Ralph Waldo Emerson

By George Edward Woodberry | Go to book overview

CHAPTER VI
TERMINUS

SOON after the Civil War the vital energy of Emerson began to decline. He was now established in his fame. The dubiousness with which he had long been regarded, the disparagement of him, had passed away. The older generation whom he had most offended was gone from the scene. The transcendentalists and the abolitionists had ceased from the land, and he was no longer encumbered by the ludicrousness of the one or the unpopularity of the other. He had been accepted into literature as one of the most effective writers of his country. It is true that he had founded no school and was to leave no disciple; but he lectured throughout the North, and the circulation of his books had become important; it was as a man of letters, rather than in any other capacity, that he now held his place. The times had changed, too, at Harvard College. The University which had so long looked at him with an unfavourable eye, though on his side he had continued a loyal connection with it by going up to Cambridge at its annual occasions of the reassembling of the alumni, now recognized its most distinguished son, gave him the degree of LL. D., made him an overseer, in which capacity he served twelve years, and on the thirtieth anniversary of his Phi Beta Kappa Address invited him to address the society once more. He had resumed

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Ralph Waldo Emerson
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Title Page iii
  • Note v
  • Contents vii
  • Chapter I - The Voice Obeyed at Prime 1
  • Chapter II - "Nature" and Its Corollaries 44
  • Chapter III - "The Hypocritic Days" 64
  • Chapter IV - The Essays 107
  • Chapter V - The Poems 158
  • Chapter VI - Terminus 178
  • Index 199
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