Arthur Hugh Clough: The Critical Heritage

By Michael Thorpe | Go to book overview

LETTERS AND REMAINS OF ARTHUR HUGH CLOUGH

(‘For private circulation only’)

1865

36.

William Allingham, from ‘Arthur Hugh Clough, 1819-1861’, Fraser’s Magazine

October 1866, lxxiv, 525-35

Allingham (1824-89), an Irishman, was a poet and editor of Fraser’s Magazine, 1874-9.

Most of the biographical part of this survey of Clough’s life and work, about two-thirds of the whole, has been omitted.

The name of Arthur Hugh Clough is held in regard by many readers of books in England and America, and in affection by his personal friends. He was an Englishman of our own day with its novelties and problems, intellectual, cultivated, thoroughly honest and singleminded, and possessing moreover a marked degree of originality, which after all is the truly interesting thing. Originality or ‘genius, ’ that which is born with a man, and peculiarly distinguishes him from all others, is what we seek in every one; this is the man. But, though every human creature has a genius, it is in most cases so small, and so overlaid in a few years with all kinds of extraneous matter and rubbish, as to be scarcely discoverable, at all events not worth much pains to discover.

Clough’s mind, naturally of a grave reflective turn, was occupied in early life with the studies of a public school and college career, and a good deal at the same time with moral and theological questions; English ecclesiasticism had a large share in his training; later, he took interest in politics, though not in parties; the picturesque in nature

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