Washington Irving
by Henry W. Boynton
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Not long afterward Dickens visited America. Irving and he saw much of each other, though they did not meet many times. Irving presided at a great dinner given to Boz in New York, broke down in his introductory speech, and otherwise endeared himself to his brother author. When presently Dickens went back, he wrote, "I did not come to see you, for I really have not the heart to say 'good-by' again, and felt more than I can tell you when we shook hands last Wednesday."

Pretty soon Irving himself was leaving America. In February, 1842, he was startled from the home quiet of Sunnyside by a summons which he could not disregard. Daniel Webster, then Secretary of State, had secured his appointment as Minister to Spain. The Senate confirmed it almost by acclamation, and letters came from various quarters urging him to accept it. He could not doubt that the wish was general. But it was very hard for him to leave home and America again. For some time after accepting the post he was plunged into a dejection which seemed laughable to himself. "The crowning honor of his life," he admitted, had come to him, and he could only groan under it.

"'It is hard, very hard,' he half murmured to himself, half to me; yet he added whimsically enough, being struck with the seeming absurdity of such a view, 'I must try to bear it. God tempers the wind to the shorn lamb'" (P. M. Irving).

In April he sailed from New York, and made a leisurely journey by way of England and France, not reaching Madrid till the end of July. Europe had lost its old charm. Many places reminded him painfully of the favorite brother Peter who had shared his first impressions of them, and whose loss was one of the keenest griefs of his life. "My visit to Europe has by no means the charm of former visits," he wrote from Paris; "scenes and objects have no longer the effect of novelty with me. I am no longer curious to see great sights or great people, and have been so long accustomed to a life of quiet, that I find the turmoil of the world becomes irksome to me. Then I have a house of my own, a little domestic world, created in a manner by my own hand, which I have left behind, and which is continually haunting my thoughts, and coming in contrast with the noisy, tumultuous, heartless world in which I am called to mingle. However, I am somewhat of a philosopher, and can accommodate myself to changes, so I shall endeavor to resign myself to the splendor of courts and the conversation of courtiers, comforting myself with the thought that the time will come when I shall once more return to sweet little Sunnyside, and be able to sit on a stone fence, and talk about politics and rural affairs with Neighbor Forkel and Uncle Brom."

At Madrid he very soon found himself too much occupied for the literary work he had counted on. He had accepted the place under the impression that his duties would not greatly interfere with the writing of the "Life of Washington," on which he was then fairly launched. But from the beginning he found the situation in Spain unexpectedly absorbing. It was the usual Spanish situation, to be sure: a designing pretender, a child monarch, a court honeycombed with intrigue, and a people ready for anything spectacular. When Irving was presented to the young queen, she was closely guarded. "On ascending the grand staircase, we found the portal at the head of it, opening into the royal suite of apartments, still bearing the marks of the midnight attack upon the palace in October last, when an attempt was made to get possession of the persons of the little queen and her sister, to carry them off.... The marble casements of the doors had been shattered in several places, and the double doors themselves pierced all over with bullet-holes, from the musketry that played upon them from the staircase during that eventful night. What must have been the feelings of those poor children, on listening from their apartment to the horrid tumult, the outcries of a furious multitude, and the reports of fire-arms, echoing and reverberating through the vaulted halls and spacious courts of the immense edifice, and dubious whether their own lives were not the object of the assault!" Such an appeal to Irving's sympathy and chivalry was enough to deprive the situation of its quality of opera-bouffe.

Presently an insurrection takes place in Barcelona. The regent hurries off to quell it, and Irving's letters are full of the pomp and circumstance of war. The regent is successful, and returns apparently firmer than ever in power. But a few months later the trouble breaks out again, more seriously; Madrid is placed in a state of siege, and martial law declared. The life of the queen is thought to be in danger, and the diplomatic corps, headed by Irving, offers its services for her protection. Finally the regent is driven out of power, and blows are once again succeeded by intrigue. Such, briefly, was the character of the little drama in which the quiet American author was to take a significant part, during his whole ministry. This Spanish experience is fully recorded in his family letters. He was always a voluminous letter-writer; during this period he is fairly encyclopedic. A single letter to his sister fills thirteen closely printed pages of his nephew's biography. His official dispatches, too, were very full and thorough. Webster valued them particularly, and remarked that he "always laid aside every other correspondence to read a diplomatic dispatch from Mr. Irving." He had time, too, for many charming chatty letters to the nieces at Sunnyside. Here is a Thackerayish passage from one of them: "You seem to pity the poor little queen, shut up with her sister like two princesses in a fairy tale, in a great, grand, dreary palace, and wonder whether she would not like to change her situation for a nice little cottage on the Hudson? Perhaps she would, Kate, if she knew anything of the gayeties of cottage life; if she had ever been with us at a picnic, or driven out in the shandry-dan with the two roans, and James, in his slipshod hat, for a coachman, or yotted in the Dream, or sang in the Tarrytown choir, or shopped at Tommy Dean's; but, poor thing! she would not know how to set about enjoying herself. She would not think of appearing at church without a whole train of the Miss ——s and the Miss ——s, and the Miss ——s, as maids of honor, nor drive through Sleepy Hollow except in a coach and six, with a cloud of dust, and a troop of horsemen in glittering armor. So I think, Kate, we must be content with pitying her, and leaving her in ignorance of the comparative desolateness of her situation."

In 1842, Irving suffered another of those petty persecutions which he was not thick-skinned enough to endure without suffering, nor confident enough to ignore. The charges were of the most ordinary sort, and advanced by men of little weight: he had appropriated material without giving due credit for it, and he had puffed his own work. Their only claim upon our notice lies in the fact that Irving thought it worth while to confute them at length. He was perhaps especially sensitive to critical attacks at this time. His income from literary property had nearly ceased. Some of his books were out of print, and the rest were having comparatively little sale. A wave of indifference had overtaken his public. "Everything behind me seems to have turned to chaff and stubble," he wrote. "And if I desire any further profits from literature, it must be by the further exercise of my pen." It is characteristic of his modesty that he was disposed to accept this momentary neglect as final. He planned to revise all his works, in the hope of finding a renewed market for them later, but evidently expected little.

A letter to Brevoort from Bordeaux dated November, 1843, accounts for the first break in his Madrid residence: "I am now on my way back to my post, after between two and three months' absence. I set out in pursuit of health, and thought a little traveling and a change of air would 'make me my own man again'; but I was laid by the heels at Paris by a recurrence of my malady, and have just escaped out of the doctor's hands.... This indisposition has been a sad check upon all my plans. I had hoped, by zealous employment of all the leisure afforded me at Madrid, to accomplish one or two literary tasks which I have in hand.... A year, however, has now been lost to me, and a precious year, at my time of life. The 'Life of Washington,' and indeed all my literary tasks, have remained suspended; and my pen has remained idle, excepting now and then in writing a dispatch to Government, or scrawling a letter to my family. In the mean time the income which I used to derive from farming out my writings has died away, and my moneyed investments yield scarce any interest.... However, thank God, my health and with it my capacity for work are returning. I shall soon again have pen in hand, and hope to get two or three good years of literary labor out of myself."

After his return to Spain he was again laid by. He was disappointed, but not discouraged, for the self-pity of the invalid never deprived him of his strong man's humor. "When I drive out and notice the opening of spring, I feel sometimes almost moved to tears at the thought that in a little while I shall again have the use of my limbs, and be able to ramble about and enjoy these green fields and meadows. It seems almost too great a privilege. I am afraid when I once more sally forth and walk the streets, I shall feel like a boy with a new coat, who thinks everybody will turn around to look at him. 'Bless my soul, how that gentleman has the use of his legs!'" A few days after this was written, he got word that one of his friends had just undergone a successful surgical operation. "God bless these surgeons and dentists!" he exclaims. "May their good deeds be returned upon them a thousand fold! May they have the felicity, in the next world, to have successful operations performed upon them to all eternity!"

By this time he had come to take Spanish politics rather too seriously. The insincerity and profligacy of the Spanish character, the corruption of the court and state, fairly sicken him: "The last ten or twelve years of my life," he writes, "have shown me so much of the dark side of human nature, that I begin to have painful doubts of my fellow men, and look back with regret to the confiding period of my literary career, when, poor as a rat, but rich in dreams, I beheld the world through the medium of my imagination, and was apt to believe men as good as I wished them to be." His sense of responsibility for the young queen oppressed him, and he looked forward impatiently to the hour of his release.

A year later he had gained far better health and spirits. On his sixty-second birthday—"I caught myself bounding upstairs three steps at a time, to the astonishment of the porter, and checked myself, recollecting that it was not the pace befitting a minister and a man of my years." His mental life had, however, caught the sober tone of age. "I am now at that time of life when the mind has a stock of recollections on which to employ itself; and though these may sometimes be of a melancholy nature, yet it is a 'sweet-souled melancholy,' mellowed and softened by the operation of time, and has no bitterness in it.... When I was young, my imagination was always in the advance, picturing out the future, and building castles in the air; now memory comes in the place of imagination, and I look back over the region I have traveled. Thank God, the same plastic feeling, which used to deck all the future with the hues of fairyland, throws a soft coloring over the past, until the very roughest places, through which I struggled with many a heartache, lose all their asperity in the distance."

In July, 1846, his successor arrived, and Irving was free to leave Europe for the last time. His services in Spain had brought nothing but honor to himself and his country; he had earned a right to the quiet years that followed in his favorite home nook at Sunnyside.

Soon after his return he began to busy himself with the revised edition of his works which he had projected in Spain. It was disheartening to find his old publishers dubious about undertaking the republication, and for a time the work went hard. "I am growing a sad laggard in literature," he wrote to his nephew, "and need some one to bolster me up occasionally. I am too ready to do anything else rather than write." For more than a year his time was largely devoted to overseeing an enlargement of the cottage, and a renovation of the grounds, at Sunnyside. At last he got it all into satisfactory order. "My own place has never been so beautiful as at present. I have made more openings by pruning and cutting down trees, so that from the piazza I have several charming views of the Tappan Zee and the hills beyond, all set, as it were, in verdant flames; and I am never tired of sitting there in my old Voltaire chair of a long summer morning with a book in my hand, sometimes reading, sometimes musing, and sometimes dozing, and mixing all up in a pleasant dream." As for New York, "For my part, I dread the noise and turmoil of it, and visit it but now and then, preferring the quiet of my country retreat; which shows that the bustling time of life is over with me, and that I am settling down into a sober, quiet, good-for-nothing old gentleman."

This was all very well—for a mood. He spent the next winter in town, moving freely in society, and "not missing a single performance" of the opera. "One meets all one's acquaintances at the opera, and there is much visiting from box to box, and pleasant conversation, between the acts. The opera house is in fact the great feature of polite society in New York, and I believe is the great attraction that keeps me in town. Music is to me the great sweetener of existence, and I never enjoyed it more abundantly than at present." Clearly, the old social instinct was by no means dead in him, however he might express himself in less buoyant moods.

Two years after his return from Spain the house of Putnam agreed to publish the revised edition of his works on very liberal terms—a twelve and a half per cent. royalty. The result of the enterprise was a surprise to author and publisher, for during the ten remaining years of his life the royalties amounted to more than $88,000. The arrangement brought about an immediate accession of courage and power, and he returned with fresh zeal to the "Life of Washington." "All I fear," he said, "is to fail in health, and fail in completing this work at the same time. If I can only live to finish it, I would be willing to die the next moment. I think I can make it a most interesting book. If I had only ten years more of life! I never felt more able to write. I might not conceive as I did in earlier days, when I had more romance of feeling, but I could execute with more rapidity and freedom." The consciousness of approaching age grew stronger in him, but without weakening his capacity for enjoyment or his turn for humorous expression. Early in 1850, George Ticknor sent him a copy of his "History of Spanish Literature." Irving dipped into it, liked it, and "When I have once read it through," he wrote, "I shall keep it by me, like a Stilton cheese, to give a dig into whenever I want a relishing morsel. I began to fear it would never see the light in my day, or that it might fare with you as with that good lady who went thirteen years with child, and then brought forth a little old man, who died in the course of a month of extreme old age. But you have produced three strapping volumes, full of life and freshness and vigor, that will live forever." This sounds well for Ticknor; but it needs only a glance at Irving's recorded correspondence to see that he was inclined to overestimate the work of others. That kind heart must needs assume the functions of a head which was very well able to take care of itself.

In larger matters his judgment was often colored, but seldom warped, by feeling. The line between sentiment and common sense is clearly drawn in his comment upon the Kossuth obsession which held New York in 1852. "I have heard and seen Kossuth both in public and private, and he is really a noble fellow, quite the beau ideal of a poetic hero.... He is a kind of man that you would idolize. Yet, poor fellow, he has come here under a great mistake, and is doomed to be disappointed in the high-wrought expectations he had formed of cooperation on the part of our government in the affairs of his unhappy country. Admiration and sympathy he has in abundance from individuals; but there is no romance in councils of state or deliberative assemblies. There, cool judgment and cautious policy must restrain and regulate the warm impulses of feeling. I trust we are never to be carried away, by the fascinating eloquence of this second Peter the Hermit, into schemes of foreign interference, that would rival the wild enterprises of the Crusades." The letter concludes in a minor strain: "It is now half-past twelve at night, and I am sitting here scribbling in my study, long after the family are abed and asleep—a habit I have fallen much into of late. Indeed, I never fagged more steadily with my pen than I do at present. I have a long task in hand, which I am anxious to finish, that I may have a little leisure in the brief remnant of life that is left to me. However, I have a strong presentiment that I shall die in harness; and I am content to do so, provided I have the cheerful exercise of intellect to the last."

By this time some of his Western investments had begun to make handsome returns. With an easy pocket, and a single congenial task for his leisure, it seemed that Irving's last years were certain to be peacefully rounded. Unfortunately his health did not hold; all his former ailments came back upon him, and the "Life of Washington" became an Old Man of the Sea, which one wishes heartily he might have been rid of. A visit to Saratoga in the summer of 1852, and the company of many pretty women, seemed for the moment to lift the years from his shoulders. "No one seemed more unconscious of the celebrity to which he had attained," wrote one of his Saratoga acquaintances, long after. "In this there was not a particle of affectation. Nothing he shrank from with greater earnestness and sincerity and (I may add) pertinacity, than any attempt to lionize him." His name was used to conjure with too often for his comfort. An "Irving Literary Union" had been formed in New York. Irving's attitude toward it was amusing and characteristic; he was always invited to attend the anniversary meeting, always accepted, and always stayed away.

Events abroad continued to interest him. His sister had sent an account from Paris of the marriage of Louis Napoleon. "Louis Napoleon and Eugenie Montijo, Emperor and Empress of France!" he wrote. "One of whom I have had a guest at my cottage on the Hudson; the other of whom, when a child, I have had on my knee at Granada! It seems to cap the climax of the strange dramas of which Paris has been the theatre during my lifetime."

In 1855, "Wolfert's Roost" was published. Most of its contents had figured years before in the "Knickerbocker Magazine." It is one of the best of his miscellaneous collections, and should be better known to the modern reader of Irving. Thereafter, his work was over, except for the "Life of Washington," which was to appear in parts during the next three years. Its merits were perhaps exaggerated at the time; to the modern critic they lie chiefly in its possession of the lucid simplicity of method without which its author could not write, and in the life which it infuses into a cold abstraction. If this is not Washington, it is at least a living and breathing person, whose interest for us lies not altogether in his career.

These closing years were sadly clouded by sleeplessness and depression of spirits, from which at times he roused himself to bursts of his old brilliancy and humor. A year before his death he said to one of the innumerable inquiries about his health, "I have a streak of old age. Pity, when we have grown old, we could not turn round and grow young again, and die of cutting our teeth." A few months later, when he had begun to be troubled with difficulty of breathing, he had a long and prosy letter from a total stranger, who proposed a call. "Oh, if he could only give me his long wind," gasped Irving, "he should be most welcome."

We need not follow here the rather pitiful struggle of those last months. "I do not fear death," said he, "but I would like to go down with all sail set." The thoughts of the gradual loss of his faculties haunted him with curious insistency. He conceived a dislike for his own room, could not bear to be alone, and hung with pathetic eagerness to the companionship of the few whom he held dearest. His fear was groundless. To the end his mind remained clear; and on the 29th of November, 1859, he "went down with all sail set."



One is tempted to ask himself, in concluding a review of this man's life and work, what it was that he peculiarly stood for; what new kind of excellence he brought into being, and how far it survived him. Oddly enough, the accident of his birthplace is made at once his chief merit, and the subtle derogation of that merit; he is the first distinguished name in American letters, and he is "the American Addison." From the outset one who wishes to study his work is hampered by the fact of place. One must be always considering solemnly, "Although he was an American, he succeeded in doing this," or, "Because he was an American, he might have done that," till one is fairly inclined to wish that his English parents had not happened to marry and settle in New York. As a matter of fact, there are few writers against whom the point of nationality may be pushed with less pertinence.

It is plain that earlier American writing interests us only in a local and guarded sense. The critical microscope discovers certain merits; but the least shifting of the eye-piece throws the object out of field. We value what these men wrote because of what they did as Americans, or stood for in American life. Of Irving and a few later writers this is not true. And our regard for them may lead us to suspect that from the literary point of view, it is better to be great than American; or at least that there is no formula to express the ratio between a writer's Americanism and his literary power. The historian esteems a flavor of nationality in literature; to the lover of pure letters, it is only a superior sort of local color. Irving's distinction is that he was the first prophet of pure letters in America. This is to speak thickly; and it will not help matters greatly to say that the mark of pure letters is style. The application of that foggy term to such a writer as Irving is likely to be particularly unfair; it has not been spared him. He has had more praise for his style than for anything else; indeed, it has been commonly suggested that there is little else to praise him for. This is, of course, a survival of the old notion that style is a sort of achievement in decorative art; that fine feathers may do much for the literary bird, at least. The style of a writer like Irving—a mere loiterer in the field of letters—is at best a creditable product of artifice. To him even so much credit has not been always allowed; the clever imitator of Addison—or, as some sager say, of Goldsmith—has not even invented a manner; he has borrowed one.

Fortunately, novelty of form is a very different thing from literary excellence. Irving wrote like a well-bred Englishman, brought up in the sound traditions of the days of good Queen Anne. Whatever local merit his work may have, belongs to theme rather than to treatment. Its delicate humor is as far as possible from what has come to be known as American humor. His only conscious Americanism in motive—to speak of him merely as an artist—was to show England that "an American could write decent English." At that time, it seems, Englishmen considered this to be a good thing for an American to do; and the poet Campbell's remark was thought to be high praise: that Washington Irving had "added clarity to the English tongue." This was a service of which the language just then stood sadly in need. There are always men ready enough to make English turbid, to wreak their ingenuity upon oddities of phrase and diction. At that moment, certainly, the anxious courtier of words was not so much needed as the easy autocrat, whose style, however cavalier, should have grace and firmness and clarity to commend it. When Irving began to express himself, there was very little straightforward simple writing being done, either in America or in England. The stuffed buckram of Johnsonese had been succeeded by the mincing hifalutin of Mrs. Anne Radcliffe and her like. It is at least to Irving's credit that his taste led him back half a century to the comparative simplicity and purity of the prim Augustan style. But it is odd that it should have been for this acquired manner that the world thought it liked him while he lived, and has chiefly praised him since he died.

But after all, as was said of Milton in a different connection, Irving has worn "the garb, but not the clothes, of the ancients." His kinship to them in temper of thought and feeling was closer than his resemblance in manner. Like Addison and Goldsmith, he wins his audience through sheer charm of personality. To open one of his books is like meeting a congenial stranger. You like his looks at first glance, you feel somehow that he likes yours; and while you may be hesitating about advances, he is at your side, and there is nothing more to be said. You do not care whether he is American or English, you are not particular what he talks about, but you do not willingly part with him.

The charm of creative genius is less the charm of mind than of feeling. And it is to feeling refined and colored by temperament, that the more delicate modes of belles-lettres owe their whole power. That is, a writer in this sort is admirable as he subdues language and subordinates thought to his own temper, not as he gives elegant utterance to thought or feeling in their abstracted and general estate. Through a surface artificiality of style, which is far more marked in his earliest work, and from which at times he quite escapes, Irving's personality shines clearly. He has so employed a conventional medium as to make it serve his original purposes. He possessed, to be sure, a faculty of strong vernacular speech, which is little suggested in his to-be-published writing, or even in his private letters. The Oregon embroilment had led certain British journals into gross speech about America. Irving was much disturbed. What he wrote was, "A rancorous prejudice against us has been diligently inculcated of late years by the British press, and it is daily producing its fruits of bitterness." What he said was: "Bulwer,"—then English minister to Spain,—"I should deplore exceedingly a war with England, for depend upon it, if we must come to blows, it will be serious work for both. You might break our head at first, but by Heaven! we would break your back in the end!"

But one need not write in the vernacular to be sincere and effective; personality may utter itself through different media, whether in different tongues or in distinct strata of the same tongue. Just now we have a bent toward colloquialism on paper; it was not the bent of Irving's day.

As far as the external features of his style are concerned, he has had praise enough, and more than enough. Clearness, ease, a certain Gallic grace it has; the ink flows readily, the thing says itself without crabbedness or constraint. On the other hand this ready writer is often conventional; a set phrase contents him, why should he labor to escape the usual formula? He knew nothing of the struggle or the reward of the artist in words, who wrestles for the exact nuance, and will not let a sentence go till he has obtained its blessing. Consequently he is never finicking in his phraseology, and seldom final. The subtle artfulness of Stevenson is beyond him; but he has a rarer quality—that subtler artlessness which has belonged in some measure to all the greater writers of sentiment. It is a quality independent of the mechanics of writing; whether the author echoes the syntax of Addison or the diction of Goldsmith is an indifferent question. All that we know is that, through his use of words or in spite of it, a new melody has come into being, a golden motif which is to ring in the world's ears nobody knows how long.

It seems idle to say of such a man that because he does not concern himself with "the mystery of existence," and "the solemn eternities," he has nothing to say. Surely the simple-souled artist may leave such matters for the philosophers and theologians to deal with. Surely his "message" is as significant as theirs. Irving is admirable not mainly because he "wrote beautifully," but because he said something which no one else could say: he uttered the most meaning of all messages—himself. And if literature is really a criticism of life, such a message from such a man has, it would seem, dignity enough.

Evidently Irving, like Goldsmith and Oliver Wendell Holmes, owed his amazing influence largely to his cheerful and wholesome this-worldliness. He was a sentimentalist, but obviously different in spirit from the two great English writers of sentiment who were most nearly his contemporaries. Thackeray is sophisticated; fortune's buffets have left him still a tender interest in life, but pity rather than hopefulness gives color to his mood. Dickens's sentiment seldom rings perfectly true; too often it is sharped to flippancy, or flatted to mawkishness. The tone of Irving, in sentiment or in humor, is the clear and even utterance of a healthy nature. It was a period of sickly sentimentalism in which he began to write; men drew tears frequently and mechanically then, as they drew corks. The sentimentalist passed easily from broad mirth to unwinking pathos. Fortunately that weakest mood of sentiment without humor came seldom to Irving; he wrote only one "History of Margaret Nicholson."

It was his nature to be achingly considerate of others, so that he was a better friend than critic; and he was as careful of their good opinion as of their comfort. Always doubtful what treatment his work would meet, and even what it deserved, he would ask his friends to say nothing about it, unless they liked it. "One condemning whisper," said one of them, "sounded louder in his ear than the plaudits of thousands." Socially, on the other hand, he never had the least doubt of himself. The tastes and manner of a gentleman did not need to be acquired; there was no question of his fitness for any society. During his whole career, thrown as he was into the choicest company of two continents, there was evidently not the least suspicion of embarrassment or awkwardness in his quiet bearing.

He was in the largest sense of the word a generous man; and even in the smaller sense his generosity has distinction and significance. Addison we know to have been a little on the hither side of open-handedness. Goldsmith was by his own satirical confession the "good-natured man," to whom giving was a conscious indulgence. Irving was simply not aware that he gave; to share his best was a natural function. And it is our sense of this, of being admitted as a matter of course to share in all that he is and has, which largely explains his delightfulness as man and author.

Citizen of the world as he was in his literary character, in practical life his Americanism was real and potent. He deplored the War of 1812 and the war with Mexico, but believed firmly that it was no man's duty to go back of the government's decision. In the conduct of his mission to Spain he showed the utmost steadiness, loyalty, and self-possession in many trying situations. He was, in short, a valuable citizen, to whom honors came unsought, and who, out of office, and not desirous of political power, was trusted by all parties, and tempted by none. The mere existence of such a figure, calm, simple, incorruptible, honored wherever he was known, and known prominently throughout Europe, was a valuable stay to the young republic in that purgatorial first half of the nineteenth century.

One fact about him will perhaps bear emphasis; that with all his gentlenesses he was strong and firm and full of spirit. He was susceptible to advice, yet nobody ever forced him to do a thing that was against his mind or conscience. That he was amiable, congenial, companionable—we do not forget these traits of his; we should remember, too, that he never faced an emergency to which he did not prove himself equal. His personal hold upon his contemporaries was plainly due to the fact that their confidence in him as a man was as perfect as their delight in him as an artist. What he did was, after all, only a little part of what he was.

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