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A Tremendous Reader

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Probably no author of his time has read more than Carlyle. He actually devours, and has devoured books ever siiico ie was ten years old. He will go through an ordinary volume in two hours, and ihough he may not con each page, he will find in it all that is worthy. His memory is prodigious, not only for generĂ¡is, but for details. He could repeat poetry by the ell ; he never does, however, for he is always averring that he hates poetry - that the greatest bards have jrippled their thought and limited their range, by rhy thm and rhyme. He thinks Hoiner, Dante, and Shakespeare would have been greater had they expressed themselves in prose. Nevertheless, he is a poet - a poet, not without, but indifferent to form. He has the roputation of being better acquainted with all subjects, historie, philosophic, literary, and soientific, than any living Briton. For years and years he is reputed to have read on an aveyage five volumes a day, and to bave skimmed eight or ten more. Readiug has ever been a passion with him, and he has said that his idea of heaven would be to be turned into an inexhaustible library of new and good books, where ho could browse for all eternity. He estimates, I have heard, that he has gleaned the contents of fully one hundred thousand volumes, which, when we consider his voracity, rapidity, trained eyes and mind, is not at all nnlikely. There is hardly a curious and remarkable book in the British Museum that he is not more or less familiar with. A gentleman's ordinary library he could eat up - all that is worth eating, that is - in a single fortnight. It is asserted that a rich merohant, who had collected five or six thousand rare works, once besought the author to dino with him, in order to look at his library. The bibliophile, allured by literary hunger, went three hours before the time announced. When the merchant got home, and asked his guest to look at his books, his guest replied : " Why, mon, I've finished 'em."


Old News
Michigan Argus