Life & Letters

Correspondence

About this Item

Title: Walt Whitman to Edmund W. Gosse, 19 May [1876]

Date: May 19, 1876

Source: The transcription presented here is derived from Walt Whitman, The Correspondence, ed. Edwin Haviland Miller (New York: New York University Press, 1961–1977), 3:48. For a description of the editorial rationale behind our treatment of the correspondence, see our statement of editorial policy.

Location: Papers of Walt Whitman (MSS 3829), Clifton Waller Barrett Library of American Literature, Albert H. Small Special Collections Library, University of Virginia

Whitman Archive ID: uva.00374

Contributors to digital file: Elizabeth Lorang, Ashley Lawson, Zachary King, and Eric Conrad




431 Stevens st
Camden New Jersey
U S America
May 191

I have this day forwarded to you2 by mail—same address as this card—my new edition, Two Volumes (separate parcels)—Please notify me (by postal card will do) when they arrive safely—


W.W.


Notes:

1. This letter's envelope bears the address, "E W Gosse | Townsend House North Gate | Regent's Park | London England." It is postmarked: "Camden | May | 19 | N.J.; London. N W | F 6 | Paid | My 29 | 76."

Gosse (1849–1928) had written to Walt Whitman on December 12, 1873: "I can but thank you for all that I have learned from you, all the beauty you have taught me to see in the common life of healthy men and women, and all the pleasure there is in the mere humanity of other people." He reviewed Two Rivulets in The Academy, 9 (June 24, 1876), 602–603, and visited Whitman in 1885. In a letter to Richard Maurice Bucke on October 31, 1889, Whitman characterized Gosse as "one of the amiable conventional wall-flowers of literature" (Charles E. Feinberg Collection of the Papers of Walt Whitman, 1839–1919, Library of Congress, Washington, D.C.). [back]

2. Sir Edmund William Gosse (1849–1928), English poet and author of Father and Son (a memoir published in 1907), had written to Whitman on December 12, 1873: "I can but thank you for all that I have learned from you, all the beauty you have taught me to see in the common life of healthy men and women, and all the pleasure there is in the mere humanity of other people" (see Horace Traubel, With Walt Whitman in Camden, Friday, June 1, 1888). Gosse reviewed Two Rivulets in the Academy, 9 (24 June 1876), 602–603 (a digital version of this review is available at "Walt Whitman's New Book"), and visited Whitman in 1885 (see Whitman's letter inviting Gosse to visit on December 28, 1884 and The Correspondence, ed. Edwin Haviland Miller [New York: New York University Press, 1961–1977], 3:384 n80). In a letter to Richard Maurice Bucke on October 31, 1889, Whitman characterized Gosse as "one of the amiable conventional wall-flowers of literature" (Charles E. Feinberg Collection). For more about Gosse, see Jerry F. King, "Gosse, Sir Edmund (1849–1928)," Walt Whitman: An Encyclopedia, ed. J.R. LeMaster and Donald D. Kummings (New York: Garland Publishing, 1998). [back]


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