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John Greenleaf Whittier (search for this): chapter 22
ng that Mrs. Stowe should have felt herself impelled to give literary form to an experience so exceptional. Still more must this be the case when the early associations of this exceptional character were as amusing and interesting as they are shown forth in Oldtown Fireside stories. None of the incidents or characters embodied in those sketches are ideal. The stories are told as they came from Mr. Stowe's lips, with little or no alteration. Sam Lawson was a real character. In 1874 Mr. Whittier wrote to Mrs. Stowe: I am not able to write or study much, or read books that require thought, without suffering, but I have Sam Lawson lying at hand, and, as Corporal Trim said of Yorick's sermon, I like it hugely. The power and literary value of these stories lie in the fact that they are true to nature. Professor Stowe was himself an inimitable mimic and story-teller. No small proportion of Mrs. Stowe's success as a literary woman is to be attributed to him. Not only was he
Jacob Boehme (search for this): chapter 22
The same experiences continue yet, but with serious doubts as to the objectivity of the scenes exhibited. I have noticed that people who have remarkable and minute answers to prayer, such as Stilling, Franke, Lavater, are for the most part of this peculiar temperament. Is it absurd to suppose that some peculiarity in the nervous system, in the connecting link between soul and body, may bring some, more than others, into an almost abnormal contact with the spirit — world (for example, Jacob Boehme and Swedenborg), and that, too, without correcting their faults, or making them morally better than others? Allow me to say that I have always admired the working of your mind, there is about it such a perfect uprightness and uncalculating honesty. I think you are a better Christian without church or theology than most people are with both, though I am, and always have been in the main, a Calvinist of the Jonathan Edwards school. God bless you! I have a warm side for Mr. Lewes on accou
pled and dissipated man in the neighborhood, by the name of Brown, of whom I had stood in terror for years. These devils I looked on, full of eagerness, the devils struggled to force Brown down with them, and Brown struggled with the energy of despBrown struggled with the energy of desperation to save himself from their grip, and it seemed that the human was likely to prove too strong for the infernal. In thhat seemed to understand him perfectly, and, whirling up to Brown, touched his hand. Brown resisted stoutly, and struck out Brown resisted stoutly, and struck out right and left at the cloud most furiously, but the usual effect was produced,the hand grew black, quivered, and seemed to be degrees, and then the head and shoulders. At this instant Brown, collecting all his energies for one desperate effort, spraturned by an immense crank. Three of the devils now seized Brown and put his feet to the rollers, while two others stood, onncholy, but kept all my troubles to myself, through fear of Brown. This happened before my father's sickness, and consequen
hated: still the resemblance was so strong that I called him by the same name, Harvey. Harvey's visits were always expected and always pleasant; but sometimes thHarvey's visits were always expected and always pleasant; but sometimes there were visitations of another sort, odious and frightful. One of these I will relate as a specimen of the rest. One night, after I had retired to bed and was looking for Harvey, I observed an unusual number of the tunnel-shaped tremulous clouds already described, and they seemed intensely black and strongly agitated. This feeling that something awful was going to happen. It was not long before I saw Harvey at his accustomed place, cautiously peeping at me through the aperture, with an one of the clouds, which were every moment growing thicker and more numerous. Harvey soon withdrew and left me alone. On turning my eyes towards the left-hand wallith my grandmother; and when I had removed to her house I forever lost sight of Harvey. I still continued to sleep alone for the most part, but in a neatly furnished
were most constant and oppressive during the autumnal months. I very early learned to read, and soon became immoderately attached to books. In the Bible I read the first chapters of Job, and parts of Ezekiel, Daniel, and Revelation, with most intense delight, and with such frequency that I could repeat large portions from memory long before the age at which boys in the country are usually able to read plain sentences. The first large book besides the Bible that I remember reading was Morse's History of New England, which I devoured with insatiable greediness, particularly those parts which relate to Indian wars and witchcraft. I was in the habit of applying to my grandmother for explanations, and she would relate to me, while I listened with breathless attention, long stories from Mather's Magnalia or (Mag-nilly, as she used to call it), a work which I earnestly longed to read, but of which I never got sight till after my twentieth year. Very early there fell into my hands
xceptional character were as amusing and interesting as they are shown forth in Oldtown Fireside stories. None of the incidents or characters embodied in those sketches are ideal. The stories are told as they came from Mr. Stowe's lips, with little or no alteration. Sam Lawson was a real character. In 1874 Mr. Whittier wrote to Mrs. Stowe: I am not able to write or study much, or read books that require thought, without suffering, but I have Sam Lawson lying at hand, and, as Corporal Trim said of Yorick's sermon, I like it hugely. The power and literary value of these stories lie in the fact that they are true to nature. Professor Stowe was himself an inimitable mimic and story-teller. No small proportion of Mrs. Stowe's success as a literary woman is to be attributed to him. Not only was he possessed of a bright, quick mind, but wonderful retentiveness of memory. Mrs. Stowe was never at a loss for reliable information on any subject as long as the professor lived.
C. E. Stowe (search for this): chapter 22
ld-fashioned stage-coach, to enter upon a professorship in Dartmouth College, I was perfectly dissolved by it. Sincerely yours, C. E. Stowe. In a letter to Mrs. Stowe, written June 24, 1872, Mrs. Lewes alludes to Professor Stowe's letter as follows: Pray give my special thanks to the professor for his letter. His handwProfessor Stowe's letter as follows: Pray give my special thanks to the professor for his letter. His handwriting, which does really look like Arabic,--a very graceful character, surely,hap-pens to be remarkably legible to me, and I did not hesitate over a single word. Some of the words, as expressions of fellowship, were very precious to me, and I hold it very good of him to write to me that best sort of encouragement. I was much impal stimulus. In fact, the division between within and without in this sense seems to become every year a more subtle and bewildering problem. In 1834, while Mr. Stowe was a professor in Lane Theological Seminary at Cincinnati, Ohio, he wrote out a history of his youthful adventures in the spirit-world, from which the followin
Diffidence (search for this): chapter 22
hether it's good for her, but she don't drink much. So while Aunt Nabby is sitting sipping her tea and munching her bread and butter with a matter-of-fact certainty and marvelous satisfaction, mother goes doubting and reckoning round, like Mrs. Diffidence in Doubting Castle, till you see rising up another little table in another corner of the room, with a good substantial structure of broiled ham and coffee, and a boiled egg or two, with various et ceteras, which Mrs. Diffidence, after many dMrs. Diffidence, after many desponding ejaculations, finally sits down to, and in spite of all presentiments makes them fly as nimbly as Mr. Ready-to-Halt did Miss Much-afraid when he footed it so well with her on his crutches in the dance on the occasion of Giant Despair's overthrow. I have thus far dined alternately with mother and Aunt Susan, not having yet been admitted to Aunt Nabby's establishment. There are now great talkings, and congresses and consultations of the allied powers, and already rumors are afloat t
is childhood and youth among the grotesque and original characters of his native town. March 26, 1882, Professor Stowe wrote the following characteristic letter to Mrs. Lewes:-- Mrs. Lewes,--I fully sympathize with you in your disgust with Hume and the professing mediums generally. Hume spent his boyhood in my father's native town, among my relatives and acquaintances, and he was a disagreeable, nasty boy. But he certainly has qualities which science has not yet explained, and some oHume spent his boyhood in my father's native town, among my relatives and acquaintances, and he was a disagreeable, nasty boy. But he certainly has qualities which science has not yet explained, and some of his doings are as real as they are strange. My interest in the subject of spiritualism arises from the fact of my own experience, more than sixty years ago, in my early childhood. I then never thought of questioning the objective reality of all I saw, and supposed that everybody else had the same experience. Of what this experience was you may gain some idea from certain passages in Oldtown folks. The same experiences continue yet, but with serious doubts as to the objectivity of the sce
g her bread and butter with a matter-of-fact certainty and marvelous satisfaction, mother goes doubting and reckoning round, like Mrs. Diffidence in Doubting Castle, till you see rising up another little table in another corner of the room, with a good substantial structure of broiled ham and coffee, and a boiled egg or two, with various et ceteras, which Mrs. Diffidence, after many desponding ejaculations, finally sits down to, and in spite of all presentiments makes them fly as nimbly as Mr. Ready-to-Halt did Miss Much-afraid when he footed it so well with her on his crutches in the dance on the occasion of Giant Despair's overthrow. I have thus far dined alternately with mother and Aunt Susan, not having yet been admitted to Aunt Nabby's establishment. There are now great talkings, and congresses and consultations of the allied powers, and already rumors are afloat that perhaps all will unite their forces and dine at one table, especially as Harriet and little Hattie are coming
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