First published in 1843. In the Introduction, Ralph Waldo Emerson says, "Here is Carlyle's new poem, his Iliad of English woes, to follow his poem on France, entitled the History of the French Revolution. In its first aspect it is a political tract, and since Burke, since Milton, we have had nothing to compare with it. It grapples honestly with the facts lying before all men, groups and disposes them with a master's mind, and, with a heart full of manly tenderness, offers his best counsel to his brothers." According to Wikipedia: "Thomas Carlyle (1795 ndash; 1881) was a Scottish essayist, satirist, and historian, whose work was highly influential during the Victorian era. Coming from a strict Calvinist family, Carlyle was expected by his parents to become a preacher, but while at the University of Edinburgh, he lost his Christian faith. Calvinist values, however, remained with him throughout his life. This combination of a religious temperament with loss of faith in traditional Christianity made Carlyle's work appealing to many Victorians who were grappling with scientific and political changes that threatened the traditional social order.
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B&R Samizdat Express
August 27, 2008
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