The complete writings of John Greenleaf Whittier
Book format: An electronic version of a printed book that can be read on a computer or handheld device designed specifically for this purpose.
Publisher: Date:8/5/2009 - General Books LLC
By: John Greenleaf Whittier
Excerpt from book: TALES AND SKETCHES MY SUMMER WITH DR. SINGLETARY. A FRAGMENT. CHAPTER I. Dr. Singletary is dead ! Well, what of it? All who live die sooner or later: and pray who was Dr. Singletary, that his case should claim particular attention ? Why, in the first place, Dr. Singletary, as a man born to our common inheritance of joy and sorrow, earthly instincts and heavenward aspirations, o.ur brother in sin and suffering, wisdom and folly, love, and pride, and vanity, has a claim upon the universal sympathy. Besides, whatever the living man may have been, death has now invested him with its great solemnity. He is with the immortals. For him the dark curtain has been lifted. The weaknesses, the follies, and the repulsive mental and personal idiosyncrasies which may have kept him without the sphere of our respect and sympathy have now fallen off, and he stands radiant with the transfiguration of eternity, God's child, our recognized and acknowledged brother. Dr. Singletary is dead. He was an old man, and seldom, of latter years, ventured beyond the precincts of his neighborhood. He was a single man, and his departure has broken no circle of family affection. He was little known to the public, and is now little missed. The village newspaper simply appended to its announcement of his decease the customary post mortem compliment, " Greatly respected by all who knew him:" and in the annual catalogue of his alma mater an asterisk has been added to his name, over which perchance some gray-haired survivor of his class may breathe a sigh, as he calls up the image of the fresh-faced, bright-eyed boy, who, aspiring, hopeful, vigorous, started with him on the journey of life, a sigh rather for himself than for its unconscious awakener. But, a few years have passed since he lef...