THE later life of Emerson furnishes various foregrounds from which his early life may be seen in right perspective. That which I select is the great New Year's Day of 1863, which brought President Lincoln's proclamation of freedom to the American slaves, when Emerson read to a large assembly his noble Boston Hymn.
The proclamation found the people assembled in
Boston and Emerson reading to them his Hymn: --
"The word of the Lord by night
To the watching Pilgrims came
As they sat by the seaside,
And filled their hearts with flame.
"God said, I am tired of kings,
I suffer them no more;
Up to my car the morning brings
The outrage of the poor."
So it opened, and through the twenty-two verses, so full of majesty, the vast audience listened with hearts aflame.
What a vista was visible behind that scholar who