The Heart of Burrough's Journals

The Heart of Burrough's Journals

The Heart of Burrough's Journals

The Heart of Burrough's Journals

Excerpt

The Journals of John Burroughs cover the period from the year 1876, when he was thirty-nine years of age, to within a few weeks of his death in 1921, when he was eighty-four. But long before beginning his Journals, in 1854 -- from the age of seventeen onward -- he tucked away in sundry notebooks his groping, half-formed thoughts, reflections on what he was reading, immature philosophizing, and arresting words, phrases, and quotations. Thus the Notebooks and Journals, as a whole, supply a practically continuous record of more than sixtyseven years, a record, so far as I know, unparalleled, in continuity and duration, by that of any other well-known American author.

Since the Journals of Burroughs have not been published in their entirety, as have those of Emerson and Thoreau, the editing of a single volume from the entire record (which covers some two thousand typewritten pages of transcriptions from the originals), presents somewhat different problems than must have occupied the editors of the other volumes in this series. Still some parts of Burroughs's Journals have already appeared in print. The present editor made a few excerpts from them when writing 'Our Friend John Burroughs,' and copious excerpts when preparing 'The Life and Letters.' And Burroughs himself occasionally drew from them in writing his essays. Now and then the reader of this book will come upon a passage almost identical with one long . . .

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