Longfellow’s Relationship with Nature Essay

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A love of nature was one of the most well-known characteristics of the Romanticism movement. Most of the Romantic writers held a common belief that man should rely on natural objects and sensations instead of creating man-made, unnatural things to replace what is natural. These literary reformers wrote about the beauty, peace, relief, and sanctity that they saw in nature. One of the most famous, beloved American poets of Romanticism was Henry Wadsworth Longfellow. His numerous excursions to Europe exposed him to European literary styles, particularly German Romanticism, adding a fresh twist on American-style poetry. In his poems “To the River Charles,” “Nature,” and “Hymn to the Night,” Longfellow expounds on how nature guides and comforts …show more content…
She and Henry were married for only four years (Stewart). After completing his studies in Europe, Longfellow returned to America and became a professor at Harvard University in 1834 (Stewart). He published Voices of the Night, his first collection of poetry, in 1839 (Stewart). After the death of Mary Storer Potter, Longfellow eventually met Frances “Fanny” Appleton during one of his trips to Europe (Stewart). After several years, they were married, and her father, Nathan Appleton, gave them Craigie House as a wedding present, the estate with a view of the Charles River (Stewart). This new home eventually became the place for well-known writers such as Nathaniel Hawthorne, Charles Sumner, Ralph Waldo Emerson, and Julia Ward Howe to meet (Stewart). Longfellow quit his career at Harvard in 1854 to allow more focus on his writing (Stewart). Henry and Fanny had a successful, happy marriage and had six children together (Stewart). However, in 1861, tragedy struck Longfellow once again when Fanny burned to death (Liukkonen). Longfellow received several scars in an attempt to save her by throwing a mat on her, but did so in vain (Liukkonen). For the remainder of his life, he lived in Cambridge, but made a final trip to Europe in 1868, meeting with Alfred, Lord Tennyson and Queen Victoria (Liukkonen). His final poems usually concerned Christianity and, interestingly, a desire to create American mythology (Liukkonen).

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