JEFFERS ON READER by Francis Coleman -- Ed. Rosenberger
Kirkus Star


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A Treasury of Writings About Thomas Jefferson indeed, this is a delightful, stimulating collection of comments on a great and complex man... The editor has made a fine selection of contributors to the fine pencil sketch, and sometimes incisive etching, of the diverse radiations of the Jeffersonian sun. He has pointedly included the observations of a number of Jefferson's contemporaries, from Daniel Webster to two proper Bostonians, to the foreman and a slave at Monticello. Poetry, calumnious, as in the case of William Cullen Bryant's thirteen year old outpouring and adolatrous, as that of the Victorian Hezekiah Butterworth, (whose name alone is sufficient reason for inclusion!), contemporary- Karl Shapiro, Allen Tate and Archihald Macleish among them- are included. Contemporary prose includes a section of Dumas Malone's fine work in progress and Dixon Wecter's worthy essay. The book is divided into various subject sections which deal with Jefferson the individual, his Monticello, his widespread interest, his political philosophy, his qualities as a leader in his own time and for all time. John Dewey, Henry Adams, Lord Macauley, Abraham Lincoln, Franklin D. Roosevelt...the list continues, but the book only grows in stature through the varying viewpoints and never deteriorates into a repetitive, too inclusive kind of anthology. In his introduction, the editor gives counsel for further reading, and one of the great merits of this book is that it will draw those who have read little to read more about a great man in a great era. Fifteen life portraits.

Pub Date: Jan. 30th, 1952
Publisher: Dutton