[Boston—Saturday, 25 July 1868]

July 25. Weather muggy and unattractive in town. Hoped to go to the sea-side but it rained heavily & was J.’s Club day.

J. went out to see Lowell last night. As he passed Longfellow’s door “Trap” the dog, was half asleep apparently on the lawn, but hearing a foot-step he leaped up and seeing who it was became overjoyed, leaped upon J. & covered his hands with caresses. He stayed some time playing with him. Lowell was alone in his library, looking into an empty fire-place & smoking a pipe. He has been in Newport for a week but was delighted to return to find his “own sponge hanging on its nail” and to his books. He had become quite morbid because while J. was away, a smaller sum than usual was sent him for his last poem. He thought it a delicate way of saying they wished to drop him. He was annoyed at the thought of having left out of his article on Dryden one of the finest points, he thought, that was making Dryden to appear the Rubens of literature, which he appears to him to be.

Lowell is a man deeply pervaded with fine discontents. I do not believe the most favorable circumstances would improve him. Success, of wh. he has a very small share considering his deserts, (for his books have a narrow circulation) would make him gayer & happier, whether so wise a man I cannot but doubt.

He wears a chivalric tender manner to his wife.


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