 1834, and was at this time private tutor at the plantation of my uncle, Colonel Samuel Storrow, at Farley, Culpeper County, Virginia. This explains an allusion in the following letter, written by Margaret Fuller to her father during a temporary visit in Cambridge,--which I give to show how cordial a tie really united them, in spite of her criticisms. The dearest and most affectionate mean a good deal. Boston, June 2, 1835. Dearest father,--I was very glad to receive your letter although 't was but brief. You have of late omitted to write to me when I was absent, and I have felt as if you thought of me le
Poland (Poland) (search for this): chapter 4
they are yet so liable to be overruled by the pressure of events that the only thing surely moulded by their efforts is their own character. This she thus illustrates:-- Leonidas saved his country by a strong exertion of will, inspired by the most generous sentiment. Brutus nerved his soul to break those ties most sacred to one like him — and failed. Resolved, united hearts, freed America. The strongest exertion, the most generous concentration of will, for a similar purpose, left Poland in blood and chains at the feet of a tyrant. Fuller Mss. II 249. Her conclusion is that, although all outward results may fail, it is not in the power of circumstance to prevent the earnest will from shaping round itself the character of a great, a wise, or a good man. It was strong meat, surely, for a young girl to be feeding on such thoughts as these; such is not the diet on which mere sentimentalists and dreamers are reared. It is a striking fact in the development of her mind, th
d in Schiller, Heine, Alfieri, Bacon, Madame de Stael, Wordsworth, and Southey; with Sartor Resartus and some of Carlyle's shorter essays; besides a good deal of European and American history, including all Jefferson's letters. Mr. Emerson says justly that her reading at Groton was at a rate like Gibbon's. All this continuous s been the scene of some touching tale of sisterly devotion, but nowhere more genuine than in that old homestead at Groton. And, with other hopes, the dream of Europe must go. Her family begged her to take in advance her share of the family property and carry out her purpose; but she made, early in 1836, what she called the lasrength, as she records, to carry out her literary plans, she planned to help her mother by teaching. Circumstances have decided, she wrote, that I must not go to Europe, and shut upon me the door, as I think, forever, to the scenes I could have loved. Let me now try to forget myself and act for others' sakes. Memoirs, i. 161.
Jefferson City (Missouri, United States) (search for this): chapter 4
wrote to Dr. Hedge that she had doubted the providence of God, but not the immortality of the soul. During the few years following she studied architecture, being moved to it by what she had read in Goethe; she also read Herschel's Astronomy, recommended to her by Professor Farrar; read in Schiller, Heine, Alfieri, Bacon, Madame de Stael, Wordsworth, and Southey; with Sartor Resartus and some of Carlyle's shorter essays; besides a good deal of European and American history, including all Jefferson's letters. Mr. Emerson says justly that her reading at Groton was at a rate like Gibbon's. All this continuous study was not the easy amusement of a young lady of leisure; but it was accomplished under such difficulties and preoccupations that every book might almost be said to have cost her a drop of life-blood. Teaching little Fullers, as she called it, occupied much of her time; she had the sewing of four children also on her hands; her mother was often ill, her grandmother always
Groton (Massachusetts, United States) (search for this): chapter 4
Chapter 4: country life at Groton. (1833-1836.) In removing with her family to Groton, a villaGroton, a village nearly forty miles from Boston, and then rather difficult of access,--for this was long before thoks and intellectual companionship, what would Groton offer? She gave up Cambridge with its youthfust, if they do not pine, for my society. In Groton she read profusely, borrowing her books chiet, has been delivering a curious (as we say in Groton) address at Deerfield. If I thought you wouldiend Mrs. Barlow, after her father's death:-- Groton, February 1, 1836. I returned into life to ere more genuine than in that old homestead at Groton. And, with other hopes, the dream of Europeofounder sympathy. During her last summer in Groton she wrote this letter to her friend Samuel G. crifices for her own household while living in Groton; and showed a self-devotion that undoubtedly tur years later, she thus sums up their life at Groton, and pictures the position of the household af[5 more...]
Middleton, Mass. (Massachusetts, United States) (search for this): chapter 4
beams of freedom's holiest flame? A few days later, Mr. Bancroft found a defender, as Miss Fuller indicates, in a correspondent signing H., and giving Salem as his residence. He in turn is courteous and complimentary,--probably not being at all aware that it is a young woman of twenty-four to whom he is replying,and says of the first communication that it is written with ability and candor, but I think without fully investigating the subject. Nevertheless, as he can only cite Gibbon and Middleton's Cicero, while she had brought up Plutarch and Velleius Paterculus, the heavier ordnance was certainly with the defender of Brutus. But it was quite a triumph to be gravely answered; and the father and daughter in that quiet Groton farm-house must have taken great delight in cutting out for preservation those two momentous extracts from the Daily Advertiser. It often happens that young people, when banished from society to what seems solitude, find compensation in being anew introduce
Colorado (Colorado, United States) (search for this): chapter 4
nate daughter, M. Fuller Mss. i. 153. Fathers are fortunately so constituted as rarely to refuse appeals like this, and Margaret Fuller had her journey. It was her first experience of a pleasure which then, perhaps, had a greater zest than now, as being rarer, and involving more adventure. She went to Newport, then dear to her as the summer home of the Rev. Dr. Channing, -to New York, and to Trenton Falls, accounted one of the glories of America in the simple days when the wonders of Colorado and the Yosemite Valley were unknown. In the autumn she met Miss Harriet Martineau at the house of Professor Farrar, and a new delight opened before her vision. It was proposed that she should make a voyage to England with the Farrars; and under the guidance of her kind friends, long resident in England, she hoped to meet the larger intellectual circle of which she had dreamed. But suddenly a blow fell which crushed this hope and brought the profoundest emotions. Her father was taken il
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