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and Co. paid ultimately 2s. 9d. in the pound; Hurst and Robinson about 1s. 3d. The Ballantyne firm had as yet done nothing to prevent their following the same line of conduct. It might still have allowed itself (and not James Ballantyne merely as an individual) to be declared bankrupt, and obtained a speedy discharge, like 10 these booksellers, from all its obligations. But for Scott's being a partner, the whole affair must have been settled in a very short time. If he could have at all made up his mind to let commercial matters take the usual commercial course, the creditors of the firm would have brought into the market whatever property, literary or otherwise, Scott at the hour of failure 20 possessed. All this being disposed of, the result would have been a dividend very far superior to what the creditors of Constable and Hurst received; and in return, the partners in the printing firm would have been left at liberty to reap for themselves the profits of their future exertions.

Scott persisted in regarding the embarrassment of his commercial firm 30 with the feelings not of a merchant but of a gentleman. He thought that, by devoting the rest of his life to the service of his creditors, he could, in the upshot, pay the last farthing he owed them. They, with one or two exceptions, applauded his honorable intentions and resolutions, and partook, to a certain extent, in the selfreliance of their debtor. Nor had 40 they miscalculated as to their interest.

Nor had Sir Walter calculated wrongly. He paid the penalty of health and life, but he saved his honor and his self-respect.



1. These selections from Lockhart's Life of Scott are given, first, because they supply sev

eral intimate pictures of the home life and methods of work of the great poet, and second, because they will introduce you to biography as a form of literature. John Gibson Lockhart had already made a name for himself as a writer and editor when he met Scott in 1818. Two years later he married Sophia, Scott's eldest daughter, and spent his summers in a cottage near Abbotsford at a time when Scott was at the height of his powers. Though he afterwards became a distinguished editor and critic, it is by his work in biography that he is best remembered. His Life of Burns, published in 1828, still remains the most delightful introduction to the life and works of the poet. In 1837-1838 the Life of Scott appeared, and, like its predecessor, had a large sale. It is interesting to note that Lockhart assigned the profits from the book to Scott's creditors, thus helping, after the death of the hero, to complete the payment of the debt.

2. Biography is a form of history. It is the history of the life of a great man, and, like history itself, may bring in material from all sources in order to set forth clearly the age or period with which it deals. It is also like history in that it is a story. A good biography presents the story of a great man's life in such a way as to give us an intimate acquaintance with him, with his friends, with great actions in which he bore a part, and, incidentally, with the period in which he lived.

3. There are many great biographies in English. One of the first of these you have already learned about, Sir Thomas North's. translation, in the sixteenth century, of Plutarch's Lives, a series of biographies of Greek and Roman heroes. North made use of a French translation of Plutarch's work, which was originally written in Greek, but his translation seems almost like a work written originally in English, and we think of it in this way today. Shakespeare used this collection of biographies in several of his dramas; it has also been read for generations by ambitious boys who afterwards became great men, so that it has been called "the pasture of great minds."

The most famous of English biographies is probably Boswell's Life of Dr. Samuel Johnson, a book written in the eighteenth century about a man as great in his time as Scott became later. Boswell's Johnson is like Lockhart's Scott in its intimate, personal view of the subject; its profusion of anecdote; its report of the sayings of everyday life; its complete revelation of a many-sided and fascinating personality as revealed, not through his books or public addresses, but in the familiarity of home life. Besides these two great biographies, English

literature possesses many others scarcely less interesting, among them Lockhart's Burns, Southey's Nelson, and Irving's Goldsmith.

4. Closely related to the biography are collections of letters, and autobiographies. In the biography we get a picture of a man as seen by someone who has lived with him, or has studied him so closely as to be able to produce the effect of intimacy. In the autobiography and in the letters of great men we have self-revelation. All these, biography, autobiography, letters, are fascinating because of the stories they tell; they are also useful because a boy or girl who wishes to make the most out of life can do no better than to see how men and women who have won a high place in the world have lived their lives. Great autobiographies are those by Franklin; Huxley; Muir (The Story of my Boyhood and Youth); Mary Antin (The Promised Land); Helen Keller (The Story of my Life); Riis (The Making of an American). Among the most charming letters are those by Cowper, Lamb, and Stevenson. A collection called Familiar Letters, containing many letters by these and other famous men and women, is published in the Lake English Classics.


1. Summarize in your own words the story of Scott's relations to his children, being careful to indicate the topics under which you present your subject.

2. What evidence does the second selection ("Scott at Work") give of the sources of the descriptions of nature that you find in his works? What observations can you make from this about the way in which good description is written? Does a man just imagine the scene he wishes to describe, or does he have a definite place or scene in mind? Try to put this idea into practice the next time you are asked to write a description.

3. This second selection also tells you about some of the ways in which poetry is written. Why did Scott find it easy to compose his poetry while galloping on his pony? What kinds of poetry might well be composed under such circumstances? Again, why did Scott recite "poetry and old legends from morning till night"?

4. Near the end of the second selection, point out several incidents that seem to you to show the personality of Scott.

5. In the third selection ("Scott at Play") prepare the material for a five-minute talk. In order to do this, read through the selection, noting several headings or topics under which the material might be placed. Examples are "Scott and His Guests"; "Sir Walter's Humor"; "A Day in the Open Air"; "Recreations and Abbotsford"; etc. Select one of these topics for your five-minute talk. Perhaps some other members of the class will take other subjects from your list, so that you can present a program on "Scott at Play."

6. Add to your study of Scott's personality, begun in the second selection, whatever new information you gain from the third selection.

7. In the last selection ("How Sir Walter Met Adversity") add further notes on the topic suggested in question 6. You are now ready to make a report on "My Conception of Sir Walter Scott as a Man." This report may be in the form of notes or an outline. Under each topic, such as "humor," "love of outdoor sports,' "lover of animals," "courage," etc., cite instances that prove your points. After studying this outline, try to sum up, in a few sentences, your conception of what sort of man Scott


Library Reading. Read all or parts from one of the autobiographies or collection of letters mentioned in the Explanatory Note, 4, and prepare a five-minute oral report on some interesting incident found in your reading.





THE AUTHOR OF THE DRAMA The man who wrote Julius Caesar was only thirty-six years old at the time, yet he was already one of the leading actors and playwrights of London. He was not, however, London born. He was in one sense a country boy, for he was born in a town of some two thousand inhabitants about eighty miles from London.

When he was born, probably on April 23, 1564, his father was a prosperous butcher and dealer in farm products, who later was made bailiff, or mayor, of the town. There was in Stratford-on-Avon a free grammar school in which the mayor's eldest son must have studied Latin grammar and Latin authors like Æsop, Ovid, and Virgil. He had to attend church every Sunday, as the town authorities were very strict about such matters. But he apparently had a great deal of time for amusement. He probably learned to bowl and to use the bow and arrow, because there were grounds for such sports in Stratford. It is very likely he watched a good many cock-fights and he learned about hunting with dogs and horses and also with falcons, though falcons were kept only by the wealthy men called "gentlemen." He may have begun to act in his boyhood, for nearly every town had companies made up of the citizens. To act was with them a diversion, not a profession. He would also be interested in the companies that came from a large neighboring town, Coventry. His father, when he was bailiff, gave such a company permission to act. All in all, young Shakespeare must have had a good time as a boy.

When he was only eighteen, he married Anne Hathaway. They had three children before he was twenty-two. Then he went away to London to try his fortune in the

great city. He went at a time when opportunities were opening on every hand. The men engaged in trading with the Netherlands or in other business were growing rich very fast. The common people also had more comfort than they had ever enjoyed before. It was probably the theaters that drew Shakespeare. London was still shut in by a wall some two miles around, and no theaters were allowed inside the wall. In the fields north of the wall and across the Thames to the south, however, were several theaters which were crowded daily, and even on Sundays, until the Puritans had a law passed against Sunday playing. It was the period of greatest dramatic activity in all of English history.

Strolling players roamed over England, theatrical companies were formed, and theaters were built. One of these, The Globe, a summer theater, was made especially famous by Shakespeare and his associates. The summer theaters were for daylight performances in the open air, with perhaps a roof over the stage or over the boxes and the galleries around the pit. Spectators were allowed to sit on the stage and mingle with the actors. The female characters in a play were taken by boys. There was only the rudest scenery, or none at all-a change of scene being indicated by printed signs. Because of this lack of scenery, actors were compelled to rely for their effects upon the lines and the acting. This is one of the reasons why the plays of Shakespeare have been read and played, studied and discussed, more than the works of any other writer.

According to tradition, Shakespeare began his theatrical career in London by holding the horses of the theater goers. Within six years he had become a playwright himself. Before he was thirty he had become an important member of the leading theatrical company. His activi


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ties brought him not only honor but profit, for at thirty-three he bought the largest house in Stratford. In fact, when his friends in Stratford needed financial aid, they seem to have turned to him for assistance.

Before he composed Julius Caesar he had written some twenty other plays. Some of them are very famous, as Romeo and Juliet, Midsummer Night's Dream, The Merchant of Venice, As You Like It, and Twelfth Night. These plays are the most interesting and brilliant of all Shakespeare's comedies. If you have not read them, you will wish to before you are very much older.

Julius Caesar is quite different. It is a tragedy. Shakespeare gained nearly all of his material for this play from Plutarch, a Greek who was born shortly before Caesar's assassination. Plutarch lectured in Rome on philosophy and wrote a book containing fifty parallel lives of famous Greeks and Romans; as, Alexander and Caesar, Dion and Brutus, Demetrius and Antony. Shakespeare used Sir Thomas

North's English translation, which he followed very closely in places. In this play he drew upon three of the "lives": "Caesar," "Brutus," and "Antony." We cannot be sure of the exact time when the play was produced, but probably the public first saw it in the fall of 1600. It was so very successful that a rival manager tried to bring out another play on the same subject, to be called "Caesar's Fall."

Beginning with Julius Caesar, Shakespeare turned to tragedy. In rapid succession he produced Hamlet, Othello, King Lear, and Macbeth. Some of these tragedies you will study before you are graduated from high school, but all of them you will want to read before many years have passed. Later came Antony and Cleopatra, and Coriolanus, two Roman plays which some students will find very interesting to read in connection with Julius Caesar. When you have read all these you will have become acquainted with the greatest dramas in English literature.

Shortly after the death of Queen Elizabeth in 1603 Shakespeare seems to have

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