Life and Letters of Joel Barlow, LL.D., Poet, Statesman, Philosopher: With Extracts from His Works and Hitherto Unpublished Poems

By Charles Burr Todd | Go to book overview

CHAPTER VIII.
1805-1811.

AGAIN, after eighteen years absence, the poet was amid old familiar scenes. No one knew him: he had grown out of remembrance. But greater changes had occurred in his native land than in him. Vermont, Kentucky, Tennessee, and Ohio had been admitted into the Union. The centre of population had shifted far to the westward. Ohio, which he had left a wilderness, contained 75,000 souls. Politically, there were greater changes. The Constitution had been adopted, and had stood the test of nearly eighteen years of trial. Washington was dead, his tomb to be henceforth the Mecca of all devotees of liberty. With him had died Federalism, the last relic of early English domination. The old order had changed, giving place to the new. A new party was in power, with new men, new ideas, a new policy, and under its impetus the nation was going gayly on to its destiny. Necessarily it was an era of the fiercest partisan hatred and bitterness. The Federalists took their defeat sorely, and indulged in the most vituperative abuse of their opponents. Nor were the Republicans models of meekness under this torrent of invective. Barlow's arrival seems to have created quite a ripple in the political and religious world. The Republicans greeted him warmly, as the honored citizen of two Republics, the poet and philosopher of repute, the patriot who had risked life and health in perilous service to his countrymen.

The Federalists, on the other hand, so far as they were represented by their newspapers, joined in traducing him. It is a striking commentary on the vicious, debasing character of partisanship, that these sheets could see nothing

-204-

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Life and Letters of Joel Barlow, LL.D., Poet, Statesman, Philosopher: With Extracts from His Works and Hitherto Unpublished Poems
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Title Page i
  • Introductory Note. iii
  • Joel Barlow. 1
  • Chapter II - 1778-1780. 10
  • Chapter III - 1780-1783. 24
  • Chapter IV - 1783-1788. 46
  • Chapter V - 1788-1795. 55
  • Chapter VI - 1795-1797. 115
  • Chapter VII - 1797-1805. 151
  • Chapter VIII - 1805-1811. 204
  • Chapter IX - 1811-1813. 256
  • Chapter X - Personal. 289
  • Index. 305
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