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Tennyson As A Pompous Prig

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A New York correspondent of the Cliiengo Tribune gay : 'f hose who kave heard James T. Field-i' lecture on Tennyson Unv., prolmbly, boen truck with the enthusiastic adiniration which the lecturer evidently fecls tor his subject. There is somethiug of the Boswoll in Fields, wbo inay belicve. with ïiauvenargue, that tneasured praise is a uro sign of raediocrity. Tennyson, it will be genenvlly conceded, is a very clever poot ; lut that lie Í3 a great man, few who have met bim will be willing to Irait. Nearly all accounts of Americans ugree in pronouncing hitn an illinannereiegotist and poir.pous prig. During Charles Sumner's recent visit abroad he was in Teunyson's own house, nd happened to speak of American affiiirs. The poet evidently grew restless, iiü he is wout to do when the theme is iinything but hiuiself. Sumner, pereeivjng this, oon dropped his topic, and Tennysou, at onco going to the libn.ry, returned with an upen book in his hand presented it to Surnner, and stid drinnutically and iuifirntively : " Read that !" Sumner, lookiiig at the open page, shw that it was " The Princess," and reioarkcd: "Oh, yesr Mr. Tennyson, I am very familiar with this and I consider it one of the best of your poenas." " Kead that aloud," exclaimed tbo coneited author, whfie'jpon the statesiuan, thouijh feeling tlie extreme delicocy of LÍ9 poaition, begtvn to interpret it as though it sho'ild be. He had hardly gotten through with a ynze, before TenBj-áon almost snatehed the volume from )iis hand, remarking, "This is the way it sbould be read, sir ■," ad he rucited nearly the wbole of tLe poem in the drawlüigi monotonous, artificial marnier for ■which he isfauious; conTeyin the inipression thnt he was giving divine delightand bcstowing a divine favor. Saiimer bore the inftiction with outrard retignutim ; bat bis friends say he will be very wary of calling on Tenuyson again. What an immense bore Tennyson must be! I doubt nov that that oíd artesian "Wordsworth is dead, whcthsr any other Biino iuan o: the century wouia De loonsn enough to read his own productions ly the hour to his visitors. I wonder if Tunnysun over heard the story of Dionysius, the tyrant of Syraouse, who having pardoned a certain literitry critic for BOiue political offense, invited him f rom prison to his palace, and began rcading to hiin one of his own impedios. The tyrant had reached the end of the lirst sceue, when the critio yawned tremHiidoualy, and siiid : " Pardon me, jour Maj.esty ; but I would mueh rather go Ysic to prisou."


Old News
Michigan Argus