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ing years at the latter, graduating successively at the Law School and the Divinity School, and finally taking his degree in the undergraduate department at what seemed to us a ripe old age. Another tonic in the way of cultured companionship was that of James Elliot Cabot, fresh from a German university,--then a rare experience,--he being, however, most un-German in clearness and terseness. I remember that when I complained to him of not understanding Kant's Critique of pure reason, in English, he answered tranquilly that he could not; that having read it twice in German he had thought he comprehended it, but that Meiklejohn's translation was beyond making out. These men were not in the Divinity School, but I met their equals there. The leading men of a college class gravitated then as naturally to the Divinity School as now to the Law School; even though, like myself, they passed to other pursuits afterward. I met there such men as Thomas Hill, afterward President of Harvard;
Hoffmann Von Fallersleben (search for this): chapter 6
r, Strauss's Life of Jesus (a French translation), and bought by economy a fine folio copy of Cudworth's Intellectual system, on which I used to browse at all odd hours — keeping it open on a standing desk. I read Mill's Logic, Whewell's Inductive sciences, Landor's Gebir and Imaginary conversations. Maria Lowell lent me also Landor's Pentameron, a book with exquisite passages; Alford's poems, then new, and, as she said, valuable for their simplicity; and the fiery German lays of Hoffmann von Fallersleben, some of which I translated, as was also the case with poems from Ruckert and Freiligrath, besides making a beginning at a version of the Swedish epic Frithiof's Saga, which Longfellow admired, and of Fredrika Bremer's novel, The H — family. I returned to Homer and Dante in the originals, and read something of Plato in Cousin's French translation, with an occasional reference to the Greek text. Some verses were contributed by me, as well as by my sister Louisa, at various times
J. G. Fichte (search for this): chapter 6
been my housemate at Brookline, had, however, been printed in The present, a short-lived magazine edited by my cousin, William Henry Channing; the verses being afterward, to my great delight, reprinted by Professor Longfellow in his Estray. My first prose, also, had appeared in The present, -an enthusiastic review of Mrs. Child's Letters from New York, then eagerly read by us young Transcendentalists. I dipped ardently, about that time, into the easier aspects of German philosophy, reading Fichte's Bestimmung des Menschen (Destiny of Man) with delight, and Schelling's Vorlesungen über die Methode des Akademische Studiums (Lectures on Academical Study). The influence of these authors was also felt through Coleridge's Literary remains, of which I was very fond, and in Vital Dynamics, by Dr. Green, Coleridge's friend and physician. A more perilous book was De Quincey's Confessions of an English Opium-Eater, which doubtless created more of such slaves than it liberated: I myself was led
Stephen Foster (search for this): chapter 6
ge of the Marine Court of New York city, who belonged to that heretical class, was the first person in America, apparently, to write and print, in 1819, a strong appeal in behalf of total abstinence as the only remedy for intemperance; and the same man made, in 1837, in the New York Assembly, the first effort to secure to married women the property rights now generally conceded. All of us were familiar with the vain efforts of Garrison to enlist the clergy in the anti-slavery cause; and Stephen Foster, one of the stanchest of the early Abolitionists, habitually spoke of them as the Brotherhood of Thieves. Lawyers and doctors, too, fared hard with those enthusiasts, and merchants not much better; Edward Palmer writing against the use of money, and even such superior men as Alcott having sometimes a curious touch of the Harold Skimpole view of that convenience. It seems now rather remarkable that the institution of marriage did not come in for a share in the general laxity, but it di
Charles Fourier (search for this): chapter 6
s were men quite worth knowing; and Dr. Convers Francis, especially, had a noted library and as dangerous a love of miscellaneous reading as my own. Accordingly, during the first year I kept up that perilous habit, and at the end of this time stayed out of the school for another year of freedom, returning only for the necessary final terms. There had just been a large accession of books at the college library, and from that and the Francis collection I had a full supply. I read Comte and Fourier, Strauss's Life of Jesus (a French translation), and bought by economy a fine folio copy of Cudworth's Intellectual system, on which I used to browse at all odd hours — keeping it open on a standing desk. I read Mill's Logic, Whewell's Inductive sciences, Landor's Gebir and Imaginary conversations. Maria Lowell lent me also Landor's Pentameron, a book with exquisite passages; Alford's poems, then new, and, as she said, valuable for their simplicity; and the fiery German lays of Hoffmann v
Convers Francis (search for this): chapter 6
, and dyspeptics. This, being interpreted, really meant that the young men there assembled were launched on that wave of liberal thought which, under Emerson and Parker, was rapidly submerging the old landmarks. For myself, I was wholly given over to the newer phase of thought, and after a year of unchartered freedom was ready to concentrate my reading a little and follow the few appointed lines of study which the school then required. The teachers were men quite worth knowing; and Dr. Convers Francis, especially, had a noted library and as dangerous a love of miscellaneous reading as my own. Accordingly, during the first year I kept up that perilous habit, and at the end of this time stayed out of the school for another year of freedom, returning only for the necessary final terms. There had just been a large accession of books at the college library, and from that and the Francis collection I had a full supply. I read Comte and Fourier, Strauss's Life of Jesus (a French transl
Ferdinand Freiligrath (search for this): chapter 6
worth's Intellectual system, on which I used to browse at all odd hours — keeping it open on a standing desk. I read Mill's Logic, Whewell's Inductive sciences, Landor's Gebir and Imaginary conversations. Maria Lowell lent me also Landor's Pentameron, a book with exquisite passages; Alford's poems, then new, and, as she said, valuable for their simplicity; and the fiery German lays of Hoffmann von Fallersleben, some of which I translated, as was also the case with poems from Ruckert and Freiligrath, besides making a beginning at a version of the Swedish epic Frithiof's Saga, which Longfellow admired, and of Fredrika Bremer's novel, The H — family. I returned to Homer and Dante in the originals, and read something of Plato in Cousin's French translation, with an occasional reference to the Greek text. Some verses were contributed by me, as well as by my sister Louisa, at various times, to The Harbinger, published at Brook Farm and edited by the late Charles A. Dana. My first poe
Octavius B. Frothingham (search for this): chapter 6
men of a college class gravitated then as naturally to the Divinity School as now to the Law School; even though, like myself, they passed to other pursuits afterward. I met there such men as Thomas Hill, afterward President of Harvard; Octavius B. Frothingham; William R. Alger; Samuel Longfellow and Samuel Johnson, who compiled at Divinity Hall their collection of hymns,--a volume called modestly A book of hymns, and more profanely named from its editors' familiar names The Sam book. Longfelg since found their way into the most orthodox and respectable collections. Two of the most interesting men in the Divinity School were afterward, like myself, in military service during the Civil War. One of them was James Richardson, whom Frothingham described later as a brilliant wreath of fire-mist, which seemed every moment to be on the point of becoming a star, but never did. He enlisted as a private soldier and died in hospital, where he had been detailed as nurse. The other had bee
W. L. Garrison (search for this): chapter 6
ghts now generally conceded. All of us were familiar with the vain efforts of Garrison to enlist the clergy in the anti-slavery cause; and Stephen Foster, one of the insurrection. It was in this sincere but deluded belief that such men mobbed Garrison. When I once spoke with admiration of that reformer to Mr. Augustus Aspinwall French Revolution. If it had come in his way, he would undoubtedly have seen Garrison executed, and would then have gone back to finish clearing his roses of snailsted worthy of such companionship; I wrote and printed a rather crude sonnet to Garrison; and my only sorrow was in feeling that, as Alexander lamented about his fatheaps the quietest, was the very Francis Todd who had caused the imprisonment of Garrison at Baltimore. It happened, besides, that the one political hero and favorite son of Newburyport, Caleb Cushing-for of Garrison himself they only felt ashamed — was at that moment fighting slavery's battles in the Mexican war. It now seems t
J. H. Green (search for this): chapter 6
iastic review of Mrs. Child's Letters from New York, then eagerly read by us young Transcendentalists. I dipped ardently, about that time, into the easier aspects of German philosophy, reading Fichte's Bestimmung des Menschen (Destiny of Man) with delight, and Schelling's Vorlesungen über die Methode des Akademische Studiums (Lectures on Academical Study). The influence of these authors was also felt through Coleridge's Literary remains, of which I was very fond, and in Vital Dynamics, by Dr. Green, Coleridge's friend and physician. A more perilous book was De Quincey's Confessions of an English Opium-Eater, which doubtless created more of such slaves than it liberated: I myself was led to try some guarded experiments in that direction, which had happily no effect, and I was glad to abandon them. It seems, in looking back, a curious escapade for one who had a natural dislike for all stimulants and narcotics and had felt no temptation of that kind; I probably indulged the hope of s
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