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William Morris was born in Walthamstow, March 24, 1834. He was educated at Exeter College, Oxford. Before he was thirty years old he founded an establishment for the manufacture of artistic materials for household decoration. His work in this direction has improved the beauty of all household fabrics, and has affected the taste in household art in both England and America. Nevertheless he is best kulown as a poet. His finest poems are The Earthly Paradise," a series of Norse legends, “ Three Northern Stones,” translated from Icelandic poems, and his translations of “The Odyssey." He died in 1896.

Algernon Charles Swinburne was born in London, April 5, 1837. He was educated partly in France, at Eton, and at Balliol College, Oxford. He left the University without a degree to spend several years in travel. He is a master of English, using a wider vocabulary than any of his contemporaries, and the musical effects of his many varied meters have won for him a unique position in poetry. He has been called “ the greatest metrical inventor in English literature." His works in French and Latin show him to be a poet in three languages. His best-known works are “ Poems and Ballads," “ Songs before Sunrise,” and “Mary Stuart.” He is the greatest living English poet.

Dante Gabriel Rossetti was born in London, May 12, 1828. He studied art in the antique school of the Royal Academy, and became known as an artist before he won fame as a poet. His most widely known poem is “ The Blessed Damozel.” He died in 1882.

Christina Georgina Rossetti, the sister of D. G. Rossetti, was born in London, December 5, 1830. She ranks as one of the greatest and most spiritual of English poetesses.

Sir Edwin Arnold was born in Sussex, June 10, 1832. He was educated at King's College, London, and at University College, Oxford. He was appointed principal of the Government Sanscrit College at Poonah, India, and Fellow of the University of Bombay, and held these posts through the Sepoy Rebellion. Returning to London in 1861, he was one of the editors of the Daily Telegraph, and through his influence Henry M. Stanley undertook his first

expedition into Africa to find Livingstone. Nearly all of his poetry deals with Oriental legends, and much of his time was spent in India and Japan. His principal works are “ The Light of Asia," “ Pearls of the Faith,” “ Indian Song of Songs," " Japonica," and “The Light of the World."

Rudyard Kipling was born in Bombay, India, December 30, 1865. He was educated partly in England, but returned to India when he was only fifteen, and there began his literary work and first won fame. His writings are mainly in prose, and he is at his best when writing of India. His poems are all short, and " The Recessional ” and - The Dove of Dacca ” are especially fine. In prose the 6. Jungle Books," "The Naulakha," and “Kim” are the most popular.

Among the minor poets of the Victorian Age may be mentioned the following:

John Henry, Cardinal Newman, 1801–1890. Author of many volumes of sermons and the hymn “Lead Kindly Light.”'

Henry Francis Lyte, 1793–1847. Author of many hymns, the most popular of which is Abide with Me."

Alfred Domett, 1811-1887. Author of “ Christmas Hymn.”

Arthur Hugh Clough, 1819–1861. Author of " Bothie of Tóberna-vuolich."

Charles Mackay, 1814–1889. Author of many songs, among them “ There is a Good Time Coming” and “Cheer, Boys, Cheer!”


In the early days of this country the time and thought of the settlers were taken up in struggling with the difficulties of their surroundings, so that there was little opportunity for the establishment of an American literature. For art, poetry, and the beautiful in life, the colonists naturally turned to the mother country - to the home which they had so lately left. During the period before the French and Indian War the subject of religion and nice points of doctrine filled the minds of the Americans, hence we find that the first American writer who attained to a European reputation


was the Rev. Jonathan Edwards, a distinguished divine and president of Princeton College. His books on “ The Religious Affections" and - The Freedom of the Will are still studied.

After the French and Indian War, politics became the absorbing topic of the day, and Benjamin Franklin was the first to achieve fame in this field of letters. His writings in “ Poor Richard's Almanac,” honest and wholesome in tone, exercised a marked influence upon the literature of his time. Among the orators who won distinction in the discussion of civil liberty are James Otis, John and Samuel Adams, and Patrick Henry. The writings of John Jay, Alexander Hamilton, and James Madison in The Federalist secured the adoption of the Constitution and survive to this day as brilliant examples of political essays, while the state papers of George Washington and Thomas Jefferson are models of clearness and elegance of style.

With the peace and prosperity that followed the establishment of our republic came the opportunity to cultivate the broader fields of literature. Relieved of the strain of the struggle for civil and religious liberty, the people could satisfy their inclinations toward the beautiful in art and life, and from that time until the present day the writers of America have held their own in the front ranks of the authors of the English-speaking peoples.

Joseph Rodman Drake, the first American poet to win distinction, was born in New York City in 1795. He was educated in Columbia College. He died prematurely when only twenty-five years old. His best-known poems are - The Culprit Fay” and “The American Flag.” He was the intimate friend of Fitz-Greene Halleck, the Connecticut poet, author of “ Marco Bozzaris." The last four lines of Drake's “ American Flag” were written by Fitz-Greene Halleck.

William Cullen Bryant was born in Cummington, Massachusetts, November 3, 1794. He was educated at Williams College. He studied law and was admitted to the bar. His first poem was published when he was thirteen. His best-known poem,“ Thanatopsis," was written when he was only nineteen and delivered at his college




commencement. After practicing law for a short time, he became editor of The Evening Post and continued this work until his death. When he was seventy-two, he began his translation of Homer, which occupied him for six years. He died in 1878.

Ralph Waldo Emerson was born in Boston, May 20, 1803. He studied at Harvard College, and after a period of teaching, became pastor of a Unitarian church in Boston for a short time. Later he settled in Concord, spending his time in writing and lecturing in this country and England. He was the founder of what has been called “The Concord School of Philosophy." His best-known poems are “ The Concord Hymn," Rhodora," " The Snow Storm," " Each and All,"? " The Days,” and “ The Humble Bee.” He died in 1882.

Henry Wadsworth Longfellow was born in Portland, Maine, February 27, 1807. He was educated at Bowdoin College and, after a period of study abroad, was appointed professor of Foreign Languages there. This position he gave up to become professor of Modern Languages and Literature at Harvard College. At Cambridge he was a friend of Hawthorne, Holmes, Emerson, Lowell, and Alcott. His best-known long poems are “ Evangeline,” “ Hiawatha," " The Building of the Ship,” and “The Courtship of Miles Standish.” He made a fine translation of Dante's “ Divine Comedy.” Among his many short poems, “ Excelsior," “ The Psalm of Life,' 6. The Wreck of the Hesperus,' 66 The Village Blacksmith,” and “ Paul Revere's Ride” are continuously popular. He died in 1882. He was the first American writer who was honored by a memorial in Westminster Abbey.

John Greenleaf Whittier was born near Haverhill, Massachusetts, December 17, 1807. He was educated in the public school, working at the same time on his father's farm or at making shoes. Having left the academy, he devoted himself to literature. He was an ardent abolitionist, and many of his poems are written to aid the cause of freedom in which he was so deeply interested. His bestknown poems are “ Snow-Bound," ". Barbara Frietchie,”

• Maude Muller,” and “ Voices of Freedom.” He died in 1892.



Edgar Allan Poe was born in Boston, Massachusetts, January 19, 1809. The story of his life is as melancholy as was his genius. Wild, dissipated, reckless, he was dismissed from West Point. He alienated his best friends and lived the greatest part of his life in the deepest poverty, dying in 1849 from the effects of dissipation and exposure. His best poems are “ The Raven," 5. The Bells,” and “ Annabel Lee."

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Oliver Wendell Holmes was born in Cambridge, Massachusetts, August 29, 1809. He was educated at Harvard College and studied medicine, spending two years in the hospitals of Europe. He was successively professor of Anatomy and Physiology at Dartmouth College, a physician in regular practice in Boston, and professor of anatomy at Harvard College — this position he held from 1847 to 1882. He was nearly fifty before he became widely known as a writer, when “ The Autocrat of the Breakfast Table " published. He was successful as essayist, novelist, poet, a kindly wit playing through much of his work. His best-known poems

"Old Ironsides,” " The Chambered Nautilus,” “The Onehoss Shay,” “ The Last Leaf,” and “ The Boys." He died in 1894.



James Russell Lowell was born in Cambridge, Massachusetts, February 22, 1819. He was educated at Harvard College. He succeeded Longfellow as professor of Modern Languages and Literature at Harvard. He was also editor of the Atlantic Monthly and of the North American Review. He was appointed minister to Spain and later to England, where he was our ambassador for five years. His best-known poems are “ The Vision of Sir Launfal," “ Commemoration Ode,” “ The Biglow Papers,” “ The Present Crisis," and " The First Snowfall.” He died in 1891.

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Walt Whitman was born in West Hills, Long Island, May 31, 1819. He was unable to go to college. He served in various occupations, teacher, printer, writer, until in the great Civil War he volunteered as a war nurse. His exertions and exposure in this work destroyed his health, so that most of his remaining years he was dependent upon his friends. His most beautiful poem is

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