WILLIAM CULLEN BRYANT

CHRONOLOGY
1794 Born, Cummington, Mass; Nov. 3. Father a physician and a strong Federalist.
1808 Published The Embargo, a satire attacking Jefferson.
1810-11 Studied at Williams College.
1811 First draft of Thanatopsis.
1811-14 Studied law.
1815-16 Admitted to the bar; practised law in Plainfield.
1816-25 Practiced law in Great Barrington, Mass., and held various town offices.
1816 Published "Early American Verse", attacking its imitativeness.
1817 Published "Thanatopsis", in North American Review.
1821 Married Frances Fairchild. Delivered The Ages as Phi Beta Kappa poem at Harvard. Published Poems.
1824-25 Wrote many poems for the United Slates Literary Gazette of Boston.
1825 Gave up law and moved to New York, becoming joint editor of the New-York Review.
1826-27 Became joint editor of the United States Review. Delivered his Lectures on Poetry before the Athenæum Society.
1829-78 After serving as assistant editor of the New York Evening Post in 1827-28, Bryant became its editor-in-chief, assisted by John Bigelow and Parke Godwin. Bryant's editorship, in which he urged free trade and abolition, brought him a considerable fortune. He made The Post the greatest American newspaper of the time.
1832 His Poems published in New York, and (under Irving's editorship) in London. Visited Illinois. Wrote short stories.
1834-36 First of Bryant's six trips to Europe.
1842 The Fountain and Other Poems.
1843 Residence at Roslyn, Long Island.
1844 The White-Footed Deer and Other Poems.
1845 To Europe.
1849 To Europe, the trip resulting in Letters of a Traveller, 1850.
1852 A Discourse on the Life and Genius of James Fenimore Cooper.
1852-53 To Europe and the Near East.
1855 Helped form the Republican Party, of which he became an influential member.
1857-58 To Europe. Had a Unitarian clergyman baptize him in Naples. Trip resulted in a second series of Letters of a Traveller, 1859.
1859-65 As journalist and poet Bryant offered powerful support of the Union and the Civil War. He had presided at Lincoln's address in Cooper Union, New York, in 1859.
1864 Published Thirty Poems and (privately) Hymns.
1866 Death of Mrs. Bryant.
1866-67 To Europe. Began translating Homer to divert mind from sorrow. Widely popular as an orator on literary and civic affairs.
1869 Eulogy of Fitz-Greene Halleck, a fellow poet. Published Letters from the East, based on his travels.
1870 Published The Iliad of Homer, a translation in blank verse.
1871-72 The Odyssey of Homer. Edited A Library of Poetry and Song, with an introduction on "Poets and Poetryof the English Language". Speech at Williams College attacking Darwinism.
1878 Address on Mazzini. Died in New York, June 12.

BIBLIOGRAPHY
I. Bibliography
Sturges, H. C. Chronologies of the Life and Writings of William Cullen Bryant, with a Bibliography of His Works in Prose and Verse. New York. 1903. Also in Poetical Works. Roslyn Edition. New York: 1903. (This is the most complete bibliography, giving the individual poems in the supposed order of composition, the most important editions, and the separate publications in verse and prose. It contains some errors, however, which have been corrected by A. H. Herrick and by Tremaine McDowell (see below).
Pang, C. M. The Cambridge History of American Literature. New York: 1917. I, 517-521. (The brief list of critical items about Bryant does not extend beyond 1911.)
Herrick, A. H. "The Chronology of a Group of Poems by W. C. Bryant", Modern Language Notes, XXXII, 180-182 ( March, 1917). (Corrects errors in the dates of seven poems as given by Sturges and Godwin.)
McDowell, Tremaine. William Cullen Bryant. American Writers Series. New York: 1935. (The footnotes and the notes contain much fresh information regarding the dates of the first publication of Bryant's poems. The selected bibliography, pp. lxxiii-lxxxii, lists all important studies of Bryant to the present and contains descriptive and judicial comments on each item, by the recognized authority on the subject.)
II. Text
The Poetical Works of William Cullen Bryant. New York: 1876. (Since this edition was the last which Bryant supervised, it is the best source for the text of his poems.)
The Poetical Works of William Cullen Bryant. New York: 1883. 2 vols. (These constitute vols. 3 and 4 of The Life and Writings of William Cullen Bryant. Parke Godwin, the editor, added

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Major American Poets
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Title Page iii
  • Preface v
  • Acknowledgments vii
  • Contents ix
  • Philip Freneau 1
  • William Cullen Bryant 61
  • John Greenleaf Whittier 105
  • Ralph Waldo Emerson 191
  • Edgar Allan Poe 243
  • Henry Wadsworth Longfellow 287
  • James Russell Lowell 435
  • Oliver Wendell Holmes 543
  • Emily Dickinson 603
  • Sidney Lanier 611
  • Walt Whitman 651
  • Vachel Lindsay 733
  • Edwin Arlington Robinson 755
  • Notes Chronological, Bibliographical, Critical 779
  • William Cullen Bryant 788
  • John Greenleaf Whittier 798
  • Ralph Waldo Emerson 817
  • Edgar Alian Poe 834
  • Henry Wadsworth Longfellow 847
  • James Russell Lowell 860
  • Oliver Wendell Holmes 882
  • Emily Dickinson 893
  • Sidney Lanier 903
  • Walt Whitman 914
  • Vachel Lindsay 929
  • Edwin Arlington Robinson 938
  • General Principles of Poetics 948
  • General Index 951
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