Frases de James Russell Lowell

James Russell Lowell Foto
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James Russell Lowell

Fecha de nacimiento: 22. Febrero 1819
Fecha de muerte: 12. Agosto 1891

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James Russell Lowell fue un poeta, crítico, editor y diplomático estadounidense, del movimiento romántico. Se le asocia con los llamados Fireside Poets. En 1877 fue nombrado embajador en España.

Lowell se graduó en el Harvard College de la Universidad de Harvard, en 1838, pese a su reputación problemática. Posteriormente cursó estudios de Derecho en la Harvard Law School. Publicó su primera colección de poesía en 1841 y contrajo matrimonio con Maria White en 1844. Ambos se involucraron pronto en la causa abolicionista; el escritor expresó sus pensamientos sobre el particular en su poesía y trabajó como editor en un periódico abolicionista de Filadelfia, Pennsylvania. El matrimonio tuvo varios hijos, aunque sólo uno sobrevivió a la niñez. Tras regresar a Cambridge, fue uno de los fundadores del periódido llamado The Pioneer, del que sólo salieron tres números. Lowell alcanzó notoriedad en 1848 con la publicación de A Fable for Critics, largo poema satírico contra escritores y poetas contemporáneos. Ese mismo año publicó The Biglow Papers, que incrementó su fama. Posteriormente publicaría más ensayos y libros poéticos.

Maria White murió en 1853 y Lowell, un año después, entró a trabajar como profesor de lenguas en Harvard, aunque efectuó un largo viaje por Europa antes de ocupar su puesto, que conservó durante veinte años. Contrajo segundas nupcias con Frances Dunlap en 1857. Ese año se convirtió en editor del The Atlantic Monthly. Veinte años más tarde recibió su primer cargo político, el de embajador en España. Luego lo sería del Reino Unido. Pasó sus últimos años en Cambridge, Massachusetts, el mismo estado donde había nacido. Allí murió en 1891.

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Frases James Russell Lowell

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„Once to every man and nation comes the moment to decide,
In the strife of Truth with Falsehood, for the good or evil side;“

—  James Russell Lowell
Context: Once to every man and nation comes the moment to decide, In the strife of Truth with Falsehood, for the good or evil side; Some great cause, God's new Messiah, offering each the bloom or blight, Parts the goats upon the left hand, and the sheep upon the right, And the choice goes by forever 'twixt that darkness and that light. St. 5

„God, give us Peace! not such as lulls to sleep,
But sword on thigh and brow with purpose knit!“

—  James Russell Lowell
Context: God, give us Peace! not such as lulls to sleep, But sword on thigh and brow with purpose knit! And let our Ship of State to harbor sweep, Her ports all up, her battle lanterns lit, And her leashed thunders gathering for their leap. The Washers of the Shroud, st. 20

„The Holy Supper is kept, indeed,
In whatso we share with another's need,—“

—  James Russell Lowell
Context: The Holy Supper is kept, indeed, In whatso we share with another's need,— Not that which we give, but what we share,— For the gift without the giver is bare; Who bestows himself with his alms feeds three,— Himself, his hungering neighbor, and me. Pt. II, st. 8

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„Not only around our infancy
Doth heaven with all its splendors lie“

—  James Russell Lowell
Context: Not only around our infancy Doth heaven with all its splendors lie; Daily, with souls that cringe and plot, We Sinais climb and know it not. Prelude to Pt. I, st. 2

„In the scales of the destinies brawn will never weigh so much as brain.“

—  James Russell Lowell
Context: In the scales of the destinies brawn will never weigh so much as brain. Our healing is not in the storm or in the whirlwind, it is not in monarchies, or aristocracies, or democracies, but will be revealed by the still small voice that speaks to the conscience and the heart, prompting us to a wider and wiser humanity.

„Democracy in its best sense is merely the letting in of light and air.“

—  James Russell Lowell
Context: All free governments, whatever their name, are in reality governments by public opinion, and it is on the quality of this public opinion that their prosperity depends. It is, therefore, their first duty to purify the element from which they draw the breath of life. With the growth of democracy grows also the fear, if not the danger, that this atmosphere may be corrupted with poisonous exhalations from lower and more malarious levels, and the question of sanitation becomes more instant and pressing. Democracy in its best sense is merely the letting in of light and air.

„I have hinted that what people are afraid of in democracy is less the thing itself than what they conceive to be its necessary adjuncts and consequences.“

—  James Russell Lowell
Context: I have hinted that what people are afraid of in democracy is less the thing itself than what they conceive to be its necessary adjuncts and consequences. It is supposed to reduce all mankind to a dead level of mediocrity in character and culture, to vulgarize men's conceptions of life, and therefore their code of morals, manners, and conduct — to endanger the rights of property and possession. But I believe that the real gravamen of the charges lies in the habit it has of making itself generally disagreeable by asking the Powers that Be at the most inconvenient moment whether they are the powers that ought to be. If the powers that be are in a condition to give a satisfactory answer to this inevitable question, they need feel in no way discomfited by it.

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