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LIFE OF EMERSON Ralph Waldo Emerson was born in Boston, May 25, 1803. He was descended from a long line of New England ministers, men of refinement and education. As a school-boy he was quiet and retiring, reading a great deal, but not paying much attention to his lessons. He entered Harvard at the early age of fourteen, but never attained a high rank there, although he took a prize for an essay on... more...

An April Day My study has been a dull place of late; even the open fire, which still lingers on the hearth, has failed to exorcise a certain gray and weary spirit which has somehow taken possession of the premises. As I was thinking this morning about the best way of ejecting this unwelcome inmate, it suddenly occurred to me that for some time past my study has been simply a workshop; the fire has been... more...

CHAPTER 1 There are none of England's daughters that bear a prouder presence. And a kingly blood sends glances up, her princely eye to trouble,And the shadow of a monarch's crown is softened in her hair. —ELIZABETH BARRETT BROWNING The sun shone slanting over a spacious park, the undulating ground here turning a broad lawn towards the beams that silvered every blade of grass; there, curving... more...

CHAPTER I JERNYNGHAM’S HAPPY THOUGHT The air was cooling down toward evening at Sebastian, where an unpicturesque collection of wooden houses stand upon a branch line on the Canadian prairie. The place is not attractive during the earlier portion of the short northern summer, when for the greater part of every week it lies sweltering in heat, in spite of the strong west winds that drive dust-clouds... more...

CHAPTER I If I were asked what, in my opinion, distinguishes the thought of the present day from that of a previous generation, I should feel inclined to say, it is the fact that people are beginning to realize that Thought is a power in itself, one of the great forces of the Universe, and ultimately the greatest of forces, directing all the others. This idea seems to be, as the French say, "in the... more...

FASHIONABLE PHILOSOPHY. Scene—A London Drawing-room. Time—5 o’clock p.m. The afternoon tea apparatus in one corner of the room, and Lady Fritterly on a couch in another.  The Hon. Mrs Allmash is announced. Lady Fritterly.  How too kind, dear, of you to come, and so early, too!  I’ve got such a lot of interesting people coming, and we are going to discuss the religion of the future. Mrs... more...

Weep with me, all you that readThis little story;And know, for whom a tear you shed,Death's self is sorry. Ben Jonson. This story is no invention of mine. I could not invent anything half so lovely and pathetic as seems to me the incident which has come ready-made to my hand. Some of you, doubtless, have heard of James Speaight, the infant violinist, or Young Americus, as he was called. He was... more...

On the 22nd of July, 1828, the Sydney South Seaman, Indefatigable, eleven days out from the Port of Conception in Chili, was in lat 17? S. and about 127? E. long., six hundred miles distant from the nearest land—the then almost unknown Paumotu Group, which Cook had well named the Dangerous Archipelago. Five years before, the brig was named the Calder, and was then commanded by Captain Peter Dillon, a... more...

To many people in England the mention of Australia conjures pictures of tented gold-fields and tall, black-bearded, red-shirted bushrangers; of mounted police recruited from "flaxen-haired younger sons of good old English families, well-groomed and typically Anglo-Saxon"; of squatters and sheep runs; of buckjumpers ridden by the most daring riders in the world; and of much more to the same... more...

THE situation of American literature is anomalous. It has no centre, or, if it have, it is like that of the sphere of Hermes. It is, divided into many systems, each revolving round its several suns, and often presenting to the rest only the faint glimmer of a milk-and-water way. Our capital city, unlike London or Paris, is not a great central heart from which life and vigor radiate to the extremities,... more...