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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 Socrates, and was made class poet after several... more...

BRITANNIA. I. The people that now occupies England was formed, like the French people, by the fusion of several superimposed races. In both countries the same races met and mingled at about the same period, but in different proportions and under dissimilar social conditions. Hence the striking resemblances and sharply defined contrasts that exist in the genius of the two nations. Hence also the contradictory sentiments which mutually animated... more...

CHAPTER I THE RENAISSANCE (1) There are times in every man's experience when some sudden widening of the boundaries of his knowledge, some vision of hitherto untried and unrealized possibilities, has come and seemed to bring with it new life and the inspiration of fresh and splendid endeavour. It may be some great book read for the first time not as a book, but as a revelation; it may be the first realization of the extent and moment of what... more...

WHAT IS MAN? I a. Man the Machine. b. Personal Merit (The Old Man and the Young Man had been conversing. The Old Man had asserted that the human being is merely a machine, and nothing more. The Young Man objected, and asked him to go into particulars and furnish his reasons for his position.) Old Man. What are the materials of which a steam-engine is made? Young Man. Iron, steel, brass, white-metal, and so on. O.M. Where are these found?... more...

In a little place called Le Monastier, in a pleasant highland valley fifteen miles from Le Puy, I spent about a month of fine days.  Monastier is notable for the making of lace, for drunkenness, for freedom of language, and for unparalleled political dissension.  There are adherents of each of the four French parties—Legitimists, Orleanists, Imperialists, and Republicans—in this little mountain-town; and they all hate,... more...


TO THE QUEEN. MADAM, I have the honour to place in your Majesty's hands the hitherto uncollected and unpublished Prose Works of WILLIAM WORDSWORTH —name sufficient in its simpleness to give lustre to any page. Having been requested thus to collect and edit his Prose Writings by those who hold his MSS. and are his nearest representatives, one little discovery or recovery among these MSS. suggested your Majesty as the one among all... more...

CHAPTER I. THE DANUBE PICTURE. There was no air of uncertainty upon the handsome countenance ofMr. Randall Clayton as he stepped out of the elevator of a sedateFourteenth Street business building and approvingly sniffed theApril morning breeze. On this particular Saturday of ninety-seven, the shopping multitude was already pouring from the Scylla of Simpson, Crawford & Simpson's on Sixth Avenue—and its Charybdis of the Big... more...

CHAPTER IA WORD OF WARNING Every actress of prominence receives letters from young girls and women who wish to go on the stage, and I have my share. These letters are of all kinds. Some are extravagant, some enthusiastic, some foolish, and a few unutterably pathetic; but however their writers may differ otherwise, there is one positive conviction they unconsciously share, and there is one question they each and every one put to me: so it is... more...

Introduction My aim in this little book has been to give short sketches and estimates of the greatest modern English writers from Macaulay to Stevenson and Kipling. Omissions there are, but my effort has been to give the most characteristic writers a place and to try to stimulate the reader's interest in the man behind the book as well as in the best works of each author. Too much space is devoted in most literary criticism to the bare facts... more...

When they are very little just only a baby you can never tell which one is to be a lady. There are some when they feel it inside them that it has been with them that there was once so very little of them, that they were a baby, helpless and no conscious feeling in them, that they knew nothing then when they were kissed and dandled and fixed by others who knew them when they could know nothing inside them or around them, some get from all this... more...