Ralph Waldo Emerson
Ralph Waldo Emerson was an American essayist, lecturer and poet who led the transcendentalist movement of the mid-19th century. He was seen as a champion of individualism and a prescient critic of the countervailing pressures of society, he disseminated his thoughts through dozens of published essays and more than 1,500 public lectures across the United States. Emerson moved away from the religious and social beliefs of his contemporaries and expressing the philosophy of transcendentalism in his 1836 essay "Nature". Following this work, he gave a speech entitled "The American Scholar" in 1837, which Oliver Wendell Holmes Sr. considered to be America's "intellectual Declaration of Independence."Emerson wrote most of his important essays as lectures first and revised them for print. His first two collections of essays, Essays: First Series and Essays: Second Series, represent the core of his thinking, they include the well-known essays "Self-Reliance", "The Over-Soul", "Circles", "The Poet", "Experience."
Together with "Nature", these essays made the decade from the mid-1830s to the mid-1840s Emerson's most fertile period. Emerson wrote on a number of subjects, never espousing fixed philosophical tenets, but developing certain ideas such as individuality, the ability for mankind to realize anything, the relationship between the soul and the surrounding world. Emerson's "nature" was more philosophical than naturalistic: "Philosophically considered, the universe is composed of Nature and the Soul." Emerson is one of several figures who "took a more pantheist or pandeist approach by rejecting views of God as separate from the world."He remains among the linchpins of the American romantic movement, his work has influenced the thinkers and poets that followed him. "In all my lectures," he wrote, "I have taught one doctrine, the infinitude of the private man." Emerson is well known as a mentor and friend of Henry David Thoreau, a fellow transcendentalist. Emerson was born in Boston, Massachusetts, on May 25, 1803, a son of Ruth Haskins and the Rev. William Emerson, a Unitarian minister.
He was named after his mother's brother his father's great-grandmother Rebecca Waldo. Ralph Waldo was the second of five sons. Three other children—Phebe, John Clarke, Mary Caroline—died in childhood. Emerson was of English ancestry, his family had been in New England since the early colonial period. Emerson's father died from stomach cancer on May 12, 1811, less than two weeks before Emerson's eighth birthday. Emerson was raised with the help of the other women in the family, she lived with the family off and on and maintained a constant correspondence with Emerson until her death in 1863. Emerson's formal schooling began at the Boston Latin School in 1812. In October 1817, at 14, Emerson went to Harvard College and was appointed freshman messenger for the president, requiring Emerson to fetch delinquent students and send messages to faculty. Midway through his junior year, Emerson began keeping a list of books he had read and started a journal in a series of notebooks that would be called "Wide World".
He took outside jobs to cover his school expenses, including as a waiter for the Junior Commons and as an occasional teacher working with his uncle Samuel and aunt Sarah Ripley in Waltham, Massachusetts. By his senior year, Emerson decided to go by Waldo. Emerson served as Class Poet, he graduated in the exact middle of his class of 59 people. In 1826, faced with poor health, Emerson went to seek a warmer climate, he first found the weather was still too cold. He went farther south, to St. Augustine, where he took long walks on the beach and began writing poetry. While in St. Augustine he made the acquaintance of Prince Achille Murat, the nephew of Napoleon Bonaparte. Murat was two years his senior; the two engaged in enlightening discussions of religion, society and government. Emerson considered Murat an important figure in his intellectual education. While in St. Augustine, Emerson had his first encounter with slavery. At one point, he attended a meeting of the Bible Society while a slave auction was taking place in the yard outside.
He wrote, "One ear therefore heard the glad tidings of great joy, whilst the other was regaled with'Going, going!'" After Harvard, Emerson assisted his brother William in a school for young women established in their mother's house, after he had established his own school in Chelmsford, Massachusetts. Emerson was accepted into the Harvard Divinity School in late 1824, was inducted into Phi Beta Kappa in 1828. Emerson's brother Edward, two years younger than he, entered the office of the lawyer Daniel Webster, after graduating from Harvard first in his class. Edward's physical health began to deteriorate, he soon suffered a mental collapse as well. Although he recovered his mental equilibrium, he died in 1834 from long-standing tuberculosis. Another of Emerson's bright and promising younger brothers, born in 1808, died in 1836 of tuberculos
The House of the Seven Gables
The House of the Seven Gables is a Gothic novel written beginning in mid-1850 by American author Nathaniel Hawthorne and published in April 1851 by Ticknor and Fields of Boston. The novel follows their ancestral home. In the book, Hawthorne explores themes of guilt and atonement, colors the tale with suggestions of the supernatural and witchcraft; the setting for the book was inspired by the Turner-Ingersoll Mansion, a gabled house in Salem, MA, belonging to Hawthorne's cousin Susanna Ingersoll, by ancestors of Hawthorne who had played a part in the Salem Witch Trials of 1692. The book was well received upon publication and had a strong influence on the work of H. P. Lovecraft; the House of the Seven Gables has been adapted several times to television. The novel is set in the mid-19th century, but flashbacks to the history of the house, built in the late 17th century, are set in other periods; the house of the title is a gloomy New England mansion, haunted since its construction by fraudulent dealings, accusations of witchcraft, sudden death.
The current resident, the dignified but poor Hepzibah Pyncheon, opens a shop in a side room to support her brother Clifford, who has completed a thirty-year sentence for murder. She refuses all assistance from Judge Jaffrey Pyncheon. A distant relative, the lively and pretty young Phoebe and becomes invaluable, charming customers and rousing Clifford from depression. A delicate romance grows between Phoebe and the mysterious attic lodger Holgrave, writing a history of the Pyncheon family; the house was built on ground wrongfully seized from its rightful owner, Matthew Maule, by Colonel Pyncheon, the founder of the Massachusetts branch of the family. Maule was executed. According to legend, at his death Maule laid a curse upon the Pyncheon family. During the housewarming festivities, Colonel Pyncheon was found dead in his armchair, his portrait remains in the house as a symbol of its dark past and the weight of the curse upon the spirit of its inhabitants. Phoebe plans to return soon. Clifford, depressed by his isolation from humanity and his lost youth spent in prison, stands at a large arched window above the stairs and has a sudden urge to jump.
The departure of Phoebe, the focus of his attention, leaves him bed-ridden. Judge Pyncheon arrives to find information about land in Maine, rumored to belong to the family, he threatens Clifford with an insanity hearing unless he reveals details about the land or the location of the missing deed. Clifford is unable to comply. Before Clifford can be brought before the Judge, the Judge mysteriously dies while sitting in Colonel Pyncheon's chair. Hepzibah and Clifford flee by train; the next day, Phoebe finds that Holgrave has discovered the Judge's body. The townsfolk begin to Clifford's sudden disappearance. Phoebe is relieved when Clifford return, having recovered their wits. New evidence in the crime that sent Clifford to prison proves his innocence, he was framed for the death of his uncle by Jaffrey Pyncheon, then looking for the missing deed. Holgrave is revealed as Maule's descendant; the missing deed is discovered behind the old Colonel's portrait, but the paper is worthless: the land is settled by others.
The characters abandon the old house and start a new life in the countryside, free from the burdens of the past. Hepzibah Pyncheon – An unmarried older woman. Though a member of the upper class, she is destitute. At the beginning of the novel, she opens a shop in the first floor of the house to support herself and her brother. Holgrave – A daguerreotypist who boards at the house, he is secretly a descendant of Matthew Maule, hanged as a wizard. He falls in love with Phoebe. Phoebe Pyncheon – She is from the country and not a member of the Salem aristocracy, she takes over the shop. Her cheerfulness and beauty make the shop a success, charm the reclusive Clifford, to whom she serves as a kind of caretaker. Phoebe shows a willingness to work, absent in Hepzibah and Clifford, she falls in love with Holgrave. Alice Pyncheon – A haughty beauty whose ghost haunts the House of the Seven Gables. Holgrave writes a story about Alice. In Holgrave's story, Matthew Maule, grandson of the accused witch, is recruited by Alice's greedy father to assist in finding documents that will make him rich.
Maule hypnotizes Alice to help locate the documents. In reality, Maule intends revenge on the Pyncheons by making Alice permanently susceptible to his commands, he uses this to force her to publicly embarrass her family. Alice dies. Maule is mortified that he has caused the death of a refined young woman. Colonel Pyncheon – The founder of the Pyncheon family, the colonel was cursed by Matthew Maule, he died on the day that the House was built on the site where Maule's house had been. Judge Jaffrey Pyncheon – A jurist and political aspirant who lives on a comfortable estate out of town. In appearance and character he so resembles Colonel Pyncheon that some people mistake portraits of the ancestor for the descendant, he is just as ruthless as his ancestor in his hunt for a lost land deed, the intended source of new wealth for the dissolute Pyncheon clan. Matthew Maule – Original owner of the land where the House of Seven Gables is built. Colonel Pync
James Thomas Fields
James Thomas Fields was an American publisher and poet. He was named James Field, his father died before Fields was three. He and his brother were raised by her siblings, their aunt Mary and uncle George. At the age of 14, Fields took a job at the Old Corner Bookstore in Boston as an apprentice to publishers Carter and Hendee, his first published poetry was included in the Portsmouth Journal in 1837 but he drew more attention when, on September 13, 1838, he delivered his "Anniversary Poem" to the Boston Mercantile Library Association. In 1839, he joined William Ticknor and became junior partner in the publishing and bookselling firm known after 1845 as Ticknor and Fields. Ticknor oversaw the business side of the firm, he became known for being likable, for his ability to find creative talent, for his ability to promote authors and win their loyalty. With this company, Fields became the publisher of leading contemporary American writers, with whom he was on terms of close personal friendship, he was the American publisher of some of the best-known British writers of his time, some of whom he knew intimately.
The company paid royalties to these British authors, including Charles Dickens and William Makepeace Thackeray, at a time when other American publishers pirated the works of those authors. The first collected edition of Thomas de Quincey's works was published by his firm. Ticknor and Fields built their company to have a substantial influence in the literary scene which writer and editor Nathaniel Parker Willis acknowledged in a letter to Fields: "Your press is the announcing-room of the country's Court of Poetry."Sometime in 1844, Fields was engaged to Mary Willard, a local woman six years younger than him. Before they could be married, she died of tuberculosis on April 17, 1845, he maintained a close friendship with her family and, on March 13, 1850, married her 18-year-old sister Eliza Willard at Boston's Federal Street Church. Sick with tuberculosis, she died on July 13, 1851. Grief-stricken, he traveled to Europe. In 1854, Fields married Annie Adams, an author herself. Mrs. Fields was instrumental in helping Mr. Fields establish literary salons at their home at 37 Charles Street in Boston, where they entertained many well-known writers.
One such writer was Nathaniel Hawthorne. After Hawthorne's death in 1864, Fields served as a pallbearer for his funeral alongside Amos Bronson Alcott, Ralph Waldo Emerson, Oliver Wendell Holmes, Sr. Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, Edwin Percy Whipple. In 1867, he performed the same role after the death of Nathaniel Parker Willis, along with Holmes, James Russell Lowell, Samuel Gridley Howe. Ticknor and Fields purchased The Atlantic Monthly for $10,000 and, about two years in May 1861, Fields took over the editorship from Lowell. At a New Year's Eve party in 1865, he met William Dean Howells and 10 days offered him a position as assistant editor of the Atlantic. Howells was somewhat dismayed by Fields's close supervision. Ticknor died in 1864. Fields was less concerned with the retail store owned by the company and wanted to focus on publishing. On November 12, 1864, he sold the Old Corner Bookstore and moved Ticknor and Fields to 124 Tremont Street. In 1868 the business became Fields and Company, recognizing James R. Osgood.
On New Year's Day, 1871, Fields announced his retirement at a small gathering of friends. No longer involved with editorial duties, he devoted himself to lecturing and writing, he edited, with Edwin Percy Whipple, A Family Library of British Poetry. Fields became popular as a lecturer throughout the 1870s. In May 1879, Fields suffered a brain hemorrhage and collapsed before a scheduled lecture at Wellesley College. By autumn he seemed to have recovered. In January 1881, he gave what would be his final public lecture, coincidentally at the Mercantile Library Association, the organization which hosted his first public reading. Fields died in Boston on April 24, 1881, he is buried at Mount Auburn Cemetery in Massachusetts. His wife, Annie Fields, was devastated and demanded friends not mention him and she cut herself off from others, her friend, writer Celia Thaxter told her, "don't shut yourself away... or you will die a thousand deaths of silence." Shortly after, she began a friendship with Sarah Orne Jewett, the two became companions for the rest of their lives.
In addition to his work as a publisher and essayist, Fields wrote poetry. A number of his works are collected in his book Ballads and Verses published in 1880; this volume contains the poem "The Ballad of the Tempest", which includes the famous lines: "We are lost!" the captain shouted As he staggered down the stairsHis chief works were the collection of sketches and essays entitled Underbrush and the chapters of reminiscence composing Yesterdays with Authors, in which he recorded his personal friendship with William Wordsworth, William Makepeace Thackeray, Charles Dickens, Nathaniel Hawthorne, Herman Melville and others. Annie Adams Fields wrote the biography Memoir of James T. Fields, by his Wife and Authors and Friends, which mentions him. James T. Fields was known in his lifetime as one of the most successful and shrewd book promoters, working at a time when bribery was typical in the publishing culture. Hawthorne said he owed his success as a writer to him: "I care more for your good opinion than for that of a host of critics, have excellent reason for so doing.
Sophia Amelia Peabody Hawthorne was an American painter and illustrator as well as the wife of author Nathaniel Hawthorne. She published her journals and various articles. Sophia Amelia Peabody was born September 21, 1809, in Salem and named after two of her aunts. Peabody's father was the dentist Nathaniel Peabody, while her mother was the strong Unitarian Elizabeth Palmer, she had three brothers. Her sister Elizabeth educated Sophia, focusing on geography, science and both American and European history. Sophia's health had been questionable since infancy, she was an occasional invalid. One possible cause was a fashionable treatment her dentist father prescribed for her teething pains that included mercury. In life, she was a frequent user of calomel and opium to relieve her pain and migraines; when doctors pronounced Sophia had no discernible illness, she sought the "rest therapy". She left for Cuba on December 1833, with her sister Mary. Sophia first met Nathaniel Hawthorne through Elizabeth; when the author came to visit once, Elizabeth is said to have reported, "He is handsomer than Lord Byron!"
When she urged Sophia to come downstairs to meet him, she laughed and said, "If he has come once he will come again". After meeting her, Nathaniel wrote the tale "Edward Randolph’s Portrait", which included an artist character inspired by Sophia Peabody named Alice Vane. Sophia had objected to marriage because of her health, they became secretly engaged by New Year's Day, 1839. Sophia gave two of her paintings to Hawthorne in 1840 on the first anniversary of their engagement. "Hawthorne valued the paintings so much that he hid them behind curtains to enjoy when he was alone". A wedding was postponed when Sophia fell ill. On July 9, 1842, five years after first meeting and Nathaniel were married at 13 West Street in Boston, the Peabody bookstore where Margaret Fuller held some of her "conversations"; the day before, Nathaniel wrote to James Freeman Clarke asking him to oversee the ceremony. "I am to be married to Miss Sophia Peabody tomorrow. Both were considered old for marriage, but the coupling proved happy for both of them.
After their wedding, they rented and moved into The Old Manse in Concord, Massachusetts. The next day, Hawthorne wrote to his sister, Louisa: "We are as happy as people can be, without making themselves ridiculous, might be happier. Together the couple etched their impressions of their new married life in the glass of a window in the study using Sophia's diamond ring: Man's accidents are God's purposes. Sophia A. Hawthorne 1843Nath Hawthorne This is his study The smallest twig leans clear against the sky Composed by my wife and written with her diamond Inscribed by my husband at sunset, April 3, 1843. In the Gold light. SAH On their first wedding anniversary, Nathaniel wrote to Sophia: "We were never so happy as now—never such wide capacity for happiness, yet overflowing with all that the day and every moment brings to us. Methinks this birth-day of our married life is like a cape, which we have now doubled and find a more infinite ocean of love stretching out before us." The Hawthornes' first child was born March 1844, after a difficult 10-hour delivery.
They named her Una, a reference to The Faerie Queene by Edmund Spenser, to the disapproval of many family members. Sophia wrote in her journal, "It was a great happiness to be able to put her to my breast and I thanked Heaven I was able to have the privilege of nursing her." John L. O'Sullivan served as her godfather and gave her a Newfoundland dog named Leo when she was two months old. Nathaniel wrote that fatherhood brought "a sober and serious kind of happiness", the family began to worry about money. Sophia had a recurrence of her migraines after Una's birth; the family was soon kicked out of the Old Manse, left with only 10 dollars. They moved in with family on Herbert Street in Salem while Nathaniel awaited a government job appointment. In March, 1846, Sophia moved to 77 Carver Street in Boston to be closer to family and Dr. William Wesselhœft while pregnant with her second child; the couple's son Julian was born in Boston on May 22, 1846. His father wrote of the news to a sister, "A small troglodyte made his appearance here at ten minutes to six o'clock this morning, who claims to be your nephew".
The family moved to Lenox, it was there, in a red farmhouse they rented, that Sophia gave birth to her third child, Rose. Two months prior to giving birth, Sophia claimed she instinctively knew it would be a girl and chose the name Rose, she was born on May 1851, about a month after the publication of The House of the Seven Gables. Sophia went into labor early. Few of Sophia's letters from her courtship and early marriage survive. In June 1853, Nathaniel alludes to the destruction of his letters in his journal: "I burned great heaps of old letters and other papers, a little while ago, preparatory to going to England. Among them were hundreds of Sophia's maiden letters". Hawthorne in 1862 praised his wife: "She is the most sensible woman I knew in my life, much superior to me in general talent, of fine cultivation." Sophia had a close friendship with Annie Adams Fields, wife of the publisher James Thom
Twice-Told Tales is a short story collection in two volumes by Nathaniel Hawthorne. The first was published in the spring of 1837, the second in 1842; the stories had all been published in magazines and annuals, hence the name. Hawthorne was encouraged by friend Horatio Bridge to collect these anonymous stories. Many had been published in The Token, edited by Samuel Griswold Goodrich; when the works became popular, Bridge revealed Hawthorne as the author in a review he published in the Boston Post. The title, Twice-Told Tales, was based on a line from William Shakespeare's The Life and Death of King John: "Life is as tedious as a twice-told tale, / Vexing the dull ear of a drowsy man." The quote referenced may be Hawthorne's way of acknowledging a belief that many of his stories were ironic retellings of familiar tropes. The book was published by the American Stationers' Company on March 6, 1837. Hawthorne had help in promoting the book from Elizabeth Peabody, she sent copies of the collection to William Wordsworth as well as to Horace Mann, hoping that Mann could get Hawthorne a job writing stories for schoolchildren.
After publication, Hawthorne asked a friend to check with the local bookstore to see how it was selling. After noting the initial expenses for publishing had not been met, he complained: "Surely the book was puffed enough to meet with sale. What the devil's the matter?" By June, between 600 and 700 copies were sold but sales were soon halted by the Panic of 1837 and the publisher went out of business within a year. On October 11, 1841, Hawthorne signed a contract with publisher James Munroe to issue a new, two-volume edition of Twice-Told Tales with 21 more works than the previous edition. 1,000 copies were published in December of that year with a cover price of $2.25. Hawthorne complained. Editor John L. O'Sullivan suggested Hawthorne buy back unsold copies of Twice-Told Tales so that they could be reissued through a different publisher. At the time of this suggestion, 1844, there were 600 unsold copies of the book. Hawthorne lamented, "I wish Heaven would make me rich enough to buy the copies for the purpose of burning them."After the success of The Scarlet Letter in 1850, Twice-Told Tales was reissued with the help of publisher James Thomas Fields.
In a new preface, Hawthorne wrote that the stories "may be understood and felt by anybody, who will give himself the trouble to read it, will take up the book in a proper mood." About a week after the publication of the book, Hawthorne sent a copy to his classmate from Bowdoin College, the poet Henry Wadsworth Longfellow. Longfellow had given a speech at their commencement calling for notable contributions to American literature. By this time, Longfellow was becoming popular as a poet. Hawthorne wrote to him, "We were not, it is true, so well acquainted at college, that I can plead an absolute right to inflict my'twice-told' tediousness upon you. In his 14-page critique in the April issue of the North American Review, Longfellow praised the book as a work of genius. "To this little book", Longfellow wrote, "we would say,'Live sweet, sweet book.' It comes from the hand of a man of genius." For his review of the second edition, Longfellow noted that Hawthorne's writing "is characterized by a large proportion of feminine elements and tenderness of feeling, exceeding purity of mind."
He referred to the collection's "The Gentle Boy" as "on the whole, the finest thing he wrote". The two authors would build a strong friendship. Reviews were positive. Park Benjamin, Sr. said that the author was "a rose baptized in dew". For the Boston Quarterly Review, Orestes Brownson noted Hawthorne's writings as "a pure and living stream of manly thought and feeling, which characterizes always the true man, the Christian, the republican and the patriot." After reading Twice-Told Tales, Herman Melville wrote to Evert Augustus Duyckinck that the stories weren't meaty enough. "Their deeper meanings are worthy of a Brahmin. Still there is something lacking—a good deal lacking to the plump sphericity of the man. What is that?—He does'nt patronise the butcher—he needs roast-beef, done rare."Edgar Allan Poe wrote a well-known two-part review of the second edition of Twice-Told Tales, published in the April and May 1842 issues of Graham's Magazine. Poe praised Hawthorne's originality as "remarkable".
He nonetheless criticized Hawthorne's reliance on allegory and the didactic, something he called a "heresy" to American literature. He did, express praise at the use of short stories and said they "rivet the attention" of the reader. Poe admitted, "The style of Hawthorne is purity itself, his tone is singularly effective--wild, thoughtful, in full accordance with his themes." He concluded that, "we look upon him as one of the few men of indisputable genius to whom our country has as yet given birth."The Grolier Club named Twice-Told Tales the most influential book of 1837. In 1963, United Artists released a horror trilogy film titled Twice-Told Tales, with content loosely adapted from three Hawthorne stories; the three stories were: "Dr. Heidegger's Experiment,", one of the "Twice-Told Tales"; the film is regarded as a classic of sorts in the field of low-budget Hollywood horror, with Vincent Price, Sebastian Cabot, Beverly Garland delivering good performances. Bleiler, Everett; the Checklist of Fantastic
Ticknor and Fields
Ticknor and Fields was an American publishing company based in Boston, Massachusetts. In 1832 William Davis Ticknor and John Allen began a small bookselling business which operated out of the Old Corner Bookstore located on Washington and School streets in Boston, Massachusetts; the space had been used by publishers Carter & Hendee, who hired a teenaged James Thomas Fields as an apprentice. When Ticknor and Allen began their business, Fields joined them. A year Allen withdrew from the firm, Ticknor continued business under William D. Ticknor and Company; when John Reed and Fields became partners in 1845, the imprint was changed to Ticknor and Fields. Reed retired in 1854 and the imprint was renamed as Ticknor and Fields, which became well known. During these years the firm purchased and printed the Atlantic Monthly and the North American Review. In 1842 Ticknor became the first American publisher to pay foreign writers for their works, beginning with a check to Alfred Tennyson; these were prosperous years for the firm, they compiled an impressive list of authors, Horatio Alger, Lydia Maria Child, Charles Dickens, Ralph Waldo Emerson, Nathaniel Hawthorne, Oliver Wendell Holmes, Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, James Russell Lowell, Harriet Beecher Stowe, Alfred Tennyson, Henry David Thoreau, Mark Twain, John Greenleaf Whittier.
The Old Corner Bookstore had become the publishing meeting place for these authors. Many writers visited many times a week; the success of the firm was in part to the matched but varied talents of Ticknor and Fields. Ticknor gave his attention to the financial and manufacturing departments while Fields focused on literary relations and social aspects of the business, it was during these years that Ticknor and Fields developed a close relationship with the Riverside Press, founded by Henry Oscar Houghton in 1852. In the spring of 1864, Ticknor accompanied Nathaniel Hawthorne on a trip to restore the author's health, at the urging of his wife Sophia Hawthorne. During the trip, Ticknor became ill with pneumonia. Hawthorne wrote to Fields that "our friend Ticknor is suffering under a billious attack... He had seemed uncomfortable, but not to an alarming degree." Ticknor died on the morning of April 10, 1864. Upon Ticknor's sudden and unexpected death, interests in the firm were carried on by his son Howard M. Ticknor.
During these years the business had outgrown the Old Corner Bookstore and Fields, now in charge of the company, was no longer interested in the retail store. He sold the Old Corner Bookstore on November 12, 1864, moved the publishing house to 124 Tremont Street; the firm began to publish Our Young Folks edited by Howard M. Ticknor; the younger Ticknor soon retired and, in 1868, the firm was reorganized as Fields, Osgood, & Co. Benjamin Holt Ticknor, son of William Davis Ticknor, was admitted at a partner in 1870. On New Year's Day, 1871, Fields announced his retirement from the business at a small gathering of friends, intending to focus on his own writing. On January 2, 1871, the remaining partners bought out Fields's share of the company for $120,000 and it was renamed James R. Osgood & Co. Osgood, who considered Fields a mentor, attracted substantial new talent and published new works by Thomas Bailey Aldrich, Bret Harte, William Dean Howells, Henry James, Sarah Orne Jewett, Lucy Larcom, Elizabeth Stuart Phelps Ward, Celia Thaxter, Charles Dudley Warner.
The firm invested in heliotype printing technology, various periodicals, established a New York office. Within a few years, the company was in financial difficulty and Osgood and B. H. Ticknor were forced to sell off various assets, including many stereotype plates. By December 1878, they were forced to merge with Hurd & Houghton and became Houghton, Co. Henry Oscar Houghton became a partner in the deal; the partnership would last until 1880, when Osgood left to form a second J. R. Company. Houghton's company, now Houghton, Co, retained the rights to the Tickner and Fields backlist; the second J. R. Osgood and Co. was taken over by Benjamin Holt Ticknor in 1885 under the name Ticknor and Company. Ticknor and Company operated until 1889 when it became part of Houghton, Co. In 1908 the name was changed to Houghton Mifflin Company. In 1979, Houghton Mifflin revived the Fields name as and imprint. Chester Kerr was the editor from its reestablishment to 1984. Fiske, John.. Appletons' Cyclopædia of American Biography, New York: D. Appleton and Company Ticknor, Caroline..
Hawthorne and His Publisher, Boston: Houghton Mifflin Company - via the Internet Archive American National Biography Online, retrieved June 25, 2008 The LUCILE Project, retrieved June 25, 2008 Ticknor and Fields listing at Biblio.com Ticknor and Fields records, 1839-1881, Houghton Library, Harvard University
Fable is a literary genre: a succinct fictional story, in prose or verse, that features animals, legendary creatures, inanimate objects, or forces of nature that are anthropomorphized and that illustrates or leads to a particular moral lesson, which may at the end be added explicitly as a pithy maxim or saying. A fable differs from a parable in that the latter excludes animals, inanimate objects, forces of nature as actors that assume speech or other powers of humankind. Usage has not always been so distinguished. In the King James Version of the New Testament, "μῦθος" was rendered by the translators as "fable" in the First Epistle to Timothy, the Second Epistle to Timothy, the Epistle to Titus and the First Epistle of Peter. A person who writes fables is a fabulist; the fable is one of the most enduring forms of folk literature, spread abroad, modern researchers agree, less by literary anthologies than by oral transmission. Fables can be found in the literature of every country; the varying corpus denoted Aesopica or Aesop's Fables includes most of the best-known western fables, which are attributed to the legendary Aesop, supposed to have been a slave in ancient Greece around 550 BCE.
When Babrius set down fables from the Aesopica in verse for a Hellenistic Prince "Alexander," he expressly stated at the head of Book II that this type of "myth" that Aesop had introduced to the "sons of the Hellenes" had been an invention of "Syrians" from the time of "Ninos" and Belos. Epicharmus of Kos and Phormis are reported as having been among the first to invent comic fables. Many familiar fables of Aesop include "The Crow and the Pitcher", "The Tortoise and the Hare" and "The Lion and the Mouse". In ancient Greek and Roman education, the fable was the first of the progymnasmata—training exercises in prose composition and public speaking—wherein students would be asked to learn fables, expand upon them, invent their own, use them as persuasive examples in longer forensic or deliberative speeches; the need of instructors to teach, students to learn, a wide range of fables as material for their declamations resulted in their being gathered together in collections, like those of Aesop.
African oral culture has a rich story-telling tradition. As they have for thousands of years, people of all ages in Africa continue to interact with nature, including plants and earthly structures such as rivers and mountains. Grandparents enjoy enormous respect in African societies and fill the new role of story-telling during retirement years. Children and, to some extent, adults are mesmerized by good story-tellers when they become animated in their quest to tell a good fable. Joel Chandler Harris wrote African-American fables in the Southern context of slavery under the name of Uncle Remus, his stories of the animal characters Brer Rabbit, Brer Fox, Brer Bear are modern examples of African-American story-telling, this though should not transcend critiques and controversies as to whether or not Uncle Remus was a racist or apologist for slavery. The Disney movie Song of the South introduced many of the stories to the public and others not familiar with the role that storytelling played in the life of cultures and groups without training in speaking, writing, or the cultures to which they had been relocated to from world practices of capturing Africans and other indigenous populations to provide slave labor to colonized countries.
India has a rich tradition of fabulous novels explainable by the fact that the culture derives traditions and learns qualities from natural elements. Most of the gods are some form of animals with ideal qualities. Hundreds of fables were composed in ancient India during the first millennium BCE as stories within frame stories. Indian fables have a mixed cast of animals; the dialogues are longer than in fables of Aesop and witty as the animals try to outwit one another by trickery and deceit. In Indian fables, man is not superior to the animals; the tales are comical. The Indian fable adhered to the universally known traditions of the fable; the best examples of the fable in India are the Jataka tales. These included Vishnu Sarma's Panchatantra, the Hitopadesha and The Vampire, Syntipas' Seven Wise Masters, which were collections of fables that were influential throughout the Old World. Ben E. Perry has argued controversially that some of the Buddhist Jataka tales and some of the fables in the Panchatantra may have been influenced by similar Greek and Near Eastern ones.
Earlier Indian epics such as Vyasa's Mahabharata and Valmiki's Ramayana contained fables within the main story as side stories or back-story. The most famous folk stories from the Near East were the One Thousand and One Nights known as the Arabian Nights. Fables had a further long tradition through the Middle Ages, became part of European high literature. During the 17th century, the French fabulist Jean de La Fontaine saw the soul of the fable in the moral — a rule of behavior. Starting with the Aesopian pattern, La Fontaine set out to satirize the court, the church, the rising bourgeoisie, indeed the entire human scene of his time. La Fontaine's model was subsequently emulated by England's John Gay. In