Commentary

Disciples


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Saturday, November 30, 1889

     7.30 P.M. W. in room—light down—not reading. Called my attention to the Century. "Morris has a poemet there," he said. Mrs. Coates represented there, too—and he spoke of her "readiness." Then: "The Lincoln piece this month is extremely taking—at least for me: not as much in what it may say in the way of summing up, but for its documentary evidence. This is not the picture of the time—the teller of that story has not come yet—could not in the nature of things have come: the theme is too tremendous: we cannot measure it at so short a distance. This book itself, like other books—all, so far—Southern, Northern—is but material, soil, out of which to make up the history. The historian will come. When,—who knows? Not in our day, certainly."

     Speaks of his "phlegm" as his "saving quality." Referred to his Brazil poem, manuscript of which was on the table—saying he had not sent it to any other publisher after the Harpers refused it. But "perhaps would."

     W. looked with interest at the list of Chubb's lectures sent me by Weston. Two of these, under the general head—"Two American Literary Influences in England"—are about Thoreau and Whitman. Instead of speaking at Toynbee Hall Monday

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night the 18th, as proposed, I shall suggest that he give these two lectures—bring them together, if possible. W. thought my suggestion a good one.


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