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observer. We feel that there is an occult relation between the very worm, the crawling scorpion and man. I am moved to strange sympathies. I say, I will listen to this invitation. I will be a Naturalist.”
In December, 1833, in his lecture “ The Relation of Man to the Globe,” he spoke of the recent discovery of a fact the “most sublime,” that man is no upstart in Creation, but has been prophesied in Nature for a thousand thousand ages before he appeared; that from times incalculably remote there has been a progressive preparation for him, an effort (as physiologists say) to produce him.
7. In 1835 Lyell's book on Geology came out and was read by Emerson, in which the ideas of Lamarck, first announced in 1800, were mentioned. Mr. Emerson probably came on them there. These doctrines of Variation in animals through environment and “ effort,” and the transmission of these peculiarities, were at first ridiculed or neglected, but are now recognized as equally necessary in Evolution with Darwin's Natural Selection. Darwin's Origin of Species was not published until 1859.
In 1836, in a lecture given in Boston on “ The Humanity of Science,” Mr. Emerson
alluded to Lamarck as “ finding a monad of organic life common to every animal, and becoming a worm, a mastiff or a man, according to circumstances. He says to the caterpillar, How dost thou, brother ? Please God you shall yet be a philosopher.”
Lastly. In his Essay “ Poetry and Imagination,” made up from lectures, some of which were given early, Mr. Emerson credits John Hunter with “ the electric word arrested and progressive development, indicating the way upward from the invisible protoplasm to the highest organism which gave the poetic key to Natural Science.”
Mr. Conway after long search found interesting evolutionary ideas only in a note to Palmers' edition of Hunter's works, but not this phrase.
Mr. Emerson, in some notes on the sketch of John Hunter in the Biographie Générale (Paris, 1858), speaks of these words as found by Richard Owen in Hunter's Manuscripts, and in 1866 wrote in his Journal:
“ The idea which haunted John Hunter, that
• The writer in the Biographie Générale, dwelling on a likeness between the ideas of Hunter and Harvey, says : “ Cette filiation se retrouve également dans un autre ordre
life was independent of organization protecting and re-creating the parts and varying its means of action, he never succeeded in expressing but in his museum.” Possibly Owen himself said this to Emerson, as the word progressive does not appear in the Biographie Générale notice.
From books, and from men, alike in the laboratory, the counting-room, on the farm, he eagerly collected his material — “dull, despised facts” which he found were “ pearls and rubies to his discourse.” “ They do not know what to do with their facts. I know ;” for behind each was a law of spirit as well as of matter, in however humble guise. The great significance of Evolution was its warrant with him. After leaving his church he found that “the man of to-day scarcely recognizes the man of yesterday,” yet the high aim in both was the same — “ as the shellfish crawls out of its beautiful but d'idées dans cette phrase remarquable que M. Owen a trouvée dans les manuscrits de Hunter, et qui contient en germe, quoique avec une expression très-peu nette, les théories actuelles sur l'arrêt de développement ;” and then gives a quotation of some length, the substance of which may be thus translated : “If we take a series of animals from the most imperfect to the most perfect, we there shall probably find an imperfect animal corresponding to each stage of the development of the most perfect."
stony cave because it no longer admits of its growth.” Now he spoke on week days to hearers, who did not come from custom, on the same high themes, but in freer language and with richer illustration, and found ready acceptance from the young in years or spirit. Those who shared the general social, intellectual, and spiritual awakening that came from various causes to New England at that time, were called Transcendentalists. “I told Mr. M— " said Mr. Emerson, “ that he need not consult the Germans, but if he wished at any time to know what the Transcendentalists believed, he might simply omit what in his own mind he added [to his simple perception] from the tradition, and the rest would be Transcendentalism.”
In 1837 Mr. Emerson made his notable address, “ The American Scholar,” to the Phi Beta Kappa Society at Cambridge. It was well received and advanced his repute as a thinker and writer. But the next year, when, invited by the graduating class at the Divinity School, he made up his mind to tell them bravely that they could well spare tradition, and the soul might regard any mediation between itself and the living God as impertinent, he had the old
conditions to deal with, — the presence, alert for heresy, of men pledged and committed to the tradition. These pained or outraged guardians of the flock remonstrated, or fiercely disclaimed complicity in this occurrence.
The stern old war-gods shook their heads,
The rash word boded ill to all. Mr. Emerson declined to argue his case. The thought given to his earnest prayer he had delivered, and he withdrew, leaving it to do its work. “As like a sunbeam he glided into the conclave, so like a sunbeam he glided out.” Returning to his woodlands to contemplate the daily miracle of Nature, he said with St. Augustine, Wrangle who will, I will work. His poem “ Uriel,” if carefully read, will be seen to be an exact but sublimed account of this experience. Uriel, archangel of the sun, was chosen as one who from a central position sees all things in their ordered courses, where those in eccentric positions see perturbations. Yet Emerson did not lack defenders who then could see that he was no Atheist, - denied personality to God “because it was too little, not too much.” As for the Pantheism of his “ Universal Mind,” their