Saturday, November 13, 2010

John Greenleaf Whittier

I've been digging around in old books online.
Man, that's fun.
Whittier is one poet I pulled out of the archives.
“For all sad words of tongue or pen,
the saddest are these: ‘It might have been’”
— John Greenleaf Whittier

John Greenleaf Whittier
(b. 17 Dec 1807 – d. 7 Sep 1892)
Quaker and bachelor.
Elizabeth Whittier mentioned in his works is his sister.

(NOTE: I think the "best of a book " quote at wiki belongs to Oliver Wendell Holmes, not Whittier. I'm digging up stuff on Holmes too.)

The above Whittier quote is from the poem:
Maud Muller
There are illustrated versions available online.

1869 version (Has an epub.)
NOTE: Scroll down at google books for more versions of the "same" book.
Sometimes they are different, sometimes not.
I look at them all.

Maud got significantly homelier one year and was looking in the wrong direction (1869).

But by 1879, she was back to her normal self (1866).

Another quote I like:
“The windows of my soul I throw
Wide open to the sun.”
— John Greenleaf Whittier

That comes from the poem:
My Psalm

The poems are very long, so I'm not going to post them here.
I then found the COMPLETE works of Whittier online.
That has everything, including My Psalm and Maud Muller.

Just paging thru documents, I liked "Red Riding Hood."
Here's just a snippet of it.

Complete Works 1894
The complete poetical works of John Greenleaf Whittier
Houghton, Mifflin company, 1894 - American poetry - 542 pages
Best version as far as the text goes.
Elizabeth's poems are in here.
Even the library date stamps are interesting to me.

Complete Works 1895
1895 but still 542 pages.
This one has a portrait of Whittier and a different house image.

There is an illustrated volume (less pages).
Poetical Works Illustrated 1885
The poetical works of John Greenleaf Whittier
Houghton, Mifflin, 1885 - 336 pages

(NOTE: I put poem together with image using Paint Shop Pro.)

A few more illustrations that caught my attention as I was looking thru the document.

A Smile Sadder than Tears:
(Poem: The Witch's Daughter)

The Cloud of Her Soul Was Lifted:
(Poem: The Changeling)

Writings of - 1888
The Writings of John Greenleaf Whittier
John Greenleaf Whittier, Elizabeth Hussey Whittier
Houghton, Mifflin, 1888
This one has some info on his sister.

The Works of - Vol. I
The works of John Greenleaf Whittier ([c1892])
I think it is Vol. I of 7 but it is 490-4 pages.
Not very good quality, but there is a sample of Whittier's writing.

Henry Wadsworth Longfellow (died 1882) and John Greenleaf Whittier (died 1892) were born in the same year, 1807.

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