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as real problems faced him there developed had anything of his own to say. unsuspected tenacity and noble purpose; his imagination reached its powers, the high spirits he had even in pain and suf- tool was at his hand. Those who think fering.
exquisite writing comes by inspiration There is little in the animated and should note that Stevenson, referring to humorous letters which have made Ste- style rather than to matter, said: * I imvenson a living personality to a world of agine nobody had ever such pains to learn readers to show that he was constantly a trade as I had; but I slogged at it day fighting for life. " I was made for a con- in and day out; and I frankly believe test," he wrote Mr. Meredith, "and the (thanks to my dire industry) I have done Powers have so willed that my battlefield more with smaller gifts than almost any should be this dingy, inglorious one of man of letters in the world." Often his the bed and the physic-bottle.” But best work was rewritten ten times. Here, rarely was there heard from him a word in a somewhat abbreviated form, is the of complaint or a tone of melancholy. often-told story of his self-imposed apprenHis brilliant romances are alive with ticeship: character and rich in humor and fancy, his subtle essays are keyed on optimism, known and pointed out for the pattern of an
All through my boyhood and youth I was his child-poems are open-doored and open- idler ; and yet I was always busy on my own hearted, his very journeys to the ends of private end, which was to learn to write. I the world that he might find a place where kept always two books in my pocket-one to he could live and work made him the was busy fitting what I saw with appropriate
read, one to write in. As I walked my mind friend, counselor, and teacher of the weak words; when I sat by the roadside, I would and oppressed.
either read, or a pencil and a penny versionNothing is more difficult to define than book would be in my hand, to note down the
features of the scene or commemorate some charm. What is the quality about Steven- halting stanzas. Thus I lived with words. son as man and as author which has And what I thus wrote was for no ulterior endeared him to the world far more than use; it was written consciously for practice. some of greater intellectual force? Mr.
It was not so much that I wished to be an
author (though I wished that, too) as that I Balfour thus defines it :
had vowed that I would learn to write. ... To deal with Stevenson's intellectual quali
Whenever I read a book or a passage that ties alone is to approach his less fascinating particularly pleased me, in which a thing was side, and to miss far more than half the influ said or an effect rendered with propriety, in ence of his charm. I have referred to his which there was either some conspicuous chivalry, only to find that in reality I was
force or some happy distinction in the style, I thinking of every one of the whole group of must sit down at once and set myself to ape attributes which are associated with that name.
that quality. I was unsuccessful, and I knew Loyalty, honesty, generosity, courage, cour
it; and tried again, and was again unsuccesstesy, tenderness, and self-devotion ; to impute ful, and always unsuccessful; but at least in no unworthy motives and to bear no grudge;
these vain bouts I got some practice in to bear misfortune with cheerfulness and with: rhythm, in harmony, in construction, and the out a murmur; to strike hard for the right and
co-ordination of parts. I have thus played take no mean advantage; to be gentle to
the sedulous ape to Hazlitt, to Lamb, to women and kind to all that are weak; to be
Wordsworth, to Sir Thomas Browne, to Devery rigorous with oneself and very lenient to foe, to Hawthorne, to Montaigne, to Baudeothers--these, and any other virtues ever
laire, and to “ Obermann." implied in "chivalry,” were the traits that distinguished Stevenson. They do not make
A last quotation from a book which life easy, as he frequently found. One day, constantly tempts to quotation may be his stepson tells me, they were sitting on the one of several prayers written by Robert deck of a schooner in the Pacific, and Steven- Louis Stevenson-one not, we think, genson was reading a copy of “ Don Quixote." erally known. It has much of the man's Suddenly he looked up, and, with an air of realization, said sadly, as if to himself, " That's nature in it: me."
The day returns and brings us the petty Turning from Stevenson's charm to his us to play the man, help us to perform them
round of irritating concerns and duties. Help literary art, it is brought out in this book with laughter and kind faces ; lei cheerfulness better than ever before that even from abound with industry. Give us to go blithely early boyhood he had a real passion for on our business all this day, bring us to our striving after style. In a sense he mayored, and gr
resting beds weary and content and undishon
us in the end the gift of sleep. be said to have acquired style before he Amen.
Tolstoi and the Russian Censors The two pictures presented herewith will bring direct to the reader's eye the method of censorship employed by the Russian Government. Hardly anything could appear less harmful or revolutionary on its face than this pictorial postal card containing a reproduction of Repine's famous portrait of Tolstoi, yet because the Russian authorities were incensed by Tolstoi's brave reply to the edict of excommunication, they absolutely refuse to allow the Red Cross Society to put on sale these postal cards, which the Society had printed with the Government's consent as a way of raising money for the humane work of the Society.
On the next page will be seen a reproduction of a page of our worthy and certainly far from Anarchistic contemporary, “ The Literary Digest," as it appears after it has gone through the Russian censor's hand. The article thus treated was entitled “The Beginnings of Christianity as Viewed by a
Layman," and the reader's eyes are sharper than ours if he can detect in the original article the special danger concealed beneath this apparently harmless title. As is pointed out by a correspondent who sends us this example of Russian despotism, there have been left one or two phrases which to an ordinary observer might seem more radical than the mild historical statements of the author of the article which have been so hardly dealt with. What happens to The Outlook in Russia we do not know; a friend suggests that the censor would not spare even the name of such a pernicious paper, because an outlook is just what the Government does not want the people to get.