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GEORGE TICKNOR, born in 1791 at Boston, preceded the poet Longfellow in the chair of Modern Literature at Harvard. A History of Spanish Literature from his pen ranks, for learning, sound criticism, and literary merit, with the very highest works of its class.
JOHN LOTAROP MOTLEY has won a high place among historians by his Dutch Republic and United Netherlands, on the latter of which he is at present engaged. He excels in vivid and pictorial description.
JOHN WINTHROP.—(1587–1649)—one of the Pilgrim Fathers-Governor of Mas
sachusettsDiary of Events in that colony down to 1644. COTTON MATHER. -(1663–1728) - a Puritan minister at Boston - Magnalia
Christi Americana, an Ecclesiastical History of New England. JARED SPARKS.-(1794)-editor of the Library of American Biography,
author of a Life of Washington, and an edition of Franklin's Works. RICHARD HILDRETA.-(1807)—Deerfield, Massachusetts-History of the United
States; Japan as it was.and Is. Among various local histories, containing much valuable material, we may name Maine, by WILLIAMSON ; Virginia, by CAMPBELL; Georgia, by STEVENS ; Kentucky, by MANN BUTLER ; and the Indian Tribes, by M-KENNÁY and HALL.
WRITERS OF FICTION,
WASHINGTON IRVING, born in 1783 at New York, was the scion of an old Orkney family. His father was a merchant. The literary career of this Goldsmith of the States began in 1807, the year after his admission to the bar, by contributions to Salmagundi, a humorous serial of short life. Then came that queer, delightful burlesque of old Dutch and Swedish colonist life, called The History of New York, by Diedrich Knickerbocker. The management of a branch of Irving Brothers, in Liverpool, being confided to him, he crossed the Atlantic for the second time in 1815. But the house failed, and the young merchant turned author by profession. It was up-hill work at first; but Scott having pronounced a most favourable opinion upon The Sketch-book, which was sub
mitted to him, the road to fame and fortune was opened at once to Geoffrey Crayon, Gent"., as the author styled himself.
A list of Washington Irving's works is subjoined :
1836 1837 1849 1850 1855 1855–7
Whatever his subject-an English manor house, with bright fires and Christmas snow-a drowsy Dutch farm-steading in Sleepy Hollow—a moonlit court in the Alhambra—the great Italian sailor —the sweet-souled Irish author—the simply noble American general -we are charmed by the poetic graces of his fancy and the liquid music of his style. For several years he resided at Madrid, collecting materials for his Spanish works. In 1830, while in England, he received one of two gold medals conferred by George the Fourth for historical eminence, Hallam receiving the other. His later life was spent at a pleasant seat-Sunnyside, by the Hudson. There he died in November 1859.
JAMES FENIMORE COOPER, born in 1789, at Burlington in New Jersey, entered, after six years of naval life, upon his brilliant career as a writer of fiction. Residing on the borders of Otsego Lake, a district thick with game and then uncleared, he wrote his first novel, Precaution. In two walks he has been eminently successful—Indian novels and Naval novels. Among the former, The Last of the Mohicans, The Prairie, The Path-finder, and The Deer
AMERICAN LITERATURR. 533
slayer, are the best ; among the latter, The Pilot, with its noble character of Long Tom Coffin, stands first. Of his tales founded on the history of the American War, The Spy is most popular Cooper died in 1851. THOMAs CHANDLER HALIBURTON, a Nova Scotian judge, born about 1800, is well known as the author of the papers signed Sam Slick, illustrative of Yankee life and humour. The Clockmaker, The Attaché, The Old Judge, Letter-Bag of the Great Western, and The Season-Ticket, are his chief works. Judge Haliburton now resides in England. He has also written an Historical and Statistical Account of Nova Scotia. NATHANIEL HAWTHORNE, born about 1807, at Salem in Massachusetts, is one of the finest American novelists. His first acknowledged work was Twice-Told Tales (1837). Then came Mosses from an Old Manse (1846); The Scarlet Letter (1850); The House of the Seven Gables (1851), his best novel; and The Blithedale Romance (1852). His taste for psychology has deeply tinged his works, the chief of which belong somewhat to the Weird school of fiction. The beauty of his language and the rich quaintness of his humour possess irresistible attractions. For a year Mr. Hawthorne was Surveyor of Customs at Salem; and since 1853 he has held the American Consulship at Liverpool. HARRIET BEECHER STowe, the world-renowned authoress of Uncle Tom's Cabin, was born at Litchfield in Connecticut, the daughter of Lyman Beecher, an eminent Congregationalist minister. The Mayflower was one of her earlier works. “Uncle Tom” appeared in 1850, in the columns of a weekly paper, The Washington National Era. Its astonishing success was owing partly to its subject, but not a little to its graphic power. A Key followed the work, supplying ample evidence of its truthfulness. Mrs. Stowe then visited Europe, recollections of her tour appearing in Sunny Memories of Foreign Lands. None of her later works—Dred, The Minister's Wooing, The Pearl of Orr's Island—have come up to “Uncle Tom” in power or popularity. Agnes of Sorrento (in the “Cornhill”) is said to be from her pen.
Supplementary List. CHARLES BROCKDEN BROWN.—(1771–1810)-Philadelphia-Wieland; Ormond;
Arthur Mervyn; Edgar Huntly. JAMES KIRKE PAULDING.(born 1779)--associated with Irving in Salmagundi
-John Bull and Brother Jonathan; The Dutchman's Fireside ; West
ward Ho! JAMES HALL.-(born 1793)- Philadelphia-a judge in Illinois-Letters from
the West; Wilderness and War-Path. John P. KENNEDY.-(born 1795)-Virginia (?)—follower of Irving-Swallow
Barn ; Horse Shoe Robinson. WILLIAM WARE.-(born 1797)-Massachusetts-Unitarian clergyman-Fall of
Palmyra; Probus, or Rome in the Third Century. ROBERT M. BIRD.-(1803–1854)-Newcastle, Delaware-a doctor of medicine
Calavar and The Infidel (Mexican romances); Nick of the Woods; Hawks
of Hawk Hollow. WILLIAM SIMMs.-(born 1807)-planter of South Carolina-Guy Rivers; Beau.
champ; Wigwam and Cabin. T. B. THORPE.—(born 1815)-Westfield, Massachusetts-Mysteries of the Back
woods; Big Bear of Arkansas. Our list must close with the names of Miss SEDGWICK (Hope Leslie); Miss LOTAROP (Dollars and Cents); Miss WARNER (The Wide Wide World and Queechy); Mrs. KIRKLAND (New Home and Forest Life); and SAMUEL GOODRICH (Peter Parley), author of an immense number of tales and educatioval works.
ESSAYISTS, CRITICS, AND ORATORS.
WILLIAM ELLERY CHANNING, born in 1780, at Newport in Rhode Island, though ranking high amongst theologians, finds a fitter place among the most eloquent American Essayists. After a distinguished career at Harvard College, he lived for a while as a tutor in Virginia, and in 1803 was ordained minister of a Unitarian church in Boston. National Literature, Milton, Napoleon, Fenelon, Self-Culture, The Elevation of the Labouring Classes, are among the subjects he has written and lectured upon.
Brilliant and original thoughts, clothed in language of rare fire and beauty, characterize all the works of this eminent man. Discourses on the Evidences of Revealed Religion form his chief theological work. One of his strongest feelings was hatred of the Slave Trade;
and his last public utterance was upon the emancipation of British slaves in the West Indies. He died of typhus fever in 1842.
EDWARD EVERETT, born in 1794, at Dorchester near Boston, originally a Unitarian minister, became Governor of Massachusetts, American minister in London (1841-46), and Secretary of State for the United States. His literary fame rests on his Orations and Speeches. He wrote largely for the North American Review, which he edited for four years (1820–24).
RALPH WALDO EMERSON, born in 1803 at Boston, became, after studying at Harvard, minister of a Unitarian church. This connection soon ceasing, he buried himself at Concord, to study and to write. He has spoken to the public principally through lectures, afterwards collected and published. His chief work is Representative Men, embracing strikingly eloquent estimates of Montaigne, Goëthe, Plato, Swedenborg, Shakspere, and Napoleon.
Supplementary List. ALEXANDER HAMILTON.-(1757–1804)-island of Nevisa lawyer and statesman
of the Revolution--The Federalist, to which Madison and Jay also contri
buted. ALEXANDER EVERETT.-(1790–1847)-Boston-elder brother of the orator
diplomatist-Europe; New Ideas on Population ; America ; Essays. OLIVER WENDELL HOLMES.-(born 1809) Cambridge, Massachusetts - Professor
of Anatomy at Cambridge--lives now at Boston-Poems ; Autocrat at
the Breakfast-Table (essays). MARGARET FULLER.— (1810-1850) — Cambridge, Massachusetts - Marchesa
D'Ossoli-Woman in the Nineteenth Century; Summer on the Lakes. HENRY THEODORE TUCKERMAN.-(born 1813)-Thoughts on the Poets ; Charac
teristics of Literature ; Diary of a Dreamer ; New England Philo
sophy. Rufus GRISWOLD.-(1815–1857)- Benson, Vermont-Baptist minister-Curio
sities of American Literature; Poets and Prose-Writers of America. The Lectures of HENRY REED (drowned in the wreck of the Arctic) upon Enge lish Literature, and of EDWIN WHIPPLE, upon Subjects connected with Literature and Life, are fine specimens of eloquent and accurate criticism. THEODORE PARKER, a Unitarian minister, has written Essays upon German Literature, Labour, and the Labouring Classes. DANIEL WEBSTER (1782-1852), HENRY CLAY (1777–1852), and John CALHOUN (1782-1850), are the leading names in American oratory. Noah WEBSTER's English Dictionary, and ANTHON'S Edi lions of the Classics belong to this section.