Love-Letters of Margaret Fuller, 1845-1846

Love-Letters of Margaret Fuller, 1845-1846

Read FREE!

Love-Letters of Margaret Fuller, 1845-1846

Love-Letters of Margaret Fuller, 1845-1846

Read FREE!

Excerpt

Margaret Fuller's name is now one to conjure with. Few remain at the present day of those who felt her personal attraction, or heard her eloquent discourse. The literary material which she left behind her appears small in dimension, when thought of in comparison with the scope of her intellect and the height of her aspiration. Yet her name, once the subject of sarcasm, is now spoken with reverence, and her figure, carved or cast in enduring marble or bronze, would appropriately guard the entrance of the enlarged domain of womanhood, of which she was the inspired Pythoness.

Among the titles bestowed on women of unusual gifts, that of Sibyl appears to me to suit best with what we know of her. Like her contemporary, George Sand, she felt keenly the wide discrepancy between the moral and intellectual power of women, and the limits assigned them in the division of the world's work. But Margaret's Puritan inheritance had bred in her a religious faith in which she far excelled the great Frenchwoman, a faith in the fulfilment of all the glorious promises of humanity. As in a vision she walked, rapt, inspired, little sensitive to praise or blame, with a message to deliver, whose full import she could not know. The decades which have elapsed since her untimely death have made this import clearer to us. The new order has asserted and established itself, and, though time has swept away most of those who held converse with her while in the flesh, the number is greatly multiplied of those who claim fellowship with her in the spirit.

A leading trait in this leader of the woman's cause was courage. Margaret dared to recognise her own mental and moral power. There was nothing in her make-up to suggest the old- time phrase "only a woman." She certainly enjoyed exceptional advantages of early training and surrounding, neither of her parents having found their duty in the act of

"Preaching down a daughter's heart."

The way in which she embraced these opportunities of instruction made evident a spirit brave from the start. Foreign tongues might be difficult; they were not too difficult for her. The ancient classics, not then included in the curriculum of a girl's education, were not beyond her reach. Coming to womanhood, she was generous in sharing with others the results of her thoughtful study. The atmosphere of this fine culture, of this large and liberal view of life, went with her everywhere.

Biography has done for her what it could. A very full account of her life was given many years since by Ralph Waldo Emerson, James Freeman Clarke, and William Henry Channing. To be so memorialized argued a subject nothing less than illustrious. At a later date, Colonel Higginson and the writer of these lines each gave to the world a more succinct appreciation of her life and work.

Search by... Author
Show... All Results Primary Sources Peer-reviewed

Oops!

An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.