A Manual of the Art of Fiction
by Clayton Hamilton
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The Short-Story More Artistic Than the Novel.—Unlike the short-story, the novel aims to produce a series of effects,—a cumulative combination of the elements of narrative,—and acknowledges no restriction to economy of means. It follows that the novel, as a literary form, requires far less attention than the short-story to minute details of art. Great novels may be written by authors as careless as Scott, as lazy as Thackeray, or as cumbersome as George Eliot; for if a novelist gives us a criticism of life which is new and true, we forgive him if he fails in the nicer points of structure and style. But without these nicer points, the short-story is impossible. The economy of means that it demands can be conserved only by rigid restriction of structure; and the necessary emphasis can be produced only by perfection of style. The great masters of the short-story, like Poe and Hawthorne, Daudet and de Maupassant, have all been careful artists: they have not, like Thackeray, been slovenly in structure; they have not, like Scott, been regardless of style. The artistic instinct shows itself almost always at a very early age. If a man is destined to be an artist, he usually exhibits a surprising precocity of expression at a period when as yet he has very little to express. This is another reason why the short-story, as opposed to the novel, belongs to youth rather than to age. Though a young writer may be obliged to acknowledge inferiority to his elders in maturity of message, he may not infrequently transcend them in fineness of technical accomplishment.

The Short-Story Almost Necessarily Romantic.—Another point that remains to be considered, before we relinquish this general discussion in order to devote our attention more particularly to a technical study of the structure of the short-story, is that, although the novel may be either realistic or romantic in general method, the short-story is almost of necessity obliged to be romantic. In the brief space allotted to him, it is practically impossible for the writer of short-stories to induce a general truth from particular imagined facts imitated from actuality: it is far simpler to deduce the imagined details of the story from a central thesis, held securely in the author's mind and suggested to the reader at the outset. It is a quicker process to think from the truth to facts than to think from facts to the truth. Daudet and de Maupassant, who worked realistically in their novels, worked romantically in their contes; and the great short-stories of our own language have nearly all been written by romantic authors, like Poe, Hawthorne, Stevenson, and Mr. Kipling.

[3] A contribution to "The Wampum Library"; Longmans, Green & Co., 1904.

[4] This paper, later included in Pen and Ink, 1888, has since been published by itself in a little volume: Longmans, Green & Co., 1901.

[5] This definition was printed first in the Bookman for February, 1904, and later in the Reader for February, 1906. It has subsequently been repeated in nearly every book that deals with this special aspect of the art of fiction.

[6] The second story of the second day, and the sixth story of the ninth day. See "American Short Stories," p. 28.

[7] Published first in The Atlantic Monthly for August, 1902, and since included, as Chapter XII. in "A Study of Prose Fiction": Houghton, Mifflin & Co., 1904.


1. Distinguish between the novel, the novelette, and the short-story.

2. Define the short-story.

3. Explain the contributions made by Edgar Allan Poe and Brander Matthews to the consciousness of the short-story as a special form of art.

4. What are the advantages and disadvantages of the short-story as compared with the novel?

5. Is realism possible in the short-story? If not, why not?


EDGAR ALLAN POE: Review of Hawthorne's "Tales."

BRANDER MATTHEWS: "The Philosophy of the Short-Story."

BLISS PERRY: "A Study of Prose Fiction"—Chapter XII, on "The Short Story."

CHARLES SEARS BALDWIN: Introduction to "American Short Stories."

HENRY SEIDEL CANBY: "The Short Story in English."


BRANDER MATTHEWS: Introduction to "The Short-Story: Specimens Illustrating Its Development."



Only One Best Way to Construct a Short-Story—Problems of Short-Story Construction—The Initial Position—The Terminal Position—Poe's Analysis of "The Raven"—Analysis of "Ligeia"—Analysis of "The Prodigal Son"—Style Essential to the Short-Story.

Only One Best Way to Construct a Short-Story.—Since the aim of a short-story is to produce a single narrative effect with the greatest economy of means that is consistent with the utmost emphasis, it follows that, given any single narrative effect—any theme, in other words, for a short-story—there can be only one best way to construct the story based upon it. A novel may be built in any of a multitude of ways; and the selection of method depends more upon the temperament and taste of the author than upon inherent logical necessity. But in a short-story the problem of the author is primarily structural; and structure is a matter of intellect instead of a matter of temperament and taste. Now, the intellect differs from the taste in being an absolute and general, rather than an individual and personal, quality of mind. There is no disputing matters of taste, as the Latin proverb justly says; but matters of intellect may be disputed logically until a definite decision is arrived at. Hence, although the planning of a novel must be left to the individual author, the structure of a short-story may be considered as a matter impersonal and absolute, like the working out of a geometrical proposition.

Problems of Short-Story Construction.—The initial problem of the writer of short-stories is to find out by intellectual means the one best way of constructing the story that he has to tell; and, in order to solve this problem, there are many questions he must take up and decide. First of all, he must conserve the need for economy of means by considering how many, or rather, how few, characters are necessary to the narrative, how few distinct events he can get along with, and how narrow is the compass of time and place within which he may compact his material. He must next consider all the available points of view from which to tell the given story, and must decide which of them will best subserve his purpose. Next, in deciding on his means of delineating characters, of representing action, of employing setting, he must be guided always by the endeavor to strike a just balance between (on the one hand) the greatest economy of means and (on the other) the utmost emphasis. And finally, to conserve the latter need, he must, in planning the narrative step by step, be guided by the principle of emphasis in all its phases.

The Initial Position.—The natural emphasis of the initial and the terminal position is, in the short-story, a matter of prime importance. The opening of a perfectly constructed tale fulfills two purposes, one of which is intellectual and the other emotional. Intellectually, it indicates clearly to the reader whether, in the narrative that follows, the element of action, or of character, or of setting is to be predominant,—in other words, which of the three sorts of narrative effect the story is intended to produce. Emotionally, it strikes the key-note and suggests the tone of the entire story. Edgar Allan Poe, in his greatest tales, planned his openings infallibly to fulfill these purposes. He began a story of setting with description; a story of character with a remark made by, or made about, the leading actor; and a story of action with a sentence pregnant with potential incident. Furthermore, he conveyed in his very first sentence a subtle sense of the emotional tone of the entire narrative.

In opening his short-stories, Hawthorne showed himself far inferior to his great contemporary. Only unawares did he occasionally hit upon the inevitable first sentence. Often he wasted time at the beginning by writing an unnecessary introduction; and frequently he began upon the wrong track, by suggesting character at the outset of a story of action, or suggesting setting at the outset of a story of character. The tale of "The Gentle Boy," for instance, which was one of the first to attract attention to his genius, begins unnecessarily with an historical essay of three pages; and it is not until the narrative is well on its way that the reader is able to sense the one thing that it is all about.

Mr. Rudyard Kipling, in his earlier stories, employed a method of opening which is worthy of careful critical consideration. In "Plain Tales from the Hills" and the several volumes that followed it within the next few years, his habit was to begin with an expository essay, filling the space of a paragraph or two, in which he stated the theme of the story he was about to tell. "This is what the story is to deal with," he would say succinctly: "Now listen to the tale itself." This method is extremely advantageous on the score of economy. It gives the reader at the outset an intellectual possession of the theme; and knowing from the very beginning the effect designed to be produced, he can follow with the greater economy of attention the narrative that produces it. But, on the other hand, the method is inartistic, in that it presents explicitly what might with greater subtlety be conveyed implicitly, and subverts the mood of narrative by obtruding exposition. In his later stories, Mr. Kipling has discarded for the most part this convenient but too obvious expedient, and has revealed his theme implicitly through the narrative tenor and emotional tone of his initial sentences. That the latter method of opening is the more artistic will be seen at once from a comparison of examples. This is the beginning of "Thrown Away," an early story:—

"To rear a boy under what parents call the 'sheltered life system' is, if the boy must go into the world and fend for himself, not wise. Unless he be one in a thousand he has certainly to pass through many unnecessary troubles; and may, possibly, come to extreme grief simply from ignorance of the proper proportions of things.

"Let a puppy eat the soap in the bath-room or chew a newly blacked boot. He chews and chuckles until, by and by, he finds out that blacking and Old Brown Windsor made him very sick; so he argues that soap and boots are not wholesome. Any old dog about the house will soon show him the unwisdom of biting big dogs' ears. Being young, he remembers and goes abroad, at six months, a well-mannered little beast with a chastened appetite. If he had been kept away from boots, and soap, and big dogs till he came to the trinity full-grown and with developed teeth, consider how fearfully sick and thrashed he would be! Apply that notion to the 'sheltered life,' and see how it works. It does not sound pretty, but it is the better of two evils.

"There was a Boy once who had been brought up under the 'sheltered life' theory; and the theory killed him dead...."

And so on. At this point, after the expository introduction, the narrative proper begins. Consider now the opening of a later story, "Without Benefit of Clergy." This is the first sentence:—"But if it be a girl?" Notice how much has already been said and suggested in this little question of six words. Surely the beginning of this story is conducted with the better art.

The expository opening was copied from Mr. Kipling by O. Henry and established by this writer as a fashion which is still continued by contributors to American magazines. But a popular expedient is not necessarily to be regarded as a permanent contribution to the methods of fiction; and Mr. Kipling, in his later stories, is a finer artist than Miss Edna Ferber or any other of the many imitators of O. Henry.

The Terminal Position.—But, in the structure of the short-story, the emphasis of the terminal position is an even more important matter. In this regard again Poe shows his artistry, in stopping at the very moment when he has attained completely his preestablished design. His conclusions remain to this day unsurpassed in the sense they give of absolute finality. Hawthorne was far less firm in mastering the endings of his stories. His personal predilection for pointing a moral to adorn his tale led him frequently to append a passage of homiletic comment which was not bone of the bone and blood of the blood of the narrative itself. In the chapter on emphasis, we have already called attention to Guy de Maupassant's device of periodic structure, by means of which the solution of the story is withheld till the concluding sentences. This exceedingly effective expedient, however, is applicable only in the sort of story wherein the element of surprise is inherent in the nature of the theme. In no other single feature of construction may the work of the inexperienced author be so readily detected as in the final passage of his story. Mr. Kipling's "Lispeth" (the first of "Plain Tales from the Hills"), which was written at a very early age, began perfectly [the first word is "She"] and proceeded well; but when he approached his conclusion, the young author did not know where to stop. His story really ended at the words, "And she never came back"; for at that point his pre-established design had been entirely effected. But instead of closing there, he appended four unnecessary paragraphs, dealing with the subsequent life of his heroine—all of which was, to use his own familiar phrase, "another story." Poe and de Maupassant would not have made this mistake; and neither would Mr. Kipling after he had grown into mastery of artistic method. In one of the most celebrated stories of O. Henry, entitled "The Gift of the Magi", the author made the technical mistake of appending a superfluous paragraph after his logical pattern had been completed.

Poe's Analysis of "The Raven."—In his very interesting paper on "The Philosophy of Composition," Edgar Allan Poe outlined step by step the intellectual processes by which he developed the structure of "The Raven" and fashioned a finished poem from a preconceived effect. It is greatly to be regretted that he did not write a similar essay outlining in detail the successive stages in the construction of one of his short-stories. With his extraordinarily clear and analytic intellect, he fashioned his plots with mathematical precision. So rigorously did he work that in his best stories we feel that the removal of a sentence would be an amputation. He succeeded absolutely in giving his narrative the utmost emphasis with the greatest economy of means.

Analysis of "Ligeia."—If we learn through and through how a single perfect story is constructed, we shall have gone far toward understanding the technic of story-building as a whole. Let us therefore analyze one of Poe's short-stories—following in the main the method which he himself pursued in his analysis of "The Raven"—in order to learn the successive steps by which any excellent short-story may be developed from its theme. Let us choose "Ligeia" for the subject of this study, because it is very widely known, and because Poe himself considered it the greatest of his tales. Let us see how, starting with the theme of the story, Poe developed step by step the structure of his finished fabric; and how, granted his preestablished design, the progress of his plan was in every step inevitable.[8]

The theme of "Ligeia" was evidently suggested by those lines from Joseph Glanvill which, quoted as a motto for the story, are thrice repeated during the course of the narrative:—

"And the will therein lieth, which dieth not. Who knoweth the mysteries of the will, with its vigor? For God is but a great will, pervading all things by nature of its intentness. Man doth not yield himself to the angels, nor unto death utterly, save only through the weakness of his feeble will."

Poe recognized, with the English moralist, that the human will is strong and can conquer many of the ills that flesh is heir to. If it were still stronger, it could do more mighty things; and if it were very much stronger, it is even conceivable that it might vanquish death, its last and sternest foe. Now it was legitimate for the purposes of fiction to imagine a character endowed with a will strong enough to conquer death; and a striking narrative effect could certainly be produced by setting forth this moral conquest. This, then, became the purpose of the story: to exhibit a character with a superhuman will, and to show how, by sheer force of volition, this person conquered death.

Having thus decided on his theme, the writer of the story was first forced to consider how many, or rather how few, characters were necessary to the narrative. One, at least, was obviously essential,—the person with the superhuman will. For esthetic reasons Poe made this character a woman, and called her Ligeia; but it is evident that structurally the story would have been the same if he had made the character a man. The resultant narrative would have been different in mood and tone; but it would not have been different in structure. Given this central character, it was not perhaps evident at first that another person was needed for the tale. But in all stories which set forth an extraordinary being, it is necessary to introduce an ordinary character to serve as a standard by which the unusual capabilities of the central figure may be measured. Furthermore, in stories which treat of the miraculous, it is necessary to have at least one eye-witness to the extraordinary circumstances beside the person primarily concerned in them. Hence another character was absolutely needed in the tale. This second person, moreover, had to be intimately associated with the heroine, for the two reasons already considered. The most intimate relation imaginable was that of husband and wife; he must therefore be the husband of Ligeia. Beside these two people,—a woman of superhuman will, and her husband, a man of ordinary powers,—no other character was necessary; and therefore Poe did not (and could not, according to the laws of the short-story) introduce another. The Lady of Tremaine, as we shall see later on, is not, technically considered, a character.

The main outline of the story could now be plotted. Ligeia and her husband must be exhibited to the reader; and then, in her husband's presence, Ligeia must conquer death by the vigor of her will. But in order to do this, she must first die. If she merely exerted her will to ward off the attacks of death, the reader would not be convinced that her recovery had been accomplished by other than ordinary means. She must die, therefore, and must afterwards resurrect herself by a powerful exertion of volition. The reader must be fully convinced that she did really die; and therefore, before her resurrection, she must be laid for some time in the grave. The story, then, divided itself into two parts: the first, in which Ligeia was alive, terminated with her death; and the second, in which she was dead, ended with her resurrection.

Having thus arrived at the main outline of his plot, Poe was next forced to decide on the point of view from which the story should be told. Under the existing conditions, any one of three distinct points of view may have seemed, at the first glance, available: that of the chief character, that of the secondary character, and that of an external omniscient personality. But only a little consideration was necessary to show that only one of these three could successfully be employed. Obviously, the story could not be narrated by Ligeia: for it would be awkward to let an extraordinary woman discourse about her own unusual qualities; and furthermore, she could hardly narrate a story involving as one of its chief features her stay among the dead without being expected to tell the secrets of her prison-house. It was likewise impossible to tell the tale from the point of view of an external omniscient personality. In order that the final and miraculous incident might seem convincing, it had to be narrated not impersonally but personally, not externally but by an eye-witness. Therefore, the story must, of course, be told by the husband of Ligeia.

At this point the main outline was completed. It then became necessary for Poe to plan the two divisions of the story in detail. In the first part, no action was necessary, and very little attention had to be paid to setting. It was essential that all of the writer's stress should be laid on the element of character; for the sole purpose of this initial division of the story must be to produce upon the reader an extremely emphatic impression of the extraordinary personality of Ligeia. As soon as the reader could be sufficiently impressed with the force of her character, she must be made to die; and the first part of the story would be finished. But at this point Poe was obliged to choose between the direct and the indirect means of delineating character. Should Ligeia be depicted directly by her husband, or indirectly, through her own speech? In other words, should this first half of the story be a description or a conversation? The matter was easy to decide. The method of conversation was unavailable; because a dialogue between Ligeia and her husband would keep the attention of the reader hovering from one to the other, whereas it was necessary for the purpose of the tale to focus all of the attention on Ligeia. She must, therefore, be depicted directly by her husband. Having concluded that he must devote the entire first half of his story to this description, Poe employed all his powers to make it adequate and emphatic. The description must, of course, be largely subjective and suggestive, and must be pervaded with a sense of something unfathomable about the person described. In order that (reverting to the language of Poe's own critical dictum) "his very initial sentence" might "tend to the outbringing of this effect," the author wrote, "I cannot for my soul remember how, when, or even precisely where I first became acquainted with the Lady Ligeia"; and the story was begun.

It was more difficult to handle the second division of the tale, which was to deal with the period between Ligeia's death and her resurrection. The main stress of the story now ceased to be laid on the element of character. The element of action, furthermore, was subsidiary in the second part of the tale, as it had been already in the first. All that had to happen was the resurrection of Ligeia; and this the reader had been forced by the very theme of the story to foresee. The chief interest in the second part must therefore lie in determining where and when and how this resurrection was accomplished. A worthy setting must be found for the culminating event. Poe could lose no time in preparing a place for his climax; and therefore he was obliged, as soon as he had laid Ligeia in the grave, to begin an elaborate description of the stage settings of his final scene. The place must be wild and weird and arabesque. It must be worthy to receive a resurrected mortal revisiting the glimpses of the moon. The place was found, the time—midnight—decided upon: but the question remained,—how should Ligeia be resurrected?

And here arose almost an insuperable difficulty. Ligeia had been buried (must have been buried, as we have seen), and her body had been given to the worms. Yet now she must be revived. And it would not be sufficient to let her merely walk bodily into the fantastic apartment where her husband, dream-haunted, was waiting to receive her; for the point to be emphasized was not so much the mere fact of her being once more alive, as the fact that she had won her way back to life by the exertion of her own extraordinary will. The reader must be shown not only the result of her triumph over death, but the very process of the struggle through which by sheer volition she forced her soul back into the bodily life. If only her body were present, so that the reader could be shown its gradual obsession by her soul, all would be easily accomplished; but, by the conditions of the story, her body could not be present: and the difficulty of the problem was extreme.

But here Poe hit upon a solution of the difficulty. Would not another dead body do as well? Surely Ligeia could breathe her life into any discarded female form. Therefore, of course, her husband must marry again, solely in order that his second wife should die. The Lady Rowena Trevanion of Tremaine is, therefore, as I have already hinted, not really a character, but only a necessary adjunct to the final scene, an indispensable piece of stage property. In order to indicate this fact, Poe was obliged to abstain carefully from describing her in detail, and to seek in every possible way to prevent the reader's attention from dwelling long upon her. Hence, although, in writing the first part of the story, he devoted several pages to the description of the heroine, he dismissed the Lady Rowena, in the second part, with only two descriptive epithets,—"fair-haired and blue-eyed," to distinguish her briefly from the dark-eyed and raven-haired Ligeia.

With the help of this convenient body, it was easy for Poe to develop his final scene. The intense struggle of Ligeia's soul to win its way back to the world could be worked up with enthralling suspense: and when at last the climax was reached and the husband realized that his lost love stood living before him, the purpose of the story would be accomplished, Ligeia's will would have done its work, and there would be nothing more to tell. Poe wrote, "These are the full, and the black, and the wild eyes—of my lost love—of the Lady—of the Lady Ligeia": and the story was ended.

For it must be absolutely understood that with whatever may have happened after that moment of entire recognition this particular story does not, and cannot, concern itself. Whether in the next moment Ligeia dies again irrevocably, or whether she lives an ordinary lifetime and then ultimately dies forever, or whether she remains alive eternally as a result of the triumph of her will, are questions entirely beyond the scope of the story and have nothing to do with the single narrative effect which Poe, from the very outset, was planning to produce. At no other point does he more clearly display his mastery than in his choice of the perfect moment at which to end his story.

It would, of course, be idle to assert that Poe disposed of all the narrative problems which confronted him while constructing this story precisely in the order I have indicated. Unfortunately, he never explained in print the genesis of any of his stories, and we can only imagine the process of his plans with the aid of his careful analysis of the development of "The Raven." But I think it has been clearly shown that the structure of "Ligeia" is at all points inevitably conditioned by its theme, and that no detail of the structure could be altered without injuring the effect of the story; and I am confident that some intellectual process similar to that which has been outlined must be followed by every author who seeks to construct stories as perfect in form as Poe's.

Analysis of "The Prodigal Son."—The student of short-story structure is therefore advised to submit several other masterpieces of the form to a process of intellectual analysis similar to that which we have just pursued. By so doing he will become impressed with the inevitability of every structural expedient that is employed in the best examples of the type. For a further illustration of this inevitability of structure, let us look for a moment at the parable of "The Prodigal Son" (Luke xv., beginning with the eleventh verse), which, although it was written down many centuries ago, fulfills the modern critical concept of the short-story, in that it produces a single narrative effect with the greatest economy of means that is consistent with the utmost emphasis. For the purposes of this study, let us set aside the religious implications of the parable, and consider it as an ordinary work of fiction. The story should more properly be called "The Forgiving Father," rather than "The Prodigal Son"; because the single narrative effect to be wrought out is the extent of a father's forgiveness toward his erring children. Two characters are obviously needed for the tale,—first, a father to exercise forgiveness, and second, a child to be forgiven. Whether this child were a son or a daughter would, of course, have no effect on the mere structure of the story. In the narrative as we know it, the erring child is a son. In pursuance of the greatest economy of means, the story might be told with these two characters only, because the effect to be wrought out is based on the personal relation between them,—a relation involving no one else. But fatherly forbearance exercised toward an only child might seem a trait of human weakness instead of patriarchal strength; and the father's forgiveness will be greatly accentuated if, beside the prodigal, he has other children less liable to error. Therefore, in pursuance of the utmost emphasis, it is necessary to add a third character,—another son who is not allured into the way of the transgressor. The story must necessarily be narrated by an external omniscient personality: it must be seen and told from a point of view aloof and god-like. The father could not tell it, because the theme of the tale is the beauty of his own character; and neither of the two sons is in a position to see the story whole and to narrate it without prejudice. The story opens perfectly, with the very simple sentence, "A certain man had two sons." Already the reader knows that he is to be told a story of character (rather than of action or of setting) concerning three people, the most important of whom is the certain man who has been mentioned first. Consider, in passing, how faulty would have been such another opening as this, for instance,—"Not long ago, in a city of Judea".... Such an initial sentence would have suggested setting, instead of suggesting character, as the leading element in the story. Very properly, the first of the two sons to be singled out specifically is the more important of the two, the prodigal: "And the younger of them said to his father, 'Father, give me the portion of goods that falleth to me.'" Thus, in only two sentences, the reader is given the entire basis of the story. The swift and simple narrative that follows is masterly in absolute conciseness. The younger son takes his journey into a far country, wastes his substance in riotous living, begins to be in want, suffers and repents, and returns to seek the forgiveness of his father. Wonderfully, beautifully, his father loves and pities and forgives him: "For this my son was dead and is alive again; he was lost, and is found." At this point the story would end, if it were told with only two characters instead of three. But emphasis demands that the elder son should now make an entirely reasonable objection to the reception of the prodigal; because the great love which is the essence of the father's character will shine forth much more brightly when he overrules the objection. He does so in the same words he had used in the first moment of emotion: "For this thy brother was dead, and is alive again; and was lost, and is found." These beautiful words, which now receive the emphasis of iteration as well as the emphasis of terminal position, sum up and complete the entire preestablished design.

This story, which contains only five hundred words, is a little masterpiece of structure. It embodies a narrative theme of profound human import; it exhibits three characters so clearly and completely drawn that the reader knows them better than he knows many a hero of a lengthy novel; and it displays an absolute adjustment between economy and emphasis in its succinct yet touching train of incidents. Furthermore, it is also, in the English version of the King James translators, a little masterpiece of style. The words are simple, homely, and direct. Most of them are of Saxon origin, and the majority are monosyllabic. Less than half a dozen words in the entire narrative contain more than two syllables. And yet they are set so delicately together that they fall into rhythms potent with emotional effect. How much the story gains from this mastery of prose may be felt at once by comparing with the King James version parallel passages from the standard French Bible. The English monosyllabic refrain, with its touching balance of rhythm, loses nearly all of its esthetic effect in the French translation: "Car mon fils, que voici, etait mort, mais il est ressuscite; il etait perdu, mais il est retrouve." And that very moving sentence about the elder son, "And he was angry, and would not go in: therefore came his father out and entreated him," becomes in the French Bible, "Mais il se mit en colere, et ne voulut point entrer; et son pere etant sorti, le priait d'entrer." No especial nicety of ear is necessary to notice that the first is greatly written, and the second is not.

Style Essential to the Short-Story.—And this leads us to the general consideration that even a perfectly constructed story will fail of the uttermost effect unless it be at all points adequately written. After Poe had, with his intellect, outlined step by step the structure of "Ligeia," he was obliged to confront a further problem,—the problem of writing the story with the thrilling and enthralling harmony of that low, musical language which haunts us like the echo of a dream. It is one thing to build a story; it is quite another thing to write it: and in Poe's case it is evident that an appreciable interval of time must have elapsed between his accomplishment of the first, and his undertaking of the second, effort. He built his stories intellectually, in cold blood; he wrote them emotionally, in esthetic exaltation: and the two moods are so distinct and mutually exclusive that they must have been successive instead of coexistent. Some authors build better than they write; others write better than they build. Seldom, very seldom, is a man equipped, as Poe was, with an equal mastery of structure and of style. Yet though unity of form may be attained through structure alone, unity of mood is dependent mainly upon style. The language should be pitched throughout in tune with the emotional significance of the narrative effect to be produced. Any sentence which is tuned out of harmony will jangle and disrupt the unity of mood, which is as necessary to a great short-story as it is to a great lyric poem. Hawthorne, though his structure was frequently at fault, proved the greatness of his art by maintaining, through sheer mastery of style, an absolute unity of mood in every story that he undertook. Mr. Kipling has not always done so, because he has frequently used language more with manner than with style; but in his best stories, like "The Brushwood Boy" and "They," there is a unity of tone throughout the writing that sets them on the plane of highest art.

[8] The analysis of "Ligeia" which follows was first printed in the Reader for February, 1906. It is here resumed with a few revisions of detail.


1. What are the main points to be considered in constructing a short-story?

2. Explain the technical importance of the last paragraph, and the first paragraph, of a short-story.

3. Analyze a great short-story according to the method illustrated in the foregoing analyses of "Ligeia" and "The Prodigal Son."


EDGAR ALLAN POE: "The Fall of the House of Usher."


BRET HARTE: "Tennessee's Pardner."


RUDYARD KIPLING: "Without Benefit of Clergy."

KENNETH GRAHAME: "The Roman Road."

F. J. STIMSON: "Mrs. Knollys."

GUY DE MAUPASSANT: "The Necklace."

ALPHONSE DAUDET: "The Last Class."

H. C. BUNNER: "A Sisterly Scheme."

O. HENRY: "A Municipal Report."



Structure and Style—Style a Matter of Feeling—Style an Absolute Quality—The Twofold Appeal of Language—Concrete Examples—Onomatopoetic Words—Memorable Words—The Patterning of Syllables—Stevenson on Style—The Pattern of Rhythm—The Pattern of Literation—Style a Fine Art—Style an Important Aid to Fiction—The Heresy of the Accidental—Style an Intuitive Quality—Methods and Materials—Content and Form—The Fusion of Both Elements—The Author's Personality—Recapitulation.

Structure and Style.—The element of style, which has just been touched upon in reference to the short-story, must now be considered in its broader aspect as a factor of fiction in general. Hitherto, in examining the methods of fiction, we have confined our attention for the most part to the study of structural expedients. The reason is that structure, being a matter merely of the intellect, can be analyzed clearly and expounded definitely. Like any other intellectual subject—geometry, for instance—structure may be taught. But style, although it is in fiction a factor scarcely less important, is not a matter merely of the intellect. It is not so easily permissible of clear analysis and definite exposition; and although it is true that, in a certain sense, it may be learned, it is also true that it cannot be taught.

Style a Matter of Feeling.—The word "style" comes trippingly to the tongue of every critic; but it has never yet been satisfactorily defined. Famous phrases have been made about it, to be sure; but most of these, like that corrupted from Buffon's cursory remark in his discourse of reception into the Academy—"Le style est de l'homme meme,"—are lofty admissions of the impossibility of definition. By this fact we are fortified in our opinion that style is a matter of feeling rather than of intellect. Avoiding, therefore, as unwise any attempt at definition, we may yet succeed in clarifying our ideas regarding style if we circle round the subject.

Style an Absolute Quality.—At the outset, in order to narrow the compass of the circle, let us admit that the familiar phrase "bad style" is a contradiction of terms. Basically, there is no such thing as good style or bad. Either a literary utterance is made with style, or else it is made without it. This initial distinction is absolute, not relative. It must, however, be admitted that of two utterances made with style, the one may be more imbued with that quality than is the other; but even this secondary distinction is a matter of more and less, rather than of better and worse. Style, then, is a quality possessed in a greater or less degree, or else not possessed at all. This much being granted, we may investigate with clearer minds the philosophic aspect of the subject.

The Twofold Appeal of Language.—Language makes to the mind of the reader or the listener an appeal which is twofold. First, it conveys to his intellect a definite meaning through the content of the words that are employed; and secondly, it conveys to his sensibilities an indefinite suggestion through their sound. Consciously, he receives a meaning from the denotation of the words; subconsciously, he receives a suggestion from their connotation. Now, an utterance has the quality of style when these two appeals of language—the denotative and the connotative, the definite and the indefinite, the intellectual and the sensuous—are so cooerdinated as to produce upon the reader or the listener an effect which is, not dual, but indissolubly single. And an utterance is devoid of the quality of style when, although it conveys a meaning to the intellect through the content of the words, it does not reinforce that conveyance of meaning by a cognate and harmonic appeal to the senses through their sound. In the latter case the language produces upon the recipient an effect which is, not single, but dual and divorced.

Concrete Examples.—The matter may be made more clear by the examination of concrete examples. The following sentence, for instance, is devoid of style: "The square on the hypothenuse of a right-angled triangle is equal to the sum of the squares on the other two sides": for, although by its content it conveys to the intellect a meaning which is entirely clear and absolutely definite, it does not by its sound convey to the senses a suggestion which is cognate. But, on the other hand, the following lines from Tennyson's "The Princess" are rich in style, because the appeals to the intellect and to the ear are so cooerdinated as to produce a single simultaneous effect:—

"Myriads of rivulets hurrying thro' the lawn, The moan of doves in immemorial elms, And murmuring of innumerable bees."

In these lines, fully as much is conveyed to the reader by the mere melody of m's and r's and l's as by the content, or denotation, of the words. For instance, the word "innumerable," which denotes to the intellect merely "incapable of being numbered," is in this connection made to suggest to the senses the murmuring of bees. That one word, therefore, accomplishes a dual service, and contributes to the expression of the general idea in one way through its content and in another through its sound.

Onomatopoetic Words.—This cooerdination of the two appeals is the origin and the essence of the quality of style. But the question now demands to be considered,—how may this cooerdination be effected? The first detail we must attend to is the choice of words. Tennyson's task, in the lines that we have just considered, was comparatively easy. He was writing about certain sounds; and it was not especially difficult for him to imitate those sounds with the words that he selected to denote them. His device was the obvious one which is called, by rhetoricians, onomatopoeia. In every language those words which are denotative of sounds are nearly always also imitative of them. Such words, as, for example, "whisper," "thunder," "rattle," are in themselves stylistic. Alone, and apart from any context, they incorporate that cognate appeal of significance and sound which is the secret of style. Thus far the matter is extremely simple. But there are also many words which denote other things than sounds and yet somehow convey subtly to the ear a sensuous suggestion of their content. Such words, for instance, are "mud," "nevermore," and "tremulous." Any child could tell you that words like these "sound just like what they mean"; and yet it would be impossible for the critical intellect to explain exactly wherein lies the fitness between sound and sense in such a word as "mud." The fitness, however, is obviously there. If we select from several languages words which are identical in denotation, we are likely to find that, because of their difference in sound, they connote different phases of the idea which they contain. For example, the English word "death" has a spiritual sound; whereas the German "der Tod" sounds horrible and grim, and the French "la mort" sounds fearsome and bizarre. In content, these three words are indistinguishable; but in style they differ very widely. Their diversity of connotation is obviously inherent in their sound; and yet, though the difference may be heard at once, it seems inexplicable by the intellect.

Memorable Words.—But by far the greatest number of stylistic words owe their connotation not so much to their sound alone, as to their capacity for evoking memories. They awake the psychologic process of association. Such are the words which lie close to the heart of every one's experience,—words like "home," "sorrow," "mother," "youth," and "friends." Whenever such a word is used, it conveys to the reader or the listener not only the specific meaning intended by the momentary context, but also a subsidiary and subconscious recollection of many phases of his personal experience. All of the indisputably magic words possess this associative or memorable quality. Saying one thing definitely, they evoke a concordant harmony of subconscious and shadowy suggestion. Expressing a message in the present, they recall remembered beauty from the past. Thus it is with the words of those two enchanted lines of Keats,—

"Charm'd magic casements, opening on the foam Of perilous seas, in faery lands forlorn."

They say much more than what they say. Conveying one meaning to the reader, they remind him of many, many others.

The Patterning of Syllables.—But the choice of suggestive and memorable words is only the first step toward mastery of style. The perfect marriage of significance and sound is dependent not so much upon the words themselves as upon the way in which they are arranged. The art of style, like every other art, proceeds by an initial selection of materials and a subsequent arrangement of them in accordance with a pattern. In style, the pattern is of prime importance; and therefore, in order to understand the witchery of writing, we must next consider technically the patterning of words.

Stevenson on Style.—This phase of the subject has been clearly expounded and deftly illustrated by Robert Louis Stevenson in his essay "On Some Technical Elements of Style in Literature."[9] This essay is, so far as I know, the only existing treatise on the technic of style which is of any practical value to the incipient artist. It should therefore be read many times and mastered thoroughly by every student of the mystery of writing. Since it is now easily accessible, it will not be necessary here to do more than summarize its leading points,—stating them in a slightly different way in order that they may better fit the present context.

The Pattern of Rhythm.—Every normal sentence, unless it be extremely brief, contains a knot, or hitch. Up to a certain point, the thought is progressively complicated; after that, it is resolved. Now, the art of style demands that this natural implication and explication of the thought should be attended by a cognate implication and explication of the movement of the sentence. Unless the hitch in the rhythm coincides with the hitch in the thought, the two appeals of the sentence (to the intellect and to the ear) will contest against each other instead of combining to accomplish a common effect. Therefore the first necessity in weaving a web of words is to conquer an accordance between the intellectual progression of the thought and the sensuous progression of the sound. The appeal of rhythm to the human ear is basic and elemental; and style depends for its effect more upon a mastery of rhythmic phrase than upon any other individual detail. In verse, the technical problem is twofold: first, to suggest to the ear of the reader a rhythmic pattern of standard regularity; and then, to vary from the regularity suggested, as deftly and as frequently as may be possible without ever allowing the reader for a moment to forget the fundamental pattern. In prose, the writer works with greater freedom; and his problem is therefore at once more easy and more difficult. Instead of starting with a standard pattern, he has to invent a web of rhythm which is suited to the sense he wishes to convey; and then, without ever disappointing the ear of the reader by unnecessarily withholding an expected fall of rhythm, he must shatter every inkling of monotony by continual and tasteful variation.

The Pattern of Literation.—But language, by its very nature, offers to the ear not only a pattern of rhythm but also a pattern of letters. A mastery of literation is therefore a necessary element of style. Effects indisputably potent in suggestion may be gained by running a recurrence of certain letters, deftly for a time withheld,—since blatancy must always be avoided,—yet triumphant in harmonious return. The great sentences of literature which echo in our ears because their sound is married to their meaning will be found upon examination to incorporate an intricate pattern of tastefully selected letters. Thus it is with the following sentence of Sir Thomas Browne's, wherein it is difficult to decide whether the rhythm or the literation contributes the larger share to its symmetry of sound:—"But the iniquity of oblivion blindly scattereth her poppy, and deals with the memory of men without distinction to merit of perpetuity." Thus it is, again, with this sentence from Ruskin's "Seven Lamps of Architecture":—"They are but the rests and monotones of the art; it is to its far happier, far higher, exaltation that we owe those fair fronts of variegated mosaic, charged with wild fancies and dark hosts of imagery, thicker and quainter than ever filled the depths of midsummer dream; those vaulted gates, trellised with close leaves; those window-labyrinths of twisted tracery and starry light; those misty masses of multitudinous pinnacle and diademed tower; the only witnesses, perhaps, that remain to us of the faith and fear of nations." So it is also with these sentences from De Quincey's "The English Mail-Coach":—"The sea, the atmosphere, the light, bore each an orchestral part in this universal lull. Moonlight, and the first timid tremblings of the dawn, were by this time blending; and the blendings were brought into a still more exquisite state of unity by a slight silvery mist, motionless and dreamy, that covered the woods and fields, but with a veil of equable transparency."

Style a Fine Art.—A more detailed study of style along these lines would lead us to considerations too minutely technical for the purpose of the present volume. Style, in its highest development, belongs only to the finest art of literature; and it must be admitted that literature is not always, nor even perhaps most frequently, a fine art. Of the four rhetorical moods, or methods, of discourse, exposition lends itself the least to the assistance of the quality of style. Explanations are communicated from intellect to intellect. Words, in exposition, must be chosen chiefly with a view to definite denotation. The expository writer must be clear at any cost; he must aim to be precise rather than to be suggestive. Style is considerably more important as an adjunct to argumentation; since in order really to persuade, a writer must not only convince the reader's intellect but also rouse and conquer his emotions. But it is in narrative and in description that the quality of style is most contributive to the maximum effect. To evoke a picture in the reader's mind, or to convey to his consciousness a sense of movement, it is advisable (I am tempted to say necessary) to play upon his sensibilities with the sound of the very sentences that are framed to convey a content to his intellect.

Style an Important Aid to Fiction.—Since narrative is the natural mood of fiction, and since description is more often introduced than either argument or exposition, it follows that the writer of fiction must always reckon with the factor of style. It is true that stories may be written without style; it is even true that many of the greatest stories have been devoid of this indefinable quality: but it is not therefore logical to argue that the factor of style may be neglected. How much it may be made to contribute to the attainment of the aim of fiction will be recognized instinctively upon examination of any wonderfully written passage. Let us consider, for example, the following paragraphs from "Markheim." After Markheim has killed the dealer, and gone upstairs to ransack the belongings of the murdered man, he suffers an interval of quietude amid alarms.—

"With the tail of his eye he saw the door—even glanced at it from time to time directly, like a besieged commander pleased to verify the good estate of his defenses. But in truth he was at peace. The rain falling in the street sounded natural and pleasant. Presently, on the other side, the notes of a piano were wakened to the music of a hymn, and the voices of many children took up the air and words. How stately, how comfortable was the melody! How fresh the youthful voices! Markheim gave ear to it smilingly, as he sorted out the keys; and his mind was thronged with answerable ideas and images; church-going children and the pealing of the high organ; children afield, bathers by the brookside, ramblers on the brambly common, kite-fliers in the windy and cloud-navigated sky; and then, at another cadence of the hymn, back again to church, and the somnolence of summer Sundays, and the high genteel voice of the parson (which he smiled a little to recall) and the painted Jacobean tombs, and the dim lettering of the Ten Commandments in the chancel.

"And as he sat thus, at once busy and absent, he was startled to his feet. A flash of ice, a flash of fire, a bursting gush of blood, went over him, and then he stood transfixed and thrilling. A step mounted the stair slowly and steadily, and presently a hand was laid upon the knob, and the lock clicked, and the door opened."

Anybody who has ears to hear will immediately appreciate how much the effect of this passage is enhanced by the masterly employment of every phase of style which we have hitherto discussed. If, instead of writing, "Presently the notes of a piano were wakened to the music of a hymn," Stevenson had written, "Soon a piano began to play a hymn," he would have suggested to the ear a jangle like the banging of tin pans, instead of the measured melody he had in mind. And let it be particularly noted that the phrase suggested for comparison is, in intellectual content alone, scarcely distinct from the original. How little is the difference in denotation, how great the difference in suggestion! The brief phrase, "Kite-fliers in the windy and cloud-navigated sky," seems to blow us bodily upward into the air:—here is mastery of rhythm. "The somnolence of summer Sundays," is whispery and murmurous with s's, m's, and n's:—here (more obviously) is mastery of literation. In the second paragraph, notice how the rhythm suddenly hurries when Markheim is startled to his feet; and in the last sentence, consider the monotonous and measured slowness of the movement, ominous with pauses.

The Heresy of the Accidental.—Every now and then a critic steps forward with the statement that style in fiction is not a deliberate and conscious conquest, that the sound of sentences is accidental and may therefore not be marshaled to contribute to the sense, and that preoccupation with details of rhythm and of literation is an evidence of a finical and narrow mind. To such a statement no answer is necessary but the wholesome advice to re-read, aloud and carefully, several passages on a par with that from "Markheim" which we have just examined. Very evidently Stevenson knew intuitively what he was about when he planned his rhythmic patterns and his literate orchestral harmonies.

Style An Intuitive Quality.—I say "intuitively," because, as I admitted at the outset, style is, with the author, a matter of feeling rather than of intellect. But matters may be planned with sensibility as well as with intelligence. The writer with the gift of style forehears a rhythmic pattern into which he weaves such words as may be denotative of his thought; and all the while that he is striving to be definite and clear, he carries in his mind a subtle sense of the harmonic accompaniment of consonants, the melodious eloquence of vowels.

By what means a writer may attain to mastery of style is a question not to be answered by the intellect. Matters of sensibility are personal, and every man must solve them for himself. The author of "Markheim," as he tells us in his essay on "A College Magazine," taught himself to write by playing the sedulous ape to many masters; and this method may be recommended to aspirants with an imitative ear. But there can be no general rule; because, although in the process of pure reason all men rightly minded think alike, each man differs from every other in the process of emotion.

This is the reason why style, besides being (as we asserted at the outset) an absolute quality, possessed or not possessed by any literary utterance, is also in every case a quality personal to the author who attains it. In this regard, Buffon was right in stating that style is a phase of the man himself. Any work that is accomplished by the intellect alone belongs to man in general rather than to one man in particular; but any work that is accomplished by the sensibilities incorporates those profounder qualities by virtue of which each man stands distinct from every other. By studying the structure of an author's work, we can estimate his intellect: by studying the style, we can estimate that subtler entity which is the man himself.

Methods and Materials.—At the close of our study of the materials and methods of fiction, it is advisable that we should consider in general the relation between form and content,—the respective value of methods and materials. Primarily, there are two groups of worthy fiction,—that which is great mainly on account of its content, and that which is great mainly on account of its form. It would be unwise, of course, to overestimate the single and inherent value of either material or method. Some comparison, however, may be made between the merits of the one group and the other.

Content and Form.—In the first place, it must be noted that, as far as the general reader is concerned, the appeal of any work of fiction depends far more upon its content than upon its form. The average reader knows little and cares less about the technical methods of the art. What he demands above all is interesting subject-matter. He seeks, in the popular phrase, "a good story"; he wishes to be told interesting things about interesting people; and he does not feel especially concerned about the question whether or not these things are told him in an interesting way. The matter, rather than the manner, is the element that most allures him.

There are many reasons that tempt the critic to accept without reservation the general reader's view. For instance, many of the most important works of fiction have been inefficient in mere art. The "Don Quixote" of Cervantes is indubitably one of the very greatest novels in all literature, for the reason that it contains so vast a world. Yet it is very faulty both in structure and in style. The author seems to have built it little by little, as he went along; and he changed his plan so often during the process of construction that the resultant edifice, like the cathedral of St. Peter's, is architecturally incoherent. He showed so little regard for unity that he did not hesitate to halt his novel for half a hundred pages while he set before the reader the totally extraneous novelette of "The Curious Impertinent," which he happened to find lying idle in his desk. How little he was a master of mere style may be felt at once by comparing his plays with those of Calderon. Yet these technical considerations do not count against the value of his masterpiece. All of Spain is there resumed and uttered, all pains that the idealist in any age must suffer, all the pity and the glory of aspiration misapplied.

Scott has no style, and Thackeray has no structure; but these technical defects go down before their magnitude of message. Scott teaches us the glory and the greatness of being healthy, young, adventurous, and happy; and Thackeray, with tears in his eyes that humanize the sneer upon his lips, teaches us that the thing we call Society, with a capital S, is but a vanity of vanities. If we turn from the novel to the short-story, we shall notice that certain themes are in themselves so interesting that the resultant story could not fail to be effective even were it badly told. It is perhaps unfair to take as an example Mr. F. J. Stimson's tale called "Mrs. Knollys," because his story is both correctly constructed and beautifully written; but merely in theme this tale is so effective that it could have endured a less accomplished handling. The story runs as follows:[10]—A girl and her husband, both of whom are very young, go to the Alps for their honeymoon. The husband, in crossing a glacier, falls into a crevasse. His body cannot immediately be recovered; but Mrs. Knollys learns from a German scientist who is making a study of the movement of the ice that in forty-five years the body will be carried to the end of the glacier. Thereafter she regards her husband as absent but not lost, and lives her life in continuous imagined communion with him. At the end of the allotted time, she returns and finds his body. She is then a woman in her sixties; but her husband is, in aspect, still a boy of twenty-one. She has dreamt of him as growing old beside her: she finds him sundered from her by half a century of change.—Even in a bald and ineffective summary the interest of this narrative effect must be apparent. The story scarcely needed to be told so well as Mr. Stimson told it.

We must admit, then, that, from the standpoint of the author as well as from that of the general reader, material may often be regarded as more important than method. But the critic is not therefore justified in stating that style and structure may be neglected with impunity. Other things being equal, the books that have lived the longest are those which have been executed with admirable art. The decline in the fame of Fenimore Cooper is a case in point. Merely in subject-matter, his books are more important now than they were at the time of their original publication; for the conditions of life in the forest primeval must necessarily assume a more especial interest to a world that, in its immediate experience, is rapidly forgetting them. But Cooper wrote very carelessly and very badly; and as we advance to a finer appreciation of the art of fiction, we grow more and more distracted from the contemplation of his message by his preposterous inequalities of craftsmanship.

Novels like the "Leatherstocking Tales" may be most enjoyed (I had almost said appreciated best) by readers with an undeveloped sense of art. This would seem a very strange admission at the close of a study devoted to the art of fiction, were it not for the existence of that other group of stories whose importance lies in method even more than in material. A lesser thing done perfectly is often more significant than a bigger thing done badly. Jane Austen is likely to live longer than George Eliot, because she conveyed her message, less momentous though it were, with a finer and a firmer art. Jane Austen's subjects seem, at the first glance, to be of very small account. From English middle-class society she selects a group of people who are in no regard remarkable, and thereafter concerns herself chiefly with the simple question of who will ultimately marry whom. But by sedulously dwelling on the non-essentials of life, she contrives to remind the reader of its vast essentials. By talking to us skilfully about the many things that do not matter, she suggests to us, inversely and with unobtrusive irony, the few things that really do. Her very message, therefore, is immediately dependent upon her faultless art. If she had done her work less well, the result would have been non-significant and wearisome.

Poe and de Maupassant are shining examples of the class of authors who are destined to live by their art alone. Poe, in his short-stories, said nothing of importance to the world; and de Maupassant said many matters which might more decorously have remained untalked of. But the thing they meant to do, they did unfalteringly; and perfect workmanship is in itself a virtue in this world of shoddy compromise and ragged effort. Long after people have ceased to care for battle, murder, and sudden death, the thrill and urge of buoyant adventure, they will re-read the boyish tales of Stevenson for the sake of their swiftness of propulsion and exultant eloquence of style.

And fully to appreciate this class of fiction, some technical knowledge of the art is necessary. Washington Irving's efforts must, to a great extent, be lost on readers who are lacking in the ear for style. He had very little to say,—merely that the Hudson is beautiful, that the greatest sadness upon earth arises from the early death of one we love, that laughter and tears are at their deepest indistinguishable, and that it is very pleasant to sit before the fire of an old baronial hall and remember musingly; but he said this little like a gentleman,—with a charm, a grace, an easy urbanity of demeanor, that set his work forever in the class of what has been well done by good and faithful servants.

There is a very fine pleasure in watching with awareness the doing of things that are done well. Hence, even for the casual reader, it is advisable to study the methods of fiction in order to develop a more refined delight in reading. It would seem that a detective story, in which the interest is centred mainly in the long withholding of a mystery, would lose its charm for a reader to whom its secret has been once revealed. But the reader with a developed consciousness of method finds an interest evermore renewed in returning again and again to Poe's "Murders in the Rue Morgue." After his first surprise has been abated, he can enjoy more fully the deftness of the author's art. After he has viewed the play from a stall in the orchestra, he may derive another and a different interest by watching it from the wings. To use a familiar form of words, Jane Austen is the novelist's novelist, Stevenson the writer's writer, Poe the builder's builder; and in order fully to appreciate the work of artists such as these, it is necessary (in Poe's words) to "contemplate it with a kindred art."

The Fusion of Both Elements.—But the critic should not therefore be allured into setting method higher than material and overestimating form at the expense of content. The ideal to be striven for in fiction is such an intimate interrelation between the thing said and the way of saying it that neither may be contemplated apart from the other. We are touching now upon a third and smaller group of fiction, which combines the special merits of the two groups already noted. Such a novel as "The Scarlet Letter," such a short-story as "The Brushwood Boy," belong in this third and more extraordinary class. What Hawthorne has to say is searching and profound, and he says it with an equal mastery of structure and of style. "The Scarlet Letter" would be great because of its material alone, even had its author been a bungler; it would be great because of its art alone, even had he been less humanly endowed with understanding. But it is greater as we know it, in its absolute commingling of the two great merits of important subject and commensurate art.

The Author's Personality.—But in studying "The Scarlet Letter" we are conscious of yet another element of interest,—an interest derived from the personality of the author. The same story told with equal art by some one else would interest us very differently. And now we are touching on still another group of worthy fiction. Many stories endure more because of the personality of the men who wrote them than because of any inherent merit of material or method. Charles Lamb's "Dream-Children; A Revery," which, although it is numbered among the "Essays of Elia," may be regarded as a short-story, is important mainly because of the nature of the man who penned it,—a man who, in an age infected with the fever of growing up, remained at heart a little child, looking upon the memorable world with eyes of wonder.

Recapitulation.—These, then, are the three merits to be striven for in equal measure by aspirants to the art of fiction: momentous material, masterly method, and important personality. To discover certain truths of human life that are eminently worth the telling, to embody them in imagined facts with a mastery both of structure and of style, and, behind and beyond the work itself, to be all the time a person worthy of being listened to: this is, for the fiction-writer, the ultimate ideal. Seldom, very seldom, have these three contrarious conditions revealed themselves in a single author; seldom, therefore, have works of fiction been created that are absolutely great. It would be difficult for the critic to select off-hand a single novel which may be accepted in all ways as a standard of the highest excellence. But if the term fiction be regarded in its broadest significance, it may be considered to include the one greatest work of art ever fashioned by the mind of man. The "Divine Comedy" is supreme in subject-matter. The facts of its cosmogony have been disproved by modern science, the religion of which it is the monument has fallen into disbelief, the nation and the epoch that it summarizes have been trampled under the progress of the centuries; but in central and inherent truth, in its exposition of the struggle of the beleaguered human soul to win its way to light and life, it remains perennial and new. It is supreme in art. With unfaltering and undejected effort the master-builder upreared in symmetry its century of cantos; with faultless eloquence he translated into song all moods the human heart has ever known. And it is supreme in personality; because in every line of it we feel ourselves in contact with the vastest individual mind that ever yet inhabited the body of a man. We know (to quote the Poet's most appreciative translator)—

"from what agonies of heart and brain, What exultations trampling on despair, What tenderness, what tears, what hate of wrong, What passionate outcry of a soul in pain, Uprose this poem of the earth and air, This medieval miracle of song."

His labor kept him lean for twenty years; and many a time he learned how salt his food who fares upon another's bread,—how steep his path who treadeth up and down another's stairs. But Dante saw and conquered,—realizing what he had to do, knowing how to do it, being worthy of his work. Therefore, singly among authors, he deserves the epithet his countrymen apply to him,—divine.

"The Divine Comedy" is the supreme epic of the world. The supreme novel remains to be written. It is doubtful if human literary art may attain completeness more than once. But as our authors labor to embody truths of human life in arranged imagined facts, they should constantly be guided and inspired by the allurement of the ultimate ideal. The noblest work is evermore accomplished by followers of the gleam. Let us, in parting company, paraphrase the sense of a remark made centuries ago by Sir Philip Sidney,—that model of a scholar and a gentleman:—It is well to shoot our arrows at the moon; for though they may miss their mark, they will yet fly higher than if we had flung them into a bush.

[9] First published in the Contemporary Review for April, 1885; and now included in Volume XXII of the "Thistle Edition": Charles Scribner's Sons.

[10] "Mrs. Knollys" is now easily accessible in "The Short Story: Specimens Illustrating Its Development." Edited by Brander Matthews. American Book Company, 1908.


1. What is meant by style in literature?

2. Make three patterns of words,—the first notable for sheer selection, the second notable for rhythm, and the third notable for literation.

3. Write a theme, containing approximately three hundred words, that shall be judged for its quality of style.


ROBERT LOUIS STEVENSON: "On Some Technical Elements of Style in Literature."

WALTER PATER: "Essay on Style," in "Appreciations."

HERBERT SPENCER: "Philosophy of Style."


Actions and Reactions, 112, 137.

Adam Bede, 20, 33, 116.

Addison, Joseph, xv; Sir Roger de Coverley, xv.

AEneid, The, 160, 161, 162.

Alcott, Louisa M., 78; Little Women, 78.

Aldrich, Thomas Bailey, 137; Marjorie Daw, 137.

Alice in Wonderland, 18.

Ambitious Guest, The, 174.

American Short Stories, 174.

Amiel, Henri-Frederic, 9.

Andersen, Hans Christian, 11.

Angel in the House, The, 158.

An Habitation Enforced, 112.

Anna Karenina, xxi.

Arcadia, 102.

Archer, William, 8.

Ariosto, Ludovico, 102; Orlando Furioso, 102.

Aristotle, 69, 70.

Arnold, Matthew, 184.

Assignation, The, 38.

As You Like It, 12.

At the End of the Passage, 110.

Aubignac, Abbe d', xviii, xx; Pratique du Theatre, xviii.

Aurora Leigh, 158.

Austen, Jane, 7, 21, 29, 90, 130, 131, 221, 222; Emma, 90, 130, 146; Pride and Prejudice, 131, 146.

Bacon, Francis, 34.

Baldwin, Charles Sears, 174, 175, 180; American Short Stories, 174.

Balfour, Graham, 54.

Balzac, Honore de, xiv, xvi, xvii, 55, 58, 157, 163, 184; Eugenie Grandet, 173; Human Comedy, 163.

Barrie, Sir James Matthew, xxiv, 13, 28, 135, 136.

Beach of Falesa, The, 182.

Beowulf, 133.

Bernhardt, Sarah, 165.

Besant, Sir Walter, xxiv, 37; The Art of Fiction, 37.

Beyle, Henri, see Stendhal.

Boccaccio, Giovanni, xiv, 64, 101, 180; Decameron, 64, 101, 180.

Boswell, James, 125.

Bronte, Charlotte, 13; Jane Eyre, 13, 122, 124, 170.

Brougham, Lord, xxiii.

Browne, Sir Thomas, 213.

Browning, Elizabeth Barrett, 158; Aurora Leigh, 158.

Browning, Robert, 157.

Brunetiere, Ferdinand, xiv, 167; History of Classical French Literature, 14.

Brushwood Boy, The, 28, 35, 205, 223.

Buffon, Comte de, 207, 218.

Bunner, Henry Cuyler, 137, 152; A Sisterly Scheme, 152; The Documents in the Case, 137.

Bunyan, John, 81; Pilgrim's Progress, 65, 81.

Burbage, Richard, 165.

Cable, George Washington, 111.

Calderon, 219.

Camoens, 160; The Lusiads, 160.

Captive, The, 91, 124.

Carlyle, Thomas, 10; Heroes and Hero-Worship, 10.

Carmen, 173.

Carroll, Lewis, Alice in Wonderland, 18.

Cask of Amontillado, The, 143, 178.

Cervantes, xiv, 8, 219; Don Quixote, xxv, 162, 219; The Curious Impertinent, 219.

Chateaubriand, Rene de, 18.

Child's Dream of a Star, A, 185.

Cimabue, 99.

Collins, Wilkie, 18, 51, 75, 153; The Moonstone, 75.

Colomba, 173.

Colvin, Sir Sidney, 179.

Cooper, James Fenimore, xvi, 29, 146, 186, 220; Leatherstocking Tales, 221; The Last of the Mohicans, 173; The Spy, 146.

Coppee, Francois, 159; The Strike of the Iron-Workers, 159; The Substitute, 159.

Coquelin, Constant, 165.

Corneille, Pierre, xx.

Crawford, F. Marion, xxiv, 26; The Novel: What It Is, 26.

Criticism and Fiction, 40, 134.

Curious Impertinent, The, 219.

Cyrano de Bergerac, 165.

Daisy Miller, 173.

Daniel Deronda, 130, 149.

D'Annunzio, Gabriele, 7, 18.

Dante Alighieri, 32, 160, 225; The Divine Comedy, 160, 224, 225.

Daudet, Alphonse, 79, 107, 144, 174, 186, 187; Sapho, 19, 79; The Elixir of the Reverend Father Gaucher, 107; The Last Class, 174.

David Copperfield, 72.

David Swan, 65.

Deal in Cotton, A, 137.

Decameron, 64, 101, 180.

Defoe, Daniel, xv, 103, 122; Robinson Crusoe, 103, 122.

De Quincey, Thomas, 10, 214; The English Mail-Coach, 214.

Dickens, Charles, xx, 23, 70, 72, 81, 104, 147, 185; A Child's Dream of a Star, 185; A Tale of Two Cities, 68, 147; David Copperfield, 72; Martin Chuzzlewit, 86; Our Mutual Friend, 70, 96, 103, 152; Pickwick Papers, xxv; The Old Curiosity Shop, 104, 105.

Divine Comedy, The, 160, 224, 225.

Documents in the Case, The, 137.

Doyle, Sir Arthur Conan, 125, 149.

Dream-Children, 223.

Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde, Strange Case of, xxii, 33, 38, 126, 182.

Dryden, John, xx.

Dumas, Alexandra, pere, xvi, xxiii, 9, 42, 50, 145.

Du Maurier, George, 117.

Eckermann, J. P., xx.

Egoist, The, 72, 84, 92, 113.

Elia, Essays of, 223.

Eliot, George, xvii, xxiii, 6, 13, 20, 25, 27, 28, 29, 33, 37, 41, 45, 51, 67, 70, 72, 73, 83, 87, 88, 116, 123, 129, 130, 184, 186, 221; Adam Bede, 20, 33, 116; Daniel Deronda, 130, 149; Middlemarch, 70, 79; Romola, 28, 37, 114, 148; Silas Marner, 29, 67; The Mill on the Floss, 12, 87, 112.

Elixir of the Reverend Father Gaucher, The, 107.

Emerson, Ralph Waldo, 43, 80; Representative Men, 80.

Emma, 90, 130, 146.

English Mail-Coach, The, 214.

Erasmus, xiv.

Erckmann-Chatrian, 163.

Essays of Elia, 223.

Esther, Book of, 174.

Eugenie Grandet, 173.

Evangeline, 159.

Evan Harrington, 73, 127.

Experimental Novel, The, 111.

Faerie Queene, The, 102, 161.

Fall of the House of Usher, The, 96, 114, 117, 143.

False Dawn, 113.

Ferber, Edna, 193.

Fielding, Henry, xv, 103; Tom Jones, xxv.

Flaubert, Gustave, xvii, 25, 26, 114; Madame Bovary, 26; Salammbo, 114.

Franklin, Benjamin, 80; Autobiography of, 80.

Freeman, Mrs. Mary E. Wilkins, 111.

Freytag, Gustave, xxiv; Technic of the Drama, xxiv.

Froude, James Anthony, xxiii.

Furetiere, Antoine, xvii, xviii; Roman Bourgeois, xvii.

Garland, Hamlin, 111.

Gentle Boy, The, 191.

Gesta Romanorum, 64, 101.

Gift of the Magi, The, 143, 194.

Gil Blas, 66, 122.

Giotto, 99, 101.

Glanvill, Joseph, 195.

Goethe, J. W. von, xx; Conversations with Eckermann, xx.

Goldsmith, Oliver, xv; The Vicar of Wakefield, 84, 85.

Goncourt, Jules and Edmond de, 28.

Gossip on Romance, A, 56, 108.

Greene, Robert, xxiii.

Gummere, Francis B., xvii.

Hale, Edward Everett, 182; The Man Without a Country, 182.

Hamlet, xiv, 8, 9, 82, 165, 169.

Hardy, Thomas, 111; Tess of the D'Urbervilles, 111.

Hawthorne, Nathaniel, xvii, 7, 15, 20, 28, 29, 31, 38, 65, 71, 72, 73, 146, 148, 154, 159, 175, 180, 186, 187, 191, 193, 205, 223; David Swan, 65; The Ambitious Guest, 174; The Gentle Boy, 191; The House of the Seven Gables, 7, 28, 31; The Marble Faun, 38, 73, 154; The Scarlet Letter, xxv, 15, 20, 29, 36, 71, 72, 73, 146, 223; The White Old Maid, 148.

Hedda Gabler, 148.

Hegel, G. F. W., xix.

Henry Esmond, 28, 122.

Henry IV, 49.

Henry, O., 143, 193, 194; The Gift of the Magi, 143, 194.

Heroes and Hero-Worship, 10.

Hervieu, Paul, xxiv.

Homer, 74, 133, 157, 160, 162; The Iliad, 94, 133, 160, 162; The Odyssey, 133.

Horace, 74.

House of the Seven Gables, The, 7, 28, 31.

Howells, William Dean, 40, 134, 135; Criticism and Fiction, 40, 134; The Rise of Silas Lapham, 173.

Hugo, Victor, xvi, xxiii, 25, 26, 50, 112, 145, 149; Les Miserables, 26; Notre Dame de Paris, 112, 145, 149, 173.

Human Comedy, 163.

Humble Remonstrance, A, 60, 70.

Huxley, Thomas Henry, xxi.

Ibsen, Henrik, 8, 12, 147; Hedda Gabler, 148; Rosmersholm, 147.

Iceland Fisherman, The, 112.

Iliad, The, 94, 133, 160, 162.

Irving, Washington, 7, 181, 222; Rip Van Winkle, 181; The Legend of Sleepy Hollow, 181.

James, Henry, 21, 27, 37, 57, 72, 78, 118, 137, 151, 181; Daisy Miller, 173; The Art of Fiction, 27, 118; The Turn of the Screw, 151, 181; What Maisie Knew, 137.

Jane Eyre, 13, 122, 124, 170.

Jerusalem Liberated, 160.

Johnson, Samuel, xv, xviii, xx, xxiii, 125.

Jonson, Ben, 81.

Just So Stories, 23.

Keats, John, 211.

Kenilworth, 149, 173.

Kidnapped, 15, 122, 124.

Kim, 67, 148.

King Lear, 82.

Kipling, Rudyard, 11, 21, 22, 23, 35, 39, 50, 67, 79, 82, 87, 106, 110, 112, 124, 127, 137, 148, 150, 157, 169, 173, 174, 184, 185, 186, 187, 191, 192, 193, 194, 205; Actions and Reactions, 112, 137; A Deal in Cotton, 137; An Habitation Enforced, 112; At the End of the Passage, 110; False Dawn, 113; How the Elephant Got His Trunk, 11; Just So Stories, 23; Kim, 67, 148; Lispeth, 193; "Love-o'-Women," 150; Mrs. Bathurst, 95, 127, 150; Only a Subaltern, 14; Plain Tales from the Hills, 185, 191, 193; Soldiers Three, 127; The Brushwood Boy, 28, 35, 205, 223; The Captive, 91, 124; The Light That Failed, 173; The Three-Decker, 174; They, 22, 35, 87, 169, 205; Thrown Away, 192; Without Benefit of Clergy, 21, 106, 174, 192.

Kreutzer Sonata, The, xxi.

Lady of the Lake, The, 158.

Lady or the Tiger? The, 154, 183.

Lamb, Charles, 135, 223; Dream-Children, 223; Essays of Elia, 223; The South Sea House, 135.

Lantern-Bearers, The, 23.

Last Class, The, 174.

Last Days of Pompeii, The, 113.

Last of the Mohicans, The, 173.

Leatherstocking Tales, 221.

Le Breton, Andre, xiv, xxiii.

Lee, Sir Sidney, 71.

Legend of Sleepy Hollow, The, 181.

Leibnitz, Baron G. W. von, 104.

Leonardo da Vinci, 100.

Le Sage, Alain Rene, 66; Gil Blas, 66, 122.

Les Facheux, 66.

Les Miserables, 26.

L'Etourdi, 66.

Lewes, George Henry, 51.

Ligeia, 174, 194, 195, 201, 204.

Light That Failed, The, 173.

Lispeth, 193.

Little Women, 78.

London, Jack, 111.

Longfellow, Henry Wadsworth, 159, 225; Evangeline, 159.

Loti, Pierre, 112; The Iceland Fisherman, 112.

"Love-o'-Women," 150.

Lowell, James Russell, xvii, 7.

Lucile, 158.

Lusiads, The, 160.

Macbeth, 7, 82, 153, 168.

MacLeod, Fiona, 113.

Madame Bovary, 26.

Man Without a Country, The, 182.

Manzoni, Alessandro, xvi.

Marble Faun, The, 38, 73, 154.

Marjorie Daw, 137.

Markheim, xxii, 36, 48, 141, 154, 174, 215, 216, 217.

Marmion, 158.

Martin Chuzzlewit, 86.

Masque of the Red Death, The, 142, 149, 155, 178.

Master of Ballantrae, The, 92, 93, 94, 113, 126, 148, 170.

Matthews, Brander, 42, 137, 173, 176; The Documents in the Case, 137; The Philosophy of the Short-Story, 176.

Maud, 158.

Maupassant, Guy de, 40, 63, 132, 134, 142, 143, 152, 174, 180, 181, 184, 186, 187, 193, 221; Pierre et Jean, 40; The Necklace, 142, 152, 174.

Mendes, Catulle, 29.

Merchant of Venice, The, 68.

Meredith, George, 29, 55, 72, 73, 113, 127, 129, 130, 169, 171, 184, 186; Evan Harrington, 73, 127; The Egoist, 72, 84, 92, 113; The Ordeal of Richard Feverel, 113.

Meredith, Owen, 160; Lucile, 160.

Merimee, Prosper, 173; Carmen, 173; Colomba, 173.

Merry Men, The, 54.

Middlemarch, 70, 79.

Millet, Jean-Francois, 101.

Mill on the Floss, The, 12, 87, 112.

Milton, John, 160, 162; Paradise Lost, 160.

Modern Painters, 105.

Moliere, J. B. Poquelin de, xix, 66, 165; Les Facheux, 66; Le Tartufe, xix, 8; L'Etourdi, 66.

Moonstone, The, 75.

Motley, John Lothrop, xxiii.

Mrs. Bathurst, 95, 127, 150.

Mrs. Knollys, 219, 220.

Murders in the Rue Morgue, The, 75, 222.

Necklace, The, 142, 152, 174.

New Arabian Nights, 28, 85.

Newcomes, The, 126, 173.

Nibelungen Lied, 133.

Norris, Frank, xxii, 111, 164.

Notre Dame de Paris, 112, 145, 149, 173.

Nouvelle Heloise, La, 104.

Novel, The: What It Is, 26.

Odyssey, The, 133.

OEdipus King, xix.

Old Curiosity Shop, The, 104, 105.

Only a Subaltern, 14.

Ordeal of Richard Feverel, The, 113.

Orlando Furioso, 102.

Ostade, Adrian van, 100.

Othello, 149, 169.

Our Mutual Friend, 70, 96, 103, 152.

Pamela, 20.

Paradise Lost, 160.

Parkman, Francis, 10.

Patmore, Coventry, 158; The Angel in the House, 158.

Paul and Virginia, 102.

Peele, George, xxiii.

Pendennis, 14.

Pepys, Samuel, 47.

Perry, Bliss, xxiv, 28, 29, 182, 183, 184; A Study of Prose Fiction, 28, 182.

Petrarch, 71.

Philosophy of Composition, The, 194.

Philosophy of the Short-Story, The, 176.

Pickwick Papers, xxv.

Pierre et Jean, 40.

Pilgrim's Progress, 65, 81.

Pinero, Sir Arthur Wing, 149, 171.

Pit and the Pendulum, The, 183.

Plain Tales from the Hills, 185, 191, 193.

Plato, 9.

Plutarch, 10.

Poe, Edgar Allan, 29, 38, 75, 114, 115, 125, 142, 143, 144, 172, 174, 175, 176, 177, 178, 179, 180, 181, 183, 184, 185, 186, 187, 190, 193, 194, 195, 196, 197, 198, 199, 200, 201, 204, 205, 221, 222; Ligeia, 174, 194, 195, 201, 204; The Assignation, 38; The Cask of Amontillado, 143, 178; The Fall of the House of Usher, 96, 114, 117, 143; The Masque of the Red Death, 142, 149, 155, 178; The Murders in the Rue Morgue, 75, 222; The Philosophy of Composition, 194; The Pit and the Pendulum, 183; The Raven, 194, 201; The Tell-Tale Heart, 144, 178.

Pride and Prejudice, 131, 146.

Princess, The, 209.

Prodigal Son, The, 174, 201, 202, 203, 204.

Rabelais, Francois, xiv, 18.

Raphael, 100.

Raven, The, 194, 201.

Redgauntlet, 185.

Rembrandt, 140.

Richardson, Samuel, xv, 20, 127; Pamela, 20.

Rip Van Winkle, 181.

Rise of Silas Lapham, The, 173.

Robinson Crusoe, 103, 122.

Romeo and Juliet, 14.

Romola, 28, 37, 114, 148.

Ronsard, Pierre, 71.

Rosmersholm, 147.

Rossetti, Dante Gabriel, 71, 72.

Rostand, Edmond, 165; Cyrano de Bergerac, 165.

Rousseau, Jean Jacques, 104; La Nouvelle Heloise, 104.

Ruskin, John, 105, 213; Modern Painters, 105; Seven Lamps of Architecture, 213.

Ruth, Book of, 174.

Saint-Pierre, Bernardin de, 102; Paul and Virginia, 102.

Salammbo, 114.

Sapho, 19, 79.

Sardou, Victorien, 165; La Tosca, 165.

Scarlet Letter, The, xxv, 15, 20, 29, 36, 71, 72, 73, 146, 223.

School for Scandal, The, 149.

Scott, Sir Walter, xvi, 20, 21, 25, 26, 38, 42, 50, 58, 74, 86, 133, 145, 146, 149, 158, 185, 219; Kenilworth, 149, 173; Marmion, 158; Redgauntlet, 185; The Lady of the Lake, 158; The Talisman, 146; Wandering Willie's Tale, 185; Waverley, 20.

Seven Lamps of Architecture, The, 213.

Shakespeare, William, xviii, xix, 7, 8, 9, 10, 12, 13, 35, 49, 70, 71, 157, 165, 168, 169; As You Like It, 12; Hamlet, xiv, 8, 9, 82, 165, 169; Henry IV, 49; King Lear, 82; Macbeth, 7, 82, 153, 168; Othello, 149, 169; Romeo and Juliet, 14; The Merchant of Venice, 68.

Shaw, George Bernard, 10.

Sheridan, Richard Brinsley, 149; The School for Scandal, 149.

Sidney, Sir Philip, 102, 225; Arcadia, 102.

Silas Marner, 29, 67.

Sisterly Scheme, A, 152.

Smoke, xxv.

Smollett, Tobias, xv.

Soldiers Three, 127.

Sophocles, xix, xx, 184, 185; OEdipus King, xix.

Spenser, Edmund, 102, 112; The Faerie Queene, 102, 161.

Spielhagen, Friedrich, xxiv; Technic of the Novel, xxiv.

Spy, The, 146.

Steele, Sir Richard, xv.

Stendhal, xvii.

Sterne, Laurence, xv.

Stevenson, Robert Louis, xxi, xxii, 16, 23, 28, 33, 36, 39, 40, 48, 50, 54, 56, 60, 61, 62, 70, 73, 85, 108, 113, 170, 173, 174, 179, 182, 187, 212, 223; A College Magazine, 217; A Gossip on Romance, 56, 108; A Humble Remonstrance, 60, 70; Kidnapped, 15, 122, 124; Markheim, xxii, 36, 48, 141, 154, 174, 215, 216, 217; New Arabian Nights, 28, 85; On Some Technical Elements of Style in Literature, 212; Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde, xxii, 33, 38, 126, 182; The Beach of Falesa, 182; The Lantern Bearers, 23; The Master of Ballantrae, 92, 93, 94, 113, 126, 148, 170; The Merry Men, 54; The Treasure of Franchard, 173; Treasure Island, 51, 52, 78, 122, 124.

Stimson, F. J., 219; Mrs. Knollys, 219, 220.

Stockton, Frank R., 154; The Lady or the Tiger?, 154, 183.

Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde, xxii, 33, 38, 126, 182.

Strike of the Iron-Workers, The, 159.

Study of Prose Fiction, A, 28, 182.

Substitute, The, 159.

Swift, Jonathan, xv, 18.

Tale of Two Cities, A, 68, 147.

Talisman, The, 146.

Tarkington, Booth, 111.

Tartufe, Le, xix, 8.

Tasso, Torquato, 160, 162; Jerusalem Liberated, 160.

Taylor, Bayard, 154; Who Was She?, 154.

Tell-Tale Heart, The, 144, 178.

Teniers, David, the younger, 100.

Tennyson, Alfred, Lord, 158, 209; Maud, 158; The Princess, 209.

Tess of the D'Urbervilles, 111.

Thackeray, William Makepeace, xvii, 14, 21, 26, 27, 28, 63, 71, 74, 79, 97, 126, 134, 135, 185, 219; Henry Esmond, 28, 122; Pendennis, 14; The Newcomes, 126, 173; The Virginians, 28; Vanity Fair, xxv, 20, 71, 79, 97, 98, 146, 151.

Theocritus, xiv.

They, 22, 35, 87, 169, 205.

Three-Decker, The, 174.

Thrown Away, 192.

Tintoretto, 140.

Tolstoi, Count Leo, xxi, 7; Anna Karenina, xxi; The Kreutzer Sonata, xxi; War and Peace, xxv.

Tom Jones, xxv.

Tosca, La, 165.

Treasure Island, 51, 52, 78, 122, 124.

Treasure of Franchard, The, 173.

Trollope, Anthony, 41, 51.

Turgenieff, Ivan, 57, 58, 72, 157, 173; Smoke, xxv.

Turn of the Screw, The, 151, 181.

Uncle Tom's Cabin, 163.

Vanity Fair, xxv, 20, 71, 79, 97, 98, 146, 151.

Verrocchio, Andrea, 140.

Vicar of Wakefield, The, 84, 85.

Virgil, 161; The AEneid, 160, 161, 162.

Virginians, The, 28.

Wagner, Richard, 147.

Wandering Willie's Tale, 185.

War and Peace, xxv.

Waverley, 20.

What Maisie Knew, 137.

White Old Maid, The, 148.

White, Stewart Edward, 111.

Whitman, Walt, 71, 79.

Who Was She?, 154.

Without Benefit of Clergy, 21, 106, 174, 192.

Wordsworth, William, 58.

Zola, Emile, 6, 29, 41, 111, 164; The Experimental Novel, 111; The Rougon-Macquart Series, 111, 164.




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