The Letters of William Cullen Bryant - Vol. 1

By William Cullen Bryant II; Thomas G. Voss et al. | Go to book overview

cause you could not come this summer. 9 What if you should come in the present month and see how autumn looks in this region? You are a man of leisure and should give a part of your time to your friends.--

I am yrs &c.
W. C BRYANT.

P. S. Dr. [Henry J.] Anderson who has just called tells me that he has no doubt that the notice of my poems in the Foreign Quarterly was written in this country. Their critic's notion of prosody is the same as Dr. McHenry's. 10

MANUSCRIPT: NYPL-GR ADDRESS: Richard H. Dana Esq / care of William Ellery Esq. / Newport / R. I. POSTMARK: NEW-YORK / OCT / 8 ENDORSED: Wm C. Bryant / Oct 8--1832 / Answered PUBLISHED (in Part): Life, I, 285-286.

1.
Dana's comments on his health were omitted from that portion of his letter of October 3 published in Life, I, 284-285. The manuscript is unrecovered.
2.
This epidemic swept Europe and Great Britain in 1831-1832, and arriving in New York by way of Canada in June, caused more than 3,500 deaths in the city before receding in September. While it still raged, Bryant wrote in the EP on August 20, that, following the exodus of more than 100,000 persons to the suburbs, "so many domestic fires have been put out, and the furnaces of so many manufactories have been extinguished, that the dense cloud of smoke which always lay over the city," as seen from Hoboken, "is now so thin as often to be scarcely discernible, and the buildings of the great metropolis appear with unusual clearness and distinctness." See Hone, Diary, I, 65-74, passim.
3.
Dana had apparently proposed that Bryant offer his poems for republication by the Boston firm of Russell, Odiorne, and Company, his own publishers.
4.
The source of this allusion has not been identified.
5.
See Life, I, 284. A review of Bryant 1832 Poems by John Wilson in Blackwood's Edinburgh Magazine, 31 ( April 1832), 646-664, is reprinted in part in McDowell , Representative Selections, pp. 376-379.
6.
"The Past." See Poems ( 1876), pp. 171-173.
7.
The notices to which Bryant refers included those in Metropolitan, 3 ( April 1832), 110-114; Foreign Quarterly Review, 10 ( August 1832), 121-138; London Literary Gazette, 16 ( March 1832), 131-132; and Penny Magazine, I ( June 30, 1832), 134-135.
8.
In "The Prairies," published the following year in the Knickerbocker, Bryant incorporated half a dozen of the ideas and images offered here in prose. See Poems ( 1876), pp. 184-189.
9.
Dana feared to visit New York because of the cholera.
10.
See 237.2 and 237.3. A critic in the "Foreign Quarterly Review" found Bryant possessed of "great descriptive power," but lacking a "good car for metrical rhythm."

250. [To the Editor of the SACRED OFFERING?]1

New York Oct. 30 1832.

Dear Sir

I send you a few lines which I wrote for the "Sacred Offering," and which you will forward for publication if you think them worthy--if not dispose of them as you please. I had no verses on hand when I received

-361-

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