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CV. —HE GIVETH HIS BELOVED SLEEP.
ELIZABETH BARRETT BROWNING was born in London in 1809. She was married to Robert Browning in 1846, and died June 29, 1861. The greater part of her married life was passed in Italy, a country in whose fate and fortunes she took an enthusiastic interest. Her first volume was published in 1826. In 1833 she published a translation of " Prometheus Bound.” In these early volumes there is little of that originality and vigor which mark her later poems, such as “Aurora Leigh," "Casa Guidi Windows," and the remarkable sonnets from the Portuguese. She was a woman of rare and high genius, marked by imagination and originality of treatment, and hardly less so by her intense sympathy with every form of suffering. She is sometimes obscure in expression; her poetry is sometimes wanting in perfect taste, and frequently needs compression; but she is unequaled for power of thought, splendor of coloring, and a varied and passionate energy. She was not less distinguished for her learning than for her genius. She was an admirable Greek scholar, and published in one of the English periodicals a series of striking translations from the Greek Christian poets. She was a person of very delicate organization, and from the pressure of constant ill health compelled to lead a life of constant seclusion. During her married life in Italy, she became known to several Americans, who found her as remarkable for sweetness, simplicity, and unaffected grace of manner as for genius and learning. The Italians have marked their sense of her enthusiastic interest in their cause, by an Italian inscription on the walls of the house in Florence in which she lived for many years, and where she wrote her “Casa Guidi Windows."
What would we give to our beloved ?
What do we give to our beloved ?
A little dust to overweep,
“ Sleep soft, beloved !” we sometimes say,
O earth, so full of dreary noises !
His dews drop mutely on the hill;
Ay, men may wonder while they scan
For me my heart, that erst* did go
That sees through tears the mummer's leap,
from me, And round
bier ye come to weep,
HENRY WARD BEECHER was born in Litchfield, Connecticut, June 24, 1813; graduated at Amherst College in 1834; studied theology under his father, the Rev. Lyman Beecher; and since 1847 has been pastor of the Plymouth Church in Brooklyn, N. Y. He is an eloquent and effective preacher, and, as a lecturer to the people, he enjoys an unrivaled popularity, earned by the happy combination of humor, pathos, earnestness, and genial sympathy with humanity, which his discourses present. He is a man of great energy of temperament, fervently opposed to every form of oppression and injustice, and with a poet's love of nature. His style is rich, glowing, and exuberant. The following extract is from the “Star Papers," a volume made up of papers which originally appeared in the “New York Independent.”
OW bright are the honors which await those who,
with sacred fortitude and patriotic patience, have endured all things that they might save their native land from division and from the power of corruption! The honored dead! They that die for a good cause, are redeemed from death. Their names are gathered and garnered. Their memory is precious. Each place grows proud for them who were born there. There is to be erelong, in every village and in every neighborhood, a glowing pride in its martyred heroes.
Tablets shall preserve their names. Pious love shall renew their inscriptions as time and the unfeeling elements decay them. And the national festivals shall give multitudes of precious names to the orator's lips. Children shall grow up under more sacred inspirations whose elder brothers, dying nobly for their country, left a name that honored and inspired all who bore it. Orphan children shall find thousands of fathers and mothers to love and help those whom dying heroes left as a legacy to the gratitude of the public.
O, tell me not that they are dead, — that generous host, that airy army of invisible heroes! They hover as a cloud of witnesses above this nation. Are they dead that yet speak louder than we can speak, and a more universal language? Are they dead that yet act? Are they dead that yet move upon society, and inspire the people with nobler motives and more heroic patriotism?
Ye that mourn, let gladness mingle with your tears. He was your son; but now he is the nation's. He made your household bright; now his example inspires a thousand households. Dear to his brothers and sisters, he is now brother to every generous youth in the land.
Before, he was narrowed, appropriated, shut up to you. Now he is augmented, set free, and given to all. He has died from the family, that he might live to the nation. Not one name shall be forgotten or neglected; and it shall by and by be confessed, as of an ancient hero, that he did more for his country by his death than by his whole life.
Every mountain and hill shall have its treasured name; every river shall keep some solemn title; every valley and every lake shall cherish its honored register; and till the mountains are worn out, and the rivers forget to flow, till
the clouds are weary of replenishing springs, and the springs forget to gush, and the rills to sing, shall their names be kept fresh with reverent honors which are inscribed upon the book of National Remembrance !
CVII. - AMERICA THE OLD WORLD.
LOUIS JOAN RUDOLPH AGASSIZ was born at Mottier, near Lake Nonchatel in Switzerland, May 28, 1807; and died in Cambridge, Massachusetts, December 15, 1873. He devoted himself to natural history from his early youth. He gained at an early age the friendship of Cuvier and Humboldt, by whom he was warmly encouraged and aided in his labors and studies. The three subjects which claimed his special attention were the fossil fishes, fresh-water fishes of Europe, and the formation of glaciers, on all of which he published elaborate and valuable works. In 1846, being in the enjoyment of a world-wide reputation as a naturalist, he came to America. In 1848 he was appointed Professor of Zoology and Geology in the Lawrence Scientific School at Cambridge, where he resided until the time of his death. He gave an immense impulse to the study of natural history by his indefatigable activity and the magnetism of his personal presence and manners. He devoted himself with great energy to the formation of a Museum of Comparative Zoology at Cambridge. In 1865 he made a scientific journey to Brazil, the results of which were published in a volume by Mrs. Agassiz. He was a foreign associate of the Institute of France, and a member of the leading scientific bodies of Europe, from many of which he had received medals and other marks of distinction. He was warmly beloved by his friends, and has trained a body of enthusiastic young naturalists by whom the labors he left unfinished will be continued with his zeal and in his spirit.
VIRST-BORN among the continents
, though so much later in culture and civilization than some of more recent birth, America, so far as her physical history is concerned, has been falsely denominated the NEW WORLD. Hers was the first dry land lifted out of the waters, hers the first shores washed by the ocean that enveloped all the earth beside; and while Europe was represented only by islands rising here and there above the sea, America already stretched an unbroken line of land from Nova Scotia to the Far West.