Life of Ralph Waldo Emerson

Life of Ralph Waldo Emerson

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Life of Ralph Waldo Emerson

Life of Ralph Waldo Emerson

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Synopsis

Emerson dealt severely with his biographer. With full knowledge that his history must be written, he thought fit to lead a life devoid of incident, of nearly untroubled happiness, and of absolute conformity to the moral law. His correspondence is seldom very interesting, and his diary is out of reach. The injured biographer must rely on whatever charm may attach to the not frequent figure of one who lived as he wrote.

Excerpt

On May 25, 1803, William Emerson, minister of the First Church in Boston, was among the listeners to the Election Sermon preached "to great acceptance," by the Rev. Mr. Puffer. Whether he had left home in spite of inward monitions that he ought to remain, we are not informed; but, if misgivings he had, they were insufficient to prevent his presence at the dinner at Governor Strong's, in which the observance of the day culminated. While sitting at the Governor's table, his enjoyment of the repast was enhanced or interrupted by the tidings of an increase to his family : Ralph Waldo Emerson, William's fourth child and third son, having meanwhile been added to the population of Boston, "within a kitestring of the birthplace of Benjamin Franklin." The usual hour of dinner was then one. Ten hours sooner, allowing for the difference of Greenwich and Boston time, Old England had been enriched by the birth of . . .

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