- Project Runeberg -  America of the Fifties: Letters of Fredrika Bremer /
26

(1924) [MARC] Author: Fredrika Bremer
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Full resolution (TIFF) - On this page / på denna sida - Brooklyn, November 5, 1849

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it to show to his friends and admirers in Sweden.
Washington Irving invited me and my friends to
his house for the following day, and in the forenoon
I paid him a visit. His house or villa, which
stands on the banks of the Hudson, resembles a
peaceful idyll; thick masses of ivy clothe one
portion of the white walls and garland the eaves. Fat
cows graze in a meadow right before the window.
Within, the room seemed full of summer warmth
and peace, and gave the appearance of something
living. One felt that a cordial spirit, full of the
best sentiments of the soul, lived and worked
there. Washington Irving, although possessed of
the politeness of a man of the world, and with
abundant natural good temper, has nevertheless
some of that natural shyness which so easily
attaches itself to the author of the better and more
refined type. The poetical mind, through its
intercourse with the divine spheres, is often brought
into disharmony with clumsy earthly realities. To
these belong especially the visits of strangers and
the forms of social intercourse, such as we employ
in good society on earth, and which are shells that
must be cracked if one would get at the juice of
either kernel or fruit. But that is a difficulty for
which one often has no time. A portrait which
hangs in Washington Irving’s drawing-room, and
which was painted many years ago, represents him

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