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Oliver Wendell Holmes (search for this): chapter 14
iam Henry Channing, and Wendell Phillips was a sufficient earnest of the catholicity of intention which prevailed in the government of the club. Only the intellectual bias was so much in the opposite direction that we who stood for the preeminence of Christianity sometimes felt ourselves at a disadvantage, and in danger of being set down as ignorant of much that our opponents assumed to know. In this connection I must mention a day on which, under the title of Jonathan Edwards, Dr. Oliver Wendell Holmes favored the club with a very graphic exposition of old-time New England Calvinism. The brilliant doctor's treatment of this difficult topic was appreciative and friendly, though by no means acquiescent in the doctrines presented. He said, indeed, that the feeling which naturally arises in contemplating the character of Jonathan Edwards is that of deep reverence for a man who seems to have been anointed from his birth; who lived a life pure, laborious, self-denying, occupied with
Samuel Longfellow (search for this): chapter 14
outdone and never to be forgotten. A lesser light of this time was the Rev. Samuel Longfellow. I remember him first as of a somewhat vague and vanishing personalition entitled Hymns of the Spirit, and published under the joint names of Samuel Longfellow and Samuel Johnson, is a valuable one, and the hymns which Mr. LongfellowMr. Longfellow himself contributed to the repertoire of the denomination are deeply religious in tone; and yet I must think that among Unitarians of thirty or more years ago he was was very vehement in his expression; but his indignation had reference to Mr. Longfellow's supposed opinions, and not at all to his character, which was esteemed ofpart in the discussion of this paper, I admitted the logical consistency of Mr. Longfellow's argument. I could point out no flaw in it, and yet, I maintained that th abide in the conclusion arrived at. My last recollection of speech with Mr. Longfellow is of an evening on which I lectured at his church in Germantown. He gave
Michael Angelo (search for this): chapter 14
Protestant divine, Athanase Coquerel, spoke of religion and art in their relation to each other. After a brief but interesting review of classic, Byzantine, and mediaeval art, M. Coquerel expressed his dissent from the generally received opinion that the Church of Rome had always been foremost in the promotion and patronage of the fine arts. The greatest of Italian masters, he averred, while standing in the formal relations with that church, had often shown opposition to its spirit. Michael Angelo's sonnets revealed a state of mind intolerant of ecclesiastical as of other tyranny. Raphael, in the execution of a papal order, had represented true religion by a portrait figure of Savonarola. Holbein and Rembrandt were avowed Protestants. He considered the individuality fostered by Protestantism as most favorable to the development of originality in art. With these views Colonel Higginson did not agree. He held that Christianity had reached its highest point under the dispensat
Edmund Quincy (search for this): chapter 14
endell Phillips thought the paper, on the whole, unjust to Edwards, and felt that there must have been in his doctrine another side not fully brought forward by the essayist. These and other speakers were heard with great interest, and the meeting was one of the best on our record. I have heard it said that Wendell Phillips's orthodoxy was greatly valued among the antislavery workers, especially as the orthodox pulpits of the time gave them little support or comfort. I was told that Edmund Quincy, one day, saw Parker and Phillips walking arm in arm, and cried out: Parker, don't dare to pervert that man. We want him as he is. I was thrice invited to read before the Radical Club. The titles of my three papers were, Doubt and Belief, Limitations, Representation, and How to Secure it. William Henry Channing was one of the bright lights of the Radical Club, a man of fervent nature and of exquisite perceptions, presenting in his character the rare combination of deep piety with
Thomas G. Appleton (search for this): chapter 14
ne, and the hymns which Mr. Longfellow himself contributed to the repertoire of the denomination are deeply religious in tone; and yet I must think that among Unitarians of thirty or more years ago he was held to be something of a skeptic. Thomas G. Appleton was speaking of him in my presence one day, and said, He asked me whether I could not get along without the idea of a personal God. I replied, No, you—— ——. Appleton shook his fist, and was very vehement in his expression; but his indiAppleton shook his fist, and was very vehement in his expression; but his indignation had reference to Mr. Longfellow's supposed opinions, and not at all to his character, which was esteemed of all men. I myself was present when he read his essay on Law before the Radical Club. Of this I especially recall a rather elaborate argument against the popular notion of a directing and overruling Providence. He supported his statement by the imagined story of a shipwreck or railroad disaster, in which some would escape injury, while others quite as worthy might be killed or
C. A. Bartol (search for this): chapter 14
he Boston Radical Club appears to me one of the social developments most worthy of remembrance in the third quarter of the nineteenth century. From a published record of its meetings I gather that the first of them was held at the residence of Dr. Bartol in the autumn of the year 1867. I felt a little grieved and aggrieved at the time, in that no invitation had been sent me to be present on this occasion, but was soon consoled by a letter offering me membership in the new association, which, it may be supposed, I did not decline. The government of the club was of the simplest. Its meetings were held on the first Monday of every month, and most frequently at the house of Rev. John T. Sargent, though occasionally at that of Dr. Bartol. The master of the house usually presided, but Mrs. Sargent was always present and aided much in suggesting the names of the persons who should be called upon to discuss the essay of the day. The proceedings were limited to the reading and discussion o
summer already mentioned as having brought my first meeting with Dr. Howe. Commencement and Phi Beta in those days were held in the early autumn, and my sisters and I were staying at a cottage in Dorchester when we received an invitation from Mrs. Farrar, of hospitable memory, to pass the day at her house, with other guests, among whom Margaret Fuller was mentioned. It was arranged that I should go with Margaret to the church in which the morning meeting would be held. I had never even heardis time, I asked Dr. Hedge what Margaret could have meant by this saying. His answer was that she had hoped to see him take a more pronounced position with regard to the vexed questions of the time. From the church we returned to dine with Mrs. Farrar, on whose pleasant piazza I enjoyed a long walk and talk with Margaret. By and by a carriage stopped before the door. She said, It is Mr. Ripley; he has come for me. I have promised to visit his wife. In a few words she told me about this r
Howe Italian (search for this): chapter 14
at in what he said. I replied, Yes, but it was good heat. Another memorable day at the club was that on which the eminent French Protestant divine, Athanase Coquerel, spoke of religion and art in their relation to each other. After a brief but interesting review of classic, Byzantine, and mediaeval art, M. Coquerel expressed his dissent from the generally received opinion that the Church of Rome had always been foremost in the promotion and patronage of the fine arts. The greatest of Italian masters, he averred, while standing in the formal relations with that church, had often shown opposition to its spirit. Michael Angelo's sonnets revealed a state of mind intolerant of ecclesiastical as of other tyranny. Raphael, in the execution of a papal order, had represented true religion by a portrait figure of Savonarola. Holbein and Rembrandt were avowed Protestants. He considered the individuality fostered by Protestantism as most favorable to the development of originality in a
Howe German (search for this): chapter 14
termined, in spite of my fatigue, to attend the lecture appointed for that day. I accordingly went out to Cambridge, and took my seat among Dr. Hedge's hearers. From time to time a spasm of somnolence would seize me, but the interest of the lecture was so great and my desire to hear it so strong that I did not once catch myself napping. Dr. Hedge was a lover of the drama. When Madame Janauschek first visited Boston, he asked me to accompany him in a visit to her. The conversation was in German, which the doctor spoke fluently. Madame J. said, among other things, that she had intended coming a year earlier, and had sent forward at that time her photograph and her biography. The doctor once invited me to go with him to the Boston Theatre, which was then occupied by a French troupe. This was at some period of our civil war. The most important of the plays given was La Joie fait Peur. As it proceeded, Dr. Hedge said to me, What a wonderful people these French are! They have put
Janauschek (search for this): chapter 14
d on one occasion, having passed the night without sleeping, on the road between New York and Boston, I determined, in spite of my fatigue, to attend the lecture appointed for that day. I accordingly went out to Cambridge, and took my seat among Dr. Hedge's hearers. From time to time a spasm of somnolence would seize me, but the interest of the lecture was so great and my desire to hear it so strong that I did not once catch myself napping. Dr. Hedge was a lover of the drama. When Madame Janauschek first visited Boston, he asked me to accompany him in a visit to her. The conversation was in German, which the doctor spoke fluently. Madame J. said, among other things, that she had intended coming a year earlier, and had sent forward at that time her photograph and her biography. The doctor once invited me to go with him to the Boston Theatre, which was then occupied by a French troupe. This was at some period of our civil war. The most important of the plays given was La Joie f
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