“Mr. Bliss Perry has performed his editorial task with great skill and discrimination, and it is now possible to read in a convenient form the intellectual log book of the Concord philosopher, to obtain an informal, but truer picture of Emersonian thought than in the ‘Essays.’”—Independent.
From about 1820, when he was 17, Ralph Waldo Emerson (1803-82) kept a personal journal. Over the next 55 years, he continued to make entries, recording a wide range of thoughts and impressions about books and authors, religions, his contemporaries, the state of the nation and the world, and a host of other topics. The result was ten volumes of pure Emerson — open and informal, revealing the private man behind the formidable thinker, poet, and leader of the New England Transcendentalists.
For this volume, Professor Bliss Perry selected, with admirable judgment and a remarkable eye for the telling passage, the best of the journals, offering not only a splendid, revealing record of Emerson’s personal beliefs but also a social and historical record of his age. He has “succeeded in retaining in a single volume both only the best separate passages which their crystalline completeness of construction makes a comparatively simple matter, but, what is more difficult, the unspoiled portrait of Emerson himself.” — Outlook.
Any student, scholar, or admirer of Emerson will want to have this concise, well-chosen compilation of his intimate, innermost musings and meditations. It’s a rich opportunity to discover a fascinating, lesser-known dimension of the man known to the public as the Sage of Concord.
Reprint of the Houghton Mifflin, 1926 edition.